Published 20 March 2014
Erin Smith and SEI’s Bill Pritchard have written a thought provoking piece for The Conversation on Australian farm ownership.
The debate about who owns Australia’s farmland is often expressed in crude and narrow ways, and not just on talkback radio. Take last year’s leaders debate at Rooty Hill during the final week of the election campaign in which Kevin Rudd declared himself “old fashioned” on the issue of foreign access to Australian land.
The problem is the question of “farmland” has come to mean many different things to many different interest groups. It now exists as narrative shorthand for diverse moral panics about the future of food, the nation’s water resources, the environmental effects of coal seam gas, the political economy of foreign investment (especially from China), and the power of big agribusiness.
To read the full piece click here.