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Food and Faith is a blog of the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

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February 8, 2016

Boycotting berries

While the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is not currently boycotting Sakuma Bros. farms, we serve on the board and financially support the National Farm Worker Ministry, which is boycotting Sakuma Bros. in solidarity with Familias Unidas por la Justicia and along with several Presbyterian Hunger Program grantee partners from around the country. Last month, the president of Farm Worker Ministry Northwest, Gabriela Raquel Ríos, PhD, met with Danny Weeden, the CEO of Sakuma Bros. The dialogue will continue this Friday when National Farm Worker Ministry board members, including a PC(USA) representative will meet with Mr. Weeden and John Erb, vice president at Driscoll's in Washington DC.

Gabriela gives her account of the day below and this video gives the highlights.

Following the National Farm Worker Ministry’s endorsement of the Familias Unidas por la Justicia (FUJ) called boycott of Sakuma Bros., Driscoll’s berries and Häagen-Dazs strawberry ice cream, we have been urging farm worker supporters to sign postcards to the companies.  We have thus far received postcards from 750 people of faith and conscience around the country.  A delegation from our partner Farm Worker Ministry Northwest agreed to deliver your postcards in person to Sakuma Bros. CEO Danny Weeden.  What follows is the report of that delivery attempt.  While Mr. Weeden would not accept your postcards, know that the message you – a supporter of justice for farm workers – wanted to send was heard by the company.

Sakuma CEO Danny Weeden Asks for “Dialogue” But Refuses to Accept Your Cards

by Gabriela Raquel Ríos, PhD, President, Farm Worker Ministry Northwest

Dr. Rios reports to the crowd waiting outside of Sakuma offices, including FUJ President Ramon Torres (center) and Tirso Moreno, General Coordinator of Farmworker Association of Florida (left) about her meeting with Mr. Weeden.

Dr. Rios reports to the crowd waiting outside of Sakuma offices, including FUJ President Ramon Torres (center) and Tirso Moreno, General Coordinator of Farmworker Association of Florida (left) about her meeting with Mr. Weeden. Debi Covert-Bowlds connects the NFWM national office via her phone.

On January 8, I and Farm Worker Ministry-Northwest (FWM-NW) members, Debi Covert-Bowlds, Carla Shafer, Kristen Barber and Mike Betz traveled to Mt. Vernon in hopes of meeting with Sakuma Bros. CEO, Danny Weeden in support of Familias Unidas por la Justicia (FUJ). Such a meeting, we later discovered, has not been granted to any FUJ member.

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December 7, 2015

How Not to Buy GMOs

apple with question mark painted on it93% of people in the U.S. want GMO labeling, but the industry has fought tooth and nail to avoid GMO labeling to happen locally or nationally. We will get there, but until then we must do our homework.

Fortunately, avoiding GMOs is very easy. Buy organic or buy from a farmer you know does not use GM seeds. These online resources make finding such food simple.

Local Harvest
www.localharvest.org
Local Harvest connects people looking for good food with the farmers who produce it.

Eat Wild
www.eatwild.org
More than 1,400 pasture-based farms, with more farms being added each week. It is the most comprehensive source for grass-fed meat and dairy products in the United States and Canada. Products include: Beef, Pork, Lamb, Veal, Goat, Elk, Venison, Yak, Chickens, Ducks, Rabbits, Turkeys, Eggs, Milk, Cheeses, Wild-Caught Salmon and more!

Green People
www.greenpeople.org
Find local health food stores, organic food, green products, solar power supplies, green landscaping, organic baby products, doulas, natural pet care, natural beauty products, health and wellness services, green lifestyle products.

Coop Directory Service
www.coopdirectory.org
Source of information about natural food co-ops.

Eat Well Guide
www.eatwellguide.org
Search for fresh, locally grown and sustainably produced food in the United States and Canada. The Guide's thousands of listings include family farms, restaurants, farmers' markets, grocery stores, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs, U-pick orchards and more.

Green Polka Dot Box
www.greenpolkadotbox.com
Natural and organic, non-GMO foods at wholesale prices, and delivers them directly to your doorstep. Carries 100's of your favorite brands, even fresh meat and dairy (if within 2 days of Utah via FedEx Ground).

More info available at nongmoproject.org and justlabelit.org

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November 9, 2015

Boston Food Justice Young Adult Volunteer – Ashley Earley

My name is Ashley Earley and I am serving as a Presbyterian Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) in Boston this year and our focus is food justice. I will be posting periodically onto this blog about various food related topics for the next year.  First, I would like to introduce myself. I am from Rock Hill, SC (just south of Charlotte, NC) and graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in May with a bachelors in biology and a minor in math. I am currently taking a gap year before going to graduate school for a master’s in plant biology and afterwards plan to go into research. I have never been to the New England area before, but I am so far really enjoying my time in Boston.

 

For this year, I am serving at First Presbyterian Church in Brookline and at a non-profit called Woman and Girls Thriving in Brookline with a focus in the Healthy Food and Lifestyle working group. My role will be to learn and educate about food justice.

 

Also as part of the program we will be participating in two different food challenges. From September to the end of January is the local eating challenge and February to the end of July is the SNAP (food stamp) challenge.

 

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October 9, 2015

Liturgy for the Food Week of Action!

The 2015 Liturgy for the Churches' Food Week of Action is READY!

PDF version with music

Welcome and Introduction

2015 is being commemorated as the International Year of Soils and the World Food Day 2015 focuses on Social Protection and Agriculture.

In spite of steady gains against hunger and poverty, today, more than ten percent of the population of the world; about 795 million people, are undernourished and go to bed hungry.

Let us commit ourselves in prayer, to overcome hunger and social vulnerability in our communities and across the nations!

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October 3, 2015

Corporate Ag Says They Will Feed the World. Really?

Since agriculture emerged 10,000 years ago, it has been smaller-scale producers who have fed the world. Industrial, high-tech and chemical-intensive farming has only been around for about 80 years, and still today it is small-scale farmers, ranchers, pastoralists and fishers who provide approximately 70% of all the food eaten on Earth[1].

Marketing professionals and lobbyists from Monsanto, ADM and companies promoting industrial agriculture and GMOs [we’ll call that Big Ag for shorthand] have spread a myth, which people of all stripes have swallowed. This myth claims that only large-scale industrial agriculture can feed a hungry world. The myth consists of two parts: (1) More food is the answer to feeding people; (2) Corporate, industrial agriculture is the approach that can fill this need.

First, the myth that more food will feed a hungry world.

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