What will Food Day amount to?

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So, October 24–that’s Monday–is Food Day. It’s a new national holiday (but not one that gets you a day off work), and it’s meant to start a widespread conversation about our food system in the manner of Earth Day.

Locally, this means an event at the Haven on Sunday evening, at 6pm, with a community potluck and a talk by author Tanya Denckla Cobb based on her new book. I’ve got no doubt that the eats will be delish (we have a bounty of good cooks in this town), and Cobb, who teaches at UVA, is definitely a star. She’s energetic, smart and an absolute pro at making the case for a better food system.

There’s no harm in folks gathering to enjoy a meal and learn more about local food projects around the country, which are the focus of Cobb’s book. But will anyone there have an aha moment? For my money, the most effective food-related programs are the ones that get young kids familiar with broccoli, convince their parents to quit buying them Cheetohs, and hammer on the government about the subsidies that make the latter so much cheaper than the former.

There are other Food Day events around the state, including some that target those goals. And it looks like the organizers of Food Day nationally definitely have a wide view of the food issue overall (see their six "Eat Real" principles). That’s good. I hope that local organizations like the PB&J Fund can find creative ways to make Food Day a teaching tool for the kids they serve.

What are your Food Day plans?

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