the main challenges to alternative food networks

Alternative food networks (AFNs) aim to help connect food consumers with food producers in the hope that the resocialization of consumption will drive change within the food system. Such changes are generally geared towards promoting social and environmental sustainability. However, even with holistic intentions, alternative food networks [AFNs] are not without their challenges, limitations, and …

why is interest in the alternative food movement growing?

As the world's population grows and alternative values and interests come to light, the name- and facelessness of current approaches to agricultural production have become a point of contention and are less and representative of contemporary societal values (1). As a response, localism has become a standard component of emerging social and technological trends. Localism …

the advantages and disadvantages of ecolabels

Product labeling is a tool for promoting markets with specific characteristics. The labels provide information about those characteristics that might normally be unobservable or difficult to assess. If systematically and structurally implemented, labels are a source of reliable and credible information. Ecolabels are a specific type of product labeling that certifies the environmental performance of …

the industrialization of the food system

In 1920, more than half of the United States' population were farmers. They lived a peasant life in rural communities and were skilled in a range of animal rearing and crop production skills. Farmers tended to embrace natural complementaries between the unique components of the farm to establish healthy food production systems. Most farm work …

companion planting: fact or folklore

In recent years [and for generations among indigenous populations], companion planting has emerged as a common technique aimed at exploiting the benefits of the relationships between specific plants to naturally improve crop flavor, health, and vigor. More simply, companion planting is a type of polyculture where two plant species are grown together because it is …

the food systems approach

"The world now produces enough food to feed its population. The problem is not simply technical. It is a political and social problem. It is a problem of access to food supplies, of distribution, and of entitlement. Above all it is a problem of political will.” Boutros-Ghali, November 1993 925 million people were food insecure …

alternative food networks and new peasantry

There has arguably been a “relentless assault” on small farming throughout the world as a result of neoliberal policy that has enabled the globalization and industrialization of food production. Corporate regimes have been able to gain a stronghold over agricultural markets, which undermines local stewardship, dispossess rural inhabitants, and depresses both wages and prices via …