Changing Our Food and Changing Ourselves

With the advent of industrialism and its widespread application to our food supply – factory farms, genetic engineering, and agricultural chemicals – the struggle between human freedom and authority has reached a critical juncture.

In spite of the rapid growth of an alternative food system – local and sustainable food production, farmers’ markets, the public’s rising food consciousness – we become more dependent everyday on industrial agriculture whose representatives insist that it is the only way to feed a hungry world. In the face of such assertions, we must ask if our dependence on such a system threatens to supplant individual self-reliance.

Will personal freedom succumb finally and forever to the dominant voice of authority? Are we at risk of sacrificing our democratic voice to self-appointed governing elites? These are no longer speculative questions suitable only for philosophers, but real-life concerns set squarely on the plate of every eater.

Mark Winne has worked for 40 years as a community food activist, writer, and trainer. From organizing breakfast programs for low-income children in Maine to developing innovative national food policies in Washington, DC, Winne has dedicated his professional life and writing to enabling people to find solutions to their own food problems as well as those that face their communities and the world.

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