Bad Choices in Our Food System
Globally, our food system contributes to resource and habitat depletion, climate change, pollution, social injustice, economic hardship for small and medium farmers, and a public health crisis. The environmental, social, and public health costs of this current system are not properly acknowledged. Agriculture is the leading user of land and water, and a significant contributor to greenhouse gases, while farmers and agricultural and food workers are struggling to make a living. Diet is implicated in one in five deaths worldwide and diet-related illnesses are the leading cause of deaths in the US. Unhealthy diets occur across all countries and all income levels. Despite this, we are told it is the consumers’ fault. Putting the blame on individuals deflects attention from the policies that created the problems in the first place. With a focus on US policies, this book examines how our global food system has given us bad choices.
Lydia Zepeda is Professor Emerita of Consumer Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA, and Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She holds a PhD and MS in Agricultural Economics from the University of California at Davis. She has published scholarly articles on consumer food choices, food production, food waste, food access, food policy, and immigration policy. She has been employed as an economist at the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome and as an economic forecaster in private industry, and has been a Fulbright Researcher in Costa Rica and a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Spain. She is a volunteer and board member for a number of nonprofits.
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