It’s that time of year again. Kids are headed back to school and their lunch is on our minds. School food has been a hot button topic since 2010, when First Lady Michelle Obama launched Let’s Move!, her hallmark program to end childhood obesity, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) updated its nutrition standards for school cafeterias. For the last five years, we’ve worked hard to shine a spotlight on this complex, highly political issue. In this month’s editor note, I’ll take a look at our stories as a quick primer of what you need to know. Read more
It’s high summer and we’re lucky to be reaping the bounty of the hard work that farmers did earlier this year. Having worked on several farms across the U.S., I know that this is serious crunch time. Farmers are not only harvesting the fruits of their labors, but they’re also planting fall crops.
Since we Civil Eats started six years ago, we have cast our net wide to report on local food stories about individuals and communities working together to create a more vibrant, resilient, and just food system. There is so much good news about innovative projects happening nationwide: From Alaska to Hawaii, we’ve been documenting the unfolding of what local food likes like on the ground. In this month’s note, I wanted to share some of our inspiring stories showing how local food systems are connecting producers to consumers, boosting local economies, and building community.
Chefs are a key ingredient to changing the food system; they are influencing the way we eat, what we grow, and are shaping the conversation about how to fix food. For many, they also provide the first point of contact to seasonal food from local farms. And they can have an incredible impact, not on only our palates, but also by raising awareness and changing the way we think about food. Read more
As we face a serious drought, many cities in California and elsewhere are working hard to waste less water. But we as a nation have yet to fully comprehend the equally important impact of wasting food.
Journalism and agriculture are two sides of the same coin: Both have been made artificially cheap. We have come to expect free media, just as many expect to be able to buy a dozen eggs for under $3.00. But lack of social investment in both of these public goods is leading us down the wrong path. Read more
When we announced that we were looking for a new editor, we were blown away by the caliber of applicants. If we had the budget of a mainstream publication, we could hire so many amazing writers and really build the Civil Eats empire. Until then, we’ve just added one more stellar member to our team: Anna Roth, SF Weekly’s former food & drink editor, who joins us as our new senior editor. Read more
Since 2009, Civil Eats has produced thousands of stories from a stable of hundreds of contributors and broken news on underreported stories. From state and federal policy to agroecology to urban farming and school lunch to food stamps, Civil Eats’ have reported on the most important food and agriculture stories of our time, profiled hundreds of innovative models, and provided a steady stream of insightful commentary and analysis. Read more
I took this past month off from my paid consulting work to spend time focusing on the future of Civil Eats. It was also a necessary break to restore my own personal ecology after a very busy and productive 2014. In the effort to grow a movement, we often forget the need for self-preservation and well-being; I firmly believe we cannot sustain this work unless we sustain ourselves. On both fronts, it was a very fruitful month.
Civil Eats has grown tremendously from a scrappy, edgy “community-supported blog” to an award-winning, “go-to” reading resource cited on the pages of this Sunday’s New York Times’ Week in Review (thank you, Michel Nischan!). For six years, we’ve been reporting from the frontlines of the food movement because now, more than ever, people want to hear the stories behind their food. Read more
Starting this month, I’ll begin sharing a few thoughts here about the vision I have for a healthier, more diverse, and vibrant food system. This month, Civil Eats celebrates six years of original, award-winning reporting. Now, more than ever, people want to know where their food comes from, and more publications are covering the social, environmental, and political aspects of food. It’s such an exciting time to be involved in sharing the stories of a growing food movement. Read more