Marion Nestle, Others Honored as REAL Food Innovators in DC

Marion Nestle, Others Honored as REAL Food Innovators in DC

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Dr. Marion Nestle and seven others were honored at the inaugural REAL Food Innovator Awards.

During the inaugural REAL Food Innovator Awards in Washington, D.C., Dr. Marion Nestle was recently named the Food Innovator of the Year by the United States Healthful Food Council. Dr. Nestle, who is the Paulette Goddard Professor in the Department of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health at New York University, is the author of several influential books on food politics, and until recently, the monthly Food Matters column for the San Francisco Chronicle.

“We’re in the middle of a food revolution and I cannot think of anything more important to the health of more people than food,” Dr. Nestle said during her keynote address.

Chef Sam Talbot, a Top Chef ‘Fan Favorite’ and the author of The Sweet Life: Diabetes without Boundaries, prepared dinner for over 200 guests at the award ceremony, which was hosted at the Historic Whittemore House in Washington, D.C. on March 13th.

Others honored as Food Innovators included Honest Tea co-founder and president Seth Goldman, Chipotle CEO’s Steve Ells and Monty Moran, and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg. See the full list of food pioneers.

“Nothing within our control affects our health more than the food we eat, yet serving healthful foods is generally perceived as not being good for business,” said Lawrence Williams, CEO of the USHFC. “Each of these individuals is here to help change that equation.”

Karen Lo is an associate editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @appleplexy.

Marion Barry honored with bronze statue on Pennsylvania Avenue

WASHINGTON — He was a controversial leader in D.C. known as the District’s “mayor for life,” and four years after his death he’ll be recognized for years to come outside of the Mayor’s office in D.C.

Marion Barry was memorialized Saturday morning with an 8-foot statue outside of the Wilson Building, which houses the mayor’s office and the D.C. Council on Pennsylvania Avenue in Northwest D.C.

Barry was mayor of D.C. for four terms. He spent nearly 16 years as a city council member, he was a civil rights activist and a champion to the downtrodden, but he was also very controversial.

Lots of people attended Saturday’s unveiling, despite Barry’s controversies while in office, many people said they admired how he consistently fought for the people of D.C. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) “They love him because he actually did things for the little person,” said Ron Baker who is part of the Marion Barry Legacy Committee. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) Barry was elected mayor of D.C. in 1978 and served until 1991 when he decided not to run for re-election following his 1990 arrest and subsequent conviction on drug charges. He was elected to a fourth term as mayor in 1994. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) After Barry stepped down from the mayor’s office for good in 1998, he was elected to the D.C. Council for Ward 8 in 2004 and served until his death in 2014. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) The 8-foot bronze statue of Barry was cast to look like he was waving. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) People snap up photos of the moment the statue is unveiled on Saturday, March 3, 2018. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) Marion Barry’s widow, Cora Masters Barry, spoke to the crowd on Saturday. “Marion fought for the least, the last and the left behind. For those skeptics who will inevitably question why Marion is getting a statue, it is because of his selfless service. It is because Marion served the people until the day he died. Marion loved his people. He helped everyone.” (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) Don (left) and Ron Baker (right), twin brother who are both photographers, were fans of Barry. Don took the final official portrait of Barry right before he died in 2014. “Marion Barry was a champion of the people,” Ron said. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) A T-shirt commemorating the statue unveiling along Pennsylvania Avenue. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) A supporter of Marion Barry celebrates the unveiling of the former mayor’s statue on Saturday, March 3, 2018. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)

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The ceremony shut down Pennsylvania Avenue on Saturday as lots of people braved the elements to honor the D.C. icon.

“It’s an honor to be a part of this,” said Margaret Stevenson, who got her first summer job through Barry’s summer youth employment program. “This is a wonderful tribute to Marion Barry.”

Stevenson said she thinks the statute is a great way to honor a man who has done so much for D.C.

“I think it’s absolutely wonderful to know that every time you come past Pennsylvania Avenue, he is going to be waving at you,” she said.

The statue depicts Barry with his hand in the air, which does look like he is waving.

“All around this city, people will tell you, ‘I got my first job with Marion Barry,'” said Councilmember Jack Evans.

Evans, who called Barry a friend, said he created opportunities for people in the District that didn’t exist before. Evans said one of Barry’s biggest legacies will be that he helped create the African-American middle class in the city and the region. Evans said, Barry was a legendary figure in the District.

Current D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said that Barry taught people to never give up hope

“We are preserving a tremendous part of D.C. history as we honor our ‘mayor for life,'” she said.

That sentiment was echoed by D.C. Council Chair Phil Mendelson who said people saw Barry as a symbol of hope for 50 years.

“He gave voice to the lost, the last and the least,” Mendelson said. “This is an exciting day. It’s exciting because we’re placing a statute to a District of Columbia hero on Pennsylvania. Through thick and thin, the things Mr. Barry did were for other people and not himself.”

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton acknowledged that opinions about Barry will vary but said that no one can doubt “the deep and loving affection of many Washingtonians for Marion.”

“Marion Barry was a champion of the people,” said Ron Baker, who is part of the Marion Barry Legacy Committee.

Baker said he has known Barry since 1976, when he was running for his second term on the D.C. Council.

“That’s why you see so many people out today,” Baker said. “They actually love him because he did things for the little person.”

Ron’s twin brother, Don Baker, said he did a final portrait of Barry several years before Barry’s death in November 2014.

“Everyone loves that portrait of him,” he said. “He did for a city what most mayors should for a city and that’s look out for people.”

Barry’s widow, Cora Masters Barry, also spoke to the crowd and said that despite Barry’s troubles, he was always about serving the people.

“As I look out over the crowd and see all these wonderful people here, it makes my heart sing,” she said. “Marion fought for the least, the last and the left behind. For those skeptics who will inevitably question why Marion is getting a statue, it is because of his selfless service. It is because Marion served the people until the day he died. Marion loved his people. He helped everyone.”

Ancient Nutrition Announces $103 Million Strategic Minority Investment Led by VMG Partners, with Significant Investment from Hillhouse Capital and Participation by ICONIQ Capital

VMG Partners, Hillhouse Capital, ICONIQ Capital, and 100+ Industry Veterans, Influencers, and Individual Investors Join to Form Powerhouse Co-Investor Network to Propel the Future of Real Food Nutrition

NASHVILLE, Tenn.--( BUSINESS WIRE )--Ancient Nutrition, the breakthrough pioneer in Bone Broth Protein supplementation that delivers the benefits of homemade bone broth in a convenient, easy-to-mix form, announces today its $103 million strategic minority investment from VMG Partners, Hillhouse Capital, ICONIQ Capital, and over 100 members of a co-investor network. The backing from this esteemed group of industry leaders, influencers, and individual investors is a testament to the future of Ancient Nutrition’s movement towards providing history’s healthiest, real food nutrients to the modern world. This announcement marks the brand’s first investment, which is poised to elevate the current team’s resources and company growth.

Ancient Nutrition was co-founded in 2016 by Jordan Rubin and Dr. Josh Axe. Rubin also founded Garden of Life (recently acquired by Nestlé) and is the New York Times best-selling author of “The Maker’s Diet.” Dr. Axe is also the founder of DrAxe.com, the #1 natural health website in the world with over 17 million unique visitors per month, and Axe Wellness, #35 on the 2017 Inc. 5000 list. Ancient Nutrition believes the human body was built for high performance and that in the modern world consumers are often disconnected from the traditions and nutritional principles that were honored and celebrated throughout history.

Ancient Nutrition has quickly become the #2 ranking protein supplement and meal replacement brand in the natural health channel, as defined by SPINS, through its groundbreaking line of Bone Broth Protein, Multi Collagen Protein, Essential Oils, and Keto products. Ancient Nutrition is driving key paleo, collagen, and grass-fed supplement trends across all channels. The company is also one of the fastest growing brands in protein, collagen, and gut health with a 266 percent growth CAGR from 2013-2017, and is the largest dollar growth contributor to the category, contributing $10 million, which represents in excess of 40 percent of the total category growth.

“Our mission at Ancient Nutrition is to deliver real food and nutritional products that are formulated to provide ancient nutrients in a modern, convenient form,” said Dr. Josh Axe, Co-Founder of Ancient Nutrition. “The resulting products fuel the body and mind, restoring us to the health, strength, and vitality of our ancestors by delivering wholesome, clean ingredients.”

Ancient Nutrition’s strategic, minority investment is led by VMG Partners, a private equity firm that specializes in investing in and building iconic branded consumer product companies within the food, beverage, pet food, personal care, and wellness categories, including KIND, Quest, Vega, and more.

“VMG Partners is thrilled to partner with Jordan, Dr. Axe, and the phenomenal team they have built to deliver on a shared vision for the future of real food nutrition led by Ancient Nutrition,” said Jon Marshall, Vice President at VMG Partners. “The brand resonates so strongly with consumers who are actively seeking food that powers, as well as heals our bodies and overall well-being, and we are honored to be involved in the brand's continued growth and success.”

“We are completely blown away by the caliber of the Ancient Pioneers co-investor network and the expertise and enthusiasm that this group brings to the table,” said Wayne Wu, Managing Director and Partner at VMG Partners. “At VMG, we are passionate about building community and driving thought leadership in the emerging brand space. This truly remarkable group of more than 100 incredible individual co-investors joining together to support Ancient Nutrition is a testament to this community we are building that supports entrepreneurs and the emerging brand ecosystem as a whole."

Hillhouse Capital, a global firm and e-commerce thought leader throughout Asia focused on building and investing in successful brands, contributed significantly to this investment.

“We are excited to partner with Ancient Nutrition and are impressed by the vision of the co-founders,” said Lei Zhang, Founder of Hillhouse Capital. “We believe Ancient Nutrition will have great potential in Asia and look forward to working with the company to grow its business.”

Alongside VMG, Hillhouse Capital, ICONIQ Capital, and more than 100 individual investors form the co-investor network. This impressive network offers Ancient Nutrition’s current team the ability to accelerate growth and offers the unprecedented support of elite food and beverage founders, CEOs, investors, influencers, and industry professionals.

“The investment team cumulatively offers such rich and diverse expertise within the industry and we feel honored that they want to play a part in the next chapter of Ancient Nutrition,” said Jordan Rubin, Co-Founder of Ancient Nutrition. “We are so excited to partner with the best of the best to truly create the most impactful wellness brand in history.”

“The Ancient Pioneers network brings together industry veterans and leaders to support Ancient Nutrition and the brand’s exponential growth,” said John Foraker, Former CEO of Annie's Homegrown, Co-Founder and CEO of Once Upon a Farm. “I am proud to be involved and am excited to see what the next chapter holds for Ancient Nutrition as the brand continues to develop and expand.”

Ancient Nutrition’s products deliver ancient nutrients to a modern world,” said Gary Hirshberg, Co-Founder and Chairman of Stonyfield Farm. “I am thrilled to support Ancient Nutrition as they bring their mission of real food nutrition to more people.”

“Our bodies were designed and intended for high performance and thus require proper food to power this performance,” said Jillian Michaels, Personal Trainer, Fitness Expert, and Founder of Empowered Media. “People are increasingly recognizing the need for real food nutrition to nourish their bodies and this is what I envision for the future of the food landscape. I am so excited to see brands like Ancient Nutrition paving the way towards convenient, nutritionally rich foods that refresh and fuel our bodies.”

Ancient Nutrition products contain ingredients that are GMO-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, grain-free, and nut-free. Key products are available at Whole Foods Market, Sprouts, specialty retailers nationwide, and available online, shipping directly to consumers. The brand will exhibit at Natural Products Expo West on March 9-11 at the Anaheim Convention Center, located at 800 West Katella Avenue, Anaheim, CA 92802, where attendees will be able to sample the full product roster at booth #4575. For more details on the trade show, please visit www.expowest.com. For more information about Ancient Nutrition, please visit www.ancientnutrition.com.

About Ancient Nutrition:

At Ancient Nutrition, we believe the human body was built for high performance. In the modern world, we are disconnected from the traditions and nutritional principles that were honored and celebrated throughout history. Our real food nutritional products are designed to provide Ancient Nutrients in a modern, convenient form to power the body and mind, restoring us to the health, strength, and vitality of our ancestors. For more information, please visit www.ancientnutrition.com.

Jordan Rubin, Co-Founder and CEO of Ancient Nutrition, is the founder and former CEO of Garden of Life and the New York Times best-selling author of “The Maker’s Diet” and 25 additional titles, including “Planet Heal Thyself” and “Essential Oils: Ancient Medicine.” Jordan owns and operates the nearly 4,000-acre Beyond Organic Ranch and Heal The Planet Farm, a regenerative Permaculture Retreat.

Dr. Josh Axe, DNM, DC, CNS, Co-Founder of Ancient Nutrition, is a doctor of natural medicine, clinical nutritionist, chiropractic physician, and author with a passion to help people achieve radiant health. He is the best-selling author of “Eat Dirt” and “Essential Oils: Ancient Medicine,” and he operates one of the world’s largest natural health websites, visited by more than 17 million people every month looking for healthy recipes, herbal remedies, nutrition and fitness advice, and information on essential oils and natural supplements. Dr. Axe is an expert in functional medicine, digestive health, and herbal remedies. For more information, please visit www.draxe.com.

VMG Partners is focused solely on partnering with entrepreneurs and managers to support the growth and strategic development of branded consumer products companies in the lower middle market. Since its inception in 2005, VMG has provided financial resources and strategic guidance to drive growth and value creation in more than 25 companies. VMG’s defined set of target investment categories includes food, beverage, personal care, pet products, and wellness. Representative past and present partner companies include babyganics®, Daily Harvest, Drunk Elephant, Justin's, KIND Healthy Snacks, Lantana Foods, Natural Balance, Nature’s Bakery, Perfect Bar, Pirate’s Booty, Pretzel Crisps®, Quest, Spindrift, Stone Brewing, Sun Bum, and Vega. VMG Partners is headquartered in San Francisco. For more information about the fund, please visit www.vmgpartners.com.

About Hillhouse Capital:

Founded in 2005, Hillhouse Capital is a global firm of investment professionals and operating executives who are focused on building and investing in high quality business franchises that achieve sustainable growth. Independent proprietary research and industry expertise, in conjunction with world-class operating and management capabilities, are key to Hillhouse Capital’s investment approach. Hillhouse Capital partners with exceptional entrepreneurs and management teams to create value, often with a focus on enacting innovation and technological transformation. Hillhouse Capital invests in the healthcare, consumer, TMT, advanced manufacturing, financials, and business services sectors in companies across all equity stages, with a particular focus on Asia. Hillhouse Capital and its group members manage over US$35 billion in assets on behalf of institutional clients such as university endowments, foundations, sovereign wealth funds, and family offices. For more information, please visit www.hillhousecap.com.

ICONIQ Capital is a global multi-family office and merchant bank representing a group of influential families and strategic investors.

Thanks to You I’ve Been Nominated for Two Awards

The one thing that I don’t say enough when writing these posts is “Thank You.” I’d like to thank all of you for taking the time out of your busy lives to read what I have to say.

The reason that this has come to mind right now is because in the past few weeks, I’ve been nominated for a few awards. While I’m pretty happy to be nominated, it wouldn’t be possible without any of you.

My reason for writing and keeping this site is to inspire you to reconnect with your food by growing your own and to encourage open discussion around it. Without you there would be no conversation or discussion going on. I might not say it enough, but I appreciate that.

Here are the two awards that I’ve been nominated for thanks to you:

The Daily Green: 2011 Heart of Green Awards Local Hero
Each year the Daily Green has its Heart of Green Awards. One of the categories is a local hero that is making a difference for the environment. They accept nominations from their audience.

What I’m most proud of about this nomination is that of the 25 nominees, I am one of the few (if not the only one) that wasn’t nominated by their mom or a co-worker. Jenn Berry (@Jenn_Berry) of Earth911.com nominated me. So much love and appreciation to Jenn for the nomination.

Voting for this award is open through March 27.

TreeHugger’s Best of Green 2011: Best Food Twitter Feed
TreeHugger decided the best of the best Twitter Feeds and I came out as one of them. This one I’m truly blown away by considering the other names that I’m going up against – The Atlantic Life, Ethicurean, Mark Bittman and Marion Nestle.

Voting for this award is open through April 1.

Without you none of this would be possible. To even be nominated for these awards is satisfaction enough. I ain’t gonna lie. Winning would be nice, but for real the nomination is plenty rewarding.

Your votes would be plenty appreciated, but not required or expected. You visiting the site, leaving comments and taking the time to interact is reward enough.

#EarthDay2018: Eating as if the Planet Mattered


This Earth Day, April 22 nd , is an opportunity to eat in ways that better protect both people and the planet. Eating as if the planet matters means eating more healthful foods, wasting less, helping reverse climate change, and reducing the rates of overfishing and overexploitation of soils. These changes can also help consumers save money and build more resilient communities.

In honor of Earth Day, Food Tank is highlighting five high-impact actions each person can take to eat as if the planet mattered:

1) Tailor your portion sizes.

Overeating hurts more than just our bodies. The environmental impacts of industrialized food production and consumption cost the global economy trillions of dollars through water pollution, habitat destruction, antimicrobial resistance, and other avenues, according to the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES-Food). Tailoring portion sizes is an efficient way to reduce these environmental burdens.

In 2016, researchers at Tufts University found that 92 percent of restaurant portions at restaurants in Boston, MA, Little Rock, AR, and San Francisco, CA, exceeded the number of recommended calories. A study by nutritionists Marion Nestle and Lisa Young found that portion sizes for pasta dishes at popular take-out, fast-food, and family restaurants in the U.S. are almost five times larger than the individual portion size recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Further, portion sizes are not static. They have been steadily increasing in the U.S. in recent decades, according to research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The sizes of individual food items sold in grocery stores, from chocolate bars to beers, has grown by an average of between two and five times, according to Nestle and Young.

  • When eating out, plan to take food home from every meal. Since most restaurant portions are too big anyway, leaving a clean plate at the end of a meal should be an exception. Bringing reusable takeout containers to each restaurant meal is a great way to both remember not to overeat and to reduce unnecessary packaging waste.
  • For home-cooked meals, check out tools like the portion reference guide and recipe builder published by pasta company Barilla . Plan to go back for seconds rather than piling up a plate right off the bat.

2) Waste less

If food waste were a country, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that it would be the third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, after China and the U.S.

Some 1.3 billion tons of edible food go to waste every year globally. This is equal to more than two tons (4,000 pounds) of wasted food per hungry person per year.

National, international, and industry initiatives are making significant gains in increasing consumer awareness of the environmental impacts of food waste. A report by Edelman Intelligence found that the number of media articles published annually in the U.S. about food waste tripled between 2011 and 2016, according to NRDC. In 2016, 74 percent of U.S. consumers reported in a survey commissioned by The Ad Council that food waste was important to them. But the organization ReFED also reports that households are still responsible for the largest portion of all food waste by sector.

Eaters have the power to reduce waste every day, at every meal.

  • To fight food waste in a home kitchen, keep pasta and other dry staples on hand to i ncorporate small quantities of leftovers into reimagined entrees .
  • As spring approaches and new vegetables come into season, take a “root-to-stem” approach to meal planning that considers all parts of the vegetable that are edible. Beet greens , chicken bones , zucchini ends , cilantro stems , or carrot tops are all fair game.
  • Food past its prime can also be saved with a small measure of creativity. Stale bread , sour milk , and brown bananas all deserve a second chance.
  • For a comprehensive toolkit of tips and tricks for reducing home food waste, including an online recipe book and a storage guide , visit SaveTheFood.com , a joint project of the Ad Council and the Natural Resources Defense Council.

3) Eat a more plant-based diet

Americans eat more meat than residents of any other country, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Eating a plant-based diet means rethinking the way meals are organized and, instead, making plant foods the focal point of the plate.

Reducing consumption of factory farmed animal products can be an efficient strategy to improve human health, protect the environment, and spare farm animals from cruelty. Because animals have to eat a lot of high-protein plant foods to put on the muscle mass that humans then eat, animals multiply any negative impacts of food production.

More than a quarter of the land on Earth is used for livestock grazing and 33 percent of croplands are farmed exclusively to feed livestock, according to the FAO. Research published in the journal Nature calculated that eating more plant-based proteins could reduce personal greenhouse gas emissions by up to 55 percent. Eating less meat could also reduce an individual’s food-related water footprint by up to 36 percent, according to research conducted at the University of Twente.

High-protein plant alternatives to meat are plentiful and increasingly affordable. Pulses, the high-protein food group that includes beans, lentils, and chickpeas, are a healthful, water-efficient, drought tolerant, and soil-building choice, according to the FAO.

  • Start with one meatless day per week. Meatless Mondays are an internationally popular way to mix up a weekly meal-planning routine and incorporate new recipes and dishes.
  • Refine your meat consumption and choose products from companies who are striving to be socially and environmentally responsible like Organic Valley and Niman Ranch .
  • Revisit favorite recipes and substitute plant proteins in place of animal products. Tacos, pasta dishes, curries, and burger-centric meals are all great candidates. Barilla’s Passion for Pasta recipe site promotes recipes designed with plant foods at their focal points.
  • For added incentive, consider the health benefits of plant-based diets. Even moderate dietary changes in the direction of a healthful plant-based diet significantly reduce the incidence of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, according to Dr. Ambika Satija, a researcher at Harvard University who studied data from 200,000 Americans over more than 20 years.

4) Eat Low on the Marine Food Chain

When choosing which seafood products to incorporate into meal plans, an easy way to keep environmental impacts low is to aim low on the food chain. Eating large, predatory fish at the top of the food chain, like tuna or cod, has dramatically higher environmental impacts than eating fish that feed on plants, insects, or plankton, like tilapia, mackerel, or herring.

Chefs are increasingly using their celebrity, including Ned Bell, Renee Erickson, and Dan Barber, to call for a sea change in the industry towards smaller fish, like sardines, and shellfish. Filter feeders like muscles and oysters, which are about as close to the bottom of the food chain as it’s possible to get, have the added benefit of sequestering climate-warming carbon dioxide in their shells.

  • The first step is knowing not only which seafood to avoid, but also which to aim for. Seafood Watch, a project of the Monterey Bay Aquarium, maintains a comprehensive, user-friendly guide to seafood purchasing , which is also available as an app . The Environmental Defense Fund has a slightly more streamlined tool .
  • As new, unfamiliar seafoods get incorporated into diets across the U.S., sustainable seafood recipe guides have been sprouting up across the internet. Oceana partnered with a number of high-profile chefs on a useful list , and the editors of the James Beard Foundation’s blog did too .

5) Eat Forgotten and Endangered Foods

Globally, agrobiodiversity is in rapid decline. Ninety percent of crop varieties have disappeared from farmers’ fields and only 12 plant species account for 75 percent of the world’s total food supply, according to the FAO. Homogeneous food systems are less resilient to a range of threats, including drought, insect pests, and diseases, according to CGIAR, a global consortium of research centers.

The Crop Trust is working globally to stem the loss of agrobiodiversity and has conserved almost 1 million varieties of crops. They manage a number of multilateral initiatives, including the Food Forever Initiative, the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, and a global partnership to conserve crop wild relatives

International initiatives like ICRISAT, the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics, are working with producers to popularize crops that are not well-known. ICRISAT promotes nutrient-rich, drought-tolerant crops such as millet and sorghum through their Smart Food initiative.

  • Try new fruits and vegetables. As Spring arrives, there is an abundance of underutilized crops coming into season in the U.S. Farmers markets are full of chicories, cardoons, spring onions, sorrels, fennel, and rutabagas. Farmers will only be able to produce more of them if they know that they have demand.
  • Branch out and prioritize buying new varieties and unfamiliar relatives of old favorites. A few kinds of chicories, for example, can be found in many grocery stores and farmers markets, such as radicchio and Belgian endives. The diversity available is expanding along with demand, however, and more variations are becoming available, such as tardivo, puntarelle, castelfranco, and sugarloaf.
  • Look to foods that are native to a region. North America, for example, is home to dozens of edible crops that have been cultivated by indigenous peoples for millennia. Because these crops have existed in local ecosystems for so long, many have been bred to be resistant to local pests and diseases and to tolerate local climatic variability.

How To Get Started:

As the first step down the road to eating as if the planet mattered, try this recipe, prepared specially for Food Tank by chef Lorenzo Boni. It incorporates sorrel, an underutilized leafy, green vegetable from Western Europe, is plant-based, and is designed around healthy portion sizes!

1 box ziti
15 zucchini blossoms
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
5 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, boiled in milk
1 cup heirloom tomatoes, diced
1 cup sorrel


Waters was born in Chatham Borough, New Jersey, on April 28, 1944, to Charles Allen Waters, a Rutgers University graduate who was a management consultant, and Margaret Waters, a homemaker. Alice graduated from the University of California, Berkeley after transferring from UC Santa Barbara. She received a degree in French Cultural Studies in 1967. While at UC Berkeley, she studied abroad in France, where she shopped for local produce and prepared fresh, simple foods to enhance the table experience. During her time in France, she says she "lived at the bottom of a market street" and "took everything in by osmosis." [6]

She brought this style of food preparation back to Berkeley, where she popularized the concept of market-fresh cooking, using the local products available in Northern California. [7] She claims, enigmatically, that food is a way of life and not just something to eat. [8]

During her time at UC Berkeley, Waters became active in the Free Speech Movement, which was sweeping across the campus. [9] [10]

Waters worked on the congressional campaign of Robert Scheer, an anti-Vietnam War politician. She often cooked for and entertained her fellow campaigners. [11]

Waters eventually returned to Europe, where she first trained at a Montessori school in London, and then spent time traveling in Turkey and then in France once again. Principles of the Montessori method, which emphasize practical and hands-on activities for children, are evident in Waters's idea of "edible education" and her Edible Schoolyard, which engages children in the preparation of fruits and vegetables that they tend to with the supervision of their teachers. [12] [10]

After training in London, Waters next traveled to Turkey, which she credits with influencing her approach to hospitality and deepening her respect for local communities. In his book Alice Waters and Chez Panisse, Thomas McNamee recounts Waters's experience in Turkey, where a young Turkish boy shared tea and a small bit of cheese with Waters and her traveling companions, even though he had very little. This small act of kindness had an effect on Waters's approach to hospitality and generosity in her own restaurant. [13]

From Turkey, Waters then returned to France, where she embarked upon a year-long journey. Her travels solidified her love of all things food and French and inspired her to return to California and open Chez Panisse. [14]

Waters counts Elizabeth David, the English cookbook author and writer, as one of her influences. She also credits Richard Olney, an American authority on French food who spent much of his life living in France, with influencing her simple, rustic cuisine. [15]

Olney introduced Waters to Lucien and Lulu Peyraud, owners of the Domaine Tempier vineyard in Provence. Lulu Peyraud's vineyard cooking significantly influenced Waters's cooking and her menus at Chez Panisse. In her foreword to Olney's book, Lulu's Provençal Table, Waters wrote: "Lucien and Lulu's warmhearted enthusiasm for life, their love for the pleasures of the table, their deep connection to the beautiful earth of the South of France – these were things I had seen at the movies. But this was for real. I felt immediately as if I had come home to second family." [16]

In addition, Waters has said that she learned Chinese cooking from Cecilia Chiang, and the two became lifelong friends. [17] Waters has said that what Chiang did to popularize Chinese cuisine in America is what Julia Child did for French cuisine. [18] [19]

Background Edit

In 1971, Waters opened Chez Panisse, which she named for a favorite character in a trilogy of Marcel Pagnol films. From the beginning, the restaurant was a collaborative effort. One notable collaboration was with Jeremiah Tower, who helped create some of the recipes that she later published under her name. Tower took the organic ingredients and melded them into a more refined menu. Chez Panisse was intended to serve primarily as a place where Waters could entertain her friends. [7] Realizing the difficulty in sourcing fresh, high-quality ingredients, Waters began building a network of local farmers, artisans, and producers, and continues to source the restaurant's ingredients through her local network. [20] Waters opened the upstairs Chez Panisse Café, a concept championed by Tower, in 1980. Café serves an a la carte menu for lunch and dinner. In 1984, Waters opened Café Fanny, named after her daughter, between the wine shop of Kermit Lynch and Acme Bread. Café Fanny, which served breakfast and lunch in a casual, European-café setting, closed in 2012. [21] Then Waters mainly focused on the importance of organic farmers. Through Chez Panisse foundation, the project called "Edible Schoolyard" was organized in order to make an environment for the students to learn how to grow their own food and prepare it. [22]

Dedication to organic food Edit

Central to the operations and philosophy of Chez Panisse is Waters's and the restaurant's dedication to using organic ingredients. Waters has become a crusader for organic foods, believing that they are both better for the environment and for people's health in addition to tasting superior to commercially grown, non-organic foods.

Waters became an organic devotee almost by accident, claiming that what she was originally after was taste. She says: "When I opened up Chez Panisse, I was only thinking about taste. And in doing that, I ended up at the doorstep of [organic farmers]." [23]

Waters's current organic food agenda includes reforming the USDA school lunch program to include organic, local fruits and vegetables and changing the way America eats, but her passion for organics started at her restaurant, where she discovered that organic ingredients were the essential element necessary to create delicious food. [ citation needed ]

Waters's effort to promote fresh, sustainable food grown by local farms has extended into her work as a food activist and humanitarian. Waters has always been an outspoken supporter of the restaurant's approach to food, cooking, and supporting the local community, but has more recently formalized her efforts through the Chez Panisse Foundation. [24]

In celebration of the restaurant's 25th anniversary in 1996, Waters founded the Chez Panisse Foundation, whose mission is to transform public education by using food to teach, nurture, and empower young people. [25] In particular, the Foundation has worked with the Berkeley Unified School District to develop a public school curriculum that is integrated with the school dining services and incorporates growing, cooking, and sharing food at the table into the school day in order to build a humane and sustainable future for the school's students. [25]

The Chez Panisse Foundation is a publicly supported 501(c)(3) organization.

The primary work of the Chez Panisse Foundation has been to establish and sustain the Edible Schoolyard program at Berkeley's Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School. The Edible Schoolyard was established in 1995 and is a 1-acre (4,000 m 2 ) organic garden and kitchen classroom. Students at the middle school are involved in growing, harvesting, and preparing the foods from the garden, with the aim of promoting the environmental and social well-being of the school community. [26]

Waters's work at the Edible Schoolyard has also developed into her School Lunch Initiative, which has the broader goal of bringing school children into a new relationship with food by making a healthy, fresh, sustainable meal a part of the school day. The School Lunch Initiative is a collaborative project with the Center for Ecoliteracy, also in Berkeley, and is also the topic of a series of studies through the Center for Weight and Health, at UC Berkeley. [27]

The School Lunch Initiative is focused on bringing wholesome school lunch to the 10,000 students in the Berkeley Unified School District. In 2005, the Chez Panisse Foundation provided a grant to Berkeley schools to hire Ann Cooper as the Director of Nutrition Services for the district. Cooper and the Foundation eliminated almost all processed foods from the district and introduced organic fruits and vegetables to the daily menu, all while staying within the district's budget. [27] Waters's vision is to teach subjects such as history, science, and art through the vehicle of food. [28]

In September 2010, the Center for Weight and Health at UC Berkeley, Center for Ecoliteracy, and Chez Panisse Foundation released an evaluation report on the School Lunch Initiative. The report tracked elementary and middle school students over three years to determine the effects of the School Lunch Initiative on children's eating habits and knowledge. The report found that students in schools with highly developed School Lunch Initiative components ate more daily servings of fruit and vegetables than students in schools with lesser developed programs, and that they scored higher on food knowledge assessments. Schools with highly developed School Lunch Initiative components integrated kitchen and garden classes into the school curriculum, in addition to overhauling the school lunch program. [29]

Although the work of the Chez Panisse Foundation has focused primarily on the Berkeley Unified School District, Waters has become a vocal and familiar advocate for school lunch reform and activism at the national level, as well. She encouraged President Bill Clinton to plant a White House garden. [9] In 2009, she appeared on the CBS television program "60 Minutes," and made a public call for President Obama to plant an organic garden at the White House to catalyze change in the US food system. [3] Michelle Obama, in conjunction with her anti-obesity campaign Let's Move!, planted the White House organic vegetable garden that year. [30] An article in the San Francisco Chronicle states that:

Obama's Let's Move campaign, which replaced her predecessor's literacy drive, addresses much of what Waters has been preaching. Chris Lehane, a political consultant who has worked for Al Gore and Bill Clinton, sees Waters as "the George Washington of the movement and Northern California as the 13 colonies. If you're going to pick a figure who's responsible for it all, it all comes back to her." [31]

Edible Schoolyard affiliate programs Edit

In addition to the Edible Schoolyard in Berkeley, there are five affiliate Edible Schoolyard programs around the country. These include Edible Schoolyards in New Orleans, New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Greensboro, North Carolina. [32]

Other advocacy projects Edit

As of 2010 [update] , Waters is working to extend free school meals to all public school children in the United States. She hopes to expand programs like the Edible Schoolyard and the School Lunch Initiative in order to reach schools across the US. She supported the 2010 Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act, and believes that providing all public school students with free food in school would build the foundation for a healthier and more sustainable food culture in the US. [33]

In 2003, Waters helped create the Yale Sustainable Food Project, which aims to make sustainable food an important part of university-level education. The project maintains an on-campus organic farm and integrates organic, local products into the university's dining program [34]

Since 2002, Waters has served as a Vice President of Slow Food International, an organization dedicated to preserving local food traditions, protecting biodiversity, promoting small-scale quality products around the world. [35] She was drawn to the Slow Food movement because of its work in passing food knowledge and traditions to future generations. [36]

  • California Fresh Harvest: A Seasonal Journey through Northern California (California Fresh) (with Gina Gallo, the Inc. Junior League of Oakland-East Bay, et al.)
  • Waters, Alice (1984). Chez Panisse Pasta, Pizza, Calzone . ISBN978-0-679-75536-4 .
  • Waters, Alice (1995). Chez Panisse Menu Cookbook . ISBN978-0-679-75818-1 .
  • Waters, Alice (1996). Chez Panisse Vegetables. ISBN978-0-06-017147-6 .
  • Waters, Alice (1997). Fanny at Chez Panisse : A Child's Restaurant Adventures with 46 Recipes. ISBN978-0-06-092868-1 . , a storybook and cookbook for children
  • Waters, Alice (1999). Chez Panisse Café Cookbook. ISBN978-0-06-017583-2 .
  • Waters, Alice Paul Bertolli (2001). Chez Panisse Cooking. ISBN0-8446-7110-X .
  • Waters, Alice (2002). Chez Panisse Fruit. ISBN978-0-06-019957-9 .
  • Waters, Alice Carlo Petrini William McCuaig (2004). Slow Food : The Case for Taste (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History) . ISBN978-0-231-12845-2 .
  • Waters, Alice (2007). The Art of Simple Food. ISBN978-0-307-33679-8 .
  • Waters, Alice (2008). The Edible Schoolyard. ISBN978-0-8118-6280-6 .
  • Waters, Alice (2010). In the Green Kitchen: Techniques to Learn by Heart. ISBN978-0-307-33680-4 .
  • Waters, Alice (2017). Coming to My Senses: The Making of a Counterculture Cook. ISBN978-0-307-71828-0 .

Waters has received numerous awards for her cooking, environmental advocacy, and other achievements. [37]

Former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry died overnight at United Medical Center in Washington at the age of 78. Barry had gone to the hospital on Thursday complaining that he was&hellip

Washington, D.C. City Councilman Marion Barry Jr.’s name is popping up all over the place. From an upcoming interview on Oprah’s “Where Are They Now” and the recent release of&hellip

Clare Hyre

Grew up in: Lexington, Virginia

Job Title/Organization or Company: Program Manager, Teens For Food Justice

Background and Education: I graduated from Guilford College in 2008 with a double major in Peace & Conflict Studies and Religious Studies. It was during that time I became passionate about sustainable agriculture. I then went on to apprentice on farms, manage farm education programs, and run farmers’ markets around the country. In 2016 I graduated from the NYU Food Studies Master’s Program, where I focused on Food Systems. I’m currently working as Program Manager at Teens For Food Justice, and am grateful to work with such an dedicated team and youth every day.

One word you would use to describe our food system: Exposed

Food policy hero: Eric Holt-Gimenez

Your breakfast this morning: Yogurt, granola, fruit, and coffee

Favorite food: Falafel pita sandwich or anything Middle Eastern

Favorite last meal on Earth: Kimchi- jjigae

Favorite food hangout (restaurant, bodega, coffee place, friend’s house, etc) and why: Our farms during our after-school programming when we have a cooking lesson. It’s amazing to see how excited our students are to cook and the food they make tastes delicious, and is creative and healthy!

Social media must follow: @GretaThunberg

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  • Six in-depth portraits of America's distinct culinary regions are included, highlighting the unique cuisine and local foods of each
  • The first section of the book features "Local Hero" essays that explore how people in our own neighborhoods are changing the way Americans eat
  • The second section of the book includes recipes from each of the six regions, divided by seasonal availability of ingredients

Whether you want to experience the very best food from your region or be inspired by all the success stories in other regions, Edible is the ultimate guide to eating right for yourself, your community, and for the world.

Recipes and Articles from Edible

From Publishers Weekly


From the Back Cover

A gorgeous full-color celebration of America's local food heroes and traditions, Edible is for anyone who cares about delicious, safe, sustainable food being cultivated and created every day by people in our own communities. The book offers engaging, inspiring profiles of farmers, artisans, chefs, and organizations that are making a difference, and shares eighty seasonal recipes that highlight the very best local foods across the country.

"The Edible magazines are at the forefront of today's food revolution, celebrating the work of local farmers and food artisans and inspiring us to get involved. Edible tells terrific stories about the making of delicious food, but it's really about American democracy and sustainable community food systems. Read this book and join the movement!"
—Marion Nestle, Professor of Food Studies, New York University, and author of What to Eat

"Since the blossoming of the Edible magazines, I've been dying to know what's going on in other communities. This book gives us a taste of each place and a chance to meet some of the growers, artisans, cooks, and adventurous eaters around the country. And where else could you find a recipe for Kudzu Quiche? It is a simply beautiful work."
—Deborah Madison, author of Local Flavors

Bloody Sunday memorial honors late civil rights giants

SELMA, Ala. (AP) — Activists who gathered virtually and in person to commemorate a pivotal day in the civil rights struggle that became known as Bloody Sunday called on people to continue the fight for voting rights as they also honored giants of the civil rights movement, including the late U.S. Rep. John Lewis, who died last year.

The Selma Bridge Crossing Jubilee marks the 56th anniversary of Bloody Sunday — the day on March 7, 1965, that civil rights marchers were brutally beaten by law enforcement officers on Selma’s Edmund Pettus Bridge. Lewis, the Rev. Joseph Lowery, the Rev. C.T. Vivian, and attorney Bruce Boynton were the late civil rights leaders honored on Sunday.

The day became a turning point in the fight for voting rights. Footage of the beatings helped galvanize support for passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

This year’s commemoration comes as some states seek to roll back expanded early and mail-in voting access and efforts have been unsuccessful to restore a key section of the Voting Rights Act that required states with a history of discrimination to get federal approval for any changes to voting procedures.

Many speakers throughout the day’s events emphasized the need for continued activism to protect voting access.

“Voter suppression is still alive and well,” said U.S. Rep. Teri Sewell, a Democrat who represents the 7th Congressional District which includes Selma. “It reminds us that progress is elusive and every generation must fight and fight again.”

Sewell spoke during a video that featured comments from activists, mayors, members of Congress and others about the historic anniversary. Later, organizers played video footage of activists, many who had been part of the original Bloody Sunday events in 1965, crossing the bridge once again. They wore masks and in keeping with social distancing requirements designed to stop the coronavirus, spread out across the bridge as they walked.

The event typically brings thousands of people to Selma. However, most of the events were held virtually this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The annual Martin & Coretta King Unity Breakfast was held as a drive-in event. The outdoor event included some in-person speakers such as Rev. Bernard LaFayette, and the founders of the group Black Voters Matter. Cliff Albright, one of the group’s founders, spoke about the continued need to fight for voter access.

“The movement is not over,” he said as people in their cars honked in support. “What we are asking folks today is for us to commit to that moment, for us to commit to this movement.”

Others spoke via video link or in prerecorded messages. President Joe Biden appeared via a prerecorded message, in which he announced an executive order aimed at promoting voting access.

“Every eligible voter should be able to vote and have that vote counted,” Biden said. “If you have the best ideas, you have nothing to hide. Let the people vote.”

Lowery, a charismatic and fiery preacher, is often considered the dean of the civil rights veterans and led the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

Vivian began organizing sit-ins against segregation in the 1940s and later joined forces with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. In 1965, Vivian led dozens of marchers to a courthouse in Selma, confronting the local sheriff on the courthouse steps and telling him the marchers should be allowed to register to vote. The sheriff responded by punching Vivian in the head.

Boynton was arrested for entering the white part of a racially segregated bus station in Virginia, launching a chain reaction that ultimately helped to bring about the abolition of Jim Crow laws in the South. Boynton contested his conviction, and his appeal resulted in a U.S. Supreme Court decision that prohibited bus station segregation.

His case inspired the Freedom Riders of 1961 — a group of young activists who went on bus rides throughout the South to test whether court-ruled desegregation was actually being enforced. They faced violence from white mobs and arrest by local authorities.

Organizers acknowledged the fallen civil rights leaders and planned to lay wreaths at the bridge in their honor.

The march across the Selma bridge was sparked by events in nearby Marion, where a Black man had been killed by a white Alabama state trooper during peaceful protests for voting rights. Jimmie Lee Jackson, a 26-year-old church deacon, was shot while trying to protect his mother from being hurt and died eight days later. In response, activists in Marion and Selma gathered for a march on March 7, their goal the state capital in Montgomery.

Although the Jackson case occurred in 1965, it has particular resonance in 2021 as the state of Minnesota prepares to try former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd, an African American. Floyd died after Chauvin, who is white, pressed his knee onto Floyd’s neck while Floyd was held face-down on the ground in handcuffs, saying he couldn’t breathe. Body camera footage indicates Chauvin’s knee was on Floyd’s neck for about nine minutes. Floyd was later pronounced dead at a hospital.

Jury selection begins Monday.

Copyright © 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.


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