One stop shop for latest smart agribusiness and agrifood thinking
“There is no free lunch – no matter what food is grown and how it is processed and transported to the consumer, there is an impact on the planet. This impact creates consequences for individuals, societies and communities, and although this is not a difficult idea to grasp, it is harder to quantify the scale of the impact. It is harder still to decide what to do about it and how to make the best choices as individuals, within communities and for a country. But it is one which we all have a responsibility to grapple with to the best of our ability, for the sake of our grandchildren and those who follow them.” – Professor Claire Massey.
The land and food sector is currently worth $20 billion to the New Zealand economy, and with the intention to treble that value by 2025, we need to ensure that sector is one of nutrition-driven agriculture that operates within planetary boundaries. The deeply critical recent reports by the OECD and Ministry for the Environment throw the urgency to achieve that state into sharp relief. Can we get there? What will it take to get there?
Edited by Professor Claire Massey, Acting Programme Director of FoodHQ, the 2017 edition of The New Zealand Land & Food Annual contains 31 expert contributions. They weigh in with their views about how New Zealand can tackle the issues and lead the way in the world’s green revolution.
As contributor Professor Ralph Sims says, “The current debate over the environmental impacts resulting from intensifying agri-food systems clearly shows that our present farming and food-processing practices are not sustainable. As energy-smart, resource-smart and climate-smart agri-food practices evolve around the world. . . there are lessons to be learned for New Zealand. Presently we are not leading by example — but we could.”
The contributors have thought deeply and creatively about how we might grow and consume food more sustainably, both now and in the future. Highlight chapters include:
- Professor Barbara Burlingame on putting sustainable diets at the forefront of the debate; that way, both health and the environment are nurtured.
- Kerensa Johnston and Rachel Taulelei on the Kono NZ story, and how the values of manākitanga (the quality of care and generosity towards people) and kaitiakitanga (the need to ensure that between people and the land, or the land and the sea, is maintained) have influenced their business.
- Mike Joy on our deadly nitrogen addiction and the impact on our waterways.
- Jason Wargent on the potential for vertical farms to provide products that complement those grown in more traditional ways.
Published by Massey University Press and available here.