Finally… A Food Manifesto!

by Christina on February 3, 2011

“Our diet is unhealthful and unsafe. Many food production workers labor in difficult, even deplorable, conditions, and animals are produced as if they were widgets. It would be hard to devise a more wasteful, damaging, unsustainable system.” ~Mark Bittman

Thank you, Mark Bittman! It is about time we had a Food Manifesto – I love this idea.

Here is the abridged version of his proposed Food Manifesto (full version here)

  • End government subsidies to processed food. 
  • Begin subsidies to those who produce and sell actual food for direct consumption. 
  • Break up the U.S. Department of Agriculture and empower theFood and Drug Administration.  (The USDA’s mission is to expand the corn and soy markets while also providing provide nutrition education…  this is a conflict of interest)
  • Outlaw concentrated animal feeding operations and encourage the development of sustainable animal husbandry. (And shift Amercans towards a plant-based diet).
  • Encourage and subsidize home cooking.
  • Tax the marketing and sale of unhealthful foods.
  • Reduce waste and encourage recycling. 
  • Mandate truth in labeling. 
  • Reinvest in research geared toward leading a global movement in sustainable agriculture, combining technology and tradition to create a new and meaningful Green Revolution.

This is a great start! Here are some other ideas to add:

  • Improve medical education around food and nutrition.
  • Redesign food served in schools and hospitals.
  • Incorporate cooking and gardening classes into the school curriculum.

 Anything else you’d like to see in this?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura Sessum April 21, 2011 at 3:17 pm

First off, I recently stumbled upon your blog and LOVE it! Couldn’t agree more with basically everything you’ve said.

Second, I just had to comment on this post because my daughter’s school started a garden and it’s been a huge success. I tend to be the hippie mom and much prefer my children to have hands-on experiences rather than sitting in a classroom anyway, but the garden has been more enriching than even I would have imagined. As much as I teach my kids about nutrition, I still met resistance with many foods. Now that my daughter has been working in the garden (and even forsaking recess when offered extra gardening time), she is a fan of vegetables that I could have only dreamed of her eating prior to the garden.

We’ve had a home garden, but now she’s really involved with it and treats all her plants like they’re her babies. She’s begging for us to buy chickens…but I’m not sure how that’d go over with our Great Dane =) Her school also devised a fundraiser out of the herbs the garden produced, charging a $1.00 a bundle and they completely sold out.

The garden has made my daughter more engaged with food and nutrition, and subsequently taught her greater patience and responsibility.

Laura

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Christina April 22, 2011 at 10:01 pm

Laura,

Wonderful to hear from you and I am so happy to hear about the garden in your daughter’s school and how it has engaged her with food in new ways! If only every school had a garden and every child had their own little plot (perhaps one day!)

Looking forward to hearing more from you, thank you for commenting!!!
Christina

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