As I lay in the grassy commons on this delightful 75 and sunny afternoon, I can’t help feeling content. While I could be using this time “productively” on my biology or French homework, I’m really not in the right state of mind for the laborious and tedious work of my everyday existence.
However, I am in the perfect state of mind to reflect on the events of this weekend.
This past weekend, I attended a Food Ethics Conference at Viterbo University with a group of junior and senior girls from Luther. I realize that for the majority of people reading this, “food ethics” literally sounds like the most boring thing in the world and ultimately something that doesn’t relate or affect your everyday life.
Yet these assertions are absolutely ridiculous!
If you eat food, then food ethics affect your life. You might think that money or social status may lead to a happy life. But if you really look at it, money and power, jobs, grades, it all centers around how one obtains food. Food is important physically, mentally, culturally, economically, socially, environmentally, and historically. That means it's important in terms of every other aspect of our lives!
Yet, in modern times we have lost our connection to food and its importance. We grow, produce, purchase, cook, and eat food, yet we do it blindly. This conference was all about how we must restore our connection to food and how this restoration, at least in my mind, is ultimately the solution to every other problem our society faces.
While much of the conference focused on aspects of food that personally excite me, such as greenhouses, urban farms, vermicomposting (composting with worms), and regenerative agriculture, I realize these aspects of food do not evoke enthusiasm in the general public, so I’ll spare you the details.
At this point in my post I am struggling because there are just so many things I want to tell you about food and how important making healthy and environmentally friendly choices is! I want to define what a food desert is and tell you all about what people like Will Allen are doing to help combat these “deserts” and the social problems surrounding them. I want to give you an argument for restricted omnivory and tell you about how we are running out of farmers and young people need to go into agriculture.
Alas, a short blog post cannot possibly suffice to cover such a deeply entrenched issue. While I wholeheartedly encourage you to look up these issues (google can be a beautiful thing) I won’t tire you with a whole essay on them. I will, however, leave you with words of wisdom I hold dear to my heart.
Obviously food is the driving force behind our survival as living organisms, but relationships and connections to others are the driving force behind our thriving as human beings. Food ethics really comes down to two things; good food and good people are all we really need for a good life.