Ethical Food on World Food Day

by updated 2012/08/25

Today is World Food Day and also Blog Action Day and what better opportunity is there than this for us to think about the importance of Ethical Food.  Although Ethical Food has been a cause of mine for years, it has been a while since I have written about its importance, so here we go. A good place to get up to speed on what I originally wrote about the importance of this issue is to read my original, now republished, post titled: Ethically Raised Food.

On this Blog Action Day, thousands of people are expressing what they think about what the world eats.  If you want to browse some of these blog posts, here is a link to the Blog Action Day Twitter Feed that lists them all, and a link to the Blog Action Day Website itself.  Many of the posts relate to poverty and hunger.  Many others question the safety of our food supply.  One man in Britain was searching for posts on sustainable housing construction and discovered sustainable gardening.  There are posts on organic food, food waste, farming, getting kids to eat healthy, almost anything you can think of.  Except. Ethical Food.  Search the Blog Action Day Twitter for “Ethical” and the result is: “No Tweet results for ethical #bad2011“.  Many of the posts incorporate ideas that relate directly to ethical food production, but none seem to specifically address the topic.  Let this post be the first, then.

The reason I have championed ethical food production for so long is that ethical food encompasses so many concerns about our food supply.  If you are concerned about animal abuse on farms, chemical residue on vegetables, trans-fats in packaged food, if you are eating a vegetarian or vegan diet, or just trying to eat a healthier diet, striving to reduce soda consumption, or almost anything else related to food and health, then you have ethical food concerns.  Thirty five years ago as a very young man, I learned about the methods used to produce veal.  That day I vowed never to eat veal again.  That was an obvious ethical food concern, but when my co-worked decided to eat only organic apples, that was an ethical food decision also.

So following are a couple more links to ethical food resources to think and read about on this blog action day.  Leave a comment below telling us how you may be incorporating ethical food choices into your life with food decisions you make every day.

After reading some of the links in this post, you might realize that you have made many ethical food choices over the years without even knowing you were part of the ethical food movement.

Articles on Ethical Food  at WillTaft.com.

Google Search  Results For “Ethical Food”.

A Small Food Ethics Blog.

 

Will Sig
1 Klara

usually i only buy local grown food from the farmers. they are organic of course. but not only the health is important, its more about sustainability. localgrown foods dont need to be transported so far, so the charcoal fingerprint is much smaller.

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2 Will

Hi Klara – Yes knowing your food source by getting it as locally as possible is a great way to be aware of the ethics behind the production of that food. I like that “charcoal fingerprint” reference.

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3 Robin Henderson

In my life, I’ve found that poverty cures a million ills, or at least treats many of their symptoms. I’m talking about accepted poverty, the kind where you make your peace with it and put your ego away, as being too expensive for your budget, and then live accordingly. Maybe I should call it “engaged” poverty.

In the context of ethical food, this means eating little meat (expensive, hard to keep), never turning down free food (usually garden produce or something caught or foraged), and making a lot of stuff instead of buying it ready made. When you make your own bread, pizza, soup, etc, you tend not to make Chinese prisoners cook it for you or hunt up hydrolated monodihexicathedral phosphate Number 3 to put in it.

I believe that these sorts of measures are ultimately more effective than maintaining a middle class lifestyle on trendy organics from the food co-op. I don’t condemn that either, though. Just can’t afford it.

Robin

Rusty Ring: Reflections of an Old-Timey Hermit
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4 Will

Hi Robin – I am glad you found this site and really appreciate your valuable comments. I think you are on to something with engaged poverty. That choice may be easier for people living on their own though. And might also be scary for people contemplating impending old age and all its accompanying ailments and needs. The simple living movement had sort of the same philosophy and has thousands if not millions of people trying to adhere to that lifestyle.

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5 Anna

Ethical food? Everyone should keep this in mind when buying food. Buy local, organic and ethical food, if possible. I do this as much as I can, but unfortunately the choice is not as wide as I would like it to be. :(

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6 Binky

I think it’s a very good idea, but I do think for the masses it’s just something that they don’t even consider. We’re often ignorant of what goes on behind the scenes, and we don’t like to think of the negative impact of our purchases or buying habits . If there was some sort of required labeling or rating system, or if the producers of ethical food would make a bigger deal of it, it might gain a much wider acceptance. And to make a significant impact, I think it has to become mainstream.
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