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UK Phosphorus Transformation Strategy: Towards a circular UK food system

Cordell D; Jacobs B; Anderson A; Camargo-Valero M; Doody D; Forber K; Lyon C; Mackay E; Marshall R; Martin-Ortega J; May L; Okumah M; Rothwell S; Shahvi S; Sherry E; Spears B; Withers P

This report sets out the UK’s first comprehensive national phosphorus transformation strategy, based on extensive stakeholder consultation across the UK food system, in addition to economic modelling and biophysical analyses. The UK’s food system is in transition, driven in part by major changes to agricultural policy. It is also under pressure from climate change, land use change, Brexit uncertainties, and unforeseen shocks like COVID-19. However one critical challenge that has not been sufficiently addressed is the secure supply and sustainable use of phosphorus. Phosphorus is a lynchpin of the food system and has no substitute. Yet its mismanagement has led to serious risks of compromising future food and water security in the UK and globally. This Strategy forms part of a larger, 3-year, UKRI-funded research effort, the RePhoKUs project.

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