by Kai Hsing
As the real-world benefits of buying local and organic food prove to be negligible, is going veggie our only hope?
If switching from incandescent to CFL light bulbs is a first step towards indoctrination into ‘San Francisco values,’ then eating locally is surely a close second, with a dedication from Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma before every meal. But even amongst those who haven’t read Pollan’s ode to locally grown, traditionally prepared food that would make your grandmother salivate, there’s been an obvious renewed interest in farmer’s markets and organic produce with a pushback against the industrialization of the food industry in recent years.
On a certain level, this passion for foodie culture is a perfect example of DIY grassroots activism done right, with a populist message and tangible results that can be achieved quickly and cheaply. Nearly anyone can make a consumer choice to support local farmers, especially with the number of farmers markets in this country nearly doubling in the past decade. Or better yet, anyone can grow their own vegetables, a trend confirmed by the White House gardens started by first lady Michelle Obama earlier this year. There’s also the issues the modern food movement touches upon – ranging from health to poverty and consumerism – that are anything but controversial for either side of the ideological seismic fault you happen to be on. Read the rest of this entry »