The value of the Food Ethics Council

Our Council members help ensure that we are asking the right questions and reaching the right people. Two longstanding members of the Food Ethics Council – Helen Browning and Geoff Tansey – stepped down in late 2021. We want to acknowledge their immense contribution to our organisation and to the area of food ethics, sustainable food and farming, and food policy. Before leaving, we interviewed them both to get their reflections on food ethics, the role of the Food Ethics Council and what lies ahead.

Helen Browning OBE was Chair and Trustee of the Food Ethics Council for many years and played a critical role in the organisation’s work over more than two decades, bringing strategic insights as a farmer and from leadership roles in major civil society organisations. As our Chair for around 15 years, Helen provided a calm, considered voice of reason in an ever-changing world.

In the video below, Helen talks about the important role the Food Ethics Council has played and continues to play – and about the value of ethical approaches more broadly.

What I value most about the Food Ethics Council is the process we go through to come to conclusions. Process is undervalued today, at a time when everyone is wanting to get to the answer right here right now.”

Helen Browning OBE

Geoff Tansey was a Trustee for many years and involved as a member of the Food Ethics Council for 21 years, bringing expertise in food systems thinking and food policy. Geoff brought healthy, critical challenge, together with an incredible commitment to the organisation.

In the video below, Geoff shares insights from his long involvement with the Food Ethics Council and about what he believes is needed going forward to shift towards fair food systems.

“…the important thing about the approach of the Food Ethics Council is that we try to look at food within a global context and recognise that food and the food system is part of a bigger system, our economic system. We try to help make people connect these dots…”

Geoff Tansey