Pierre Desrochers is Associate Professor of Geography at the University of Toronto Mississauga. His research and teaching activities focus primarily on economic development, technological innovation, entrepreneurship, international trade, business-environment and business-university interactions. His other areas of expertise include intellectual property and urban and housing policy.
Main research interests focus primarily on:
• economic development;
• technological innovation;
• business-environment interactions;
• energy policy;
• food policy.
Department of Geography (http://geog.utm.utoronto.ca/)
University of Toronto Mississauga (http://www.utm.utoronto.ca/)
How the Globalized Food Supply Chain Benefits Our Economy and Environment
Today's food activists think that "sustainable farming" and "eating local" are the way to solve a host of perceived problems with our modern food supply system. But after a thorough review of the evidence, University of Toronto professor Pierre Desrochers concludes that these claims are mistaken. Building on historical, economic and scientific evidence, Desrochers reveals what locavores miss or misunderstand: the real environmental impacts of agricultural production; the drudgery of subsistence farming; and the essential role large-scale, industrial producers play in making food more available, varied, affordable, and nutritionally rich than ever before in history. Eliminating agriculture subsidies and opening up international trade, not reducing food miles, he argues, is the real route to sustainability.
We are also pleased to have Sarah Elton (http://thelocavore.ca/) to provide her extensive and knowledgeable perspective on the topic.
Sarah Elton is the author of the national bestseller Locavore: From Farmers' Fields to Rooftop Gardens, How Canadians Are Changing the Way We Eat (http://www.harpercollins.ca/books/Locavore-Sarah-Elton/?isbn=9781554684182), a book that won gold at the Culinary Book Awards. She is also the food columnist for CBC Radio's Here and Now and writes for publications such as Maclean's and The Globe and Mail. Her new book about the future of food will be published next year by Harper Collins.
The Locavore's Dilemma
In Praise of the 10,000-Mile Diet
by Pierre Desrochers and Hiroko Shimizu
A FEISTY, SCRUPULOUSLY-RESEARCHED DECONSTRUCTION OF THE "EAT LOCAL" ETHOS—AND HOW IT DISTRACTS US FROM SOLVING SERIOUS GLOBAL FOOD ISSUES
“They argue urbanization has brought prosperity; globalization wields peace and security; “food miles” is a joke; packaged food is safer than handling it at home; and the notion of peak oil (someday running out of fuel with which to haul all that food across the world) is an “untenable proposition,” since we’ll just go back to coal. A provocative take, to be sure, and one that will invite the ire of the 99%. ” — PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
Today’s food activists think that “sustainable farming” and “eating local” are the way to solve a host of perceived problems with our modern food supply system. But after a thorough review of the evidence, Pierre Desrochers and Hiroko Shimizu have concluded that these claims are mistaken.
In The Locavore’s Dilemma they explain the history, science, and economics of food supply to reveal what locavores miss or misunderstand: the real environmental impacts of agricultural production; the drudgery of subsistence farming; and the essential role large-scale, industrial producers play in making food more available, varied, affordable, and nutritionally rich than ever before in history.
They show how eliminating agriculture subsidies and opening up international trade, not reducing food miles, is the real route to sustainability; and why eating globally, not only locally, is the way to save the planet.
READ AN EXCERPT (http://www.thebukowskiagency.com/Locavore%20Excerpt.htm)
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
PIERRE DESROCHERS is an associate professor of geography at the University of Toronto. He is the author of over 40 peer-reviewed articles on topics ranging from economic development and globalization to energy and transportation issues and is affiliated with numerous policy research centers. Pierre has always made an effort to reach a broad audience through his over 100 columns and shorter pieces and regular contributions to various media outlets. He maintains a detailed website at http://epsem.erin.utoronto.ca/desrochers (http://epsem.erin.utoronto.ca/desrochers/) His unique strength as one of the most well-known critics of the locavore movement is his knowledge of a broader set of issues than other critics who have attacked only one facet of this movement.
HIROKO SHIMIZU was trained as an economist in one of Japan’s premier universities. She holds a Master’s of Public Policy from University Osaka. She has studied and worked at several academic institutions and private companies in Canada, Japan, China and the United States. She has also travelled worldwide to over 30 countries. Based on her international experiences and observations, she describes her policy approach as “applying global common sense” to politically correct but ultimately mistaken ideas. She has been published in three languages (Japanese, English and French) in both the academic and popular literature.