Food and fibre
Food and fibre connections provide a framework for all young Australians to understand and value primary industries. Students have the opportunity to gain knowledge, skills and understandings about the production of the food they eat, fibres they use and the environment they live in. This learning addresses the key processes of production, marketing, consumption and sustainable use of resources and waste recycling.
Food and fibre connections provide rich opportunities to address aspects of the cross-curriculum priorities, in particular Sustainability.
The following descriptions provide an overview of how cross-curriculum priorities may be addressed through a food and fibre connection.
Food and fibres are the human-produced or harvested resources used to directly sustain human life and are produced in managed environments such as farms and plantations or harvested from wild stocks. Challenges for world food and fibre production include an increasing world population, an uncertain climate and competition for resources such as land and water. Students need to engage in these challenges by understanding the processes of food and fibre production and by investigating innovative and sustainable ways of supplying agriculturally produced raw materials.
Through the food and fibre connection, students have the opportunity to gain knowledge, skills and understandings about the production of the food they eat, fibres they use and the environment they live in. This would ideally address key processes of production, marketing, consumption, sustainable use of resources and waste recycling; that is, complete paddock to plate or forest to building and beyond.
Identifying and managing risk when working outdoors needs to take into account the minimum standards of planning, personal protective equipment and qualifications or experience of teachers and leaders. It covers all necessary aspects of health, safety and injury prevention and, in any food and fibre context, the use of equipment.
Food and fibre education experiences may involve potentially hazardous activities. It is important to ensure that duty of care is exercised and that requirements of the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 are met, in addition to relevant state or territory health and safety guidelines.
Consult with your state/territory education authority regarding relevant local laws and policies.
To maximise the effectiveness of any food and fibre education delivered in schools, learning should be sequential.
The dimensions of this learning are:
Sustaining lives: Food and fibre that is essential to human life and must be managed in ways that support current and future generations
Resources: Physical, financial, social and environmental resources required to produce food and fibre and that this involves sustainable land and water management
Science and technology: Science and technology knowledge, skills and understandings that support sustainable food and fibre production
Economy: The value of primary industries to the Australian economy and Australia’s development
People: The diversity of people involved in food/fibre production and their needs, careers and lives
These dimensions of learning have been developed in consultation with Primary Industries Education Foundation Australia (PIEFA).