Friday, December 15, 2006


OK, this time I promise is the last....I hope. It has just been reported in the media that over 600 people were sickened after eating at an Olive Garden restaurant near Indianapolis. There has been not verification of the root cause. But health officials did say that there weren't any health code violations. So we're back to square One and the investigation begins.
The CDC (Center for Disease Control) reports that although food borne illness incidents have declined since the 1990s, they are keeping a close eye on things. Yeah, right! The fact is they couldn't do an adequate job unless they had the Hubbel telescope as their magnifying glass. And it is not their fault. No it is the fault of the system. Our food system, that is.
With all the stop gap protectionary measures we have throughout our food system, the one we don't use often enough is to buy more locally. Wereally don't. At least not as much as we could be. Sure, everyone likes to get out in the summer and fall to visit their favorite farm or orchard. But once the season is over, the leaves have fallen, and the snow begins to fly, we head back to the generic shelves lining every large grocery store in America. And the food all really comes from the same place: a long way from home.
The time has come to get back to our roots. And as much as we may feel we're already there, we need to look again. Spend this winter and find a local farmer. Ask questions. Join a CSA. Read labels. Ask your server where your dinner came from. If you can't get the answers you want, then keep digging. The only way we're ever help a healthy, vibrant, safe food system evolve is to dig. Dig deep. Know Your Roots!

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