2018 Summer - Should society determine the right to farm?

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Farm Policy Journal: Vol 15 No 4 2018 Summer - Full Journal - Should society determine the right to farm?

Australian Farm Institute (2018), Should society determine the right to farm?, Farm Policy Journal: Vol. 15 No. 4, Spring 2018, Surry Hills, Australia.
ISSN 1449–2210 (Print)
ISSN 1449–8812 (Web)

$60.50


FPJ1504B - Lush, D (2018),The right to farm versus the right to choose: society is having the final say

FPJ1504B - Lush, D (2018), The right to farm versus the right to choose: society is having the final say, in Farm Policy Journal, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 2018, pp. 4-11, Surry Hills, Australia.

With an increasing gap between city and country and increasing scrutiny of farming, society is already determining the right to farm. The debate over the right to farm will continue to take place on the ‘should we’ questions: what are the values, what are the ethics, should farmers and the food system be doing what they are doing? Since farmers do not have as much contact with consumers as others in the food system, an openness to the genuine questioning of practices will require a huge mind shift.
Farmers may believe they have a right to farm, but equally the market has a right not to buy their products. If transparency is the key to building trust, maintaining a social licence and overcoming right to farm issues, we need to consider if agriculture is prepared for transparency, which may also require changes to industry or farm practices.
The agriculture sector must upskill producers in engagement and leading with shared values to build trust rather than providing more science and data which, while important, will not win hearts and minds of the general public. It is time to look at a new approach for agriculture and a new way of engaging. Farmers may believe they have a right to farm, but equally the market has a right not to buy their products. If transparency is the key to building trust, maintaining a social licence and overcoming right to farm issues, we need to consider if agriculture is prepared for transparency, which may also require changes to industry or farm practices.

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FPJ1504C - Cawood, M (2018), Society giveth, and society taketh away. That’s how it should be.

FPJ1504C - Cawood, M (2018), Society giveth, and society taketh away. That’s how it should be., in Farm Policy Journal, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 2018, pp. 12-18, Surry Hills, Australia.

Should society determine how agriculture is conducted? The answer is a robust ‘yes’, because agriculture is nothing if not a part of society. But getting to that yes requires that we look at the nature of liberty, and at how society is already shaping agriculture with agriculture’s assent.

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FPJ1504D - Dumbrell, N (2018), To what extent should society determine the right to farm?

FPJ1504D - Dumbrell, N (2018), To what extent should society determine the right to farm?, in Farm Policy Journal, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 2018, pp. 19-26, Surry Hills, Australia.

Farmers, like all other business operators and individuals, are continuously faced with decisions about how to allocate and manage their resources (land, water, capital, labour, etc.) to satisfy their objectives. A farmer’s choice set is constrained by the attributes of their resources, regulations, market requirements, and social expectations. Regulations stipulate (often legal) conditions on resource access and use. But, complying with regulations is insufficient. Society expects more of farmers (and others) than to just comply with regulations. The ongoing acceptance or approval of a farmer’s operations/activities by local stakeholders and the broader community is described as the farmer’s ‘social licence to operate’.

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FPJ1504E - Ogbe Chukwunonso Daniel (2018), Delimiting the right to farm through the instrumentality of the law

FPJ1504E - Ogbe Chukwunonso Daniel (2018), Delimiting the right to farm through the instrumentality of the law, in Farm Policy Journal, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 2018, pp. 27-30, Surry Hills, Australia.

Nigeria has been in the news on the negative side of late, owing to the violent clashes that erupt occasionally between farmers who eke out a living in cultivating arable farmlands on the one hand; and pastoralist herdsmen who breed cattle within the territorial confines of Nigeria on the other hand. The incessant conflicts between Nigerian farmers and herdsmen, emanating from the grazing of farmlands by cattle, is an instance of the numerous factors responsible for the persistent questions on whether farmers should be granted the prerogative of determining how they are to carry out their farming business; or whether farming should be regulated by third party policy-makers who may not necessarily be farmers.

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FPJ1504F - Cuming, M (2018), Right to farm and its determination: the farming community’s responsibility

FPJ1504F - Cuming, M (2018), Right to farm and its determination: the farming community’s responsibility, in Farm Policy Journal, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 2018, pp. 31-37, Surry Hills, Australia.

As a farmer, a communicator and someone employed by an agricultural service provider, the statement for this year’s essay challenged me from the moment I considered it. After all, if society didn’t determine the right to farm (defined as “legitimate and lawful agriculture practice without conflict of interference”), who could or indeed should?
Could a primary producer’s right to farm be determined or even governed by farming businesses themselves?
Alternatively, is it the role of government to determine the right to farm, or perhaps the legal system? Maybe it should be determined by key stakeholders, including those who work to end certain farming practices.




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