Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A community of food policy scholars

Two national scholarly associations that cover U.S. food policy issues have greatly stepped up their level of collaboration and coordination.

The American Agricultural Economics Association (AAEA) and the American Council on Consumer Interests (ACCI) have merged their main annual meeting this year, in Orlando, July 27-29, 2008. They are exploring possible options for confederation in the longer run.

The AAEA has a subgroup or "section" for members with particular interests in Food Safety and Nutrition. If you have any suggestions for the best scholarly article published on food safety and nutrition topics, please send your nomination to be considered for the section's annual journal article award (.pdf). The section is jointly sponsoring with ACCI a couple promising conference sessions at the Orlando meeting. With colleagues at ACCI, I helped organize the one entitled "Hard Hitting and Well Informed: A Conversation Between Food Safety Policy Advocates and Researchers." It will bring together leading national policy advocates from Consumers Union and the Consumer Federation of America for a conversation with researchers on some of the same topics.

At the same conference, the ACCI's prestigious Colston Warne Lecture will be given by Michael Jacobson of the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). The AAEA's keynote lecture has been combined with ACCI's prominent Esther Peterson Consumer Policy Forum, which will be given by UC San Diego economist James Hamilton, who offers insight into the interaction between petroleum markets and food markets.

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