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29 minutes | Jun 16, 2019
Dr. John Fagan on the Toxins in our Food and Environment
On this final episode of Rootstock Radio, we're talking to Dr. John Fagan of Earth Open Source Institute about an all-encompassing model of health, climate change, pesticides and science. It's been a great 4 years of doing this podcast, and we want to thank the thousands of listeners who have celebrated so many Good Food Movement changemakers with us every week. We hope you'll stay connected with us on our blog, Rootstock, at www.organicvalley.coop/blog.
29 minutes | Jun 9, 2019
Chef Luke Zahm: The Difference Between a Fad and a Revolution
Today on Rootstock Radio, Chef Luke Zahm of the Driftless Cafe gets real about what it takes to be conscientious in the restaurant industry, and why serving local food is so important to the greater local food system. Tune in to hear about: The unique food and agriculture scene in the Driftless region of Wisconsin (which is, of course, how the Driftless Cafe got its name.) Why Luke and his team spend 85% of their food budget sourcing from producers within 100 miles of their restaurant. How Luke has made telling the stories of farmers central to his business model. Important conversations taking place among chefs about how to celebrate local food and farmers without grandstanding or exploiting the “trendiness” of farm-to-table. The difference between a fad and a revolution, according to Luke (and why organic is clearly the latter.)
0 minutes | Jun 2, 2019
Mari Margil: Giving Nature the Legal Rights it Deserves
Mari Margil and her team at the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund are committed to defending the rights of our environment under the law. Already they have assisted the first places in the world to secure Rights of Nature in law, including in Ecuador, where these rights are now written into the country’s constitution. Recently, the organization was instrumental in advocating for the rights of Lake Erie to be protected against agricultural pollution, which has also been polluting the water of Toledo, Ohio, residents. In February, Ohio voters passed the “Lake Erie Bill of Rights” law, a first-of-its-kind measure that could set a positive precedent for other Rights of Nature laws. Listen in to hear more about how our environment can - and should - have a lawyer.
29 minutes | May 26, 2019
Anthony Reyes: Growing Skills (and Food) at the Homeless Garden Project
Today on Rootstock Radio, we’re talking with Anthony Reyes, Farm Manager at Homeless Garden Project in Santa Cruz, California. Anthony’s interest in food and agriculture was piqued in college, where he studied food, agriculture and social justice. But after he got a job not just thinking about agriculture, but actually working with his hands in the soil, his focus shifted from theoretical policy, to being on the ground making change in big and small ways. Which is—of course—part of how Anthony found himself farm manager of an urban farm and garden that employs, educates and nourishes people experiencing homelessness.
29 minutes | May 19, 2019
Ashleigh Eubanks: Food and Cooperation in the Boroughs of New York City
Today we’re talking to community organizer Ashleigh Eubanks of RiseBoro Community Partnership, where her work includes food systems education, supporting local co-op development, building cross-movement solidarity and fostering local leadership. Not only that, Ashleigh was named one of Brooklyn Magazine’s “30 Under 30” for her work as a food justice organizer in 2018. Tune in to hear her story of growing up in a food desert, and how the inequality she saw inspired her to make change.
29 minutes | May 12, 2019
Sarah Potenza: How WWOOF Did Ecotourism Long Before it was Cool
WWOOF’s model for cultural exchange on organic farms connects people from all over the world through shared values of good food, sustainability and community. WWOOF was doing ecotourism before that term had even been invented! Tune in to hear about how WWOOFing works, how it's changed since the 1970s, and how it has led many people to organic farming (and showed a few that the farming life wasn't for them - and that's a good thing to know).
29 minutes | May 5, 2019
Cara Loriz: Protecting the (Often-Overlooked) Foundation of Our Food System
Have you ever stopped to think about how the plants that produce our seeds are treated? Today on Rootstock Radio Cara Loriz, Executive Director at Organic Seed Alliance, is talking about an often-overlooked and truly fundamental piece of our food and agriculture system: seeds.
29 minutes | Apr 28, 2019
Amanda Oborne: Helping the "Ag of the Middle" Thrive
Farm infrastructures in the U.S. are designed to support either very big or very small farms, which sometimes leaves mid-sized producers—the “Ag of the Middle”—without resources or a market. Amanda Oborne of Ecotrust is supporting these often-overlooked farms in order to create a flourishing regional food system.
29 minutes | Apr 21, 2019
Chef Mary Cleaver on Eating Local in the Urban Jungle (and Happy Earth Day!)
We’re ringing in the 49th anniversary of Earth Day with a special Rootstock Radio conversation with Chef Mary Cleaver, one of the country’s foremost authorities on sustainable food and local sourcing. She's also an alumnus of Earth Dinner, a special themed dinner that brings friends and family together for an intentional, meaningful meal on Earth Day (or really, any day!). Tune in to hear about: Mary’s ideal Earth Dinner menu (we’re salivating…) How Mary has literally watched the “eat local” movement come into being in NYC, from one market selling local products in 1976 to over 55 today. Helping other NYC chefs to bring local ingredients to restaurants across the city. Why Mary believes there is a big difference between what hits your tongue and the energy that flows through your body as a result. The one thing Mary would encourage everyone to do in celebration of Earth Day, or any day of the year!
29 minutes | Apr 14, 2019
Cheyenna Layne Weber: The Cooperative Economic Model Our Earth Needs
Today on Rootstock Radio, Cheyenna Layne Weber, Brooklyn-based writer and community organizer with the Cooperative Economics Alliance of New York City, talks about her pursuit of art and activism that elevates the needs of people and the planet over profit. Hear about the "solidarity economy" (aka "new economics" or "regenerative economics") and how everyone can be involved.
29 minutes | Apr 7, 2019
Kendra Klein: Reducing Exposure to Pesticides, a Scientifically Proven Way
On today’s episode of Rootstock Radio, we’re chatting with Kendra Klein, senior staff scientist at Friends of the Earth (FOE) and a seasoned writer, researcher and advocate (Kendra’s been at this kind of work for a full 17 years!). Kendra shares what that FOE is doing to change our food and agriculture system for the better. This includes an exciting new study that found switching to organic food can dramatically reduce your exposure to pesticides—we’re talking drops of 60% in just 6 days, and up to 95% depending on the compound! The study also found 14 specific pesticides in every single participant (a fact that should thoroughly alarm us all). The hopeful news is that this study, and others like it, shows it IS POSSIBLE to seriously reduce the amount of pesticide residues in our bodies through our diet. And in a world where a lot of things feel completely out of our control, our food choices are something that’s still in our own hands.
29 minutes | Mar 31, 2019
Eric Holt-Gimenez: Hope for a Democratic Food System
Eric Holt-Giménez firmly believes that our food system is not, in fact, broken. As he shared with us in early 2018, the agriculture system we’re operating today never really worked in the first place. Today on Rootstock Radio, we’re visiting with him again, this time about his latest book, Can We Feed The World Without Destroying It?, and to hear what other good things he’s been taking action around as executive director of the Institute for Food Development and Policy (also known as Food First).
29 minutes | Mar 24, 2019
Naomi Starkman of Civil Eats on Fixing TWO Broken Systems: Food & Media
On this week’s episode of Rootstock Radio, founder and editor-in-chief of Civil Eats Naomi Starkman reflects on 10 years spent building a daily news source for critical thought about the American food system. She’s not interested in being beholden to big advertisers and big business, or in chasing the current 24-hour news cycle for that matter. No, Naomi is interested in illuminating the triumphs and challenges of our current food system through fair, balanced and high-quality journalism. With the James Beard Foundation’s 2014 Publication of the Year Award under its belt, Civil Eats is well on its way to doing exactly that.
29 minutes | Mar 17, 2019
Betty Izumi: How Teaching "Food Gratitude" Encourages Kids to Eat Their Veggies
Today Betty Izumi, who holds the title of project director and "principal investigator" at Harvest for Healthy Kids, discusses a neat way to get kids to eat their fruits and veggies -- "Food Gratitude," a practice she observed while conducting research on school food in Japan. Listen in to learn more…especially if your kids are picky eaters!
29 minutes | Mar 10, 2019
Bob Quinn: The Modern Benefits of Ancient Grains
Today on Rootstock Radio we’re talking to an organic farmer and sustainable agriculture pioneer who’s in the habit of wearing his heart on his sleeve—and in his hat. Often seen with a few stalks of the ancient grain Kamut® tucked into his wide-brimmed cowboy hat, Bob Quinn is pioneering sustainable agriculture and alternative energy in his state of Montana. He’s incredibly knowledgeable about Khorasan wheat, commercially known as Kamut®, that he grows on his farm, but that’s certainly not Bob’s only area of expertise. Plus: Kamut legends, why it's a registered trademark, how Italy is obsessed with it, and using recycled veggie oil to power his farm. Tune in to hear more!
29 minutes | Mar 4, 2019
Laura-Anne Minkoff-Zern: Racial (In)Justice, Immigration and Labor in the Food System
Can you understand something like food without considering politics, economics and social conditions? Professor Laura-Anne Minkoff-Zern doesn’t think so. Catch her insights on this week’s episode of Rootstock Radio. Tune in to hear about: The lowdown on guest worker programs in agriculture: what they are, why they’re gaining popularity again—and why they’re problematic. How social violence and economic exclusion in the marketplace turns farmers into migrant farm workers. The history of farm workers being left out of progressive labor reforms like 40-hour work weeks and the right to unionize. Hope! An opportunity emerging for immigrant farm workers as (predominantly) white farmers are retiring across the country.
29 minutes | Feb 24, 2019
Liz Carlisle: Lentils, Legumes & the Power of Pulses
Tune in to hear about: - How farmers in Montana turned a cover crop into a cash crop and are fixing nutrients in their soil, all while taking a “slow money” approach. - Liz’ realizations about conversation and land stewardship in the prairies of Montana. - How Liz was inspired by Montana politician Senator Jon Tester, who is himself an organic farmer! - What changed in Montanan agriculture during the farm crisis of the 80s. - How the transition to sustainable agriculture practices affected farm communities. - Lentils, legumes and pulses! Listen at the link below, on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts.
29 minutes | Feb 17, 2019
Terry Oxford: Sustainable Urban Beekeeping
Terry Oxford is a beekeeper…on the rooftops of downtown San Francisco. It’s true! Urban areas can often be better habitat for bees than the countryside because of the parks and residents’ gardens that tend to grow flowers during a wider season than happens in nature. But they have one big thing looming against them: the chemicals used in those parks and gardens put urban bees at more risk. Tune in to hear about: - The sophisticated way honeybees think about, and plan for, the future. (Hint: they’re light years ahead of us!) - Gender roles in beehives, and how sustainable beekeeping supports BOTH the male and female bees. (Conventional beekeeping often cuts males out of the operation entirely). - How chemicals used in cities have created a world full of poisonous flowers. (Let that sink in for a minute.) - The most efficient way to create food for pollinators in a city. - The story of pollination—magical AND sexy. - Why Terry is reducing her beekeeping practice while expanding it in other ways. Listen at the link below, on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts.
29 minutes | Feb 10, 2019
Leah Penniman: Amplifying the Voices of Black and Brown Farmers
Tune in to hear about: - What cover cropping and vermicomposting have in common. - How Europeans essentially kidnapped skilled Black agriculturalists. - How Leah’s upbringing and experiences brought her to a connection with the earth and farming. - Why changing diets in marginalized communities really is an access issue NOT an education, motivation, or anything-else issue. - The incredible programs Soul Fire Farm is running, how they came about, and where they’d like to go from here. Leah is a Black Kreyol farmer who has been tending the soil for twenty years and organizing for an anti-racist food system for fifteen years. She’s an educator, food justice activist, executive director of Soul Fire Farm and author of Farming While Black: Soul Fire Farm’s Practical Guide to Liberation on the Land. Listen at the link below, on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts.
29 minutes | Feb 4, 2019
Fred Provenza: Where Wonder Meets Science (And Why They Aren’t Mutually Exclusive)
Listen in to hear about: - Imbuing his writing (and latest book) with a little more heart and soul than your average scientific text. - Plant consciousness and what Fred thinks about it—Totally implausible? Absolute fact? Tune in to find out. - How plants can sense nutrients and how this “nutritional wisdom” has been lost in humans. - The possibility of regaining nutritional wisdom (there may still be hope!) - One low-cost change you can make in your life that will help “link us back to the land,” as Fred puts it. Listen at the link below, on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts.
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