I somehow missed this excellent NY Times article, in the form of a memo from Michael Pollan to the next U.S. President. He makes the excellent point that a major ingredient in the food we eat is oil, as in petroleum, whether in the form of transportation, chemical fertilizers and/or pesticides. The cost of food has skyrocketed along with the cost of energy, and the pollution from waste that was once recycled as fertilizer...well, you get the picture. We feed 40% of all our grain to animals to fatten them up in inhumane feedlots, and another 11% to cars and trucks as biofuel.
He makes very good suggestions, from polyculture farming to converting a piece of the White House lawn to a victory garden to having one meatless day a week at the White House. I'd also like to suggest vegetable/vegetarian cooking classes in schools -- it's time we stopped treating meat-based meals as the only acceptable standard. Our eating habits are killing us and our environment.
Michael Pollan is the author of The Omnivore's Dilemma, In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto, and The Botany of Desire: A Plant's-Eye View of the World. Thanks to Food is Love for pointing me to this article.
"Immersion in the life of the world, a willingness to be inhabited by and to speak for others, including those beyond the realm of the human, these are the practices not just of the bodhisattva but of the writer." --Jane Hirshfield