UH and Partners Lead First Statewide Food System Planning Effort

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Diversified organic farming, Oʻahu, Hawaii (2022).

To address gaps in food system planning and policy at the state level, researchers from the University of Hawaii System are facilitating the development of the first collaborative statewide food system planning effort. Hawaii never had a comprehensive state plan to guide the development of food and agriculture. Experts say the negative consequences of the lack of a statewide vision and strategy for the future of food have become increasingly clear.

“The lack of food system planning has been highlighted by the many food system challenges that have emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic, including exacerbated household food insecurity, lack of economic diversification, and inadequate preparedness for disasters in Hawaii,” said noa lincolnassociate researcher and head of Indigenous Cropping Systems Laboratory in the University of Hawaii in Manoait is College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources. “It confirmed what many community members and academics have been saying for decades: there is an urgent need for food system change, and a blueprint, appropriate investment, and new forms of food system governance to facilitate this change.

uhthe efforts of Albie MilesAssistant Professor and Director of Sustainable community food systems program to HU West Oʻahu. The collaboration brings together uh professors, key government agencies, elected officials, private businesses, non-profit organizations, consultants, and community leaders in the food, agriculture, and public health sectors. Their efforts are part of Transform Hawaii‘s Food System Set—a United States Department of Agriculture-funded initiative that aims to build statewide capacity to develop healthy, equitable, sustainable and resilient food systemespecially in times of crisis.

Over the past two years, uh teachers and community leaders have developed a range of knowledge products on the food system Hawaii and now seek to develop, through a participatory process, an integrated stakeholder-informed state food policy framework to Hawaii which addresses seven major food system themes and 18 food system planning elements, such as household food insecurity, biocultural restoration and climate change resilience. The document will also serve as a blueprint for promoting Indigenous and cultural foodways.

Miles said, “The State’s Integrated Food Policy Framework for Hawaii is designed as a living document to be updated periodically and aims to bring together new and existing investment policies, strategies and recommendations under one common “roof” and focus them on clear and consistent objectives and drive system change food towards measurable objectives compatible with HawaiiSustainable Development Goals and multiple activities related to food and agriculture UN sustainable development goals.”

uh leaders include Miles, Lincoln and Kamuela Enosdirector of the uh System Office of Indigenous Knowledge and Innovation. Subhashni Raja uh Mānoa assistant professor at the College of Social Sciences Department of Urbanism and Territorial Development with expertise in food system planning, recently joined the initiative.

Raj said, “Functioning food systems are essential for community health and well-being, and most American cities were ill-equipped to manage food system deficits at the height of the COVID-19 crisis. »

The transformation Hawaii‘s Food System Together initiative and work on the State’s Integrated Food Policy Framework for Hawaii are funded by the United States Department of Agriculture Regional Food Systems Partnership Programthe Hawaii Institute for Sustainable Community Food Systems in uh West Oʻahuthe WK Kellogg Foundation, Kamehameha Schools and the Hawaii Public Health Institute, among many others. The plan should be completed by the end of the year.

Special Edition: Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems

Food System Resilience Chart

Miles and Lincoln also participated in a consortium of leading food system researchers from around the world who recently completed a special edition of an open-access food system journal on the topic of resilience and equity. of the food system at a time of global environmental change. Miles served as project editor Frontiers of Sustainable Food Systems: Achieving Food System Resilience and Equity in an Age of Global Environmental Change.

The highly successful volume had already garnered over 99,000 views by early October. The volume includes 20 items covering topics such as land tenure reform, economic consolidation, sustainability indicators, biocultural diversity, urban agroecosystems, food sovereignty, human rights and the role of traditional ecological knowledge in achieving sustainability. resilience and equity of the food system. Raj was the main author of “Food Security and Climate Change: Differences in Impacts and Coping Strategies for Rural Communities in the South and North.”

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