Feeding Britain: Our Food Problems and What to Do About Them

Feeding Britain: Our Food Problems and What to Do About Them

by Tim Lang


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The British were once famous worldwide for being uninterested in food and our food being brown. This is no longer the case. UK food has changed remarkably in the last half century. Our food has Europeanised (pizza is children's favourite food) and internationalised (we eat the world's cuisines), yet the food culture is fragmented, a mix of mass 'ultra-processed' foods (high in salt, sugar and fat) alongside food as varied and good as anywhere on the planet. This is partly the effect of Europeanisation but mainly because the UK has got wealthier, allowing aspirations and tastes to flower.

This book takes stock of the UK food system: where it comes from, what we eat, its impact, its fragilities and strengths. It's a book on the politics of food. It argues that the UK's Brexit vote is an enforced opportunity to review our food system. This is sorely needed. A deep reflection by the UK state began after the shock of the Oil/Food Commodity price spike 2007-08 and the Great Recession. This policy was, alas, curtailed by the Coalition and Tory governments which both argued the food system should just keep going as it had been. The future, they said, lay in a burst of agri-technology and more exports to pay for the massive food imports.

Feeding Britain argues that this and other approaches are short-sighted, against the public interest, and possibly even strategically folly. Setting a new course for UK food is no easy task, however, but it's a process, this book will urges, that needs to begin.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780241404805
Publisher: Penguin Random House UK
Publication date: 05/01/2021
Edition description: None
Pages: 608
Product dimensions: 4.38(w) x 7.13(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Tim Lang is Professor of Food Policy at the Centre for Food Policy, City University of London, which he founded in 1994 and directed until 2016. For the last 25 years he has researched, written and lectured on the role of policy in shaping and responding to the food system, particularly in relation to health, environment, social justice, the political economy and consumer culture. He previously spent seven years as a hill farmer, an experience which has shaped his work ever since.

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