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This book explores the new applications of established theories or adapts theoretical approaches in order to illuminate behaviour in the field of food. It focuses on social processes at the downstream end of the food chain, processes of distribution and consumption. The book reviews the existing disciplinary approaches to understanding judgements about food taste. It suggests that the quality 'halal' is the result of a social and economic consensus between the different generations and cultures of migrant Muslims as distinct from the non-Muslim majority. Food quality is to be viewed in terms of emergent cognitive paradigms sustained within food product networks that encompass a wide range of social actors with a wide variety of intermediaries, professional and governmental. The creation of the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) occurred at a juncture when perceptions of policy failure were acknowledged at United Kingdom and European Union governmental levels. The book presents a case study of retailer-led food governance in the UK to examine how different 'quality logics' actually collide in the competitive world of food consumption and production. It argues that concerns around food safety were provoked by the emergence of a new food aesthetic based on 'relationalism' and 'embeddedness'. The book also argues that the study of the arguments and discourses deployed to criticise or otherwise qualify consumption is important to the political morality of consumption.

David Barling

its desire to promote biotechnology in the interests of national economic competitiveness (Barling and Henderson 2000). The FSA’s chair is a member of the Cabinet Sub-Committee on Biotechnology for which the promotion of biotechnology is a key goal, according to a former minister and member of the panel (Hall and Vidal 2003). Yet, the Government’s overriding desire to be able to endorse GM crops and ease their entry into the European market is running into the obstacles generated by the complexities of realising consumer preferences through management of the food

in Qualities of food
Open Access (free)
Mark Harvey, Andrew McMeekin, and Alan Warde

recommendation. We can easily recognise that any item may be good with respect to one quality and bad with respect to another. Foods which are tasty but unhealthful provide a common example. It is also easy to be alert to the fact that a producer is likely to draw the public’s attention to the first property, while the nutritionist will highlight the second. Public health and economic competitiveness thus partly revolve around persuading people to prioritise one quality over another. That still, however, leaves open the difficulty of determining whether in respect of any one

in Qualities of food
Open Access (free)
Quality and processes of qualification
Mark Harvey, Andrew McMeekin, and Alan Warde

quality’ becomes a historical and comparative matter – one of ‘when and in what circumstances?’. One might argue that there are now rather more agencies involved in the process of qualification than in the past. More departments of state take an interest in the various attributes of food system – nutrition, safety, economic competitiveness, national interest. The EC presents an additional level of regulatory activity: new agencies, like the FSA in the UK, have come into being, taxed with an impartial advisory role and speaking especially as the voice of consumers who

in Qualities of food