Here we are : the first peer reviewed publication in the Demeter project ! Fenneke Reysoo and Siny Suon, in their study of food culture and diet change in rural Cambodia, describe how land restructuring, often undertaken in the name of progress, has important implications for food cultures, and, in turn, for who gets to eat, and how much.

cassava in uncleared chamkar

Cassava in degraded forest, Kampong Thom Province, 2016

Focusing on how changes in access to land in rural Cambodia have changed practices of food provision, their research shows not only how these changes have led to a transition from self-supplied food production to cash-dependent food provisioning, but also how these changes have impacted men and women differently. For example, they note that the social construction of gender in the villages where they conducted their study, led women to reduce their food intake to attribute more energy-providing foods to men, highlighting the need for greater awareness of the connections between land commercialization, gender equality and food security.

Reysoo, Fenneke & Siny Suon (2017). ‘In the forest we had plenty’. Gender, food culture and diet change in rural Cambodia (Kampong Thom Province, 1995-2015). Yearbook of Women’s History, 36, Thematic Issue “Gendered Food Practices from Seed to Waste, Guest-editors Bock, Bettina & Jessica Duncan, Hilversum: Verloren, Publisher, pp. 31-44.