“A Conversation about the Politics of Food”

Will Allen, co-founder and research director at Cedar Circle Farm, was part of a panel discussion in Gloucester, MA on July 1st. The topic of conversation was “A Conversation about the Politics of Food.” The event was co-sponsored by the Cape Ann Farmers Market and the Gloucester Writers Center. Also on the panel were Diaz Dorry of the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance and Carolyn Mugar from Farm Aid. The workshop was held in conjunction with an inspiring art exhibit at the Rocky Neck Cultural Center entitled “Resist”.

The common theme that resonated through the panel discussion, as well as the art exhibit, was a call for creative action in the face of what seems to many to be an overwhelmingly depressing political reality in our country and the world. Each person on the panel gave many examples of how farmers and food activists have struggled over the past 30 years to create a food system that focuses on environmentally sound practices and local control of the food supply, both land, and sea-based. Will explained how organic, regenerative farming practices can be key in reversing climate change since soil, properly nurtured, can be a huge sink for all the extra carbon in the atmosphere that is causing such havoc.

Everyone needs a reason to hope that things can get better in this world. Regenerative agriculture can be that hope - but farmers need to develop the technical skills to increase the soil’s capacity to sequester carbon and consumers will have to support them with their food dollars. It should be an easy choice when the product is super delicious and healthy food, grown by neighbors or nearby small-scale farmers, farming as if the future depended on it.

You can hear the whole discussion on this YouTube video


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