The character of the food system and the nature of food policy are both changing, as urbanisation, technical change and the industrialisation of the food system transform the way food is produced, marketed and consumed in developing countries. The food system can no longer be viewed simply as a way of moving basic staples from farm to (local) plate. Food is increasingly produced by commercial growers, feeding long and sophisticated supply chains, and marketing often processed and branded products to mainly urban consumers. Policy is no longer concerned mainly with famine and food insecurity, but needs to encompass issues like obesity, food safety, and competition policy in the retail sector. The challenges to food policy are daunting and immediate - and need to be on the agenda of policy-makers throughout the developing world.