Call For Foodie to Head USDA Gets Big Platform In NYTimes

Okay, I’m back, again.  An incredibly delicious Thanksgiving left me incapacitated and on the couch for two weeks, and as a result, unable to perform my regular blogging duties. Okay, the second part is a lie – keeping up with my blog is just plain hard.

So onto the point of this post. Many voices in the food world have been weighing-in (Philpott, Pollan et al) and watching closely to see who President-elect Obama will select to head up the Department of Agriculture. The main question at hand – will Obama pick a reformer that will usher in a new local/sustainable/healthy food order at USDA or will he go with a more moderate and “safe” choice that will continue to tow the line for Big Ag?

Well, the debate over this question got a lot louder this week with columnist Nicholas Kristof’s op-ed calling for a “secretary of food” in the New York Times. Who knew that Kristof was such a foodie? I sure didn’t, but he’s done some excellent work on Darfur and women’s rights, so it’s great to see him rally behind another important and often overlooked issue. Needless to say, Kristof’s column gives this debate a much bigger soapbox.

If you’d like to weigh-in on the issue, check out this grassroots petition being organized Food Democracy Now!, which was also highlighted in Kristof’s column.


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