What causes bad nutrition – not enough power or not enough vitamins?

February 22, 2012

How can the UN get its act together on food and agriculture?

January 6, 2012

New and harder evidence on climate change, hunger and food prices

May 18, 2011

Genetics and food doesn't have to be just about GM: genetic markers

March 2, 2011

Feeding the 9 billion: where to agree/disagree with the Economist?

March 1, 2011

The new Future of Food and Farming Report: excellent diagnosis; patchy cure; no power and politics

January 27, 2011

Agriculture is key to development – why I (partly) disagree with Owen Barder

October 18, 2010
It was World Food Day on Saturday, in case you missed it, and Owen Barder had a typically thought-provoking reflection on the links between agriculture and development. He starts off by quoting Amartya Sen’s words from 30 years ago, “Starvation is the characteristic of some people not having enough food to eat. It is not the characteristic of there being not enough

Is food the new oil? Fertiliser wars and Brazil as food superpower

August 30, 2010
In the Financial Times, Javier Blas gives us the back-story to the attempt by the world’s largest mining company, BHP Billiton, to buy its largest fertiliser company, PotashCorp. Suddenly fertiliser is big business: in the first eight months of the year, deals valued at $61bn have been announced by companies in the industry, a high that more than doubles the peak

The world’s next 20 years on one slide – and it’s pretty scary

August 17, 2010
This is the summary slide from a recent powerpoint on the global challenges facing humanity between now and 2030. It sets out the key questions (easier to read if you click on the slide). The answers to any one of which might well be ‘no’, with scary consequences. And please don’t try and dismiss this as ill-informed climate alarmism. It’s from

What would feminist GM crops look like?

May 14, 2009
I was in a conversation on genetically modified crops with a feminist economist and a leading ecologist the other day (Chatham House rules, so no names, alas). As often happens, the unusual combination of disciplines led to some thought-provoking exchanges. After lamenting the way most new biotech and GM research is top down and biased towards both rich country agriculture

What would a global food security policy look like?

January 27, 2009
Sticking to yesterday’s theme of food, check out ‘The Feeding of the Nine Billion‘, an excellent new paper by Alex Evans. Alex combines the skills of academic and consultant with his insider experience as a former special adviser to Hilary Benn, then UK Secretary of State for International Development. He specialises in what George Lakoff calls ‘reframing‘ – here he

A Billion Hungry People – remember the food price crisis?

January 26, 2009
Read this paragraph: ‘Despite the recent creation of a United Nations High Level Task Force, there is still little coordination or collaboration among UN organisations, the World Bank/International Monetary Fund (IMF) and other donors. There is no functioning global mechanism to ensure coordination and policy coherence of the various actors, thus adding complexity to the response effort and reducing efficiency,