The transformative potential of community kitchens for an agroecological urbanism. Preliminary insights and a research agenda

Carlotta Gennari, Chiara Tornaghi

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Abstract

A large part of contemporary discussions on sustainable food planning in the Global North is focused on interventions on the food supply chain (i.e. AFN, farmers-consumers reconnections, food miles) alongside campaigns for (individualized) responsible and healthy food behaviors, such as eating local, seasonal and organic, or food waste reduction. Collective, rather than individualized, arrangements for food system transformation (if we exclude those focused on charity and food poverty aid) are however less prominent and under-researched within the sustainable food planning community.
Through an overview of literature debates and some preliminary (mostly exploratory) empirical material, this paper will make the case for a renewed attention to collective interdependencies, and in particular the role of community kitchens as building blocks of a "reproductive, resourceful, agroecological urbanism" (Deh-Tor 2017). Departing from the extensive (and forgotten) work of Dolores Hayden (1985), the first part of the paper will offer a review of the literature, starting from ideas and contributions developed in the 18th and 19th century (i.e. utopian, feminist, communards, socialist models, etc.) such as in Fourier's work, until more recent debates. In the second part, reflecting on one or more examples of community kitchens in the UK context, and in particular their aims and their socio-political, economic and organizational aspects, the paper will discuss potential and limits of contemporary community kitchens to shaping agroecological behaviours in urban contexts and building viable alternatives to the food regime.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAgroecological transitions confronting climate breakdown. Food planning for the post-carbon city.
Subtitle of host publicationBook of Proceedings of the 9th International Conference of the AESOP Sustainable food planning group, Madrid, 2019.
Place of PublicationGranada
PublisherEditorial Universidad de Granada
Pages80-90
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)978-84-338-6533-5
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2020
Event9th International Annual Conference of the AESOP Sustainable Food Planning Group - Madrid, Spain
Duration: 7 Nov 20198 Nov 2019
Conference number: 9
https://www.aesop-planning.eu/blogs/posts/en_GB/sustainable-food-planning/2018/11/27/readabout/aesop-sfp-conference-2019-madrid

Conference

Conference9th International Annual Conference of the AESOP Sustainable Food Planning Group
CountrySpain
CityMadrid
Period7/11/198/11/19
Internet address

Keywords

  • community kitchens
  • agroecology
  • agroecological urbanism

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