On the road to food justice

On the road to food justice: A framework for a fair food future

A report of the Food Ethics Council

Food injustices have existed for a long time, produced and exacerbated by a dominant food system which serves the few to the detriment of many, concentrating resources (including land, seed, water and, capital), decision-making and power in the hands of only a few big players. The pandemic and subsequent recession have deepened these injustices, causing an ongoing crisis in the food system.

A decade ago, we published our original Food Justice report, the culmination of the Food and Fairness Inquiry, which brought together key people from across the food sector for the first time to explore aspects of fairness. The Inquiry introduced an innovative new way to consider fairness – broken down into ‘fair share’, ‘fair play’ and ‘fair say’ – in relation to food security, sustainability and health. While this framework remains powerful, the world around us has changed in so many ways – with new injustices coming to the fore.

What can we do? To tackle food injustice, we must first understand it. Today, the Food Ethics Council launches a short publication On the Road to Food Justice, featuring a new version of the #FairnessFramework.

This framework is a practical tool to help us acknowledge the intersecting injustices across food systems; identify how our direct line of work influences and shapes those injustices, empowering us to change, through policies and practices and integrate justice across our existing work. The paper includes examples of the framework in action.

We must foster the cooperative momentum of the pandemic response and rebuild our food systems such that all are able not just to meet basic needs, but to flourish.

We would love you to use the framework (which you can download below) and help us by promoting people and organisations working to address injustices in our food systems. We hope the #FairnessFramework and the examples we unpack in this publication, help us all step up on the road to Food Justice.

This work was kindly supported by Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust. The content of this report represents the views of the Food Ethics Council.

For a deeper dive into the Fairness Framework, look into this extended version produced by member of the Food Ethics Council, Dr Nigel Dower.