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SFFA response to Our Cities

Posted on 02. May, 2011 by .

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Our Cities sets out the Australian Government’s thinking on a national approach to urban development and the challenges to be addressed for our cities to become more productive, sustainable and liveable.

The Sydney Food Fairness Alliance welcomed the opportunity to respond to the Our Cities Discussion Paper Feedback Survey.

The SFFA noted that production and consumption of food is integral to the health of people, the environment and economy urged Infrastructure Australia to ensure that plans for our cities seek to protect and promote food production within urban areas and promote access to healthy, affordable food for all households.

DOWNLOAD… the SFFA response to Our Cities (pdf file)

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Sydneysiders help themselves

Posted on 01. Feb, 2011 by .

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As part of the 2010 Sydney International Food Festival, the Sydney Food Fairness Alliance hosted a Q&A style forum about the innovative ways that Sydneysiders are providing for themselves.

Moderated by Simon Thomsen, food critic for the Daily Telegraph, Iron Chef Australia judge, and one of Australia’s top food writers, the panel included, amongst others, the Reverend Bill Crews from the Exodus Foundation; Australian Local Hero of the Year Ronnie Kahn from Oz Harvest; and Simon Gregory from The Salvation Army Food 4 Life market.

‘Although Australia is a wealthy nation, not everyone is able to access healthy food,’ said Mark Ludbrooke, Sydney Food Fairness Alliance spokesperson. ‘This year, over a million Australians will run out of food and not be able afford to purchase more. Faced with such difficulties, many Sydney households are now coming together to help themselves to secure access to good food’.

The forum introduced innovative programs like the Salvation Army Food 4 Life Market – a membership based program that gives people in Warwick Farm access to an affordable food market. It also showcased Food Within – a Western Sydney program started by a low-income mother determined to provide good food for her kids and local families. Alicia Martin from Food Within generously shared her personal experience with food insecurity.

‘Local people and organisations are working hard on innovative ways to improve access healthy food’, Mark continued. ‘The question many are now asking is what is the NSW Government doing on this front? With some Sydneysiders still struggling to be able to afford enough healthy food, it’s time the Government convened an independent food policy council to consider appropriate responses to local food insecurity’.

Audio files of the evening will be available soon.

The event was made possible thanks to funding from the City of Sydney and the dedicated efforts of Sydney Food Fairness Alliance volunteers.

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SFFA forum on NSW food system

Posted on 12. Dec, 2010 by .

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In November 2010 the Sydney Food Fairness Alliance hosted When Food Systems Collide – Q&A forum on the costs and benefits of our current food system and the value of alternative models of production and distribution.

Over 60 people came together to hear Daily Telegraph restaurant critic Simon Thomsen moderate a public forum with a panel including international guest Myles Bremner – a member of the London Food Board that works to improve the health of Londoners and make London’s food sustainable.

The NSW Greens, Food Connect, Wanaka Orchards, and the Organic Traders’ and Consumers’ Network, were also represented on the panel. Audience members were invited to ask challenging questions of panellists, Q&A style.

‘With climate change affecting our capacity to grow food, cuts to water extractions projected to increase food prices, and farms under threat from urban development in the Sydney Basin and mining interests on the Liverpool Plains, consumers are increasingly questioning whether our existing food system is serving us well,’ said Mark Ludbrooke, Sydney Food Fairness Alliance spokesperson. ‘This forum was an opportunity to ask those directly involved in food production and distribution about the security and sustainability of our food system.’

The event was part of the Sydney Food Fairness Alliance advocacy for the NSW Government to convene an independent Food Policy Council to develop an integrated Food Policy for NSW.

‘The SFFA submits that the NSW Government must convene an independent Food Policy Council to meaningfully engage community, business and government stakeholders to respond to the challenge of securing an affordable, healthy food supply for NSW, now and into the future,’ Mark added.

The event was made possible thanks to funding from the City of Sydney and volunteer work from Sydney Food Fairness Alliance members.

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Can transferable development rights save Sydney’s farms?

Posted on 12. Dec, 2010 by .

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In November 2010 the Sydney Food Fairness Alliance hosted a public forum on the challenges our food system face as part of the Sydney International Food Festival. Ed Biel from Wanaka Orchards proposed the introduction of transferable farmers rights as a solution to the loss of the small family farm in the Sydney Basin.

  DOWNLOAD … Transferable land Rights

 

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SFFA calls on the Australian Government to adopt a food policy

Posted on 08. Aug, 2010 by .

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In July, the Sydney Food Fairness Alliance wrote to both the Minister for Agriculture, the Hon. Tony Burke, and the Parliamentary Secretary for Health, the Hon. Mark Butler, to urge the Australian Government to develop and implement a national food policy.

The SFFA submitted that this policy must seek to foster access to affordable, healthy food, that has been produced in a sustainable manner, for all Australians. The letter also called on the Government to actively consult with community stakeholders – including the SFFA – in the development of this policy.

10.07.23 Letter to Minister for Agriculture from SFFA re food policy

10.07.23 Letter to Parliamentary Secretary for Health from SFFA re food policy

The SFFA is not alone in calling on government to develop and implement integrated food policies. Community, consumer and industry bodies alike recognise the need for action on this front.

  • Consumer advocates CHOICE have called for open and transparent processes for developing food policy and standards to ensure that stakeholders, including consumer and public health groups, can have input into decision-making and assess the evidence and basis for decisions.
  • The Australian Food & Grocery Council has expressed its disappointment at the lack of policy to ensure that Australia’s largest manufacturing sector – food and grocery – has a robust future.
  • Recognising that Australia’s food system faces emerging pressures stemming from climate change, insecurity of the agricultural water supply as well as the growing likelihood of the peaking of global oil production, the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance contends that the Australian government must develop a national policy on food.
  • The National Farmers Federation has submitted that government needs to work with industry, right through the supply chain, in a strategic and long-term way to make sure policies are geared to Australia’s interests – domestically to keep quality high and prices competitive and globally to meet surging demand.
  • The Food Alliance – formerly the Victorian Food Security Coalition - is encouraging the state government to develop a government wide, integrated healthy and sustainable food strategy with targets for achievements and resources for implementation and evaluation.

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