- We need to take a holistic, whole catchment approach to land and marine management.
- Must learn from and share existing best practice in Devon and beyond – create mechanisms for this e.g. farmer networks and demonstration farms.
- Public and farmers need access and support to acquire the information and skills to shift to net-zero food and farming culture.
- Public procurement is a key lever for supporting sustainable agriculture and food culture.
- Regional farming, processing and distribution infrastructure needs greater support, including funding and removal of national policy barriers.
- Need to better understand “blue carbon” opportunities and limits – marine sequestered carbon.
- National policy and subsidy framework will be highly influential in ability of Devon to achieve net-zero carbon food and farming – including ways to internalize socio-ecological externalities.
|Key Actions||Barriers||Overcoming the Barriers|
|Ensure joined up policy, regulation and planning to support the public goods of healthy and sustainable food in Devon.||· Our agri-industrial food system which encourages cheap food and externalises costs such as poor diets and a crisis on the land|
· Mass retail
· Procurement criteria in public bodies
· Fishing bi-catch regulation
|· More regulation on food supply chains|
· Taking a place-based, regional approach
· Public procurement of local sustainable food – benefit of providing a stable market to farmers. Denmark have
hit a 90% public procurement for organic at no extra cost! Copenhagen has transformed its public procurement with 72% of its food from organic producers
· Improve bi-catch regulation
|Shift to net-zero food culture and diet:|
· Marine proteins will be needed
· Tree-based foods including carbohydrates
· Eating a wider variety of animals, e.g. some wild animals
· Public understand the link between food choices and carbon emissions
· Less meat eating but livestock still needed for land fertility – right type of agriculture in the right place
|· Public norms|
· Lack of time in peoples lives for food preparation, purchasing and growing – long working hours
· Public skill base
· Public knowledge base
· Cooking classes resource intensive
· Lack of collective will to decarbonize
· Lack of access to sustainable food
· Current treatment of trees in agriculture by
|· A programme of public education, awareness raising|
· Cooking classes e.g. project Rebecca Sandover has
worked on in Cornwall
· Shorter working hours to give people more time for
food preparation and growing
· Plymouth Marine Park offers engagement and education opportunities
· Support for local and sustainable food networks to distribute and retail food, e.g. veg boxes
|Food labelling to help consumers make the right|
carbon and ecological choices.
|· Cost – who to pay?|
· Sustainable food is more expensive so people don’t buy it as much and it’s not so accessible
|· Labelling helps to account for the externalities|
· A points-based system to reflect sustainability criteria met on farm was suggested. Perhaps something like
the traffic light scheme for fats and sugars? A
suggestion of nutrition produced per acre. Should
organic food labelling be paid for by non-organic
farmers? Suggested that organic farmers shouldn’t
have to pay for the labelling as their food is
sustainable. Could it be self-assessed?
· Would benefit from being a national scheme
|National taxation to influence behaviour: e.g. a carbon|
tax on foods
|· This could mask other ecological complexities ||· How could this work and not have unintended negative consequences? E.g. increased burden to farmers already struggling.|
|Small scale integrated farms in Devon key to|
delivering the land use we need – including urban
growing, aquaponics and hydroponics.
|· Lack of access to land, training and finance|
· Current planning system
· Lack of access to food distribution markets and competitiveness of market pricing
|· Training and mentoring schemes for new entrants,|
something being worked on by the Land Workers Alliance
· Need to combine practical hands on with more research
· Changes to the planning system
· Change in subsidies needed
· Demonstration farms to help share best practice
|Re-localise farming infrastructure and networks: e.g.|
abattoirs, food processing equipment such as
|· Capital investment and existing levels of farmer debt|
· Devon needs a stronger, more effective regional food distribution network
|· Mobile abattoirs e.g. like in Sweden|
· National changes in abattoir laws needed
· Funding for infrastructure
· Layering functions – making things multifunctional, e.g. van fleets not only deliver things but bring things back such as food waste – could farmers be renewable energy hubs? Would help make distribution networks more viable.
· Support local shops
· Food hubs – new models for getting sustainable food to market needed
· How to engage local supermarkets to procure more local food
|Restore and enhance natural carbon sinks &|
Protect blue carbon habitats
Plant more trees (the right tree species in the
Green sea defences
|· Lack of data and research to make accurate decisions on e.g. carbon capture in woodlands vs. permanent pasture|
· More data needed on blue carbon
· Lack of practical and widespread metrics
· Potential conflict or opportunity with offshore wind – not enough known about impact of large-scale off shore wind
· Extreme weather impacts
· Soil erosion
· Commoners rights can be in tension with tree planting agendas
|· Need to bring people on board|
· Might be synergies with wind farms, minimise disturbance in these areas
· More research on large-scale offshore wind impacts
· Tackle fishing related plastic pollution
· Peer to peer farmer/ landowner networks spreading best practice & other support for farmers – help farmers see the business case
· Support smaller fisheries e.g. Lundy
· Do we need a new agri-marine environment scheme?
· Improve farming contracts so that they reflect natural capital and enable sustainable farming. e.g.
Dartington’s innovative farming contracts for
encouraging agroforestry fields
· Identify blue carbon we already have
· Enhance mechanisms to take a catchment wide
management approach which includes land and sea
· Right incentive framework needed – shape of national subsidies will be key
· Enforcement resource needed
· Work collaboratively with commoners to achieve tree planting
· Establish common metrics which are easily measured “in field” to allow monitoring of carbon sinks and biodiversity