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Strategic ignorance and crises of trust: un-anticipating futures and governing food supply chains in the shadow of Horsegate

Brice, Jeremy, Donaldson, Andrew and Midgley, Jane (2020) Strategic ignorance and crises of trust: un-anticipating futures and governing food supply chains in the shadow of Horsegate. Economy and Society, 49 (4). 619 - 641. ISSN 0308-5147

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Identification Number: 10.1080/03085147.2020.1781387

Abstract

This paper explores how transnational food supply chains are governed and secured through examining the 2013 horsemeat scandal, during which processed beef products were adulterated with horseflesh. Drawing on theories of governmentality and ignorance studies, it argues that the apparent ignorance among food businesses about their supply chains which this event exposed arises in response to a regulatory apparatus which renders businesses responsible for taking precautions only against foreseeable threats to food safety and authenticity. Limiting their knowledge of their supply chains therefore enables food businesses to control their ability to anticipate (and their liability for) crises. This paper highlights the role of strategic ignorance in rendering future events unforeseeable and ungovernable, and in mediating the politics of accountability and responsibility within anticipatory governmental apparatuses.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/reso20/current
Additional Information: © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group
Divisions: Sociology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Date Deposited: 10 Aug 2020 13:00
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2021 03:18
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/106122

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