At its core, sustainable food systems are characterized as practices that keep the environment healthy and food production economically and socially viable. It includes a production system that is good for the environment and people, humanely treats animals and farm/food workers, and supports rural and urban communities. Sustainable food is produced using techniques that protect the environment, public health, human communities, and animal welfare.
To shop and eat sustainably is more than just how the food is produced. It also means avoiding heavily packaged and processed foods, reducing food waste, and taking into account how food production, especially meat, impacts global warming. For individuals, it is how and what we shop for, how we cook, and the actions we take to support local farmers and suppliers.
At FoodCon 2017 we will explore the myriad aspects of food sustainability in keynotes, panel discussions and by sampling locally sourced food and beverages during the conference.
Profitable has two meanings: An enterprise that is profitable makes money; things can also be profitable if they are beneficial in other ways. Profitable in sustainable food systems means more than financial success—it extends to the ability of a business to provide value for all stakeholders including owners, suppliers, employees, and consumers. All businesses strive to be profitable in the financial sense, but a profitable and sustainable food system is one that is good for everyone along the value chain.
At FoodCon 2017, we will explore how businesses involved in the sustainable food industry can be profitable by both definitions.
Accessible defined as the extent to which a consumer can obtain a good or service at the time it is needed. Accessibility is currently a part of the broader topic of food security. Food accessibility refers to both physical and economic access to food in a local area.
Consumer choices about food spending and diet are influenced by the accessibility and affordability of food retailers—travel time to shopping, availability of healthy foods, and food prices. Some people and places, especially those with low income, may face greater barriers in accessing healthy and affordable food retailers, which may negatively affect diet and food security.
Concerns about insufficient food access, despite adequate food supplies, has prompted greater policy focus on incomes, expenditure, markets and prices in achieving food security objectives.
FoodCon 2017 will explore how local food producers and government can influence food accessibility in our region.