Open the paper or get online and the news isn’t hopeful on the environment. Last March scientists declared that the global average concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reached a new record high, soaring to surpass 400 parts per million. Recently President Obama addressed graduates at the Coast Guard Academy telling them that “global warming is a national security threat.” He added that “Climate change will impact every country on the planet… so we need to act — and we need to act now.” Members of the Sustainable Food Trade Association (SFTA) are doing just that! Continue reading
I am looking forward to casting my vote tomorrow in the mid-term elections . Great change is upon us in the United States House of Representatives and in the United States Senate, many will be challenged. Polls show narrow races in many states and all eyes are on the Senate control. Interest groups around the country have been spending millions to buy votes and sway opinions. Despite the ads on television and radio I want to find a way to create positive change in our agriculture and food policy. I want to cut through the propaganda and understand how the candidates have performed. I want to cast a vote for food priorities and begin to hold our future Congress accountable! Continue reading
My father grew up in Iowa during the depression. Times were dire and he witnessed much hardship and suffering. Getting enough to eat was never an issue for his family but seeing others go hungry left its psychological mark. After returning from WWII he witnessed the Industrial Agricultural Complex taking hold in earnest and the availability of cheap food became a patriotic goal. Generations were raised thinking cheap food was a bonus. It is proving hard to shake that philosophy out of our food values. Continue reading
It was early fall in Bolivia and the countryside was a riot of flaming Quinoa hues. The fall harvest was in full throttle and as we drove on unruly roads; the landscape was painted with red, gold purple and rust. The intense Andean sun at 14,000 feet struck amazing pinpoints of color under a mighty volcano that’s ancient name is Thunupa. Amidst this colorful pageant were family members working to harvest their long stalks of Quinoa and complete the first step in the process that ultimately brings it to our tables. Continue reading
This is part 2 of a three part series. You can read Bolivian Diaries – Part 1 here.
I fall deeply asleep in the mining town of Oruro, which, at 14,350 feet, is one of the highest places we will visit. The town is relatively wealthy thanks to the copious amounts of silver, tin and lead extracted from the nearby mountain. The streets are newly paved and lined with parks festooned with magical playgrounds of dinosaur and giant turtle-inspired plays-capes. Sculptures made from discarded metals are a common decorative element and reminiscent of Burning Man art. Continue reading