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Northeastern Commits to 20% by 2020!

on October 19, 2013

After word broke loose in July that Northeastern verbally commited to source 20% real food by 2020, President Auon signed the Real Food Commitment on Thursday, October 17, as one of Northeastern's Food Day events.

"We're so excited about Northeastern signing onto the commitment because it's setting a precedent for other schools in Boston as well as large urban universities across the country," Catherine Aust, a student organizer involved with the campaign at NEU notes.

10 Moments to Remember from #RealFoodRising

on October 18, 2013

Last weekend students from around the country traveled by planes, trains, busses and cars to sleep on church floors and dive into the nuts and bolts of our food system. We lived together, ate together, and learned together how we can continue to change the narrative of the food in this country. Here are some top moments from #RealFoodRising:

1. Students filling the room on the first night with enthusiasm for the weekend ahead and an eagerness to learn!

2. So many hugs!

3. Telling stories, naming challenges, and sharing the inspiration that fuels our work

4. Meals shared: home cooked food

Reflections on the Wheel

on October 3, 2013

With just eight days until Real Food Rising, we are reflecting a lot on our work, the food justice movement, and the part we play in transforming this society. One of our Southeast Field Organizers, Manasa Kanithi, recently wrote a blog post on the beauty of the Real Food Wheel, and the role it has played in her personal journey.

Do you have stories about the real food wheel? How has it helped you understand the food movement?

Here's a snipet from her blog:

The Biggest Attack On Food Justice You’ve Never Heard Of

on September 26, 2013

Post written by Natalie Yoon from United Students for Fair Trade

Although many don’t know it, the food justice movement is facing a colossal monster that not only threatens our global food system, but also undermines our ability to fight for change. It is disguised as “free trade agreement”. Before you fall asleep at the sound of “trade agreement”, read on because this will affect you, me, and social justice movements around the world.

It’s called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and it’s is a massive new free trade agreement that the U.S. is negotiating with 11 other countries around the Pacific. It’s the most ambitious trade agreement in history, encompassing 40% of the global economy. Corporate advisors have been writing the TPP, while the public has been completely left in the dark. You can probably guess what that means: great for big business, catastrophe for people and the planet. Among the many destructive impacts the TPP would have--including attacks on labor rights, access to medicine, financial regulation, and environmental protection-- one of the most concerning is its potential effect on the global food supply.

One Month Out: The Power of #CampusFoodDay

on September 24, 2013

Written by Kate Klein, Food Day Coordinator

 

When I first heard about Real Food Challenge, I didn’t really get it. We’re trying to get local and organic food in the dining hall? I can’t get behind that. There are way bigger problems out there!

Then one day, it hit me: my monthly food budget was rather measly compared to my university’s million dollar one. The defiant absence of factory-farmed chicken on my grocery receipt was not going to even graze Tyson’s outermost orbits of awareness, but a sizable reduction in my university’s Tyson orders very well may. As the largest meat producer in the world, Tyson is not only able to sentence millions of animals to a caged, antibiotic-pumped existence, but also hold a tight grip on farmers, keeping them often in an inescapable debt while barely paying them enough to get by. Alone, I couldn’t really do all that much to change this incredible injustice -- but with my peers, I began to see how I could.

"Thinking Beyond the Clown"

on September 19, 2013

Is junk food what we really crave? Anna Lappe has teamed up with Corporate Accountability International and Food MythBusters to tackle this very idea with the next mythbusting video coming out on September 25th. You can be among the first to check out the exclusive premiere with Anna Lappe by signing up here!

Read more from Anna Lappe's Article

Solidaridad: Wendy's Week of Action

on August 14, 2013

Last week was a big week for farmworker justice and student power to unite! Real Food Challenge folks helped organize and participate in three different actions across the Northeast in solidarity with the Coalition of Imokalee Workers week of actions at Wendy's fast food locations nationwide.

Farmworker justice, an important piece of our campaigns around real food, has been increasing in awareness among student movements over the past few years as the Fair Food Program has gained support from many fast food corporations. To echo protestors in NYC, "Wendy's - your burgers might be square but your food ain't fair!"

Double the Team, Triple the Wins!

on August 5, 2013

17 fellows, 8 regional coordinators, and 6 national staff. The growth of the Real Food Challenge has been incredible – not only have we secured almost 20 Real Food Campus Commitments this past year, we have also grown our organizing and national team from 20 people to 31 people on board for this fall. After a great training with the whole team in Portland, Maine, we are gearing up for our best year yet -- ready to support student leadership development, organize strategic campaigns, and win shifts of a lot more food purchasing dollars towards REAL food sources.

With a String of Spring Wins, No Excuse for Inaction

on May 15, 2013

This post is by David Schwartz, Campaign Director for Real Food Challenge.

Today, we are proud to announce 6 new colleges and universities that have signed on to the Real Food Campus Commitment--together shifting nearly $4 million away from an corporate-industrial model of agriculture, and towards more just and sustainable alternatives.
 
These real food pioneers are: Massachusetts’ Clark University and UMass Amherst, Vermont’s Lyndon State College and Sterling College, Warren Wilson College in North Carolina, and Cornell College in Iowa. 

'Ready When You Are': Aramark, Minority Farmers, and Real Food in Mississippi

on May 1, 2013

This post is from Bonnie May Maye, Southeast Regional Field Organizer. This is the third in a series of blog posts from the Southeast Aramark Road Trip. Follow the road trip on Tumblr, and click here to get involved. 

We’re ready to sell whenever students are ready,” said Mississippi farmer Ben Burkett. 
 
Towards the end of our Southeast Aramark Road Trip, we stopped by Petal, Mississippi to visit Ben Burkett and Joe Barnes, two farmers with the Indian Springs Farmers Cooperative – a cooperative of African-American farmers who started pooling their resources together in 1981 so they could get better prices for their produce.
 

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