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Published on Dec 14, 2010
www.signsofchange.org.nz Presented at Signs of Change National e-Conference, 15-16 November 2010, NEW ZEALAND
As in most of the world, the food system in New Zealand is oriented around industrial agricultural practices and the global import/export market. It is well documented that this organization of food systems entails significant local and global environmental damage, lower quality less nutritious food and increasing corporatization of the landscape at the expense of smaller scale individual run and more flexible units of agricultural production. While there is a movement toward more ecologically sound practices, even these practices are framed as a balancing act between economic benefit in the short term and the impacts of long term damage to health and environment. In addition, more ecological practices at the industrial scale are largely limited by their higher cost and the limited ability or willingness for large percentages of the population to pay the additional cost.
However, there are alternate models of food production and delivery that do not have the negative impacts that industrial scale and are not limited to a higher income demographic. It is useful to break these models into three different scales; home gardening, community gardening and community supported agriculture. By shortening the distance between production and consumption, these models of food delivery provide high quality food at lower costs and with far less environmental damage. Jody discusses Koanga Gardens seed company which produces organically grown heritage seeds specifically for the New Zealand climate, community gardens in Christchurch, and a CSA in Wellington, Simply Good Food.