Monday, February 14, 2011

Changing The Way We Eat: 1 Link at a Time

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There are certain times in your life when you are in the right place at the right time and when you look back at the stream of "accidents" that got you there, you know that it is nothing more than fate. Saturday I had one of those times. I was here, at home, but, through various clicks on my browser and an insatiable need to tweet a "thank you" to a distant teacher, I found out about a TED event going on in Manhattan that was being streamed live online. The title of the event: Changing the Way We Eat.

It would seem enough that I had the good fortune to tune in missing only one and a half talks, but that, I would soon find out, was only the tip of this serendipitous iceberg. You see, there was also a live chat going on with the fellow viewers in the sidebar. Normally, due to my limited vision, I automatically have to zoom my screen to omit such niceties afforded by the interconnectedness of the Internet, but, on this day, I split the difference - I zoomed my screen so that half of the talk screen was cut off so that I could still see/read the chat. That was a decision that I believe, will prove quite life changing for me. I made so many new food friends, I learned so much, and I would like to take this time to share with you all of the links shared so that you, too, can benefit from all that ensued.

The Group

Before I get into all of the individual links, let me begin with the most important one: the group page. Currently named the Tedx FoodBook Group, this is a Facebook group started by the people in the chat. We decided to select a place to meet online and share ideas about spreading the word about GOOD FOOD. We are a group ready for action, we are empowered by what we saw and what we chatted about on Saturday (all day until about 6pm EST!). We are inspired by the actions of the people in Egypt and are thinking - if they can make a difference in their government, can't WE make a difference in our food industry? In the less than 24 hours the group grew to over 100 members, got filled with a number of resources (food films, food books, food websites) as well as a great conversation between like-minded people ready to act to change. COME JOIN THE GROUP to ne a part of what's next.    

The Link Parade

What follows is an equally overwhelming and inspiring list of links. They are from all over this country and the world. Some are local organizations, so keep your eye out for your area! I will give a brief discussion of each, in no particular order, and hope to do each of them justice. Enjoy!

  • If you are from Oklahoma, this one is for you! This is the Oklahoma Food Cooperative that provides food from Oklahoma to Oklahoma. There are plenty of pick up areas and an online shop, so check the site, they also provide volunteer opportunities if you are looking to get involved. 
  • This is a direct link to an interview with Curt Ellis, a co-creator of King Corn one movie every conscious eater should see. Curt Ellis was also one of the speakers at this TED event, so it was extra special to have this interview on hand. Beyond the interview, though, just seems like another very cool website to check out, so browse around and see all the fun, informative stuff they've been "airing."  
  • This is an outrageous article from the Washington post about one superintendent banning school gardens in the entire district. It is an important read so that we can understand what some of the arguments against forward movement are.  
  • Natural Solutions Food Freedom eJournal has a number of videos for each issue, with the January 2011 issue entitled "Food vs. PHUDE." Take a look at this video to decide if you are eating food or phude! (Another link shared in the chat is related to this site and has some additional resources, including links to the eJournal mentioned above.)
  • Growing Power, Inc. started in Milwakee, WI, but it now is known and spread nationally. It looks like a fantastic program that teaches each of its local communities about sustainable food systems while providing its young people with a great skill and place to work! I am learning about it as I go, but I see there is a local chapter close enough to me in Brooklyn, so perhaps I will go check it out! 
  • This looks like the website/project/family I have been waiting for! It is a family in Pasadena, CA that changed their home into an urban homestead in the middle of a city. I have been looking around at the land I have been blessed with around my home here and I have been thinking one thing over and over again... What a waste! Perhaps, you too, are wondering how to better use you home front for food, sustainability or more... if so, these are the heroes you've been waiting for. Check out the site just to see what one family can accomplish! 
  • This is the blog of one of the fellow chatters. A document of her journey to "discover a life of simplicity, less stress and more joy" - I like that!  
  • Citizens for Health "seeks to empower readers with the lesser-reported 'under side' of the stories about the dangers that hundreds of food, drugs and other everyday products bring into our homes." Their most recent posts focus on the shortcomings of the Food Safety Act and how we shouldn't simply accept a bill because it is better than what came before, instead we should not settle until we get the best. this is an excellent point.  
  • Greenhorns is a non-profit organization for young farmers in America. It also seems they have an upcoming documentary on young farmers in America. I am excited about both aspects of this site. This looks like an excellent resource for information, as well as future edu-tainment! They are looking for donations for their post-production, so you might want send some charitable funds their way! 
  • Mobius Farm has a micro farm in Westchester County, NY. This is their Facebook fan page. They have videos as well as pictures of the place, so it is really cool to look around. If you are local, make a connection! 
  • Love it, love it, LOVE IT!! This site is working on putting together not only a database of all of the places where your food comes from, but also to provide a richer experience/explanation of those places - through video, blogging, exploration and more. So many things to check out here. If you are a college student in LA, NYC, Boulder or anywhere in Michigan, or know one, you must take a look at their internship opportunities (applications due February 16th!!). If you are a farmer, a farmer's market, or a locally sourced restaurant, you need to contact them. And if you you are a consumer, you need to start spreading the word about this site and donate, if you can! 
  • This is a list of all of the pre-organized TEDxManhattan Changing the Way We Eat viewing parties all over the place. Perhaps you were in one. Nonetheless, this is a good resource of people interested in moving forward with food. 
  • The Institute for Integrative Nutrition is an online nutrition school that a couple of people in the group had mentioned. If you are interested in entering the field, here is an option you may want to explore.
  • We all know Monsanto is the BIG BADDIE in the fight for real food, this website "Millions Against Monsanto" is building a grassroots campaign to try and do something about it! Sign up, spread the word, or just read up on all the Monsanto news they have on their website to become more educated about the company's evil reputation. 
  • Here is one episode of the "Living Hero" podcast that features an interview with Vandana Shiva, a global mover and shaker in environmental movement. A great interview with such a compelling figure in our world. 
  • This site came up as a result of a request I made. After hearing one of the speakers talk about getting soil tested, I thought, That's what I have to do so my husband stops worrying. One of the chatters said that this was the place they used for their testing. So, in case anyone else is in my boat, I am sharing this link. 
  • As Britta Riley spoke at the TEDxManhattan event about open collaboration in window farming, someone in our chat group shared this link with us. This is an amazing project. Whether you are interested in getting involved as a collaborator to create newer and possibly even better window farm systems or you just want to purchase a home or school kit, this is where you want to go. If you simply want to see what happens when people get together to build new ideas instead of one company patenting it and secretly trying to build it with its own limited resources, this is also where you should go. Interested in window farms for yourself or not, the project alone is one to learn from! 
  • The Lorax Community, which also has a facebook page (!/LoraxCommunity), is a "movement toward self-sustainability." According to their mission statement they "are committed to promoting a conscious, healthy, self-sustainable way of life based on community ethics, shared values, peaceful co-existence and a profound, harmonious spiritual connection between all beings. Lorax Community exists as a way to provide educational resources to members of our community at a reasonable cost, and also to offer charitable services when needed." Seems like a worthy mission to me!
  • Food Democracy Now, another group that also has a facebook page (!/pages/Food-Democracy-Now/162878479387?sk=info), organizes both online and in-person actions through the country. This group is dedicated to building a sustainable food system that protects our natural environment, sustains farmers and nourishes families. Here's a group we all need to be in support of and a part of starting TODAY! 
Well, that is it. I have no doubt that even more fantastic information will spring forth from this group of fantastic foodies, but you'll be right there with me, won't you? ...In our facebook group as we plan the next steps in our food revolution! (I promise to keep you up to date here as well, just in case you don't have a facebook account!)

Until next time...
love your food beginning to end and I promise you will have a delicious day!

Check out my Related Post: Are the Green Movement and the Food Movement Really Two Different Things?

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