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Food Matters Research Program

Welcome to the Food Matters Research Program

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The Food Matters Research Program based at the University of Canberra contributes research and policy engagement for all aspects of the food system. It supports interdisciplinary research that addresses the challenges of feeding the global population sustainably, healthily and equitably.


The Program aims to:

  • contribute to society through completing applied research activities, including the provision of tailored consultancy services, research supervision, and research dissemination.
  • act as a focal point for food research at the University of Canberra.
  • facilitate interactions between researchers at the University of Canberra (and those at other institutions) with policy makers in government, international organisations, the private sector and the NGO community.
  • help build interest in food related research projects amongst undergraduate and postgraduate students at the University of Canberra.

Issues in the Global Food System

The food system includes all those activities involving the production, processing, retailing and consumption of food.

On the supply side there will be growing competition for land, energy and water within a changing climate. Though productivity continues to increase, recently this has been at a decelerating rate.

Whilst on the demand side there is the challenge of feeding an expanding and increasingly affluent global population. Further at the present nearly a billion people go to bed hungry each night. Whilst an extra billion or so people eat too much food and are at risk from diseases of over-consumption, a problem for both developed and developing countries.

We are interested in the governance and economics of food production, its sustainability and impact on the natural environment. This includes issues of how food affects consumer's health and well-being (including nutrition, obesity and food safety) and the food system in less developed countries where hunger and malnutrition can be rife, as well as the links between food and sustainable development. The consumption of food is an integral part of all our lives and its history and culture are also fascinating and important topics of research and study.