Food Security and Sustainability

Today the UK Select Committee on Environment, Food and Rural Affairs have published their report on Securing food supplies up to 2050: the challenges faced by the UK.

It is unfortunate that this important report will likely be ignored by the media with today’s publication of the Home Office Select Committee report on illegal immigrants and bogus colleges.

The “Securing food supplies” report was anticipated by the Sustainable Development Commission position paper on Food Security.

On the surface “Securing food supplies up to 2050: the challenges faced by the UK” says the right things: “The only acceptable form of food production is that which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.”

However the report rejects a wholesale move to organics and self-sufficiency but does not examine the sustainaility of the inputs to non-organic farming – pesticides and fertilizers – currently highly dependent on oil as feedstock, nor the sustainability of food transport required for the UK to import food.

The Committee regard this report “as the first in a series of food-related inquiries to be undertaken by [the]Committee.” We encourage them to consider the above in their further inquiries.

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