Cosmetically-Challenged Crops

I sometimes stop and wonder, what will be the next big thing in the food movement?  We’ve seen fads and trends swoop in, and certain things linger while other things fade away.  There’s been intense nutritionism, focusing our desires on key chemical and nutritional components of our food (have you eaten enough vitamin B6 today? get enough iron on that vegan diet?), the no-carb, the low-carb, the low-fat, the high-protein, and every other weight loss restriction you can imagine.  We’ve gone through the Canada Food Guide recommendations in school, the glycemic index standards for blood sugar consistency, the superfoods crazes (chia, hemp, and wild blueberries, oh my!), the natural and whole foods phenomena, and today, ethical standards (fair trade, local, and organic) tend to dominate the attention of foodies in the know.  But, as I look around me, and read the food news, and talk to others who eat, I can’t help but think perhaps the next wave is going to be healthy and whole, but quite frankly, unconventionally beautiful. Continue reading

Online PeaceMeal Course

Beginning on August 20th 2012, the PeaceMeal Project’s co-creators Stephanie Knox Cubbon and Hannah Renglich will be convening an e-learning course through the National Peace Academy!  It is part of the NPA’s National Peacebuilding Peacelearning Certificate Program, and can count toward the certificate’s completion.

The course is perfect for anyone wishing to explore how to build peace through food and food systems, for organizations and businesses wishing to train staff and volunteers to create a culture of peace within the workplace, and for students at any level interested in refining ideas and making clearer connections between the two vast topics.

For more information, visit our online course page, or visit the NPA site to register for this course now.

PeaceMeal with a Yogic Twist

This weekend I facilitated a PeaceMeal workshop at the yoga studio where I teach, Yoga Oceanside. It was PeaceMeal with a yogic twist!

First we did a meditation just to get centered and become present, and in which I asked the participants to notice how hungry they were, rate it on a scale of 1-10, and to notice where they look for hunger, what kind of sensations they feel, etc. This is an activity we can do anytime with think we’re hungry – because as it turns out, just because we think we’re hungry, doesn’t mean we actually are!

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Produce Labels Decoded: GMO, Organic, or ‘Conventional’?

The following article is reposted from Read It With a Grain of Salt, a blog about label-reading for healthy food decision-making.

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Written by: Allison Jorgens – “Read it with a Grain of Salt”  © 2012, Ontario, Canada

We have all seen cashiers at supermarkets type in the codes from those pesky stickers found on fresh fruits and vegetables, herbs, and sometimes nuts; Perhaps you have even typed the codes in yourself when using the manual checkouts some grocery stores now offer. But have you ever stopped to consider if you should be reading those codes while shopping?

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Letter Home from an Agrarian Journeyman in Australia

Dear Friends,

After spending a few months in Brisbane, Australia, getting to know some people in the food movement here, I’d like to share my experience and analysis with interested people in Canada. I have been WWOOFing to a number of farms and come across different parts of the distribution system of the city. Mostly I am interested in organic food, and co-operative, local food distribution systems that circumvent the national retailers.

The retailing of food in Australia is dominated by two major chains which control 80% of the market. Continue reading

Food Security and Climate Change Course

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Agency offers some really interesting looking free courses on food security, including one new one on Climate Change:

Climate Change and Food Security – New E-learning Course from FAO

This free course helps us understand how climate change is affecting agriculture and our food security – and what can be done.

PeaceMeal Launches at the National Peace Academy Conference

Last weekend we traveled to Boulder Colorado for the National Peace Academy Peacelearning Conference on Ecological Peace. Aside from wanting to simply connect with other peacemakers to share ideas and get inspired, we also went to launch a new project. After many months of pondering, plotting and “peacing” things together, on February 19, the PeaceMeal Project was officially born. Continue reading