Rethinking UK Food Governance

Rethinking UK Food Governance

This project aims to develop a vision for a new model of food governance in the UK.

It explores what governance is needed for a more integrated and inclusive approach to food across government. By investigating how food policy is currently made in the UK it responds to ongoing calls for a more ‘joined-up’ approach – due to the range of disconnects between parts and policies in the food system – which are argued to be undermining progress towards a more healthy and sustainable food system. It also responds to complaints about the lack of transparency and opportunity for all stakeholders to participate in the policy process.

It draws on previous research identifying how governance structures can act as barriers to more integrated approaches, and recent trends towards more participatory policymaking. By governance we mean the process through which decisions are made in government, including how food responsibilities are organised, and what mechanisms are in place to support more coherent food policy. This applies both ‘horizontally’ across different portfolios and departments, and ‘vertically’ between regional, national and local government and devolved nations. While the project is primarily focused on government, it is also recognised that decisions commonly involve non-government stakeholders, including the food industry and Civil Society Organisations.

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