Martha Stewart had a segment this week on the Heirloom Expo and expressly advised her audience to look for organic, and if you can't get organic get foods that say they do not include GMO seeds. She featured folks who were clearly slamming Monsanto and the other Big Ag companies who are more and more controlling our food supply.
She also had a vegan episode featuring +Biz Stone earlier this year.
There are now so many mainstream trendsetters who care about these issues...people you know by first name only: Oprah, Ellen, Martha. Not to mention best-selling authors and personalities like Jamie Oliver, Kathy Freston and Terry Walter. There is so much mainstream interest in changing the way food is produced and brought to market in this country. And what we enable people across ages, geography and income levels to eat.
What will it take to see policy change? Because it's government policy that's behind much of the food injustice in the U.S.
So, I didn't actually buy any produce today, because I'm traveling most of the next three weeks, and there's no sense letting good produce go to wast.
however, I did take some shots of beautiful produce...the season is starting here in California, and the Farmer's Market is a wonderful (and completely free) way to capture a spirit of abundance!
I've never cooked with purple asparagus, but considering I love asparagus and the color purple: It's on my list to do!
I've also never cooked with chard, of any color, but this yellow chard called out to me.
Finally, who doesn't love carrots? Especially cheery ones with their greenery still attached!
Sadly, all I bought today was a loaf of bread for my S.O. for while I'm gone, and some vegan high-protein bars. I won't be back at the market for another 3-4 weeks probably, but I think it's bound to be even more bountiful and beautiful then.
I haven't ranted about it in a while, but one of the hottest button issues for me is that fact that U.S. policy sends the very clear message that poor people are lesser people. The combination of food policy that makes eating healthily and affordably more challenging than it should be, and health care policy that is sub-standard to any other industrialized nation, this is the message: If you are poor it is OK if you get sicker and die younger and quicker.
ELAINE: As a parent, what do you think about the current debate about how we’re feeding our children in this country?
RUTH: We’ve allowed our children to be addicted to fat, salt and sugar and we’re not holding companies accountable. In Japan, kids eat fish and rice for breakfast and Americans eat sugary pastries. Eating is learned behavior. This is the biggest crisis we face in this country. We have a two tier diet in this country. If you’re poor you’re stuck with what we call “food” and we need to fix it. You can debate it till the cows come home, but there is no debate.
I hope people interpret Reichl's use of the word "we" as I do: We, as in we who elect officials. We, as in we who make decisions every day on how we spend our money. We, as in we who should be accountable for our personal choices, but should also hold our government accountable for making the concept of "choice" so much less empowering for lower income families.
I was due for a food policy rant, so there it is. Thanks Ms. Reichl. And thanks Elaine for asking her the question. :)
H&M isn't exactly known as a green retailer. particularly with their little PR nightmare last year when it was discovered that they were creating, literally, disposable fashion.
Now, according to Ecorazzi, they may be trying to improve their reputation by launching a new "green" clothing line called Conscious Collection on April 14th. Digging the organic and recycled fabrics, but had to do a double-take when I read that every item will be in a shade of white.
I get that most industrial dyes are bad for the environment, but there are ways to color fabric that are more eco-friendly.
Sure enough if you check out their price list, you'll see everything form ecru to eggshell and in between.
Actually it all looks a little like a Little House on the Prairie bedroom scene.
I think I was more excited abotu the announcement before I checked out the actual collection, how about you?
Hat tip to Treehugger for cluing me in to the existence of ColaLife. ColaLife is a volunteer-run nascent non-profit organization that seeks to take advantage of the distribution network of one of the largest companies in the world in order to save lives.
To be clear: ColaLife isn't an initiative born at Coca-Cola, although Coke themselves has many many corporate social responsibility programs. But ColaLife has reached out to Coca-Cola with some sucess to take advantage of one simple fact:
You can get a Coke in almost every corner of the Earth, no matter how poor or remote that corner may be. That speaks to a massive existing distribution system...and that distribution may happen by men on bicycles.
What you can't get in every corner of the Earth, however, is clean water.
And sometimes the fix for that problem is pretty small: oral rehydration and water purification tablets, for example.
ColaLIfe has created packaging for such fundamental first aid supplies that slots in amongst the normal Coca-Cola bottles in their normal packaging. It's really genius.
And with Coca-Cola cooperating with ColaLife, it sounds like this could bring revolutionary assistance to those far corners.
I do believe when big companies make change it has big impact. And that even if they don't do everything right, we need to recognize and encourage the things they do right.
And the ColaLife story shows that we can't rely on the big companies to think up every way they can help make these changes: We need to keep nudging them along.
I love this story. I hope it keeps progressing in the right direction. I hope it changes lives, and the world just a little bit.
[Disclosure: Coca-Cola has intermittently been a customer of BlogHer's this year, but I knew nothing about this initiative until I read about it on Treehugger.]