Can good food ever be huge?

I’m just catching up on this fairly amazing report out of the UK from last fall, flatly challenging the idea that nutrition education and individual behavior change can ever be enough to offset the effects of unhealthy and limiting food environments and insufficient resources for purchasing good food.

The authors note, “Big shifts in the food environment can only be achieved by shifting the incentives and standards in the system within which businesses operate. Shifting these incentives is the role of Government” (p 20).

This leads to the interesting question of whether, if some unimaginably progressive government did manage to shift those standards (which presumably would also try to take into account fair labor practices and ecological responsibility), it would still be possible for grocery stores to operate at the super scale of the supermarket-centered system that has developed over the past several decades. In other words, are huge scales and truly good food actually compatible?

4 weeks ago

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