Thursday, January 27, 2011

Foodie Politics

It's late, so I'll be really quick about this: tonight I was one of about 50 people to attend The Local Politics of Food panel discussion, and the energy in the room was palpable. Among many other interesting points, Avia Eek stressed the importance of asking political candidates to be clear about their platforms as they relate to the food system; Joe Mihevc urged us to reconsider the dichotomy between viewing urban centres only as places for business, commerce, education, and finance, and rural areas as space used exclusively for farming; and Faisal Moola supported treating farms as ecosystems because they provide an incredible number of ecological benefits that we take for granted. Moderator Sarah Thomson asked how we can take action, and the responses varied from starting community gardens to supporting the establishment of foodbelts (agricultural greenbelts) to changing people's mindsets about the aesthetics of produce so that no food is wasted simply because it isn't perfectly unblemished on supermarket shelves. Finally, I really liked how Jacob Kearey Moreland  closed the discussion by highlighting that what sustains us are the connections we have with each other and the planet. Now that more people are realizing this, things are beginning to change.

A big thank you to Darcy at Food Forward and Jacob with Dig In! Campus Agriculture for organizing this event.

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