“If another country were doing this to our kids, we would be at war, this is just insane, and it doesn’t have to be this way.” –Jeff Bridges
We just wrapped up Farm-To-Fork Week 2015 and had an excellent time. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you to everyone that made this week possible!
Living Locally has always been our passion. It is something we believe everyone should be able to experience.
It’s not just about great restaurants and fun events. We believe Farm-To-Fork encompasses what it means to plant roots and care about the community you live in and the people that fill it.
Sadly, not everyone gets to experience this.
Over 35 million Americans have no idea where their next meal is going to come from and there are still 23 million Americans that live in food deserts.
Food deserts are geographic areas where access to affordable, healthy food options like fresh fruits and vegetables are limited or nonexistent because grocery stores are often, too far away.
You’d be surprised to find out how close food deserts are to your own backyard.
These are powerful facts, and it can be overwhelming trying to figure out ways to help.
First Lady Michelle Obama’s incredible campaign to fight childhood obesity, “Let’s Move,” has a goal of eradicating food deserts by 2017.
People living in the poorest SES (social-economic status) areas have 2.5 times the exposure to fast-food restaurants as those living in the wealthiest areas.
We love our community we have built with SJ Hot Chefs, and we love providing affordable healthy options for people to eat, but we would like to see our community go further.
Food insecurity has a high correlation with increased diabetes rates. In Chicago for instance, the death rate from diabetes in a food desert is twice that of areas with access to grocery stores.
One of the problems that we directly relate to is the increase in cost for fruits and vegetables over the last thirty years. It’s nearly doubled in cost making healthy local food virtually impossible to afford for underprivileged Americans. Because of subsidies, the opposite has happened with processed food. The cost is going down. It’s virtually impossible to live just off of food stamps, making it more difficult for underprivileged families to provide the quality of food that we do at our restaurants daily.
“Roughly 1 in 3 adult Americans is now obese. And ground zero for the nation’s obesity battle is Mississippi — where 44 percent of kids are either overweight or obese. And 7 in 10 adults in the state are either overweight or obese.” -NPR
Actor and Activist Jeff Bridges formed the End Hunger Network decades ago.
In 2012, he narrated the fascinating documentary, “A Place At The Table” chronicling the plight of hungry people in America.
The United States ranks the worst, among IMF’s countries with food insecurity.
1/2 of kids in America at some point in their childhood will be on food assistance.
When we talk about changing the world, it starts right at home. Focusing on our children, and changing our country so that future generations can see a bright future, where we are all given the same basic human rights and dignity.
To this day in our public schools, our government spends roughly a dollar a day on food for our children.
“35 million people in the U.S. are hungry or don’t know where their next meal is coming from, and 13 million of them are children. If another country were doing this to our children, we’d be at war.” Jeff Bridges
The cost of hunger and obesity in the US is 167 billion a year. It’s just not worth it.
We have a problem in America, and it’s not a lack of charities. It’s a lack of smart, creative and diligent people who are left in the dark.
This isn’t a political issue for us, it’s personal.
Everyone deserves a chance at a great life, and a chance to share great meals with loved ones.
As we wrap up Farm to Fork 2015, we wanted to highlight this issue for all of our supporters.
It’s hard to figure out how to volunteer your time and energy, so we are giving you a couple of great organizations as a launching pad.
Whatever you can do, will go a long way in eliminating hunger in our own backyard.
It doesn’t take much for us to work together to accomplish great things; that’s what America was built on; equality for all.