The Poor Get Diabetes; The Rich Get Local and Organic

Mark Winne is a colleague who I’ve gotten to know through the Community Food Security Coalition activities. His messages about the injustices inherent in our food system are timely and important for those of us hoping and working for a sustainable and healthy future where all people are fed. His critique and vision is just as important to consider in our efforts to create vital local food economies. Here is an excerpt from his just published book: Closing the Food Gap:
Resetting the Table in the Land of Plenty

The following is an excerpt:

As a class, lower income people have been well represented
in some of the best-covered food stories of our day, particularly hunger,
obesity, and diabetes. As these issues have faded in and out of the public’s
eye over the last 25 years, another food trend was rapidly becoming a national obsession
— namely, local and organic.

At about the same time that Berkeley diva Alice Waters was
first showing us how to bestow style and grace on something as ordinary as a
local tomato, the Reagan administration’s anti-poor policies were driving an
unprecedented number of people into soup kitchens and food banks. And as
organic food advocates were putting the finishing touches on what was to become
the first national standard for organic food, supermarket chains were nailing
plywood across their city store windows bidding farewell to lower income
America. [Excerpt continues below; click on the link below]

Listen to Mark Winne on NPR’s Tell Me More with Michel Martin (air date November 21st, 2007).

Watch Winne on the ABC World News segment “Food Banks Come Up Short”  (air date December 8, 2007).