Whatever is your personal view on GMO’s they are probably here to stay. Future focus will be on safety, transparency and coexistence between farms raising GMO crops and farms not raising GMO crops. So what happens if a herbicide that can be sprayed on a GMO Corn field drifts on to a tomato field? It can destroy the tomato field. This is especially concerning now that weeds are becoming more resistant to Glyphosate (Roundup) and new biotech crops are being used that are resistant to other herbicides, such as Dicamba or 24D, where off-target drift is a bigger risk. The Save Your Crop Coalition and Dow Agro-Sciences are showing that it is possible to work out differences and solve problems of co-existence..
We love to eat great food, grown in the ways we prefer, but what about the 405 of food that is wasted? We talk with Deb of Food Solutions about a new business that addresses food waste, increases farm income, lowers costs to restaurants and still delivers flavor, nutrition and value to consumers. What if Farmers Markets were an incubator for new ‘bricks and mortar’ store front busniess. From Farmers Market Executive Director Nesh Dhillon we learn that they are that and much more, on this episode of Farm To Table Talk.
When you see a New York Times headline that says “Industrial Farms Have Gone Green” it gets your attention. This was the subject of an editorial in the Times by Oklahoma State Ag Economist, Dr. Jayson Lusk. While agreeing that there is much to like about small, local farms and their influence on what we eat, Dr. Lusk says we must look to the 8% of farms that grow 80% of our food if we are to sustainably deal with problems from population growth and climate change.
Improving the global food system is a goal shared by thousands, but realized by few. One of the newer effective voices for this movement is Food Tank. Farm To Table Talk visits with the Food Tank founder Danielle Nierenberg who is “honored” to share the stories of “heroes” of the global food movement. While too modest to claim hero status for Food Tank, she sees heroes among women, youth, local farmer and others all over the world. The experience, inspiration and lessons learned can apply everywhere.
It’s not been fashionable to look to Washington DC for answers, but DC Greens should be an exception. The leaders and team at DC Greens are showing that you can leverage existing infrastructure, resources and talent to build a healthy food system–a model for cities everywhere. With innovations in food education, access, policy and even Dr’s prescribing fruits and vegetables they are determined that zip codes won’t determine life expectancy. People are literally lining up to take advantage of creativity of DC Greens.
In one way or another, most of us are part of the Food Movement. Now if we only were sure what that means. Michael Dimock, the President of Roots of Change is a respected leader of the movement with a good handle on what it is, where it stands and where it is heading. He sees a movement that is like hundreds of streams flowing into a river that is covering the United States and much of the world. This is truly a grassroots movement rather than the traditional top down dictates, and now focusing one policy matters more than ever.
Accepting that the world will have 8 billion people by 2030, consuming 50% more energy and demanding 40% more water, what’s the answer? Maybe there’s not a single answer, but thousands of ‘right’ answers. The world leading Agriculture & Natural Resource system at the University of California is connecting those dots from global back to local communities. Dr. Glenda Humiston, Vice President of the University of California Agriculture & Natural Resources shares how research, extension and education will be in every bite we take.
Food Delivery 2.0 is a good way to describe the new era in food delivery, from farm to table. “Convenience, Convenience, Convenience” is the demand driver that has caused billions of dollars being invested to make it easier to get the food you want, when you want it. Rabo Bank Research Analysts have studied this emerging frontier in 1) Online grocery 2) Delivery Apps 3) Meal Kits and Ready Meals. Dr. Roland Fumasi of Rabo Bank helps us explore this new world. Farmers Markets, CSA’s and stores aren’t the only way consumers will satisfy their demand for local, heirloom, artisan, ethnic etc meals or ingredients.
Farmers Markets are the best places today to connect with your community, meet your farmers and find delicious options to bring home. Your favorite chef is probably there too, rounding up fresh surprises for tonights menu. Nothing beats a bustling Farmers Market and here you will catch the energy and sounds as we talk to a shopping couple who shares their family recipe for Pesto, the justifiably proud Market Manager and a Chef chasing purple cauliflower and other surprises for their menu that changes daily to match the fresh offerings at the Farmers Markets.
Some view Farm to Table as a luxury for the rich and others are working to see that this isn’t the case. Gus Schumacher, a co-founder of Wholesome Wave and former USDA UnderSecretary believes that affordable, healthy, local foods should be available to everyone and that even poverty need not be an obstacle to eating fruits and vegetables. He also sees leadership coming from hospitals and other health focused organizations that literally prescribe fruits and vegetables as an effective measure to the growing diet/disease crisis. Government agencies and even private companies are helping reduce costs for these new “prescriptions” for improved health.