Food dignity : international law, community, and the environment
Food politics is divided into many camps. The legal advocates of the right to food focus on starvation in poor countries while public health professionals are concerned with rising obesity and diabetes in rich countries. At the same time, peasant movements and local and seasonal advocates are challenging industrial agriculture and searching for a more holistic relationship between farmers and community. This thesis is an attempt to bring together the food problems of rich and poor alike through the unifying idea of food dignity. The concept of food dignity starts with a broad range of values that set a standard against which any individual or overall public policy decision can be judged. This is in contrast to the standard macroeconomic approach to food production and distribution. Founded on the principles of international human rights law, respect for the political and philosophical importance of community, and understanding the importance of a balanced relationship between humanity and the environment, a core set of values emerges. A food dignity standard built on these core values of labor, health, education, self-determination, community, and respect for the environment can be applied to some of the most important food policy debates of the day.