Q & A

Question:

Why does organic food cost more than non-organic food?

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LaDonnaRedmond_photoI have asked myself this question many times. I am not sure. In my mind, most people are buying organic food from the same industrial food system that gives us conventional food. I think that there is an illusion that you are helping small family farms by purchasing organic food.

Featured voice: LaDonna Redmond, Food Justice Activist

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Question:

Those of us pushing for more organic food in the marketplace are often called elitist, out of touch with most Americans—especially in an economic climate when 42 million Americans are relying on food stamps. Do you think it’s elitist?

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LaDonnaRedmond_photoI do not think that asking for organic food is elitist. I do think that the charge of elitism has to be taken seriously as the food movement has given the impression that the only people concerned about the greater good are highly resourced people. This means that the food movement has to do a better job of including the perspective people of color and communities that are under resourced. This would go a long way toward addressing the issue of who is concerned about getting organic food.

Featured voice: LaDonna Redmond, Food Justice Activist

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Question:

People often feel that healthy food is more expensive than junk food. Can it really be affordable to eat healthfully?

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LaDonnaRedmond_photoYes, it can be affordable. If we weigh in the health care costs associated with the long term impact of chronic diet related diseases. However, the question has to be framed differently, which is whether affordable food means cheap food. Cheap food – i.e. highly processed food – is at the core of the problem with our food system. Affordability has be divorced from the idea that food should be cheap.

Featured voice: LaDonna Redmond, Food Justice Activist

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Question:

What is one of your favorite examples of a program working to encourage healthy eating, especially among kids and teens?

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Juliet

Communities across the country are finding innovative ways to encourage healthy eating. In particular, farm-to-school policies are gaining traction, with farm-to-school legislation in 35 states. Such programs connect K-12 schools with local farms that supply healthy, sustainable foods to school cafeterias. Not only do these programs support the health and well-being of kids, they play a role in educating communities, supporting local farmers, and strengthening the regional food economy.

Featured voice: Juliet Sims, Prevention Institute

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Question:

Food companies say that it is the family’s responsibility to determine what foods their kids eat. Is it really up to the parents?

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Juliet

Food companies put all the responsibility on parents to shield their kids from unhealthy foods—but when food marketers have access to children in schools, in stores, on television, and increasingly on the internet, parents have the odds stacked against them. Parents don’t decide which cereals to market to children or what image goes on the front of the cereal box—food companies do. One major study found that, at this rate, children won’t be fully protected from junk food ads until 2033. We can’t continue to allow generations of children to get sick while the food industry gets free reign.  Limiting the reach of junk food marketing helps shift the balance in the right direction. After all, parents can’t do it all alone.

 

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