(estimated reading time: 5 min)
This first post explains the inspiration and thus mission of project.
Healthy, nutritious food that is good for your body, the environment, and the animal should be something that everyone can access. It should be something we can all talk about.
However, we have overwhelmed ourselves with labels: organic, fair trade, natural, hormone-free, grass-fed, gluten-free, sustainable, environmentally friendly, ecological, fresh, local, raw, eco, etc.
Even worse, we have gone even further, putting these labels on ourselves: vegetarian, vegan, omnivore, carnivore, pescatarian, freegetarian, and others that we can’t even keep up with.
What is most bothersome is that while we’ve been label-izing everything, we’ve lost sight of the one goal we’ve had since the beginning: changing our food system.
Moving from label to label ignores the fundamental and dramatic shifts that need to happen- it perpetuates an old system by simply replacing one product with hopefully a better one.
And yes, “sustainable” is a word that gets thrown out a lot, and put on labels without a second thought. However, above all others- this is the one word we should stand by. Because it implies a system that is holistic, resilient, and cyclical. It implies systems that are intertwined environmentally, social, and economically. Three legs of a stool which when missing one, topples over.
Yet, for all the critically beneficial things sustainability could do for us, our food system is far behind from achieving the fundamental changes that need to happen. The reasons can be boiled down to one:
We have been investing in the wrong kind of food system.
And while markets have been slowly changing, organic food has gotten cheaper, farmers markets are popping up everywhere in urban areas, these emerging products remain out of reach for billions of people (yes, billions), due to lack of access either financially or physically. This is because we continue to put subsidies, investments, policies, and incentives into systems that are not environmentally, socially, or economically sustainable in the long run.
Capitalism has allowed us to overrun ourselves with confusion, making it impossible to really understand what a sustainable diet and food system could really look like.
This is what this project aims to do- bring us all to the table. By offering a tool to make the most of your purchasing power and knowledge, you can help invest and steer the ship towards a sustainable food system. This, through the farmers, companies and politicians that are actively building it for us, and not just labeling that they are.
It’s time to put an end to all the confusing labels, and really bring to light the changes that you can easily make to contribute to the kind of food system that will work better for all of us.
Keep a look out for the next blog post that will outline this project!