The Importance of Vision in Food System Transformation




Food System, Transformation, Agroecology, Vision, Indigenous Cosmologies, Commoning, Solidarity Economy, Food Sovereignty


Despite growing calls for food system transforma­tion, the need to develop a vision to guide that transformation is sometimes overlooked. Vision is essential to inspire, mobilize, and keep a collective of people on track toward their goals. Individual visions can be exhilarating, but the visions that create change are taken up by large groups or movements of movements. A vision is a beginning for transformation, but it requires policy that enables it to be enacted, ideally through democratic processes. The vision, buttressed by policy and democratic governance, is what determines where people are able to buy food, how much they pay, whether farmers earn decent incomes, and whether the food is healthy. Without vision, policies are likely to be incoherent or to work at cross-purposes, as has happened in the farm bill and the European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy. A range of visions generated at different scales, from autonomous community to state to region, can serve as examples for people committed to food system transformation.

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Author Biography

Molly Anderson, Middlebury College

William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of Food Studies

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How to Cite

Anderson, M. (2019). The Importance of Vision in Food System Transformation. Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development, 9(A), 55–60.