Cambridge Food Security Forum meeting

If you are interested in the food system, and taking action to achieve a sustainable system in Cambridge, please join us for a meeting on Thursday 12 May at 5pm.

The Cambridge Food Security Forum was set up in 2015 to bring together students and post-docs that have an interest in the global food system. Over the last few months, we’ve organised a public discussion on reducing meat consumption, run a seminar series Food: Field to Table?, run a stall at the Science Festival and will soon be holding a joint conference with the Oxford Food Forum.

We are holding this meeting to elect a new committee and to start planning events for the 2016/2017 academic year. Please let us know here if you would like to join us for this meeting. We will settle a location in central Cambridge once we have numbers. If you are a student or an early career post-doc and you would like to be involved in leading the Forum next year please also indicate what roles you might like to take on.

Even if you are not affiliated with the University, do join us at this meeting – it would be fantastic to have your thoughts on projects for next year!

Any questions, or if you are interested but cannot attend the meeting, get in touch at

We look forward to meeting you soon!

Squash the Beef: a discussion on the global and personal impact of meat

Cambridge Food Security Forum is excited to be at Espresso Library on the evening of 1 March for a discussion on the global and personal impact of meat consumption. With ever increasing demand for meat, it is time to assess the impact that our personal choices have.

We have three great speakers joining us –

  • Tim Benton is the UK Food Security Champion. He will help us understand what meats have the most and least impact on our health and the environment.
  • Tim Hayward, the owner of Cambridge favourite Fitzbillies, will argue for continued meat consumption, but lesser amounts of higher quality meat and consumption from head to tail.
  • Alice Kabala, food blogger @Thoughtful Forkfuls, will talk about ways to have a nutritious and varied meat-free diet.

We will post a summary of the evening’s discussion for those that are unable to join us.

Many thanks to Cumberland Lodge, Quorn and the Cambridge Global Food Security Strategic Research Initiative for making this evening possible.

Supply Chains and Scandals: Big Ships, Big Data, Horse Meat

Catherine Barnard (Law, University of Cambridge) on

The horse meat scandal: a legal perspective

When: Wednesday 13th January, 5-7pm
Where: SG2, Alison Richards building, CB3 9DT

This session we are going to be examining how food gets from fields and slaughterhouses to your plate, and the pros and cons of complex global supply chains. We will have talks from Professor Catharine Barnard on the 2013 horse meat scandal and the legal issues arising, and from Erinch Sahan (Oxfam) on how corporations can be persuaded to improve their supply chains. There will be a food and drink reception before a discussion group.

Prior to the discussions we would like you to think about:
1) How well do you expect companies to know their supply chains?
2) How responsible are consumers for the impacts of their purchasing?
3) What is the best way to persuade corporations to change bad practices?

There are also relevant articles below should you wish to read more:

Review of UK’s new anti-slavery laws – requiring large companies to publish their efforts to tackle slavery in their supply chains annually

Guardian report on slavery in the Thai prawn industry (supplies many major supermarkets)

Timeline of the horse meat scandal

Lent Term CRASSH programme

We have released the Lent Term programme for the CRASSH discussion group, Food: Field to Table?

This term we will be focusing on the market forces that shape the global food system – from multinational supply chains, the impact of agricultural subsidies, to the politics of food provisioning and the role of gender and technology in driving market exclusion.

Our first session on Wednesday 13 January will conclude with a drinks reception.

We look forward to seeing you then!

Website Launch

This website for the newly-formed Cambridge Food Security Forum (CFSF) will go live as of 1st October 2015. If you are reading this site before then please excuse any bugs!

Those interested in following the CFSF or wanting to get involved are encouraged to make an account on the site using the “Register” link on the sidebar. If you’d like to write a post to feature on the site you can do so through the WordPress toolbar that will present itself on logging in. We are interested in your food security news, events or just opinions and ideas you’d like to get out to the community. All posts submitted will be posted, pending administrator approval.

See the Events page for a summary of our upcoming events – starting with our CRASSH Research Group events.