'The Ethics of Food Security' to be presented Feb. 13

Bryan L. McDonald, assistant professor of science, technology and society at Penn State, will present "The Ethics of Food Security" at 3 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13, in the Foster Auditorium at Paterno Library on the University Park campus. This lecture is free and open to the public.

Abstract:

The need to ensure food security, the idea that all people at all times have access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food necessary to lead active and healthy lives, has been recognized as a core challenge in the 21st century. How will the world meet demands from a growing population that is also growing more affluent with shifting dietary preferences? How will countries secure a stable and safe food supply for their citizens? How will consumer preferences for affordable, convenient, healthy and safe food create new challenges and opportunities in food systems? As these questions demonstrate, the global trends that will reshape the food system in coming decades present a number of pressing ethical questions about how to ensure food security.

Already, global change processes are creating a new food security landscape. Rising food prices and a global economic crisis have resulted in record numbers of chronically hungry people in the world. At the same time, countries around the world are confronted by health challenges from rising rates of overweight and obesity. Agricultural and food production activities are key drivers of environmental changes while at the same time likely to face significant impacts from these changes in coming decades. Food safety incidents have raised awareness of the continued peril that food systems face from diseases and contaminants.

The lack of sufficient, safe and nutritious food has significant impacts on the health, well-being and livelihoods of people and countries around the world. This lecture will examine trends in the food system and challenges to food security with a particular focus on the ethical questions raised by efforts to provide all people with needed food.

This is part of the Rock Ethics Institute’s Food Ethics Lecture series. For more information, visit http://rockethics.psu.edu/bioethics/events/food1112.shtml.

Last Updated February 06, 2012