Project Abstract

Food Justice


Food industry is of great significance all over the world, because food has the direct relation to our health and life. Recently, people pay more attention to food security and food justice. However, it seems that there are certain obstacles to achieve food justice.


In the U.S., the source of food is private farms. The introduction of the food source also matters in food justice. There are diversified reasons for people in the U.S. To have the passion devoting their life to running the farming and gardening businesses. Some of them may have the goal rooted in the mind since a young age. Because of the influence by the family, environment and other elements, it is easy for those whose parents are doing the farming to form the idea that they would love to spend their whole life in farming. They are already familiar with almost everything related to farming. So they do not need extra time and energy to learn from the start. Except for the solid knowledge background and experiences, their desire and affection have been growing increasingly, which also determine their faith to do farming in the future. Others choose farming probably not only because they have the desire of living a simple life, but also because they are fond of getting alone with nature and they enjoy the sense of achievement as well as the feeling of creating a harmonious relationship with crops and animals.


The owner of a farm must have gone through many different phases, and not everything goes smoothly without any difficulties. At the beginning, it is likely that most people face several obstacles and some of them even give up after the failure. But actually, starting from dealing with easy issues and accumulating experiences can support you to move forward with confidence and steady paces. Then as the business expands gradually, you can achieve the initial goals in all phases step by step with your great efforts. Finally, you can have a complete system of running the farm, and you can hire some assistants to help you deal with important issues. For example, your own financial manager can be responsible for the allocation of funds and managing money; you can have veterinarians to specially take care of your animals; you can also find someone to run the website of your farm and managing the marketing and branding. Several years later when your children are old enough, they can share some businesses to help you run the farm.


As for the food justice, according to Alison Alkon (2013), in the pursuit of “market as movement” approach to social change, every one of us as an individual should have the responsibility to maximize our body health as well as the economic health, and we can achieve this goal by consuming our local and organic food. In other words, food justice can also be understood as something that has relation to the location and the right of healthy food. In terms of the location, the food is grown locally and is raised by workers who also care about both the well being of the land and animals. When it comes to the right to plant, sell and eat healthy food, the food should be fresh enough with abundant nutrition and can be afforded. But actually, since people in many countries neglected the quality of food, some food they eat with low quality may damage the equality for consumers who have the right to get to know the food processing.


However, it is not an easy thing to have food justice even though some have already been aware of their right and food justice. It is worrying that many new food riots happened in India and Africa, and that the U.S. broke the record of hunger level (Eric, 2010). The reason is that food justice is hampered by some existing factors. Among these impeding factors, political factor, economical factor and ecological factor are of great importance.


Firstly, the political factor is inevitable to block food justice, because government can do a lot more they are deemed. Having the right to formulate and complement policies and procedures relevant to food, government always allows the manufacture and distribution of unqualified food. Sometimes they can use some illegal methods such as bribery to escape from the supervision of certain departments. And sometimes they even loose and manipulate the regulations in which their unqualified food can pass the tests.


Secondly, economical force also has something on food justice. Fast food industry has remained good momentum to have further development for its low price and convenience. In some cases, people have no choice or freedom to make a determination on what kind of food they eat. For example, those poor families in lower class usually eat fast food. One reason is that fast food is cheaper than other food so that they can afford fast food. Another reason is eating fast food can not only save money but also save their time, thus they can spend less time taking care of their families and spend more time on working and earning money. Therefore, they prefer fast food, and they do not have many alternatives but only accept cheap food.


Last but not least, the ecological factor also plays a significant role. As it is known that different places have their own special food, what people eat is decided by the location. Here, take fruits and vegetables as an example. Everyone knows that eating more fruits and green vegetables is beneficial to our health because they have nutrition and vitamin. But in some regions where the air is dry or the soil is not suitable to grow fruits, people have difficulties to enjoy fruits and vegetables. Although it is likely to transport fresh food into that region, consumers may still give up buying them due to the high price caused by the high cost.


Incorporating with what the interview I have conducted in the farmer’s place in San Diego county, it is apparent that people today pays more attention to the procedure that food has been produced and processed. The owner of that farmer-nursing center conveys to us that people even travel himself or herself from Los Angeles or Las Vegas area to come down to his farm for freshly squeezed milk and pasteurize the milk themselves in their own kitchen. Furthermore, the owner also has shared with us his perspective over the food justice today. His concern is that people’s emphasis over food industry has always been offering food for all. However, the case has changed that people should lean more towards the quality of the food being offered instead of the quantity of food. Overall, food justice has been viewed as providing food for all and having a good quality of food that being offered.


Therefore, it is really hard to achieve food justice in the current world. The political, economical, ecological forces and other factors all lead to the failure of food justice.







Works Cited

Tall, Rebecca, and Sara Tall. “Our Story.” City Farmers Nursery. City Farmers Nursery, 2016. Web. 09 May 2016.

Alkon, Alison. “Food Sovereignty: A Critical Dialogue.” International Conference Paper. September, 2013.

Holt-Gimenez, Eric. “Food Security, Food Justice, Food Sovereignty?” Institute for Food and Development Policy. 2010. V16:4.




Poster (click image to expand)


9500 Gilman Drive
San Diego, CA 92093
United States