Agriculture and Human Values 17 (4):315-322 (2000)

Public concern over environmentalquality and food safety has culminated in thedevelopment of markets for “green” foods – foodsthat are variously construed as fresh, chemical-free,nutritious, natural, or produced in anenvironmentally-sustainable manner. Understanding theemergence of “green” foods is dependent on analysisboth of the ways in which foods are produced andprocessed, and of the meanings that are attached tothem at each stage of their production,transformation, and consumption. The notion of “green”foods is thereby understood here as a fluid andcontestable signifier that myriad actors involved inthe production/consumption cycle may attempt to shapefor their own purposes. This paper explores corporate capital's recent attempts, through certification logosand advertising, to signify the “healthiness” andenvironmental virtues of organically-produced foods inAustralia and New Zealand. These attempts have not,however, been universally successful either in termsof gaining consumer interest, or in gaining agreementsbetween farmers, certifying organizations, andcapitalist firms over the meaning of “organic” and thepractice of “sustainable” agriculture. The experienceof corporate involvement in the organics industry isillustrative of yet-to-be-resolved processes ofreflexive modernization. As food production andtransformation continues to produce environmental andsocial risks, the question of just what makes food“green” will continue to be a source of social conflict
Keywords Corporate capital  Food consumption  Greening  Organic agriculture  Risk
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Reprint years 2004
DOI 10.1023/A:1026547102757
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Risk Society: Towards a New Modernity.Ulrich Beck, Mark Ritter & Jennifer Brown - 1993 - Environmental Values 2 (4):367-368.
Food, Self and Identity.Claude Fischler - 1988 - Social Science Information 27 (2):275-292.

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