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Fruit and vegetables

Strengthening food systems governance at the local level

A multi-disciplinary food systems approach
How law, regulation, and policy can support local governments and communities to create a healthy, sustainable, and equitable food system.

Food is fundamental to human life and flourishing, but contemporary food systems have created profound challenges for human and planetary health.

Leadership by all levels of government is needed to address issues such as over- and under-nutrition, the greenhouse gas emissions associated with food production, distribution, and disposal, and the impact of climate change on the food supply. However, action at a local level is critical to tackling these food system challenges.

Led by Dr Belinda Reeve, this multi-institutional project explores the role of Australian local governments and communities in creating a healthy, sustainable, and equitable food system, the barriers to and enablers of action, and further opportunities for strengthening food systems governance at the local level.

The project includes an analysis of policy documents from local governments in NSW and Victoria, surveys of local governments and community organisations, and a series of focus groups with councils and communities creating innovative food system policies and programs. The project has already produced important resources, including a publicly available database of NSW and Victorian local government policies relevant to food system functioning.

The Australian Local Food System Policy Database


Image above: The Australian Local Food System Policy Database

Belinda Reeve

Roger Magnusson

Professor of Health Law and Governance
Professor Magnusson's academic profile

This project has been funded by: Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Projects (DP) 2019. Grant ID: DP190102494

Banner image: Photo by Megan Thomas on Unsplash.