Constructing "green" foods: corporate capital, risk, and organic farming in Australia and New Zealand

Lockie, Stewart, Lyons, Kristen, and Lawrence, Geoffrey (2000) Constructing "green" foods: corporate capital, risk, and organic farming in Australia and New Zealand. Agriculture and Human Values, 17 (4). pp. 315-322.

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Abstract

Public concern over environmental quality and food safety has culminated in the development of markets for "green" foods – foods that are variously construed as fresh, chemical-free,nutritious, natural, or produced in an environmentally-sustainable manner. Understanding the emergence of "green" foods is dependent on analysis both of the ways in which foods are produced and processed, and of the meanings that are attached to them at each stage of their production,transformation, and consumption. The notion of "green" foods is thereby understood here as a fluid and contestable signifier that myriad actors involved in the production/consumption cycle may attempt to shape for their own purposes. This paper explores corporate capital's recent attempts, through certification logos and advertising, to signify the "healthiness" and environmental virtues of organically-produced foods in Australia and New Zealand. These attempts have not,however, been universally successful either in terms of gaining consumer interest, or in gaining agreements between farmers, certifying organizations, and capitalist firms over the meaning of "organic" and the practice of "sustainable" agriculture. The experience of corporate involvement in the organics industry is illustrative of yet-to-be-resolved processes of reflexive modernization. As food production and transformation continues to produce environmental and social risks, the question of just what makes food "green" will continue to be a source of social conflict.

Item ID: 31241
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1572-8366
Keywords: corporate capital, food consumption, greening, organic agriculture, risk
Date Deposited: 15 Mar 2016 04:03
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160801 Applied Sociology, Program Evaluation and Social Impact Assessment @ 100%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960707 Trade and Environment @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960702 Consumption Patterns, Population Issues and the Environment @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960504 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Farmland, Arable Cropland and Permanent Cropland Environments @ 40%
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