theory #13: Decolonizing Food Systems

Updated: Jan 11


For our 13th theory session, we decided to bring the discussion back to our plates and the food we eat. In a context of increasing globalisation, our food systems are more interconnected and associated with extremely unbalanced power-plays including anthropocentrism, coloniality, patriarchy, capitalism and developmentalism. Within this context, we asked ourselves how to decolonize food systems?

With a dynamic and diverse group of participants we dived into the wideness and complexity of our food production and consumption systems. Questioning food prices, local and global value chains development, and also the role of consumers in the cultural landscape. An exploration that led us to Food sovereignty, indigneous revitalization and Agroecology as decolonial food movements. Following this lively discussion, we decided to continue our exchanges and our willingness to be drivers of a decolonial change. We are organising our first practice related to decolonizing food systems for the beginning of next year. Stay tuned!

To put on your decolonial reading list:

Sam Grey and Raj Patel, Food sovereignty as decolonization: some contributions from Indigenous movements to food system and development politic, in: Agric Hum Values Vol. 32, 2015, p. 431–444.

Leonardo Figueroa-Helland et al., Decolonizing Food Systems: Food Sovereignty, Indigenous Revitalization, and Agroecology as Counter-Hegemonic Movements, in: Perspectives on Global Development and Technology 17, 2018, p. 173–201.

Helen Ludlow, Ghana, Cocoa, Colonialism and Globalisation: Introducing Historiography, in: Yesterday & Today Vol. 8, 2012, p. 1–21.

Symphorien Ongolo et al., The Tragedy of Forestland Sustainability in Postcolonial Africa: Land Development, Cocoa, and Politics

in Côte d’Ivoire, in: Sustainability Vol. 10, 2018, p. 1–17.


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