Jun 30 2014
California has hundreds of farmers markets all over the state. Whether you live in a big or small city, chances are you have access to locally grown fresh food, raised with minimal pesticides. Many conscientious eaters are also what we call “foodies,” convinced that our mere act of shopping at local farmers markets and infusing our daily menus with locally grown foods will help curb climate change, will ease the rate at which we are poisoning the earth and our own bodies, and will give our children greater appreciation for nature and our environment. While that is indeed mostly true, the so-called Farm-to-Table movement, which has taken off like wild fire in many suburban parts of the country, still has not done enough to change wholesale American habits.
Now, one chef and food justice activist, named Dan Barber has proposed a slightly different approach. Instead of including locally grown fresh produce into our daily diets, he proposes creating a whole new cuisine unique to our regional area’s growing capacities. Much like cultures worldwide have adapted their traditional cuisines to those foods that grow best in their climate and soil, US communities, according to Dan Barber need to take a similar approach.
GUEST: Dan Barber is the executive chef at a restaurant in Manhattan West Village called Blue Hill, and works with a non-profit called Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture. He writes about food and agricultural policy for the New York Times and has won a number of awards including the James Beard award. He was named by Time Magazine in 2009 as one of its 100 most influential people in the world.
Barber’s new book is called The Third Plate: Field Notes on the Future of Food and today we spend the hour with him.