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Abstract

Although in theory social justice is considered as a core dimension of agroecological transitions, alternative food initiatives related to agroecology have been criticised for their exclusionary practices based on important social and economic biases. In this article, we adopt the lens of political intersectionality to study two cases of Agroecology-oriented Food Redistribution Coalitions in Spain that emerged to address the rising levels of food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic. We find that the coalitions represent a convergence of diverse social struggles, placing intersectionally marginalized groups at the centre of their activism. However, we also uncover that coalition members participate in different ways depending on their socioeconomic profiles, which could perpetuate inequalities in organizational practices. One major point of tension is the need to balance the goal of providing access to healthy and sustainable food with the affordability of such produce. This leads to the adoption of hybrid food networks that include conventionally produced food. We also highlight that while the predominance of women in these coalitions reflects the unequal distribution of food-related care work in society, the collectivization of such work through AFRCs practices points to a transformation of gender relations. Territorialized alliances between actors from urban and rural settings and between urban centers and peripheries are established through the coalitions. However, such networks fall short on involving large numbers of agroecology-oriented initiatives and providing direct encounters between consumers and producers. Overall, the article underscores the importance of addressing intersecting inequalities within alternative food initiatives and argues that intersectional coalitions offer an intriguing example of how to promote such understanding and pave the way towards (more) just agroecological transitions.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages19
JournalAgriculture and Human Values
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Dec 2023

Keywords

  • Agroecology
  • Convergence
  • COVID-19
  • Food insecurity
  • Intersectional coalitions
  • Mutual aid

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