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Municipal Foodscapes: Urban food policy and the new municipalism

Morley, Adrian and Morgan, Kevin (2021) Municipal Foodscapes: Urban food policy and the new municipalism. Food Policy. ISSN 0306-9192 (In Press)

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Abstract

This paper explores the role of food policy at the municipal level because municipalities are assuming a growing role in food policy reform. Adopting a framework of municipal foodscapes, we set out an embedded case study of the Oldham Educational Catering service, located within the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham in Greater Manchester, England. Through this prism we consider the potential of a foundational economy approach to embed food more firmly in the civic remit and highlight the role of new municipalism in enacting this approach in the public domain. To illustrate these arguments, we argue that the public plate, particularly the provision of school meals, offers an important way to stimulate transformative food agendas at the municipal level. To progress this political agenda, however, multilevel action is needed at national and regional levels as well as within municipalities themselves to stimulate sustainable foodscapes. Recognising the foundational status of food, as illustrated by its criticality during the Covid-19 pandemic, can lead to more progressive and consequential food policy reform.

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