Editorial (wileyonlinelibrary.com) DOI 10.1002/jsfa.7017

Editorial As we move ever deeper into the 21st century, sustainability and environmental stewardship have increasingly become topics both of great interest, and great relevance. In particular, there are concerns about the impacts of global agriculture, and a growing recognition that there should be a move toward practices favourable to environmental improvement. The four contributions to this “In Focus” section address the need to consider sustainability and “positive impacts” on agriculture and health. The concept of health is applied to the entire system, in addition to its component parts, and the meanings of health in its many aspects are examined. The contributions address topics related to both mitigation and to improvement. They provide a philosophical overview of our attempts to repair and reverse the unintended consequences of the global push to increase agricultural productivity as a response to the demands of a rapidly increasing global population. The review by Vieweger and Döring1 discusses the challenges of developing commonality in the understanding of “health” in the widely divergent domains associated with the general concepts of “agriculture”. Dias et al.2 review and explore issues germane to soil health and crop rotations. The review by Döring et al.3 considers the meanings of resilience in agricultural systems, and its relevance to system health. Finally, the research report by

Savic et al.4 provides a specific example of how challenging it can be to provide quantification of a health risk associated with an agricultural production system. With this “In Focus “section, we hope to encourage an increasing dialog on the many issues that are generated by the challenges of “feeding the planet” in a sustainable, and acceptable, way. David Reid Email: [email protected]

REFERENCES 1 Vieweger A and Döring T, Assessing health in agriculture – towards a common research framework for soils, plants, animals, humans and ecosystems. J Sci Food Agric 95:438–446 (2015). 2 Dias T, Dukes A and Antunes PM, Accounting for soil biotic effects on soil health and crop productivity in the design of crop rotations. J Sci Food Agric 95:447–454 (2015). 3 Döring T, Vieweger A, Pautasso M, Vaarst M, Finckh MR and Wolfe MS, Resilience as a universal criterion of health. J Sci Food Agric 95:455–465 (2015). 4 Savic R, Ondrasek G and Josimov-Dundjerski J, Heavy metals in agricultural landscapes as hazards to human and ecosystem health: a case study on zinc and cadmium in drainage channel sediments. J Sci Food Agric 95:466–470 (2015).

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J Sci Food Agric 2015; 95: 437

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Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. Editorial.

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