Public Health - Book Chapters

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    Challenging corporate charity: Food commons as a response to food insecurity
    (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2023-08-15) Kenny, Tara; Sage, Colin; Caraher, Martin; Coveney, John; Chopra, Mickey
    Recognising that food insecurity is a structural feature that requires profound food system and public policy transformation, this paper critically examines the increasing volumes of surplus food redistributed via food charities in many rich societies. The role of corporate charitable donations is widely celebrated as a ‘win-win’ that reduces food waste and feeds hungry people. Noting the inability of such interventions to address the structural causes of food insecurity, and its propensity to maintain and support problematic ideologies, practices, and power imbalances the chapter offers an alternative perspective that argues for the need to move beyond food as commodity and appreciate its other vital attributes. Reviewing two alternative models of food redistribution – labelled ‘brokerage’ and ‘challenger’ – the chapter highlights the corporate dominance of the former while the latter offers the prospects to rethink ways out of food poverty traps. Drawing upon the notion of food as a commons, it argues that reformed public welfare provision together with diverse community initiatives grounded in principles of conviviality could offer an alternative route to addressing food insecurity.