1st Edition

Food for Degrowth Perspectives and Practices

Edited By Anitra Nelson, Ferne Edwards Copyright 2021
    258 Pages
    by Routledge

    258 Pages
    by Routledge

    This collection breaks new ground by investigating applications of degrowth in a range of geographic, practical and theoretical contexts along the food chain. Degrowth challenges growth and advocates for everyday practices that limit socio-metabolic energy and material flows within planetary constraints. As such, the editors intend to map possibilities for food for degrowth to become established as a field of study.

    International contributors offer a range of examples and possibilities to develop more sustainable, localised, resilient and healthy food systems using degrowth principles of sufficiency, frugal abundance, security, autonomy and conviviality. Chapters are clustered in parts that critically examine food for degrowth in spheres of the household, collectives, networks, and narratives of broader activism and discourses. Themes include broadening and deepening concepts of care in food provisioning and social contexts; critically applying appropriate technologies; appreciating and integrating indigenous perspectives; challenging notions of 'waste', 'circular economies' and commodification; and addressing the ever-present impacts of market logic framed by growth.

    This book will be of greatest interest to students and scholars of critical food studies, sustainability studies, urban political ecology, geography, environmental studies such as environmental sociology, anthropology, ethnography, ecological economics and urban design and planning.


    1. Food for degrowth, Anitra Nelson and Ferne Edwards  Part 1 Frugal abundance  2. Replacing growth with belonging economies: A neopeasant response, Patrick Jones and Meg Ulman  3. Quietly degrowing: Food self-provisioning in Central Europe, Petr Daněk and Petr Jehlička   4. Learning degrowth from women’s food knowledge and care in Kenya, Meike Brückner  5. Caring dachas: Food self-provisioning in Eastern Europe through the lens of care, Lilian Pungas  Part 2 Degrowth collectives  6. Germinating degrowth? On-farm adaptation and survival in Hungarian alternative food networks, Logan Strenchock   7. Nourishing self-planned socio-ecological transformations: Glocal community supported agriculture in Veneto, Italy, Silvio Cristiano, Marco Auriemma, Paolo Cacciari, Manola Cervesato, Domenico Maffeo, Paola Malgaretto and Francesco Nordio  8. Sustaining caring livelihoods: Agroecological cooperativism in Catalonia, Patricia Homs, Gemma Flores-Pons and Adrià Martín  Part 3 Degrowth networks  9. Co-creation for transformation: Food for degrowth in Budapest Food City Lab initiatives, Diana Szakál and Bálint Balázs  10. Technology for degrowth: Implementing digital platforms for community supported agriculture, Ferne Edwards and Ricard Espelt  11. Institutionalising degrowth: Exploring multi-level food governance, Ferne Edwards, Sérgio Pedro and Sara Rocha  Part 4 Narratives: Degrowth contexts and futures  12. Recycling old ideals? A utopian reading of ‘circular’ food imaginaries, Deborah Lambert  13. Degrowth, decolonisation and food sovereignty in the Cree Nation of Chisasibi, Ioana Radu, Émilie Parent, Gabriel Snowboy, Bertie Wapachee and Geneviève Beaulieu  14. Food waste or surplus? Reading between the lines of discourse and action, Constanza Hepp  15. A degrowth scenario: Can permaculture feed Melbourne?, Terry Leahy  16. Future research directions: Food for degrowth, Ferne Edwards and Anitra Nelson


    Anitra Nelson is an activist-scholar, Honorary Principal Fellow and Associate Professor in the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, University of Melbourne (Australia). Her works include Exploring Degrowth: A Critical Guide (co-author 2020), Housing For Degrowth: Principles, Practices, Challenges and Opportunities (co-editor, 2018), Small is Necessary: Shared Living on a Shared Planet (author, 2018) and Life Without Money: Building Fair and Sustainable Economies (co-editor, 2011).

    Ferne Edwards is Postdoctoral Fellow in Socially and Environmentally Just Transitions, Department of Design, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim, Norway. Previously Research Fellow, RMIT University Centre for Urban Research (Melbourne, Australia) and Work Package Lead of the EU EdiCitNet project at RMIT Europe (Barcelona, Spain), Ferne is a cultural anthropologist researching edible cities, food waste, urban beekeeping, non-monetary food economies and food sharing.

    "Food for Degrowth: Perspectives and Practices, edited by A. Nelson and F. Edwards, is an effort to understand the social and territorial expressions of the degrowth principles as applied to different areas of the food system (production, distribution, consumption). Building on fourteen diverse empirical cases, it takes the reader on a journey to discover how degrowth principles can shape alternative food practices and what are the practical limitations of implementing degrowth in our food systems toward more sustainability and justice … . Both accessible and thought-provoking, this book will be of interest to urban geographers interested in degrowth, how degrowth can shape cities and urban-rural relations, and the governance of urban transformations more broadly."Louise Guibrunet, Geography Institute, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico City, Mexico

    "Food for Degrowth is one more rich contribution to the Degrowth debates. As a multi-layered and multi-dimensional movement, Degrowth offers inspiring and complementary solutions from a large diversity of perspectives. After Housing for Degrowth, Food for Degrowth brings one more strong pillar showing that degrowth is not only necessary, not only possible, but mostly desirable and already happening here and around." - Vincent Liegey, Degrowth researcher and practitioner, co-author of Exploring Degrowth: A Critical Guide (2020) and coordinator of Cargonomia — a centre for research and experimentation on degrowth, a social cooperative for sustainable logistical solutions and local food distribution using cargo-bikes in Budapest

    "The book’s strength lies in the diversity of its contributors, with a good mix of academics, activists and grassroots workers… The book sets a tone for more works on degrowth in the future. It can be useful for students working on food sustainability cutting across Sociology, Social Anthropology, Food Studies and Environmental Studies."-- Rituparna Patgiri, excerpt from a review in Doing Sociology.org