Did you know that there isn’t any one single official definition of “sustainable food”? That may be surprising to some of you, given the extent to which the term has entered our lexicon in recent years. But what might be even more worrying is that even amid our current climate crisis, not everyone understands precisely what makes food sustainability so important.
So, let’s start from the beginning…
What is sustainable food?
As we touched on above, there’s no one legal definition of what sustainable food is. So, let’s break it down a touch. The Environmental Protection Agency in the United States has defined sustainability in general as: “the ability to maintain or improve standards of living without damaging or depleting natural resources for present and future generations.”
That seems simple enough. So, how can we begin to introduce both social and environmental sustainability to how we buy and consume food? One way to look at it is to think of it as “regenerative” food – which, in the words of former New York University professor Marion Nestle, means “putting back into the soil what gets taken out.”
Another authority on the subject is the Sustain alliance of organisations and communities, which – as its name suggests – advocates more sustainable food and agriculture policies and practices. It has pointed to several consistent characteristics of what it describes as “good food”, including that it should be produced, processed, distributed and disposed of in ways that support local economies and livelihoods, while protecting plant and animal diversity and even providing social benefits.
It’s worth noting that while the terms, ‘’organic food’’ and ‘’sustainable food’’ were once regarded as more-or-less synonymous, they aren’t necessarily the same thing. The definition of organic set out by the US Department of Agriculture, for example, doesn’t call for regenerative practices. Nonetheless, most organic farmers do use regenerative practices, so there’s plenty of overlap.
Why is sustainable food important & what is Broma doing to promote food sustainability?
Sustainable food is far from just some chic preoccupation of “eco warriors” (or “bunny huggers”, to use the parlance recently introduced by the Prime Minister!). That’s because traditional means of food production have been associated with all manner of dire real-world impacts, including elevated air pollution, land erosion, non-potable water, and other consequences that are making the existing climate crisis so much worse.
Here at Broma, we’re proud that despite being a small company with limited resources, we’re adopting various measures to help instil sustainability into everything we do. Such steps have included – as laid out on our ‘Sustainability’ page – carefully selecting our ingredients to ensure that they are sustainable, certified organic, and ethically sourced. We’re also members of the global organisation 1% For The Planet, and donate 1% of our annual sales to The Marine Conversation Society.
There’s always, of course, much more to do. However, we also don’t think our existing efforts are too bad at all! So why not discover your favourite flavours from our store today, in the knowledge that you’ll also be playing your own small part to protect the only planet we have?