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Dr Louise Manning on a collective approach to food integrity

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7 November 2018

Read the original blog in full on the NFU website 

Dr Louise Manning, Reader (Associate Professor) in Food Policy & Management, writes about the need for a collective approach in ensuring integrity in the UK’s food supply chain.

Food is a difficult topic to think about and more specifically for governments and businesses to develop appropriate policies and strategies for. We all eat food, we all buy it, some of us prepare and cook food on a regular basis; others feel “time poor” and instead opt for convenience.  We all think we have some knowledge about how food is produced and we get our information from a range of sources, and if animals are involved, we have opinions on how they should live their lives or how farming practices should or should not impact on the environment.  

Food integrity is a strange notion because in theory, people who produce food at all stages from the farm through manufacturing, logistics, retail, food service, should comply with laws and best practice and it should be a given that food is safe and legal i.e. it is what it says on the tin and is not going to harm anyone. But, and there is a BIG but, we then add in a good dose of human nature. Humans operate food supply chains, humans produce our food for us. We might create a whole set of rules for them to abide by, but individually or collectively they are driven by a whole set of motivations and attitudes, habits, cultural norms that influence their behaviour. Sometimes people (and thus businesses) comply with the rules and regulations and what we think a good business would do, others instead do not do the right thing and can operate outside the law...

Continue reading the original blog courtesy of the NFU

 

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