A Handbook of Food CrimeImmoral and Illegal Practices in the Food Industry and What to Do About Them

A Handbook of Food CrimeImmoral and Illegal Practices in the Food Industry and What to Do About Them

Allison Gray and Ronald Hinch

Print publication date: 2019

ISBN: 9781447336013

Publisher: Policy Press


This book contextualises, evaluates, and problematises the (lack of) legal and regulatory organisation involved in the many processes of food production, distribution, and consumption. Turning a criminological gaze on the conditions under which food is (un)regulated, this book encompasses a range of discussions on the problematic conditions under which food (dis)connects with humanity and its consequences on public health and well-being, nonhuman animals, and the environment, often simultaneously. Influenced by critical criminology, social harm approach, green criminology, corporate criminology, and victimology, while engaging with legal, rural, geographic, and political sciences, the concept of food crime fuses diverse research by questioning issues of legality, criminality, deviance, harm, social justice, ethics, and morality within food systems. Evident problems range from food safety and food fraud, to illegal agricultural labour and state-corporate food crimes, to obesity and food deserts, to livestock welfare and genetically modified foods, to the role of agriculture in climate change and food waste, to food democracy and corporate co-optation of food movements. Theorising and researching these problems involves questioning the processes of lacking or insufficient regulation, absent or ineffective enforcement, resulting harms, and broader issues of governance, corruption, and justice. Due to the contemporary corporatisation of food and the subsequent distancing of humans from foodstuffs and food systems, not only is it important to think criminologically about food, but the criminological study of food may help make criminology relevant today.

Table of Contents


Ronald Hinch and Allison Gray

Section I Thinking about food crime

3 The social construction of illegality within local food systems

Marcello De Rosa, Ferro Trabalzi and Tiziana Pagnani

Section II Farming and food production

Section III Processing, marketing and accessing food

7 Agency and responsibility: The case of the food industry and obesity

Judith Schrempf-Stirling and Robert Phillips

Section IV Corporate food and food safety

12 Food crime in the context of cheap capitalism

Joseph Yaw Asomah and Hongming Cheng

Section V Food trade and movement

15 Fair trade laws, labels and ethics

Will Low and Eileen Davenport

Section VI Technologies and food

17 Technology, novel food and crime

Juanjuan Sun and Xiaocen Liu

18 Food crimes, harms and carnist technologies

Linnea Laestadius, Jan Deckers and Stephanie Baran

Section VII Green food

19 Farming and climate change

Rob White and Jasmine Yeates

20 Food waste (non)regulation

Michael A. Long and Michael J. Lynch

21 Responding to neoliberal diets: School meal programmes in Brazil and Canada

Estevan Leopoldo de Freitas Coca and Ricardo César Barbosa Júnior

Section VIII Questioning and consuming food

End Matter