The Milkweed Diaries

Friday, October 28, 2011

Occupy the Pantry. . .

. . .and the fridge, and the cupboards, and the stovetop, and the plate. And while we're at it, let's occupy the pasture and the hen house and the dairy barn and the vegetable garden.

Watching the Occupy Wall Street movement crop up, proliferate, and bloom over the past few weeks has been good for my soul.

Enough has been written about corporate control of food systems and how it serves the 1% while harming the planet, our health, and workers. I don't need to add my own long diatribe here. Suffice to say that the multinational for-profit food industry is part of the problem that OWS is rallying against. Industrial agriculture and the food policy it has spawned by way of corporate control of our political process contributes to hunger, pollution, and the destruction of small farms and farmland.

So taking control of your own food supply and working for community food justice is part of the solution. And it feels good to be aware of doing that one small part while a bigger movement grows all around us. I like thinking of planting lettuce in our winter gardens and gathering eggs in the morning and canning tomato sauce as actions in solidarity with the Occupiers all over the world.

Some of my favorite posts on related notes:
  • Occupy Your Kitchen (great post with lots of tips for wresting your food supply from corporate control by Laura Everage/Family Eats)

Along the same lines, check out this great Ted Talk on gardening as a revolutionary, subversive activity:

Roger Doiron reminds us, among other things, that "food is a form of energy...but it's also a form of power. And when we encourage people to grow some of their own food, we're encouraging them to take power into their own hands. Power over their diet, power over their health, and some power over their pocketbooks. And that's quite subversive because we are also necessarily talking about taking that power away from someone else -- from other actors in society who currently have power over food and health. You can think about who some of those actors might be." I also love his statement that "gardening is a healthy gateway drug to other forms of food freedom."

To wrap it all up, here's a great quote from the ever-amazing, Frances Moore Lappé, one of my heroes, whose recent article in The Nation I highly recommend:

‎"At its best, [the food] movement encourages us to “think like an ecosystem,” enabling us to see a place for ourselves connected to all others, for in ecological systems “there are no parts, only participants,” German physicist Hans Peter Duerr reminds us. With an “eco-mind” we can see through the productivist fixation that inexorably concentrates power, generating scarcity for some, no matter how much we produce. We’re freed from the premise of lack and the fear it feeds. Aligning food and farming with nature’s genius, we realize there’s more than enough for all."
~Frances Moore Lappé, "The Food Movement: Its Power and Possibilities"


Aimee said...

Thanks for the great links! I'm amking a link to this page over on newtofarmlife.

Anonymous said...

Fun thoughts, Milkweedy! And isn't it great once you actually get to become a producer yourself: your hard work is rewarded by stocking up others' pantries as well...a great feeling.