Agrifood systems literacy: Insights from two high schools’ programs in Ontario
Keywords:Food literacy, sustainable agrifood systems, Ontario high school students, food sovereignty, critical pedagogy
Following the increased industrialization and globalization of the prevailing agrifood system, researchers and practitioners have highlighted the detrimental impacts of this model on human health, food security, and the environment. As such, experts and citizens are calling for an increased awareness, through food literacy (FL), to improve health and justice and to transition towards sustainable agrifood systems. Building on field research, critical pedagogy, and existing FL analyses, we argue for incorporating both health and well-being, and agrifood systems dimensions into FL programming. By doing so, FL can contribute to promote individual health, as well as more sustainable agrifood systems policies and practices based on the principles of food sovereignty. Through qualitative research with students and teachers in two Ontario high schools, we explore the content and approaches taken in food-related programming. Aspects of FL among students are also explored in order to highlight their strengths and limitations. Further, we point to the challenges faced by teachers in delivering food-related courses. We propose a conceptual framework that highlights the benefits of including the multiple dimensions of FL as a way to test and improve existing FL programs, and eventually train future generations of teachers, students, and citizens.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Alicia Martin, Marie-Josée Massicotte
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