Hungry for Change has arrived! Get your copy today!

Sometimes it can be overwhelming to consider how we can do the most good and the least harm when it comes to what we eat. Until we got our own chickens, it took me at least five minutes to pick out which eggs to buy every time I went to the market. I’d try to figure out how to prioritize the qualities of affordable, organic, humane, local and healthy, and wonder what all the labels really meant.

You see, I think about the ethics of food quite a bit. If recycling was my entry point into taking responsibility for Earth, choosing to eat food that is better for the planet was my second step. I remember learning in my freshman year of college about the resources required to produce a serving of meat as opposed to a serving of grain (for example, it takes about 16 pounds of grain to produce one pound of meat). From that moment on, I started eating less and less meat. Eventually, I became a (mostly) vegetarian for seven years, until I started eating meat again this February because of health reasons. My “going vegan” EcoChallenge the last two weeks has reminded me of the challenges and rewards of limiting my diet in order to live better for the whole planet.

While developing our new course Hungry for Change: Food, Ethics and Sustainability this summer, I was struck anew with how impactful our food choices are. I tend to think I know a lot about the impacts of our food choices because of my history of being a vegetarian, my background in sustainability education, and my residence in the foodie haven that is Portland, Oregon. But through Hungry for Change, I’ve been reminded of the complicated larger systems our food is entangled in. And I’ve been amazed at the new information daily made available, the challenging dilemmas that abound for conscientious eaters, and the myriad innovations that exist for positively changing our food system.

Each person comes to the intersection of food and sustainability for different reasons. For me, it was the environmental implications of what was on my plate. Maybe trying to live healthier brought you there. Maybe you’re concerned about your children’s future. Maybe you want to live with more independence and self-sufficiency. Maybe you just think organic and local food tastes better. Whatever the reason for your interest in food, Hungry for Change has something for you. Participating in a Hungry for Change discussion course will help you learn more about where your food comes from and the far-reaching impacts it has. The action plans and group project will help you invest that new learning in making change for good. And the opportunity to talk with others about food can lead to shared recipes, the planting of community gardens, or life-long friendship!

Consider organizing a Hungry for Change course in preparation for the upcoming food-filled holidays, and connect around food in a different way than you ever have before.