Food (in)Security and international trade law and policy

Submission deadline date: 31 May 2023



Today, 828 million people, that is close to 10% of the world’s population – still suffer from hunger. After steadily declining for a decade, world hunger is once again on the rise and SDG 2 (zero hunger) is unlikely to be met by 2030.

The COVID-19 pandemic had highlighted the acute problems of hunger and malnutrition and the Russia-Ukraine conflict has compounded this problem. Increasing occurrences of extreme climate events have disrupted global supply chains, further impeding progress towards food security, especially in low-income countries. With food and energy prices increasing, the situation in both developing and developed countries is fast deteriorating.

While several instruments recognize and reiterate the right to food as a human right under international law, it is most comprehensively addressed under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). The Article 11.1 of the ICESCR recognizes the right of everyone to an adequate standard of living, which includes access to “adequate food, clothing and housing, and to the continuous improvement of living conditions”. The Declaration of Nyéléni, signed in 2007, introduced the concept of “food sovereignty”. Food sovereignty, according to the Declaration, is the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and agriculture systems.

This special issue aims to demonstrate how international economic law can help in establishing a legal framework for trade that prioritises food security and works towards improving, not only food production and access where it is scarce, but also improving economic as well as sustainable access to food by creating jobs, raising incomes, and ensuring the livelihood of farmers.

List of topics

JITLP is welcoming articles addressing food (in)security in comprehensive, original, and possibly interdisciplinary approaches. Possible Topics include: 

  • The Co-ordination of International Human Rights Law and International Economic Law in Achieving Food Security 

  • Nature and Impact of Regional Policies (WTO+)

  • The Right to Food and International Economic Law 

  • The Right to Food, the Right to Health, and Law and Policy: National and International Interactions 

  • The Danger of Climate Change to Food Security 

  • Ensuring Food Security in Future Pandemics and International Conflicts 

  • What Risks and How to Mitigate them in Food Security Law and Policies? 

  • Promoting Food Security through Public Stock Holding 

  • Sustainable Fishing Practices and the Preservation of Fish Stock for Food Security 

  • The Role of Blue Economy in Promoting Food Security 

  • Innovation in Agriculture to Tackle Food Security - We Particularly Welcome Interdisciplinary Approaches 

  • Harnessing Free Trade Agreements for Sustainable Agricultural Practices 

  • The Role of International Organisations and Institutions in Promoting Food Security (and Insecurity) - We Welcome Critical Approaches 

  • Are International Trade and Investment Rules Fuelling Hunger? How to Identify Legal and Policy Gaps and Obstacles? 

  • Trade and Food Distribution: Identifying the Gaps in the Interactions Between National and International Norms and Regulations 

  • International Dispute Settlement - How States Protect and Litigate their Rights to Regulate Food Production and Distribution 

  • Litigating Hunger: How to Provide Remedies to Affected Populations? 

  • Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Global Food Trade Policy and Regulation - We Welcome Political Economy Perspectives 

  • Civil Society Perspectives on Food Security, Law, and Policy - We particularly Welcome Lived Experienced and Grassroot Expertise 

Submission information and key dates

Submissions are made using ScholarOne Manuscripts.

Authors should select (from the drop-down menu) the special issue title Food (in)security and international trade law and policy at the appropriate step in the submission process, i.e. in response to “Please select the issue you are submitting to”. 

Submitted articles must not have been previously published, nor should they be under consideration for publication anywhere else while under review for this journal.

Author guidelines must be strictly followed.

Submission opens: 07 March 2023

Submission closes: 31 May 2023