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Organic Food and Farming in China Synopsis

Despite reports of food safety and quality scandals, China has a rapidly expanding organic agriculture and food sector, and there is a revolution in ecological food and ethical eating in China's cities. This book shows how a set of social, economic, cultural, and environmental conditions have converged to shape the development of a formal organic sector, created by top-down state-developed standards and regulations, and an informal organic sector, created by 'bottom-up' grassroots struggles for safe, healthy, and sustainable food. This is generating a new civil movement focused on ecological agriculture and quality food. Organic movements and markets have typically emerged in industrialized food systems that are characterized by private land ownership, declining small farm sectors, consolidated farm to retail chains, predominance of supermarket retail, standards and laws to safeguard food safety, and an active civil society sector. The authors contrast this with the Chinese context, with its unique version of capitalism with social characteristics, collective farmland ownership, and predominance of smallholder agriculture and emerging diverse marketing channels. China's experience also reflects a commitment to domestic food security, evolving food safety legislation, and a civil society with limited autonomy from a semi-authoritarian state that keeps shifting the terrain of what is permitted. The book will be of great interest to advanced students and researchers of agricultural and food systems and policy, as well as rural sociology and Chinese studies.

Book Information

ISBN: 9780367586287
Publication date: 30th June 2020
Author: Steffanie Scott, Zhenzhong Si, Theresa Schumilas, Aijuan Chen
Publisher: Routledge an imprint of Taylor & Francis Ltd
Format: Paperback / softback
Pagination: 236 pages
Categories: Agricultural science, Organic farming, Applied ecology, Development studies,

About Steffanie Scott, Zhenzhong Si, Theresa Schumilas, Aijuan Chen

Steffanie Scott is an associate professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Management, Faculty of Environment, University of Waterloo, Canada. Zhenzhong Si is a postdoctoral fellow at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Waterloo, Canada. Theresa Schumilas is a postdoctoral fellow and research associate, Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada. Aijuan Chen is a policy analyst at Agriculture and Agri-Food, Canada.

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