The biggest celebrity in the world now, next to Brangelina, is President-elect Barack Obama. People aren't just wondering what his environmental policies will emerge to be. More specifically, some are speculating how green Obama's policies will be on food and food production. A recent article in the New York Times, "Is a New Food Policy on Obama's List?" calls Obama the first foodie president since Thomas Jefferson.
Standing in contrast is President Bush, who stands with his cronies Monsanto and Cargill, considered big-business enemies to many who advocate for organics and sustainable food production. However, Obama's pick for Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, has likewise drawn disapproval for his ties to Monsanto. However, Obama did just also appoint two of the most highly esteemed climate scientists, John Holdren and Jane Lubchenco, as scientific adviser and head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration respectively. Both scientists have advocated for urgent action against global warming.
The Times article mentions that Gourmet magazine editor (and onetime New York Times restaurant critic) Ruth Reichl has requested a
There's even a fascinating blog dedicated entirely to what the O man is eating, likes to eat, used to eat, or might possibly think of one day eating (they are seriously that obsessed): Obamafoodorama.com. The blog is bursting with posts touching on sustainable, local, and/or organic food topics. Among the blog’s sundry offerings: a link to an article where Obama comments on the steep cost of arugula at Whole Foods; a link to a ten-step "Immodest Proposal for Obama's Food Policy," including a moratorium on all new GMO products; speculation about who the First Chef might be (although Michelle O. is a fan of Paula Deen, who is not too green); and links to the Organic Food Association's protest of Vilsack, among other similar protests.
The woman behind the amazing blog is Eddie Gehman Kohan, who says of Obama, “He is the first president who might actually have eaten organic food, or at least eats out at great restaurants.”
The Obamafoodorama blog is obsessed with food, and our next president is taking office at a time when Americans are paying more attention than ever to their food, to who makes it, where it came from, and how it was raised, slaughtered, and/or harvested. Despite Obama's selection of Vilsack, it really seems like something good is cooking and heading for America's plates in the new year.
This article originally appeared in "Plenty" in January 2009.
White House chef who utilizes local food, while the leader of the US Humane Society, Wayne Pacelle, is dreaming of more humane treatment for farm animals.