Tony’s research is broadly located in the field of political ecology, with a focus on agriculture and food systems. His research was initially rooted in the Caribbean, examining the economic and environmental challenges facing small farmers within highly inequitable landscapes, and how neoliberal policy restructuring, trade liberalization, and surging imports have compounded enduring injustices. Attention to the historical and political economic dimensions of small farmer’s struggles led him towards his first book, The Global Food Economy: The Battle for the Future of Farming, which analyzed the historical foundations, structural imbalances, and socioecological instabilities of world agriculture and food systems. Following this, much of Tony’s research has focused on the illusions of cheap food and the biophysical contradictions of industrial agro-food systems, with particular attention to the phenomenal growth of livestock production. His second book, The Ecological Hoofprint: The Global Burden of Industrial Livestock, develops a conceptual framework for understanding the wide-ranging costs of this momentous aspect of agrarian (and dietary) change.
Tony has been in the Department of Geography at the University of Western Ontario since 2004, where he teaches courses centered on agriculture and food, environment and development, and animal geographies.