Chapter

Food Security in Australia

pp 353-364

Date:

Case Studies on Food Production, Policy and Trade

  • George WilsonAffiliated withAustralian National University Email author 
  • , Maarten RyderAffiliated withUniversity of Adelaide Email author 
  • , Glenn FitzgeraldAffiliated withDepartment of Primary Industries Email author 
  • , Michael TauszAffiliated withUniversity of Melbourne
  • , Robert NortonAffiliated withInternational Plant Nutrition Institute, IPNI
  • , Garry O’LearyAffiliated withDepartment of Primary Industries
  • , Saman SeneweeraAffiliated withUniversity of Melbourne
  • , Sabine Tausz-PoschAffiliated withUniversity of Melbourne
  • , Mahabubur MollahAffiliated withDepartment of Primary Industries
    • , Jo LuckAffiliated withPlant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre
    • , Grant HollawayAffiliated withDepartment of Primary Industries

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Abstract

Few native animals, other than fish and crustaceans, are used in food production by the humans who recently arrived in Australia. Even Aboriginal Australians have now become reliant on introduced species which evolved elsewhere. In part, this is due to cultural dominance, first of the British and then other western perspectives in last 200 years. It is also because introduced species generally have higher production rates following centuries of agricultural selection and recently, energy-intensive farming practices. But it need not always be that exotic species are superior, particularly in the context of climate change. Replacing cattle and sheep on the rangelands with well-adapted species such as kangaroos and making greater use of them just as Aborigines did for 40,000 years, is a prospect worthy of further investigation.