Food Security: Alaska vs. Iceland

Food Security: Iceland vs. Alaska
Julie Emslie
M.A., Rural Development
Project Manger, FEDC
• What is Food Security?
• Iceland vs. Alaska
• Mechanisms Leading to Iceland’s Level of
Food Security
What is Food Security?
• 3 Pillars
▫ Availability–sufficient quantities of food
available on a consistent basis
▫ Access–having sufficient resources to obtain
appropriate foods for a nutritious diet
▫ Utilization–appropriate use based on knowledge
of basic nutrition and care, as well as adequate
water and sanitation
• Shifting from Conventional (imported) to
Integrated (local) Food Systems
Food Production and Agriculture in
Iceland vs. Alaska
• Icelanders produce roughly half of the food they
▫ 100% of meat, fish, dairy, eggs, and 50% of vegetables
▫ Dependent on imports of grain, sugar, fruit, and
• Alaska currently imports 98% of its food.
▫ Despite the large amount of gardening, hunting,
fishing, and foraging
▫ Annually, 85% of red meat from hoofed animals
imported from outside
• Iceland: 3200 farms, roughly 6% of the population
• Alaska: 700 farms, roughly .1% of the population
Importance of Food Security in Iceland
• Government Support
• Subsidies
• 34%- milk
• 44%-sheep
• small subsidy- tomatoes, cucumber, and paprika
• Import duties
• pork, poultry, eggs, flowers, potatoes, and some greenhouse
and crop products
• Farmer’s Association of Iceland
• agricultural advisory service, animal breeding and preservation
of national breeds, crop production and rotation, research and
innovation, and forestry and soil conservation projects
• “Part of our character”
▫ Isolation
▫ Historical Events
• Recent Events
▫ Economic Crisis
▫ Volcanic Eruptions