Our New Centre for Global Food and Resources is officially launched today


Launching tonight in Adelaide, is The University of Adelaide’s new Centre for Global Food and Resources. The Centre brings together all aspects of food production, food consumption and natural resources, spanning the economic and environmental health of food and water as well as its social impact.

Our new Centre builds on the University’s reputation as a leader in research and policy with a focus on real outcomes for agriculture, food and water industries and the community. Professor Wendy Umberger, the Centre’s Executive Director

People often talk about ‘healthy’ food as though it’s all about nutritional value, but there are so many aspects of food and agriculture that we need to consider in order to make the entire system truly healthy, resilient and productive. Our Centre addresses economic, policy, sustainability and social issues affecting food systems and water resources, not only in Australia but also in global markets. Professor Wendy Umberger

The six key areas of research for the new Centre are:

  • Food and Agricultural Policy
  • Water Policy
  • Resilient Landscapes
  • Healthy Societies
  • International Development
  • Food Systems Innovation

Among the many projects being conducted by the Centre for Global Food and Resources is a long-term analysis of farming stress and rural community pressures in the Murray-Darling Basin.

This study is being led by one of the Centre’s senior researchers and an Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellow, Associate Professor Sarah Wheeler.

This research has highlighted the distress being faced by primary producers in the southern Murray-Darling Basin, with almost two-thirds of horticulture farmers and more than half of dairy farmers thinking of selling up in the next five years.

The study also revealed that dairy farmers had the highest absolute debt levels in the Murray-Darling Basin, as well as the highest debt as a percentage of their land value. We’ve seen this reflected in the number of dairy irrigators selling permanent water back to the government, and this trend is likely to continue, especially given the recent dairy milk price crisis. Associate Professor Sarah Wheeler

This research is one example of the highly complex issues facing the agri-food and resource sectors, and it’s one area where we hope our research can make an impact on policy and outcomes for the benefit of producers, industry and the community. Professor Wendy Umberger


Click here for details of tonight’s launch.

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