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Urban & Regional Food Declaration

By signing the below declaration you stand with a growing number of signatories from local councils, organisations and individuals and in doing so strengthen our united voice of our shared vision. This Declaration proposes a common vision and set of principles for a healthy, sustainable, resilient and fair food system for all Australians.

We are stronger together.

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Urban & Regional Food Declaration

Food is fundamental to life and health. Increasing urbanization, the industrialization of agriculture and a changing climate are adversely impacting many parts of the global food system. This interconnected food system includes production, processing, distribution, consumption, waste management, and meaning creation. The food system faces compounding global challenges and variable local issues. The scale of these challenges and issues is reflected in local concerns about food security, producer livelihoods, local economies, damage to ecosystems, persistently high levels of hunger and malnutrition, a pandemic of dietary-related illness and disease, and biodiversity reduction.

Many organisation and government policy areas - including health, planning, transport, infrastructure, economic development, education, trade, biosecurity and environment - are relevant to the food system. A coherent long term food policy, at whatever level and scale of governance, enables the integration of these different areas. Cities and regions need a sustainable, fair and resilient food system that provides dignified access to healthy food for all citizens, offers viable livelihoods for local producers, and engenders careful stewardship of regional ecosystems.

Purpose

To achieve a vision of a sustainable, healthy and fair food system, integrated action is needed from individuals, communities, businesses, organisations and governments. The purpose of this Declaration is to encourage such action through offering the following:

  • A set of agreed principles;
  • A lexicon of agreed definitions and common language;
  • A generalized framework for policy and legislative changes;
  • A tool for mobilization and advocacy; and
  • An associated set of tools for assessment and analysis.

Vision

Signatories to this Urban and Regional Food Declaration share a vision of a sustainable, healthy and fair food system. We commit to the following characteristics as shaping our approach to such a system:

  • A thriving diversity of food production throughout our towns and cities and countryside, from networks of backyard, community and school gardens, to market gardens, ethical animal rearing, orchards, vineyards and food forests in our peri-urban and regional areas.
  • A valuing of food producers as caretakers of the land and ecosystems, and as guarantors of our present and future food security.
  • An expansion of farmers' markets, a wide variety of farm-gate shops and trails, and high streets revitalised with shops that burst with local and seasonal produce, all supporting a growing local food economy that generates jobs and livelihoods for communities.
  • A food system that supports the health and well-being of all, recognising that access to good food is a fundamental and universal human right.

The food system is a complex set of practices that face unique and unprecedented challenges. This Declaration and its principles are based upon four domains as expressed in figure 1: Circles of Social Life.

Figure 1: Circles of Social Life. Developed by Professor Paul James. For more information, see https://www.circlesofsustainability.org and "Urban Sustainability in Theory and Practice: Circles of Sustainability" (Paul James, 2015)

Principles

Ecology: Our food system should actively maintain the health and integrity of the natural environment on which it depends, seeking to maintain the health of existing ecosystems and enhance biodiversity.

Economics: Our food system should support, create and sustain local and regional livelihoods while building a resilient food industry.

Politics: Governments and organisations should collaborate and work holistically, both internally and externally, while proactively engaging with communities to inform policy, planning and legislative actions relating to environmental stewardship, food security, health and wellbeing, and urban and regional livelihoods.

Culture: Our food system should embrace the diverse and cultural significance of food, recognizing its central role in promoting social cohesion, life-long and intergenerational learning, and community health and well-being.


Organisation Signatories

William Angliss Institute

Cultivating Community

Common Ground Project

Community Gardens Australia

Food Next Door Co-op

Melbourne Farmers Markets

Permaculture Australia

Slow Food Swan Valley And Eastern Regions Inc

The Hills Food Frontier Inc

Young Farmers Connect

3000acres

Airgarden Pty Ltd

Australia's Right To Food Coalition

Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance

Australian Institute of Landscape Architects

Australian National University

Blakthumb

Braidwood & Villages Business Chamber

Canberra City Farm

Cardinia Shire Council

Central Queensland University

City of Ballarat

City of Greater Geelong

City of Melbourne

City of Yarra

Conservation Volunteers

Creative Space

Ecoshiatsu

festival21

Flinders + Co.

Folk of All Trades

Food Fairness Illawarra

Food Fossickers

Green Light Organic Market

Green Skills Inc.

GV Food Cooperative

Healthy Cities Illawarra

Hidden Harvest

Homegrown Me

Innate Ecology

Katanning Landcare

Keyon Design

Local Food Connect

MADGE

Masons of Bendigo

Moreland City Council

Moreland Food Gardens Network

Mornington Peninsula Shire

Otway Fields

Permaculture Education Institute

PermacultureWest

Permayouth

Perth NRM

Rainbow Coast Neighborhood Centre

Randwick City Council

Regional Development Australia Mid North Coast NSW

Regional Development Australia Southern Inland NSW

Sandro Demaio Foundation

SecondBite

SEE-Change

Shire of Augusta Margaret River

Slow Food Melbourne

South Australian Urban Food Network

Southern Harvest

Spade & Barrow

Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation

Sustain

Sustainable Gardening Australia

UN Global Compact Cities Programme

Individual Signatories

Carolina Perdig√£o

Plantbased chef / Food content creator / Bachelor of Food Studies Student

Nick Rose

Executive Director, Sustain

Matt Cole

Jaime Hogan

Zachary Jones

Landscape Architect

Jane Knight

William Leon Naufahu

Founder, youknowhow.works

Karen Newman

Josephine Paone

Pasta Maker, Radical Pasta

Faye Adams

Frank Banks

Andrew Bregmen

Director, Design Solutions Group

Margaret Bridgeford

Anthony Dickson

Amanda Fleming

Nicola Foxworthy

Berbel Franse

Founder & CEO, Hidden Harvest

Angus Graham

Joanne Helen Cody

Wendy Johnson

Garry McQuillan

CEO, Randwick City Council

Emmy Nicol

Liz Ninnes

Robert O'Griffith

CEO, Green Look Living Space

Catherine Olsson

Naomi Orsillo

Owner, Copper & Stone Cafe

Roslyn Pilbeam

Stephanie Prado

Rob Rees

Lorena Rey

Sam Ryan

Educator, Folk of All Trades

Lisa Savchuk

Artist, Creative Space

Nathan Toleman

Common Ground Project

Sabian Wilde

Perth NRM