Monday, April 15, 2013

Reason Magazine highlights food policy

Baylen Linnekin's new column at Reason Magazine this week highlights the nationwide interest in food policy in recent years.

Linnekin gives at least four main examples, with links for more detail.

1. Emily Broad Leib's Harvard Law School Food Law and Policy Clinic (see our coverage earlier this year). 
For example, a recent Harvard Law School news article claims "there may be no hotter topic in law schools right now than food law and policy[.]" 
2. My new book Food Policy in the United States: An Introduction (Routledge/Earthscan).
“As a pundit once said, ‘When we leave farm policy to the experts, we actually leave it to the lobbyists,’” says Wilde, himself the author of the new book Food Policy in the United States. “This book pulls open the curtains and lets any interested reader understand the fundamentals of U.S. food policy.”
The pundit, by the way, was Ezra Klein.  Umm, may I say "pundit" is not pejorative?

3.  Oklahoma State University agricultural economist Jayson Lusk.  I have long admired Jayson's work and enjoyed contributing a chapter on food security to the multi-author handbook on the economics of food consumption and policy that Jayson co-edited for Oxford University Press a couple years ago.  After reading Linnekin's column, I have just this very minute pre-ordered Jayson's new book The Food Police.  It seems possible that Jayson's book will agree with one key theme of this blog (that government regulation sometimes overreaches badly) and perhaps downplay another (that more vigorous public sector action commonly is needed to advance the public interest, so we should all work together to make government more effective rather than undermining it).
Lusk, too, has a new food policy book out. In The Food Police, Lusk pushes back against what he sees as a dominant, pro-regulatory bent among food writers, which he calls “condescending paternalism.”
4.  David Gumpert's forthcoming book, which I also have just pre-ordered.
Still another such book, David Gumpert’s Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Food Rights, is set for release this summer.
As a nice timely hook to close this post, the Consumer Federation of America's annual Food Policy Conference begins today (April 15) in Washington, DC. If you attend, say hello to the two Friedman School graduate students who have set up a table with flyers and copies of Food Policy in the United States.

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