Currently Browsing: Activism

How to change the USDA: Look beyond the Secretary of Agriculture

By Steph Larsen In my last post for the Ethicurean, I discussed likely candidates for Secretary of Agriculture in the Obama Administration and encouraged you to voice your support or dislike of the names being floated to Obama’s transition team. You can have an impact: in large numbers, voices of the people...

Friday musical interlude: Obama, Wilco at Farm Aid 2005

Here's something to start the weekend off pleasantly: soon-to-be-Ethicurean Debra Eschmeyer posted this Farm Aid 2005 video on Facebook, with Barack Obama first talking about family farmers then introducing the band Wilco — three things I really care about, all together in six minutes. (My iPhone's ringtone...

Opening up: Notes from the Northeast Ohio Food Congress

When I hear or read comments that dismiss local foods as something only folks in California can do, I'm puzzled. Everywhere I go in northeast Ohio, I see farms and markets that have locally grown and produced foods for sale. So I have to wonder: is no one paying attention to us here in the heartland, or are...

What does an Obama win mean for the U.S. food supply?

We heard plenty of talk about Wall Street and Main Street. We heard about $150,000 wardrobes, Joe the Plumber, Bill Ayers, socialism, and cynicism. But one thing we didn’t hear much about in this election season was food and farms. According to Speech Wars, between April and October, John McCain uttered the...

Dispatch from APHA: Seeding local food in schools

As I write this, the day's far from over at the American Public Health Association's annual conference "Public Health Without Borders," but my brainpower is fading fast. Before I give up on knowledge intake and shift to taking in some of the great local San Diego eats suggested by readers, I'll share a few...

Celebrating food independence: A review of “Depletion and Abundance”

OK, quick check: everyone who is concerned about the economic crisis turning into a depression and causing food and fuel prices to rise and pockets to empty — whether for yourself, your parents, your children, your neighbors, your friends, or anyone — raise your hand. That covers about everyone, doesn't...

Oprah show torpedos CAFOs, gives props to Prop. 2

As just about everyone probably knows, most of Oprah's Tuesday show was devoted to reporter Lisa Ling's "How We Treat the Animals We Eat" investigation. I don't have cable, and thought I could watch the episode one way or another but could not, which I feel stupid about. Fortunately friend o'Ethicurean...

Wear the Sun-Food Agenda on your chest

Ethicurean reader Erica Nofi was so moved by Michael Pollan's "Farmer in Chief" policy manifesto in last week's New York Times Magazine food politics issue that she created a T-shirt that visually encapsulates his central message: Let's go back to growing food with sunlight, not oil. After reading Pollan'...

Food politics gets a prestigious platform, with Michael Pollan’s manifesto in this Sunday’s NYT Magazine

Michael Pollan — the closest thing the sustainable food movement has to a leader, even if he insists on pretending he remains just a journalist — wants the next president of the United States to pull weeds from the organically managed South Lawn Victory Garden; donate its surplus tons of food to Washington,...

For land’s sake: Farmland preservation in Ohio

My evenings and weekends lately — well, the past few months — have largely been taken up by the annual rounds of food preservation as I dry, freeze, can, pickle, and otherwise put up as much produce from this year as possible.  But when I took a day off work recently, I headed to a conference about another...

Report from Taste3: “Culanthropy” in New Orleans with the Culinary Corps

In mid-July, I had the pleasure of attending this year's TASTE3 conference in Napa, California. The conference, which is presented by the Robert Mondavi Winery, is a meeting of minds on the topics of food, wine, and art. Over the span of two days, a stream of chefs, artists, writers, musicians, activists,...

Carrots, sticks, and crumbs: Making the most of the new Farm Bill, and gearing up for 2012

By Aimee Witteman (cross-posted on Gristmill) Last week, in a stuffy room on Capitol Hill, I joined a couple dozen activists and farmers to discuss the Farm Bill. Why? you ask. Why bother to meet in hot-as-an-oven Washington D.C. to discuss the legislative mess that recently sputtered to an all too...

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