10 June 2019
Large-scale food system practices have diminished soil and water quality and negatively impacted climate change. Yet, numerous opportunities exist to harness food system practices that will ensure better outcomes for human health and ecosystems. The objective of this study was to consider food Production, Processing, Access and Consumption domains, and for each determine the challenges and successes associated with progressing towards a sustainable food system. A workshop engaging 122 participants including producers, consultants, consumers, educators, funders, scientists, media, government and industry representatives, was conducted in Perth, Western Australia. A thematic analysis of statements (Successes ( n = 170) or Challenges ( n = 360)) captured, revealed issues of scale, knowledge and education, economics, consumerism, big food, environmental/sustainability, communication, policies and legislation, and technology and innovations. Policy recommendations included greater investment into research in sustainable agriculture (particularly the evidentiary basis for regenerative agriculture), land preservation, and supporting farmers to overcome high infrastructure costs and absorb labour costs. Policy, practice and research recommendations included focusing on an integrated food systems approach with multiple goals, food system actors working collaboratively to reduce challenges and undertaking more research to further the regenerative agriculture evidence.