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Evaluating the Policy Proposals of the Food Movement

Jayson Lusk ()

Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, 2017, vol. 39, issue 3, 387-406

Abstract: The shift in the population from majority food-producer to majority food-consumer has played a role in public calls to reform federal policy to focus more on the consumer implications of the food supply chain. This article critically evaluates the food and farm policy proposals recently offered by prominent members of the so-called food movement. I demonstrate that the authors offer no consistent, underlying philosophical basis for when the federal government should (and should not) intervene and offer no framework for making tradeoffs when proposed “guarantees” come into conflict. Moreover, the authors misjudge the trajectory and impacts of changes in food and agriculture and thus overstate the urgency and scope for intervention. The authors’ numerous specific policy proposals tend to represent a hodge-podge of ideas that have already been tried, are already being undertaken by the USDA, or fail to hold up under close scrutiny, although there is some common ground on a few proposals.

Keywords: farm policy; farm bill; food policy; USDA (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q18 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy is currently edited by Timothy Park, Tomislav Vukina and Ian Sheldon

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