Archive | Blog
15
Oct

The Fundraising Letter I’d Like to Receive

Since I speak and consult with many groups around the country, I often find myself placed on their donor solicitation lists. Many of the subsequent fundraising letters I receive are from food banks which urge me to help them feed the hungry. The letters rarely vary in their message, stressing the unprecedented demand on their […]

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02
Oct

Republicans to Park Goers: “Take a hike!” But Not in the National Parks

Place: Rocky Mountain National Park – Alpine Visitors Center Elevation: 11,796 feet Date: September 2, 2013  “The National Park Service budget is down seven percent due to sequestration. We had to close the Morain Visitors Center and the Glacier campsite as well as some parking areas. We have fewer rangers and park police.” That was […]

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09
Sep

“No-Nonsense Guide to World Food” Makes Perfect Sense

Before he was a food activist and manager of the Toronto Food Policy Council, Wayne Roberts was a union leader in Ontario and a Greenpeace organizer in northern Canada. While I can’t imagine what those experiences were like, they sound rough, frigid, and unresponsive to the gentler sensibilities of today’s foodies. It must have been […]

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04
Aug

San Bernardino: A Hub of Food Activity

There’s something humbling about a 100-year old orange tree. Ancient, deeply rooted, with a gnarly trunk as thick as an old washing machine tub, its leafy crown is elegantly coiffed like that that of a manicured dowager. When standing in a large grove of these beauties one can’t help but imagine what they have seen […]

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22
Jul

Time to Re-think Food Stamps

At the risk of being labeled a Tea Party toady or right-leaning deviationist, I have to ask if the severing of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps) from the Farm Bill by the Republican House Majority isn’t an opportunity worth taking advantage of. And in the same breath, I have […]

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07
Jul

Food Rebels of Utica

I’ve always wondered what it takes to turn around a really down and out place. By which I mean the type of city where the only visible signs of prosperity are a well-lit McDonalds and half-full car wash. Some will say that the only hope rests with bold, inspired leadership by politicians or captains of […]

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19
Jun

Food Coops: A Faith Renewed

“Faith is a stray pet that will somehow find you again.” David Hernandez, deceased poet. For the better part of 40 years, my fondest memory of retail food coops was the day they closed. Even though my heart was broken, the handwritten “Out of Bizness” sign hung from the ill-fated venture’s front door signaled the […]

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05
Jun

We’re (They’re) Number One!

Ever since I abandoned my fair Connecticut for the browner pastures of New Mexico, I put more than miles between me and my former state. At times I found myself making fun of such inconsequential things as its puny size (some of New Mexico’s counties are larger than all of Connecticut), dense development and lack […]

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19
May

UK Keen on Food Policy Councils

Imagine having nearly $2 million to spend over 3 years on the development and improvement of food policy councils in the United States. Mix in some capacity building assistance, a template for bringing together local food system stakeholders to write a food plan for your city or state, a national networking conference, and voila! Not […]

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22
Apr

Food Democracy on the March

The most recent issue of the Harvard Health Policy Review has an article by me titled “Food Democracy on the March.” For those of you who have heard me speak or attended one of my food policy council trainings, some of the article’s references may sound familiar. But I thought it was time to organize […]

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