RSA Our Future in the Land

The RSA and Food, Farming & Countryside Commission conducted an inquiry “Our Future in the Land” that uncovers and understands how to assess the threat that The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that is one of the greatest risks to planetary and human health is a globalized and poorly regulated agri-food system. It concluded three main things:

1. Healthy food is every body’s business

2. Farming is a force for change, unleashing a fourth agricultural revolution driven by public values

3. A countryside that works for all and rural communities are a powerhouse for a fair and green economy

THE COST: The report exposes the hidden receipt we all pay in the cost of our food: Dietary health problems like diabetes, Environmental cost such as loss of land and soil and a climate that is increasingly hostile to grow in, Intense energy inputs that result in wasted/lost food, water, space, time, and energy, Imbalanced distribution of food where 1/3 of our production goes to the animals we feed, and in turn eat, Hunger, Poverty and Inequality that cost us socially, Biodiversity loss where farmers have lost 90% of the types of the crops they can grow. 

THE DEVELOPMENT: Fifteen recommendations are given to sustainably develop over the next ten years. They range from using agriculture technology to set up collaborative farming systems, from utilizing programs that employ the energy of youth that develops skills, knowledge and key actions that support the fourth agricultural revolution to private and public investment in local start-ups and infrastructure that brings food closer to home.

THE RESULTS: Results for following the recommendations in the report will lead to the creation of new jobs, sequestered carbon, sustainable management of resources, regenerated soil, communities connected to each other and the land. This will require a new approach to leadership, collective action, and engaging the next generation as the average age of farmers is 55. The report concludes “The actions we take in the next ten years, to stop ecosystems collapse, to recover and regenerate nature and to restore people’s health and wellbeing are now critical.”

See the full report at https://www.thersa.org/…/rsa-ffcc-our-future-in-the-land.pdf