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Food and Agriculture Policy Group

By Karin Vosgueritchian (MPP Candidate ‘19)

The Food & Agriculture Policy Group’s mission is to explore how policy can achieve equity, justice, and economic and environmental sustainability within food and agriculture systems. By providing resources, convening conversations, and facilitating collaboration within the UC Berkeley community and beyond, the Food & Agriculture Policy Group examines the intersections of issues such as food justice and equity, the environmental impacts of food systems, the role of food and agriculture subsidies, access to and affordability of nutritious food, and the impact of climate change on food systems. 

We aspire to bring together academics, professionals, and students across disciplines to discuss issues that affect all of us. The Food & Agriculture Policy Group kicked off the semester with a visit from Karen Ross, the Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture. Secretary Ross discussed California agriculture’s various challenges: climate change, labor shortage, and competing federal and state priorities. Watch the video from the event.

The Food & Agriculture Policy Group expects to continue the conversation by planning a food panel that brings together different experts in business, policy, and the sciences. We hope to explore the role of the UC Berkeley community in the food system beyond our own campus. How do UC Berkeley’s academic- or student-led initiatives shape national, state and local dialogues? What impact can students have on food insecurity, agricultural technology, and environmental movements? We also aim to organize tours with local Bay Area food companies and organizations to learn more about their business and sustainability goals, and understand pressing concerns for those involved in private, public, and non-profit sectors. 

Ultimately, the Food and Agriculture Policy Group is a conduit through which students of different disciplines can connect with one another. We aspire to share knowledge and build a collaborative community that empowers students to learn with and from one another in a systems-based approach. We hope to see you at our next meeting.