Donald Trump as “foodie in chief.” Food was central to the Obama White House. In fact, President Barack Obama was even interviewed in the White House kitchen in 2015 by NBC’s Savannah Guthrie. For those interested in food (and food policy), there’s been much speculation about what direction a Trump administration might take vis-a-vis food. We may be getting an idea.
One of my favorite food/ag politics reporters is Helena Bottemiller Evich, who writes for Politico. She recently penned an interesting piece that explores what may happen in the White House kitchen (and food policies beyond) in a Trump administration. While it remains to be seen, there are hints that childhood nutrition and gardening may find an advocate in the President’s daughter, Ivanka Trump.
As the drought eases in California, what’s next for the state’s water strategy? California has been on the receiving end of lots of snow and rain in recent weeks, but is the drought over? Excellent piece by Ian James for the Desert Sun. A quote within a quote worth noting from the piece:
“Board member Steven Moore mentioned a famous and often-cited observation by John Steinbeck in the novel East of Eden: ‘And it never failed that during the dry years the people forgot about the rich years, and during the wet years they lost all memory of the dry years. It was always that way.'”
James co-authored a series for USA Today entitled Pumped Dry: The Global Crisis of Vanishing Groundwater. It’s not new, but is definitely worth a read. Excellent visuals, too. On the topic of water, University of California ANR – California Institute for Water Resources (follow on Twitter) has recently developed an impressive list of UC water experts for media, policy makers, etc. It’s worth bookmarking.
Farm to Table Talk podcast features UC expert on food security, nutrition. One of my favorite podcasts is Roger Wasson’s Farm to Table Talk. His recent interview with Lorrene Ritchie, who directs UC ANR’s Nutrition Policy Institute, is worth a listen. They talk about food insecurity. One out of every 7 households in the US is food insecure. A key question Roger focuses on: “What happens when a nation’s students are unable to get the nutrition they need?” Ritchie’s work is funded in part by UC’s Global Food Initiative (UC GFI). Learn more about UC Global Food Initiative’s efforts to act upon campus food insecurity here.
Perspective: Three Ways Progressives Can Reconnect With Rural America. Interesting thought piece from Anthony Flaccavento, a farmer, activist and sustainable development expert who is based in rural Virginia. I met Anthony many years ago, when we were Fellows in a W.K. Kellogg Foundation program and have followed his work closely over the years. A couple of key points? The importance of understanding the environment as a working landscape and source of livelihood, and of lifting up the often-overlooked “rural innovators.” The story appears in Yes Magazine.
University of Kentucky Press has recently published Anthony’s book: Building a Healthy Economy from the Bottom-Up: Harnessing Real-World Experience for Transformative Change. Foreword by Bill McKibben.
Have a great week!