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National Rural Health Conference – great event, great recommendations

2011 March 24
by anthea

The National Rural Health Alliance convened the National Rural Health Conference in Perth from March 13-16…

The Conference was an excellent event Рvisit the NRHA website (click  here) to read the Communique and Recommendations and to access the many excellent keynote presentations.

For RIG Network participants and interested observers, the inclusion of a Priority Recommendation about the importance of Food Sovereignty and Food Security provides support for action and further cross-sectoral cooperation:

11th National Rural Health Conference, Priority Recommendation No 6: Food sovereignty

6. Conference delegates agreed that food sovereignty and food security in Australia are critical issues for the community and governments. Delegates welcome the current initiative being led by the National Food Policy Working Group, including its role in the development of a National Food Plan.

These issues are particularly important given the shocks to the food system from natural disaster, market developments, climate change, and the development of new energy industries such as coal seam gas. Food sovereignty is a critical determinant of health and has particularly strong impacts in rural and remote areas. Given the challenges faced there by food production, distribution and pricing systems, food insecurity is more common in remote areas.

Development of the National Food Plan should be sensible of the particular needs, capacities and vulnerabilities of people in rural and remote areas, including those who work in food production (e.g. farmers and fishers) and related sectors. This new Plan will include support for market gardens in remote Indigenous communities.

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