Saturday, March 1, 2008

Uncle Sam doesn't eat local

Can't find the fresh food you crave at Jewel or Dominics? King corn (and soy) may be at fault. Check out this op ed piece in today's New York Times.

Jack Hedin, a Minnesota farmer, writes that "consumers who would like to be able to buy local fruits and vegetables not just at farmers’ markets, but also in the produce aisle of their supermarket, will be dismayed to learn that the federal government works deliberately and forcefully to prevent the local food movement from expanding. And the barriers that the United States Department of Agriculture has put in place will be extended when the farm bill that House and Senate negotiators are working on now goes into effect."

If you haven't yet read Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma, get yourself a copy at your bookstore, the Morton Arboretum gift shop, or Amazon (only $9.60!). It is absolutely not a tendentious, finger-wagging book. It is full of fascinating facts that you will find yourself reading aloud to patient family members. You'll really empathize with Farmer Hedin after you've read Pollan.

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