Food Justice

Each year, Food Day inspires Americans to change their diets and our food policies. Annually on October 24, thousands of events all around the country bring Americans together to celebrate and enjoy real food while also pushing for improved food policies. Food Day is about food justice. It’s about activating people around issues of Food Security and Food Sovereignty, about making sure all people have access to healthy, delicious, affordable, ethically-produced and culturally appropriate.

Why do we need Food Day? For one, our western diet is a prescription for ill health, as Food Day reveals. When we also factor the environmental costs, as Maureen Farmer does her in her op-ed piece, we hear the call to act more clearly. The Nourish Initiative sat down with Dr. Nadine Burke and Anna Lappé to talk about the importance of having access to fresh foods.

Luckily, lots of people are doing good work around the world. Food Tank explores innovative ways food workers are fighting for justice.

Sponsored by Wholesome Wave, photographer, writer and environmentalist Glenn Charles takes us on a journey for change through New England’s diverse farming and culinary communities.

Over in California, Jessica Ferrell and Frog Hollow Farm successfully bring nutritious food to their local school district. The Center for Ecoliteracy highlights another success for California schools, telling the story of school superintendent Tony Smith who describes school food reform as “part of the basic work we have to do in order to correct systemic injustice, pursue equity, and give our children the best possible future.”

In the Midwestern part of the United States, Perennial Plate introduces us to Bhutanese refugees who themselves transported to their distant, native homes when they commune with each other over good food at a local community garden.

Inspired to shake up your food system? Get cooking with Renegade Lunch Lady Chef Ann Cooper, who returns with a bowl of seasonal, nutritious, delicious delight.

Don’t stop there. Share the Fair! Alongside Food Day, with whom you should definitely get involved, the Fair Trade Campaign is a great way to work for food justice!

This week's terms

Food Justice

Food is a basic right for all people. A global movement has taken shape that promotes self-reliant communities who have the ability to grow, sell, and eat nutritious food that is affordable and culturally-appropriate.

Food Security

"Food Security is having consistent year round access to safe, local, affordable and culturally appropriate food that is grown, raised, produced and moved about in manners that are responsible to the environment while reflecting a consumption of natural resources that is equitable with a view to our offspring seven generations from now." - Erika Allen, West Garfield Park, Chicago, IL

Food Sovereignty

Coined in 1993 by La Via Campesina (“The Peasant’s Way”), food sovereignty is a community’s right to decide how they’re fed. “You can certainly have food security under dictatorship, but you can’t have food sovereignty,” Raj Patel. “You need democracy for food sovereignty to happen. Food sovereignty is a deep and expansive idea that unfortunately we see too little of. Food sovereignty requires discussion. It takes putting people around the table, with meetings to figure out water and food are shared, and how hunger is eradicated. It looks a lot like a bunch of food policy councils. It looks a lot like kids learning at school where their food comes from. It looks like a food system free from agricultural subsidies and free from the marketing that agriculture is allowed to employ on our children. Most of all it’s characterized by conversations around hunger, poverty, and community. Those kinds of conversations are happening from Detroit to Oakland and that’s something to be celebrated.”

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