More good news to report from the Worldchanging team! Former Managing Editor Sarah Rich's new venture, the "Foodprint Project," is now online. The Foodprint Project is, at its most basic, "an exploration of the ways food and cities give shape to one another" and was founded by Nicola Twilley and Sarah Rich.
The main way that Twilley and Rich use the Foodprint Project to facilitate explorations of the interrelationships between food and urban form are through Foodprint 'events' like the recently completed Foodprint Toronto, and earlier Foodprint NYC. These events are intended as opportunities "to bring together people with diverse backgrounds and expertise to start a conversation about how we might actively use food as a design tool to make our cities more resilient, sustainable, and healthy."
If you'd like to support the planning and execution of future Foodprint events, or even bring one to your city, please see the team's Kickstarter fundraising page, between now and August 26, 2010 Asking donations start at just US$10 and all proceeds help take Foodprint on the road; Twilley and Rich take no profit.
For more information on the recent Foodprint Toronto event, see "Sustenance and the City" in the Toronto Star. The entire event was also made available as a live stream at USTREAM. Twitter followers can check out commentary submitted with the hash tag #foodprintTO.
An aerial view of the Ontario Food Terminal, “the largest wholesale fruit and produce distribution center in Canada and ranks in the top five by volume wholesale fruit and produce distribution centers in North America.” Photographer unknown. Source. (via Pruned)
In my mind, part of the big challenge around food in the 21st century is in making it a higher priority both within systems and for individuals. In schools, in hospitals, at home, in commercial zones—everywhere we go, the act of feeding ourselves is often an afterthought and the desire to spend money on food is very low. The ramifications touch education, health, tax burdens, environmental quality, the list goes on. As we think about what our cities will look like in the future, I think it's important for food to be an integral part of the conversation so that we design infrastructure and services that improve rather than degrade food systems and human health. Can bodegas manage to stock an inventory that remains relatively cheap without guaranteeing astronomical healthcare costs down the line? Can public spaces facilitate civic engagement around growing food? I think in a way this is the essential goal of Foodprint.-Sarah Rich (via interview in Pruned)