Coalition To Presidential Candidates: Reform America’s Food System

plate-of-the-union-screen-capThe Plate of the Union, a collaborative campaign among Food Policy Action, Food Policy Action Education Fund, the Union of Concerned Scientists, and the HEAL Food Alliance, calling for the next president to reform food policy.

There are five goals stated on the group’s website, including giving local farms a leg up in competing with larger farms:

1. Stand with working families. Commit to ensuring that all Americans have access to healthy, affordable food.

2. Keep our kids healthy. Stop companies from marketing junk food to kids and end subsidies that support processed junk food.

3. Make farm policy work for all farmers. Reform agricultural policies, subsidies, and supports to ensure fair markets and pricing for diverse farmers of all sizes. Promote healthy diets and support sustainable, diversified, and organic farming in all communities.

4. Protect food and farm workers. End Fair Labor Standards exemptions for farm workers, raise the minimum wage for all food workers, and eliminate the sub-minimum wage for restaurant workers.

5. Keep antibiotics working. Ban the practice of feeding antibiotics to farm animals that are not sick.

To bring attention to its cause, it is taking a food truck through battleground states. It also held a contest among universities earlier in the year, each submitting outreach plans to campaign for reform. The winner and two runners up, selected by a panel of judges made up of celebrity chefs, food advocates, elected officials, writers and policy experts. These universities have won funding to execute their winning proposals: The Ohio State University won, with Iowa State University, and Dartmouth College earning runners-up status.

Plate of the Union doesn’t connect with everyone. The National Review, a conservative magazine, accused the movement of trying to force elitist liberal policy on America.

 

 

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4 comments on “Coalition To Presidential Candidates: Reform America’s Food System

  1. By their enumerated goals, I have the following thoughts:
    1. Can you tell us which Americans do NOT have access to healthy, affordable food? Please define “affordable”.
    2. Stop companies from marketing their products? First Amendment issue, I don’t like your chances of pulling that off.
    3. Pipe dream – do you know how our legislators get paid, and by whom? It ain’t the small family farmer.
    4. Minimum wage increases only benefits the unions. Bad idea.
    5. Fine, carry on.

  2. Growers in my area cannot get harvest workers at the ends of each month because most of them are on food stamps and free medical aid which would be curtailed if the workers earn more than the ceiling amount they are assigned by what ever agency is doling out the money. In other words we are paying people not to work but we need people to work. Does this sound stupid? By the way, if organic farming is sustainable, why does it need support? Perhaps Plate of the Union would like to try the old collective farm system of the former Soviet Union. How is that working now ?

  3. I agree with Doug and Alan. How about getting the govt out of the farmers business and quit giving money to “special” areas of farming such as organic. Would also be helpful to get rid of the current Food Safety Modernization Act. Maybe a farmer could actually farm. Everybody knows when you raise the minimum the unions will demand a raise for their “trained” workers.

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