From the Founding Farmers to the modern Farm Bill, what has 200 years of progress brought to the table? More food at lower prices for sure, but also food fights over the environment, hunger, nutrition, and waste. In this closing episode of Food Forward, politicians, policy watchdogs and food experts take us on a personal tour through the history of food and agriculture in America.
Explore the disconnect between the belly and the brain and America’s national eating disorder. A journey to Cornell’s Food and Brand Lab unveils the psychology of consumer habits and introduces viewers to simple tips and tricks for a healthier diet. We also take a journey up to the Hudson River Valley on a transformative journey of one Navy veteran who is reinventing himself through culinary arts.
Once upon a time, wild food was all there was. If you didn’t pick it, catch it, or kill it, you didn’t eat. That’s all changed, of course, but what have we lost in our move from the wilderness that once supported us? And what could we gain by rediscovering foraging as a source of food?
How can agriculture use less water and still grow enough food for everyone? Are we finally emerging from the water wars of the west that pitted Native American tribes and environmentalists against farmers and ranchers? Dive into solutions that some water users are discovering to protect this most precious resource in the face of drought, politics and environmental conflicts.
Americans throw away 34 million tons of food each year. That’s like tossing a quarter of the groceries we buy directly into the trash. But where some see garbage, others find green gold. Explore the secret life of food scraps, landfills and the people who love them. San Francisco is leading the charge in composting municipal food waste.
A new breed of passionate farmers, chefs and scientists are revamping the American food system. Combining people’s passions and technological ingenuity, visit tech-savvy growers flying crop-monitoring drones in California’s central valley. We step into CU Boulder’s lab to map the human microbiome with visionary food journalist, Michael Pollan.
All across the country, the ways and means of America's small farmers are evolving. Young Hispanic farm laborers in California’s Salinas Valley are moving up the economic ladder, training to become tomorrow’s organic farm owners. In Houston, Congolese refugees are creating communities around vacant urban lots.
All public school kids have access to free or reduced-price lunch. But affordability doesn’t necessarily mean it’s good for them. Detroit’s renegade lunch lady is not only serving kids healthy food, she’s got them growing it, too. Houston schools are joining a national movement with “seed to plate” classroom cooking and ia new generation of service members is connecting farmers and schools.
American dairy is undergoing a renaissance. A cottage industry of dairy farmers, cheesemakers and creameries are creating delicious alternatives to industrial milk. Meet west-coast raw milk revolutionaries, Vermont cheese entrepreneurs making serious cheddar, and ice cream innovators in San Francisco and New York City.
Seeds represent hope, a new beginning. Amid battles over GMO crops and monocultures that dominate American farmlands, meet seed savers pursuing grassroots alternatives. From the dry deserts of Arizona to corn and soybean growers in Iowa and Illinois, genetic diversity does matter and the roots of change are taking hold.
The top six inches of soil are the most precious, yet least understood ecosystem on earth—yet we continue to treat soil like dirt. Get down and dirty with large-scale Midwestern composters, California carbon farmers reversing climate change and a West Virginia poultry farmer creating ‘biochar’ from chicken poop. Explore new frontiers beneath our feet that just might save our soil.
By mid-century, 90 percent of the world’s commercial fish may be tapped out. But we’re not sunk yet. Set sail with a different breed of fishermen who make their living on the water while also treading lightly upon it. Meet old school fishermen in the Pacific Northwest reviving the tuna industry and young fishermen (and women) creating Community Supported Fisheries.
Cheap meat is actually quite costly, taking its toll on America’s health and the environment. The good news is it’s now possible to have your steak and eat it, too. Meet a new breed of ranchers who are leading the red meat revolution by returning to traditional styles of raising cattle. Iowan bison ranchers, Georgian cattlemen and Californian cowgirls all have one thing in common— grass.