There is an urgent need to identify and develop cross-sectoral policies which promote and support a healthy, safe and sustainable food system. To help shape the political agenda, a critical first step is a shared definition of such a system among policy makers across relevant sectors. The aim of the present study was to determine how Australian policy actors define, and contribute to, a healthy, safe and sustainable food system.
A Delphi survey, consisting of two rounds, was conducted. Participants were asked how they define, and contribute to, a healthy, safe and sustainable food system (Round 1) and indicate their level of agreement with summary statements (Round 2).
This was an online Delphi survey conducted in Australia.
Twenty-nine and fourteen multisectoral and multilevel policy makers completed Round 1 and Round 2, respectively.
The definition included food processing regulation, environmentally friendly food production and access to nutritious food. All agreed that it was important for them to improve access and supply of healthy food and ensure healthy planning principles are applied.
There were cross-sectoral differences in definitions and contributions; however, critical consensus was achieved. The study contributes to the definition of key elements of a cross-sectoral food and nutrition policy to meet today’s environmental, health, social and economic challenges; however, further research using a more representative multisectoral sample is warranted.