Gourmet activists: Food for thought

Newspaper readers who linger over the food and dining sections should be familiar with a movement urging President Barack Obama to jump-start a "food revolution." The enlightened eaters driving it have become ... Read more
CommonSense

Arlington, VA

#1 Feb 6, 2009
I can't tell you how much those organic food snobs drive me nuts. Most people can't afford to eat the way they do. 10 years ago it was lobster thermidor. Today it's ANYTHING at Whole Foods.(aka Whole Paycheck) Those of us subsisting on PB&J and tuna salad sandwiches would prefer just to be left alone.
YES

Arlington, VA

#2 Feb 6, 2009
If a bunch of college-educated trust fund babies can afford to spend their days hoeing and weeding, have at it. But we're not going to feed the world from Whole Foods any more than we're going to clothe it from Neiman Marcus.
M In MT

Belt, MT

#3 Feb 6, 2009
Wow, you folks are clearly way out of touch. Did any of you actually READ Omnivore's Dilemma? It's not just about what we eat or what we can afford to eat. It's not about shopping at Whole Foods or having the time to grow a garden. It's about the whole planet and how our present agricultural system treats it and us. Wake up folks! The fertilizer that is used to grow our food is based on WWII explosives!!! Same shit that blew up the building in OK City! Check it out. In no way is our present system healthy or safe. Get your heads out of the sand!
Mom To Three

Englewood, CO

#4 Feb 6, 2009
Um guys, I hate to burst your bubble, but I'll try anyway. I was a proponant of organic food 22 years ago when my oldest was born. He was raised on organic food for the first 8 years of his life. And then I had 2 more boys and the cost of an all-organic diet became to prohibitive. Bottom line...as with all "facts" there are 2 sides to ever story and getting militant about either side never serves a purpose. By the way, my oldest son has more health problems and colds than the younger two combined so I'm not sure the whole "feed organic" philosophy works.
Food Lover

Arlington, VA

#5 Feb 6, 2009
Michael Pollan can eat his organic greens with Prince Charles and the rest of the world's "privileged elite." Policymakers need to get in touch with the needs of real moms trying to feed their children safe and healthy foods on a limited budget. Global leaders need to understand that children living in poverty need nutritionally-enhanced food and more of it. There’s no place for food snobs in today’s politics.
snailwrangler

Anaheim, CA

#6 Feb 6, 2009
It's sad that those of us who are concerned about the quality of our food supply and the sustainability of our current production method are pigeonholed as "food snobs, " or "trust-fund babies." Such gross generalizations are completely unhelpful if the goal is to find a solution to the food-related crises facing our country and many others around the world.
I'm neither a snob nor the beneficiary of a trust fund, but I do believe we vote with our wallets. I want the hard-earned dollars I spend on food to support food that is good, clean, and fair, criteria promoted by organizations such as Slow Food. Those criteria don't require expensive or precious ingredients, just an awareness of how food is produced and a willingness to spend a little of one's time.
George X

Anaheim, CA

#7 Feb 6, 2009
It's interesting that three of the comments echoing the sentiments of the author are posted from Washington, DC. The author happens to represent the misnamed "Center for Consumer Freedom" based in - you guessed it - Washington, DC. WHAT A COINCIDENCE!

That organization is funded by restaurants and junk food companies. Visit http://www.ConsumerDeception.com
M In MT

Belt, MT

#8 Feb 6, 2009
" ...but neither is it "broken." Despite alarmist claims to the contrary, America's food supply has never been safer or more efficient. "

This quote from the article about sums it up. I wonder how Mr Martosko can say this with a straight face when there are now over 1000 different "food" items on the list of peanut-butter recalls. Not broken...by who's standards? Efficient?!? Can anyone actually argue that it is a good, efficient idea to simultaneously export strawberries to Mexico while at the same time buying them from Mexico? No one thinks that EVERYONE should be eating exactly the same organically grown, natural foods tomorrow, that's just not going to happen. But when you start throwing around words like healthy, and wholesome (words by the way, that every mom on the planet wants to be able to use to describe her child's meals) you should at least do some research for yourself and find out if the food you eat on a daily basis is such.
Michelle

Chicago, IL

#9 Feb 16, 2009
The peice was equal parts insulting and pandering - was this ghost written by Sarah Palin?

To be perfectly frank, I grew up very poor. This, I suppose, lends credence to my vote for better food policy that enables people to re-learn the art of cooking and growing their own food to some small degree.

Knowledge of and respect for agriculture and family cooking arts has been diluted and squeezed from the consciousness of the masses by the makers of such gems as Hamburger Helper and McDonalds.

People ought to know how to cook from raw ingredients and from where their food came. If the later needs an extensive flow chart explained by two economists and a bio-chemist something is wrong here! That isn't snobbery, THAT is common sense.
Obama Foodorama

Temple City, CA

#10 Feb 18, 2009
Alice Waters became the weak center of the ongoing debate on food/ag policy thanks to a bizarre love affair that both Gourmet magazine and The New York Times food section have been having with her. Neither publication seems capable of reporting any kind of food policy story without quoting Alice Waters, and unfortunately, they've done both Ms. Waters and policy discussions a huge disservice. She's looked like a fool in print (see http://tinyurl.com/cb2w83 ), and aroused the wrath of "the masses"--as well as the wrath of her fellow chefs, activists and food writers. Much of the corrections of her misstatements about food policy, the White House kitchen as a "bully pulpit," and the real state of organics/sustainable foods were carried out on my blog, Obama Foodorama. Former White House Chef Walter Scheib spent many hours correcting Ms. Waters misstatements in interviews, as did other, real policy makers.( http://tinyurl.com/87aecl ) The New York Times largely ignored Mr. Scheibs statements; this is absurd, since he's the most informed individual available to speak about the topic.

I agree that the president's private food choices should not set policy or be over scrutinized to determine What America Should Eat; I even found it offensive that President Obama suggested in an interview that the peanut butter debacle needed to be sorted out because Sasha Obama eats peanut butter (no; it needs to be fixed because people are dying, and the US food safety system is a wreck). That being said, the claim in this editorial that America's food supply is safe is patently absurd; peanut butter is just the latest food safety crisis we've endured...and it mirrors recent deadly outbreaks in greens and beef. Changes need to be made, they DO need to be science based rather than driven by market forces, and they definitely should not be influenced by a high-profile, well meaning individual--or two publications that fill column inches with her inane pronouncements.

As a side note: NY Times hasn't stopped their odd fact-less reporting with Waters. When Sam Kass was hired to be an assistant chef at the White House, The Times immediately ran an article that led its readers to believe there were great changes in store for national school lunch policy, because Mr. Kass was a public critic of the program--in his private life. The fellow had been employed for two days, and The Times would have us believe he was changing policy already. http://tinyurl.com/dzx39p

Eddie Gehman Kohan Obamafoodorama.com

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