Pip Podcast #37: Nick Rose

In the latest Pip Podcast, Dr Nick Rose, the Executive Director of Sustain, reveals how we can create stronger food systems in the face of climate change, natural disasters, pandemics and the rising cost of living.

Welcome to the latest Pip Podcast. In today’s episode, Pip‘s editor Robyn Rosenfeldt speaks with Dr Nick Rose, the Executive Director of Sustain: The Australian Food Network, a not-for-profit that researches and advocates for more sustainable food systems,

Dr Rose is also the editor of ‘Fair Food: Stories from a Movement Changing the World’‘ (2015) and the co-editor of ‘Reclaiming The Urban Commons: The Past, Present and Future of Food Growing in Australian Towns And Cities’ (2018).

In the podcast, Robyn and Nick explore how we can create stronger food systems in the face of climate change, natural disasters, pandemics and the rising cost of living.

“Urban agriculture is an essential part of ensuring our food system is secure and resilient to global shocks and climate change,” says Dr Rose. “Community gardens and small-scale peri-urban farming are key pieces of the food system puzzle.” 

“The pandemic disrupted global and local supply chains, and Australians became more aware of the fragility of our food system. Now the conflict in Ukraine will impact major Australian producers with fertiliser shortages, rising diesel prices, and extra global demand for Australian exports,” Dr Rose says.

“All this means higher food prices for Australian consumers, which will push many more vulnerable community members into food insecurity.”

From grassroots initiatives, backyard growing and political change, Nick shares his vision for a more secure food system that will enable fair and equitable access to fresh healthy produce.

How To Help Support a Fair Food System
Growing your own food is a simple way to help contribute to the food system.

We can all contribute to this fair food system by growing food in our own backyards and through community initiatives, but we also need to be seeing change at the government level.

Sustain has released an analysis and scorecard of major parties’ policy on food systems and urban agriculture this federal election that found both Labor and the Coalition’s policies in need of significant improvement.

Policy areas include supporting the establishment and maintenance of community gardens in neighbourhoods and schools, apprenticeships for market gardeners, support for market gardeners to transition to more regenerative farming practices, and funding for further research. 

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If you’d like to read the letter which Sustain sent to the three major political parties in Australia (and to read their responses) click here. For more information on Sustain see here.

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