At the University of California, we envision a world with a sustainable food supply and no hunger. We embrace our role as a public research university to tackle the global food challenge. From teaching to research to service, our faculty, students and staff are engaged in finding ways to make our vision an everyday reality.

Our vision

UC is committed to putting its campuses, the state and the world on a pathway to sustainably and nutritiously feed themselves.

Food is essential.

We need it to survive. We need it to thrive.

But too many people suffer from hunger. And too many people are overeating.

Meanwhile, the pressures are mounting: population growth, climate change and resource constraints loom.

How can we sustainably and nutritiously feed a world population that is expected to reach eight billion by 2025?

The University of California is committed to addressing this challenge.

As a public research university, UC tackles the toughest problems. That’s why the UC president and chancellors from all 10 UC campuses united around this goal to launch the Global Food Initiative in 2014.

The initiative involves faculty, students and staff. It draws on UC’s leadership in agriculture, medicine, climate science, public policy, social science, biological science, humanities, arts and law, among others.

It builds on what UC already is doing — from breeding new crop varieties and improving nutrition to modeling climate change and sharing knowledge — and focuses our collective efforts to do more.

The efforts start at home. It’s making UC campuses living laboratories for sustainable operations. It’s enhancing student learning on campus farms and gardens. It’s pushing the boundaries of policy, research and service to find ways to increase food security, locally and globally.

UC not only will be working across the system, it’s also reaching out to partner with others in government, higher education, school districts, nonprofits and the private sector.

Together, we can make a difference.

Our goals

The Global Food Initiative addresses one of the critical issues of our time: how to sustainably and nutritiously feed a world population expected to reach 8 billion by 2025.

  • Working together across the UC system to create solutions that improve food security, health and sustainability throughout California, the U.S. and the world
  • Identifying best practices to address food needs and create toolkits to share locally and globally
  • Using the latest UC research to help communities access healthy, sustainable food
  • Applying UC expertise to shape and drive food policy discussions

In late 2018, the GFI leadership created an Advisory Team to envision an evolved model of the GFI. The Advisory Team recommended a "GFI 2.0" model that included creating a focal point on each campus to collaborate and build awareness for campus efforts related to food system and sustainability research projects. Launched in 2020, each Campus Collaborative will develop a central, all-inclusive collaborative framework for students, staff and faculty to support joint projects, research and strategies to further the GFI mission. Through the Campus Collaborative model, the GFI can support elevating the research of each campus and also provide a networking opportunity across campuses that is not readily available through traditional channels.

Governance

The Global Food Initiative involves all 10 UC campuses, UC’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the UC Office of the President.

The Global Food Initiative is a collaborative effort guided by a systemwide steering committee. This effort is supported by working group teams that include representatives from all 10 UC campuses, UC’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the UC Office of the President.

Learn more about the UC Global Food Initiative