With increasing pressure on resources, the looming spectre of climate change and growing anxiety among eaters, ecology and food are at the heart of the political debates surrounding agriculture and diet. This unique contribution unravels agri-environmental issues at different spatial levels, from local to global, documenting the major shifts in agriculture from a long-term perspective.

The book begins by exploring the changes in the industrialisation and socialisation of agriculture over time, through the lens of institutional economics including The French Regulation School and Conventions Theory. Building on Polanyi’s ‘Great Transformation’, the chapters in this volume analyse long-term and contemporary changes in agriculture and food systems that have occurred throughout the last few centuries. Key chapters focus on the historical changes in provisioning and the social relations of production, consumption, and regulation of food in different socio-political contexts. The future of agriculture is addressed through an analysis of controversial contemporary political claims and their engagement with strategies that aim to improve the sustainability of agriculture and food consumption.

To shed light on ongoing changes and the future of food, this book asks important environmental and social questions and analyses how industrial agriculture has played out in various contexts. It is recommended supplementary reading for postgraduates and researchers in agricultural studies, food studies, food policy, the agri-food political economy and political and economic geography.

chapter 1|26 pages


Industrialisation and socialisation of agriculture, towards new regimes
ByGilles Allaire, Benoit Daviron

part Part I|2 pages

Novel approaches and theories of global agri-economies in the second Great Transformation

chapter 2|20 pages

The ambivalence of the capitalist socialisation of agriculture

ByGilles Allaire

chapter 3|22 pages

Regulation Theory and transformation of agriculture

A literature review
ByJean-Marc Touzard, Pierre Labarthe

chapter 4|24 pages

Convention Theory in Anglophone agri-food studies

French legacies, circulation and new perspectives
ByEmmanuelle Cheyns, Stefano Ponte

chapter 5|16 pages

The new autocracy in food and agriculture

ByLawrence Busch

part Part II|2 pages

Ongoing transformations of the agri-economy

chapter 6|29 pages

Energy, biomass and hegemony

112A long history of transformations of agricultures
ByBenoit Daviron, Gilles Allaire

chapter 7|21 pages

Food Regime Analysis

A reassessment
ByJohn Wilkinson, David Goodman

chapter 8|18 pages

The Holstein cow as an institution of the agricultural modernisation project

Commodity or common good?
ByJulie Labatut, Germain Tesnière

chapter 9|24 pages

Transitions towards a European bioeconomy

Life Sciences versus agroecology trajectories
ByLes Levidow, Martino Nieddu, Franck-Dominique Vivien, Nicolas Béfort

part Part III|2 pages

Cases studies

chapter 10|20 pages

Organic farming in France

207An alternative project or conventionalisation?
ByThomas Poméon, Allison Loconto, Eve Fouilleux, Sylvaine Lemeilleur

chapter 11|16 pages

Japanese agri-food in transition

ByD. Hugh Whittaker, Robert Scollay

chapter 12|13 pages

Transforming the dairy sector in post-communist economies

Actors and strategies
ByPascal Grouiez, Petia Koleva

chapter 13|20 pages

Large-scale land investments and financialisation of agriculture

An analysis based on agro-financial filières
ByAntoine Ducastel, Ward Anseeuw

chapter 14|15 pages


Alternative sketches of a second Great Transformation
ByBenoit Daviron, Gilles Allaire