Food Governance Conference 2019

On the 3rd-5th of July, the second Food Governance Conference was hosted by the Sydney Law School, The University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre, and The George Institute for Global Health.

The conference had a focus on the role of human rights, law, regulation and policy, in addressing food system issues and challenges. Keynote presentations were given by Professor Hilal Elver on food security and climate change, Professor Sharon Friel on governing a consumptogenic world, Dr Juan Rivera on obesity prevention in Mexico and Nicole Turner on food accessibility, affordability and availability in Aboriginal communities.

A plenary panel, comprising Professor Lisa Bero, Dr Katherine Cullerton and A/Prof Gary Sacks, discussed managing conflicts of interest in food and nutrition research. Overall, the discussions focussed on how broader legislative and policy regimes may impede or facilitate access to a nutritious, equitable, and sustainable food supply, and highlighted the interrelationships between the main challenges facing the global food system.

For more details, the conference program, abstracts and a short video are available here.

Prior to the Food Governance Conference on Wednesday the 3rd of July, Dr Juan Rivera from Mexico’s Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública visited The George Institute for Global Health to present on “Scientific evidence, advocacy and obesity prevention policy in Mexico” focusing on the sugar tax. Dr Rivera shared Mexico’s experience in implementing a sugar tax, including the organisations involved and how they worked together, and challenges faced during the process. He also spoke on the impact of the sugar tax over the first two years, the 10% tax on sugar-sweetened beverages resulted in a 7.6% average decrease in purchases over two years, and the 8% tax on energy-dense nutrient poor foods resulted in a 6% average decrease in purchases.

You can watch a small snapshot of Dr Rivera’s talk here or listen to the audio of the full talk here.