UMass Amherst Eco-Rep Apr 25, 2013 14:01:57 GMT -6
Post by Gil Hogan on Apr 25, 2013 14:01:57 GMT -6
Umass Eco-Rep program is dedicated to educating college students about current events going on with the world environment. Topics covered this semester included the following: Climate Change, Waste, Recycling & Composting, and Food Systems.
For our final issue, Food Systems, our class focused a great deal on the way our country, the US, runs its agribusiness and the ways in which it can be improved. Recent studies have shown that in order to eat a simple fast-food hamburger and french fries in Massachusetts, ingredients must be shipped from Florida, Oregon, Colorado, California, Idaho and several other states. Needless to say, our efficiency could be majorly improved, and our level of wastefulness needs to be heavily reduced.
American author Michael Pollan suggests that every family start a garden of their own. Though a wonderful and inspiring idea, the methods of urban farming are far more applicable and realistic. There are thousands of relatively small but accessible pieces of farmable land in heavily populated cities such as Boston, New York and D.C. that are just waiting to be used for crop production. As community farms grow in more rural areas, hopefully urban locations will acquire the practice as well.
In a few short years, having a beautiful green lawn will not be as highly valued as it is now. Instead, people will realize that the world is hungry, starving, in fact, and they will rip up the green sod that they have put so much time and energy into, and replace it with vegetables.
Activists like Michael Pollan and Dan Barber have already begun calling us to change our ways, primarily through our food selection. After all, as the saying goes, we are what we eat, and whether we are eating chemical filled fish, corn, chickens, cow or tomatoes, we are still not as healthy as we were meant to be.
Look up their videos and see if you are not inspired to change the way you view food and strive for better, cleaner food after watching.