Our research

The Foodprint Melbourne research project began in 2015 and is now in Phase IV.

Phase IV: Victorian food resilience planning project (2022–2025)

The current project will build the capacity of local government, state government, civil society groups, and other stakeholders in Victoria to undertake food resilience planning. Climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic and geopolitical shifts are leading to food system disruptions, rising food prices and growing food insecurity.

This project aims to strengthen the resilience of Victoria’s food system to the impacts of these shocks and stresses by providing evidence and guidance about how to undertake food resilience planning. The project will adopt a ‘co-design’ approach, collaborating with policy makers and other stakeholders to develop a ‘how to guide’ in food resilience planning. The project uses an integrated ‘food systems’ approach to food resilience planning and a human rights-based approach to addressing food insecurity, with Indigenous self-determination and food sovereignty as a core principle.

The project extends work on the resilience of Melbourne’s food system carried out through previous phases of the Foodprint Melbourne project to the state of Victoria. It commences in September 2022 and will continue through to March 2025.

Phase III: Building the resilience of Melbourne’s food system (2019-2022)

Phase III assessed the resilience of Melbourne’s food system and developed a roadmap of actions to strengthen the capacity of the city’s food system to respond to shocks and stresses, such as fire, flood, drought, and pandemic.

The roadmap was developed through a collaborative process involving a wide range of stakeholders from across Melbourne’s city region from government, industry and civil society organisations. It outlines a vision and recommendations to build the long-term resilience of Melbourne’s food system to any future shock or stress.

Phase II: Roadmap for a resilient and sustainable Melbourne foodbowl (2017–2019)

Phase II investigated the challenges and opportunities for farming in Melbourne’s foodbowl and identified strategies to strengthen food production on Melbourne’s fringe so that the city’s foodbowl contributes to a more resilient and sustainable food future for the city.

The project team worked with a broad range of stakeholders to develop a vision for a resilient city foodbowl and to create a policy roadmap for achieving this vision. This roadmap identifies five key pillars of policy action that underpin a resilient and sustainable city foodbowl – farmland protection, farm viability, water access, nutrient recycling and sustainable farming.

Phase I: Foodprint Melbourne (2015–2016)

Phase I investigated what grows in Melbourne’s foodbowl and the capacity of Melbourne’s foodbowl to feed the city, now and as the city grows to a population of over 7 million. The project also investigated the city’s ‘foodprint’ – the amount of land, water, food waste and GHG emissions involved in feeding the city.

The Melbourne’s Food Future report made the case for protecting the city’s foodbowl as a fundamental building block in a more resilient and sustainable food system in the context of climate change and rapid population growth.

Sign up for the Foodprint Melbourne newsletter for project updates