The high rainfall landscapes of southwest Western Australia dominate Western Australia’s production and processing of a wide variety of fresh foods, contributing nearly $6 billion to the State’s economy ABS (2006-07). These climatically favourable and culturally diverse multifunctional landscapes account for only a small percentage of the WA landmass, but they are home to a large proportion of the State’s 2.4 million people. These places also contain Australia’s only internationally recognised terrestrial biodiversity hot spot (Myers, Mittermeier et al 2000). With a substantial projected population increase likely to result in both socio-demographic change as well as socio-cultural change, an understanding of how to sustain this diverse ecological landscape and the continuation of good decision making about food production is of critical importance. A current review of rural planning legislation (WA Department of Planning 2009) indicates that the future of the region will be shaped by the ability to manage landscape resilience with a government under pressure to convert land from food production to denser settlement potentially compromising biodiversity and landscape aesthetics. This reality signals the need for a coordinated approach to planning that supports best practice and partnerships that comprise a food system rather than a community of producers. This research draws on an analysis of some seventy expert contributions across a triple bottom line and across a range of industry and governance scales as to the future of sustainable landscapes in the region. These perceptions are compared with an aspirational model of world-class food systems operating to showcase triple bottom line values of food system sustainability. By linking expert insights into opportunities with an aspirational model we provide a vision of possibility for sustainable and resilient socio-ecological food landscapes.
|Keywords:||Food-systems, Socio-agricultural Landscapes, Multi-functional Landscapes, Socio-cultural Values, Biodiversity Hotspot|
Research Fellow, Faculty of Humanities, Curtin Institute for Biodiversity and Climate, Curtin University, Perth, WA, Australia
Researcher, Department of Food and Agriculture, Perth, WA, Australia
Research Fellow, Department of Agriculture and Food, Perth, WA, Australia
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