There is heated debate among policy-makers and civil society about the impact of trade and trade policies on food security. This paper speculates on the reasons for such fractured and antagonistic discussion in the hope that a better understanding of these reasons may lead to more convergent views as to which policies and approaches are appropriate. Then, the comprehensive empirical studies reviewed in this paper clearly show more cases of positive than negative food security outcomes emerging from trade liberalization events. In most countries, trade has also helped food security by stabilizing domestic consumption versus more erratic domestic production (while self-sufficiency tends to lead to more instability in domestic prices and availability). In addition, the greater availability through imports appears to have complemented rather than displaced local production.