HUNGRY FOR RESULTS?

By John Thompson, STEPS Centre Food and Agriculture Convenor In advance of the UN Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Summit in New York on 20-22 September, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) released new figures on the number of people worldwide who suffer chronic hunger in 2010. The latest estimates, which will soon be…

PUBLISHED TODAY – NEW BOOK ON RICE BIOFORTIFICATION BY SALLY BROOKS

The latest in the STEPS Centre’s Pathways to Sustainability book series is published today – Rice Biofortification: Lessons for Global Science and Development by Sally Brooks. Biofortification, the enrichment of staple food crops with essential micronutrients such as iron, zinc and vitamin A – has been heralded as a uniquely sustainable solution to the problem…

THE LIMITS OF SOUND SCIENCE: PUBLIC CONSULTATIONS, ACCOUNTABILITY AND FALL OUT AT THE FOOD STANDARDS AGENCY

By John Thompson and Erik Millstone Co-Convenors, Food and Agriculture Domain, The STEPS Centre Brian Wynne, Professor of Science Studies at CSEC and at the ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics (CESAGen) and a member of the STEPS Centre International Advisory Board, announced on the 31st of May 2010 that he was…

A BRITISH FOOD REVOLUTION?

By Julia Day The UK government has today called for an “radical rethink” of food production in the country. And unsurprisingly, genetically modified crops are at the centre of the plans. Hilary Benn, the UK environment minister, suggested GM farming could help to increase Britain’s crop production as he set out plans to make the…

GM CROPS: TEN YEARS ON

By IAN SCOONES, STEPS Centre Co-director A decade ago there was much hope – and even more hype – about the potentials of GM crops. GM crops were going to feed the world, solving issues of poverty and development, seemingly at a stroke. Technologies for dealing with drought or nutrient deficits were, it was claimed,…

DANGEROUS IDEAS IN DEVELOPMENT: GM CROPS AND THE GLOBAL FOOD CRISIS

By JULIA DAY, STEPS Centre member Genetically-modified (GM) crops are sometimes trumpeted as the solution to the global food crisis, and the route to transforming developing agriculture and reducing poverty for millions. For others they spell doom and disaster, bringing with them unacceptable environmental and safety risks. But what is the reality? Over the past…

WORLD FOOD DAY: £26 BILLION PACKAGE NEEDED

By JULIA DAY, STEPS Centre member As today’s World Food Day dawns, new research reveals £26-£48 billion package is needed to alleviate seasonal hunger – a fraction of the proposed $700 billion package to bail out Wall Street. Food issues are likely to get higher profile coverage today than preceeding World Food Days thanks to…

GM FOOD: SAFETY, SECURITY AND SOVEREIGNTY

STEPS member Adrian Ely has written an article on the regulation of genetically modified foods for “Food Ethics”, the magazine of the Food Ethics Council. Drawing on and extending upon work which focussed on the European food safety governance system (carried out with a team also including STEPS members Andy Stirling and Erik Millstone), Adrian…

RISKING REGULATORY CAPTURE AT THE UK’S FOOD STANDARDS AGENCY

By JULIA DAY, STEPS Centre member “The delivery of safe food and health governance is challenging and contested, and knowledge and institutions independent of vested interests are essential for public health,” write Erik Millstone – STEPS Centre food and agrciulture co-convenor – and Tim Lang in this week’s Lancet. But how independent of vested interests…

UN FOOD SUMMIT: “ENOUGH RHETORIC, MORE ACTION”

By JULIA DAY STEPS Centre member News agency Reuters has put together a package of the lastest updates coming out of Rome this morning, including work on an emergency plan to ease hunger; UN agencies signing an agreement on Africa food output; and wide consensus on need to reduce trade barriers. By Stephen Brown and…