The Need for a Transformed System

To say I like the website BuzzFeed would be an understatement.  With everything from the deeply unsolvable mysteries of ’90s Hanson to 60 fabulous moments of Seattle’s first day of marriage equality, it is an extremely informative and entertaining website.

This morning during my usual perusing of the site I came across, “11 Horrifying Facts About Your Fresh Groceries.”  Which, by the way, is a GREAT read while you are eating lunch.

The industrial food system we are dependent upon is in need of a serious overhaul.  Our food system comes with a significant carbon and ecological footprint, as well as public health implications as identified by the BuzzFeed post.  Shifting to a more locally focused food system, where farmers can subsist in the market on their own, beyond industrial contracts, and where the destructive “footprints” of the current system can be minimized is essential.

There is a lot of great energy building around food system transformation in the Chesapeake Bay Region.  Below is a list of some of the food work we have supported over the last year.

Real Food Media‘s Food Mythbusters Project:  a collaborative project that uses online videos, grassroots events and workshops, and a web-based action and resource center to inspire, educate, and grow the movement for sustainable food and farming.

Real Food Challenge‘s Real Food Chesapeake project: to build a sustainable food movement in Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay region through university and college campus advocacy.  They work with student activists to secure commitments from their college and university administrations, shifting 20% of their institutional purchases to local, sustainable sources by 2020.

Center for Emerging Media‘s Sound Bites on Delmarva (“Sound Bites”) series, a weekly radio series that investigates the current food system on the Delmarva Peninsula and Chesapeake Watershed, to educate and engage the public in discussions around transforming this food system to one that is more sustainable, healthy for the environment, and allows for accessible nutritious food to all persons regardless of income or location.

Future Harvest – CASA: sustainable farming education and advocacy work and project support for its Food Shed Initative, involving a feasibility study for conducting regional food system vision.

Maryland Hospitals for a Healthy Environment’s Chesapeake Food Leadership Council to begin shifting health care facility food purchase to local, sustainable sources.