Friday, October 21, 2011

Food Day – October 24, 2011

It’s time for America to eat real, healthy, sustainably grown food again. October 24, 2011 will be the first annual Food Day.  Food Day will be a celebration of real food: food that’s grown from the Earth with minimal, if any, processing.  It will bring together all Americans—parents, teachers, and students; health professionals, community organizers, and local officials; chefs, school lunch providers, and everyone else who cares about food—to push for healthy, affordable food produced in a sustainable, humane way. People are encouraged to attend events at their schools, churches, farmers markets, city halls, and state capitals, or host an event at their home. The initiative is being launched by the Center for Science in the Public Interest, a non-profit advocacy group started in 1971 that supports policies which make our food healthier and safer.

The Food Day website has many resources, such as a school curriculum, a newspaper, recipes, videos, petitions, and a map of Food Day events happening all over the country. These events aim to educate Americans about the food system and what we can do to change it. Actions we can take range from making healthier choices when buying food for ourselves and our families to asking Congress to support the Food Day goals.

Food Day’s stated goals are:
1)      To reduce diet-related disease by promoting safe, healthy foods.
2)      To support sustainable farms and limit subsidies to big agribusiness.
3)      To expand access to food and alleviate hunger.
4)      To protect the environment and animals by reforming factory farms.
5)      To promote health by curbing junk-food marketing to kids.
6)      To support fair conditions for food and farm workers.

New York City will be home to dozens of Food Day events. On Sunday, October 23, there will be a Faith, Food Justice, and the Farm Bill event to highlight the crucial role of the faith community in the food justice movement and the potential to reform local and national food policy. The event is being organized by the Farm Bill Working Group of NY Faith & Justice, one of Bronx Health REACH’s Legacy grantees.  There will be particular emphasis on the Farm Bill and how it affects the choices we make about the food we consume. The event will be held at The Riverside Church (490 Riverside Drive) in the Assembly Hall from 2:00 pm – 4:30 pm.

New York State Senator Gustavo Rivera is launching the Bronx CAN Family Health Challenge on Food Day. Senator Rivera has been partnering with Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and other community partners as part of the Bronx CAN (Change Attitudes Now) Health Initiative. The Bronx CAN Family Health Challenge was designed by the Mary Mitchell Family and Youth Center and Committee of Interns and Residents. One of the first challenges is to limit consumption of sugary drinks, which coincides with the launch of the NYC Department of Health’s new sugary drink campaign. The Family Health Challenge guidebooks will be distributed to students and their families throughout the neighborhoods of Kingsbridge Heights, East Tremont, Crotona Park, Fordham, and Bedford Park in the Bronx.  The guidebooks will be distributed through Montefiore Medical Center's school-based health clinics, as well as other participating schools.

Find an event to attend or learn more about Food Day at

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