Food environments are the physical, economic, socio-cultural and policy conditions that affect the availability, accessibility, affordability and attractiveness of food and drink (What are ‘food environments’? – EPHA, 2019). Or “physical, economic, political and socio-cultural context in which consumers engage with the food system to make their decisions about acquiring, preparing and consuming food”. In Europe, it is far tooeasy to consume unsustainably extractive animal-sourced foods on a scale that overshoots our planetary and social boundaries, and far too difficult to opt for alternatives that support human and animal health and welfare, planetary health, and socialequity and justice. This is because today’s food environments are not fit to maximize human, planetary and animal well-being. They are shaped by government regulations, unsustainable subsidy systems, distortionary marketing practices and the actions of powerful businesses along food supply chains. They are unsustainable, unjust and unhealthy.
The most effective and equitable way to change food behaviours is to change the structural factors that drive food choice.
Extractive animal-sourced foods is a term we are using to refer to the type of industrial, intensively produced ASF that presents a massive challenge to planetary, human and animal wellbeing. Extractive animal-sourced foods are produced in conditions that damage ecosystems, workers, animals, and local communities.
At this stage of the initiative, we are choosing not to precisely delimit what extractive ASF means, but we aspire to better define this term in partnership with a range of partners, including farmers and food workers.