Food and Farming

How we grow, process, transport, market, prepare, and dispose of food is critical to many of the central issues of sustainable living. Over the last decades, factory farming has displaced many small family farms and created several environmental and health issues. Reviving smaller-scale farms, a process that schools might help though their purchasing, could encourage agricultural practices that are more sustainable in terms of the environment, health, and the local economy.

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Tools for demonstrating the academic, health, environmental, and financial benefits of high-quality, appealing school meals.


Oct. 17, 2014: Karen Brown to discuss "Re-Localizing the Food System" at the annual Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, CA.


School food system reform is a critical strategy for addressing fundamental justice issues.

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Type Title Description Author
Essay Taste

Taste is social, cultural, and mysterious; detects toxins; can save the Earth; and is preserved by local organic farmers.

Paul Hawken
Essay The Many Wonders of Plants

To learn to eat well, children need to be reconnected with nature and with living food.

Joan Dye Gussow
Essay Message in a Bottle

Studies have indicated that the use of bovine growth hormone affects the health of the cows and possibly of humans.

Vivien Straus
Essay Uncertain Peril

Is industrial agriculture, with its focus on chemical and genetic technologies, the best choice for ensuring a healthy future?

Claire Hope Cummings
Essay Farmer in Chief

An open letter from the author of In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto, to an incoming president.

Michael Pollan
Essay Food Fight: The 2007 Farm Bill

The Farm Bill significantly affects food, farming, land use, school meals, biodiversity, family farms, and farm workers.

Dan Imhoff
Essay Sodas in Schools: A Sticky Situation

School beverage policies should address obesity, tooth decay, and low-nutrient drinks' contributions to chronic illness.

Melinda Hemmelgarn
Essay Beyond a Garden in Every School

School gardens should be thought of as the center of the school, and not just another program or place.

Philip Nix
Essay Pleasure and Process: A Recipe for Good Eating

The pleasure of good eating arises from respect, appreciation, connection, memory, romance, trust, intimacy, and food stories.

Fred Kirschenmann
Essay Rethinking Lunchtime: Making Lunch an Integral Part of Education

One school's strategies for improving its lunch program, including reversing lunch and recess.

Michael K. Stone
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