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Why you should give a f*ck about farming : Because you eat - Gabrielle Chan

Why you should give a f*ck about farming

Because you eat

At a Glance

Published: 10th September 2021

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Australia has no national food security policy. No national agriculture policy. We know what has been going on with water allocations and there is still no national response. Those with the means and access shop at farmer's market and order their brunch referring to the origins of their eggs, bacon, butter, tomatoes and greens. But do they really know and understand where their food comes from? And how they can influence decisions made around the land use, trade policy and economic future of Australia?

'I'm starting to think that after living on a farm for 25 years, I might now learn the art of agriculture at the age of 54. Because food matters. Where food comes from matters. The landscape that provides our food matters. And if you accept those propositions, we need a conversation about what we want from our food producers, our farmers. We need to think about what we want our regional landscapes to be. Because honestly, talking to farmers as I do in my home town and in my work, I think we could look back in a decade and find we have lost a fair chunk of middle growers. The in-betweeners. What we will have left is small specialised food producers who cater to niche eaters with decent incomes and vast entities churning out cheap food demanded by markets controlling our rural landscapes and our water. In that scenario, Australia would revert to the squatters' blocks of days past-vast estates with sporadic populations dotted through the countryside. Which is fine, I guess, if that is what Australia wants. As long as it is an informed decision.'


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Published: 31st August 2021

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