Giving Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving!

Food. It’s what I spend most of my time thinking about. For my day job, I work with corporations, hospitals, colleges and universities to encourage them to create policies to improve the welfare of animals in their supply chains, like switching to cage-free eggs and pork from breeding pigs that aren’t confined in gestation crates. I also encourage them all to participate in Meatless Monday as a way to reduce the number of animals raised and killed in the world, and to improve human health and reduce our environmental impact.

When I’m not working, I may be found giving out samples of vegan food. Or cooking and writing about cooking. Food is everywhere. Thanksgiving, more than any other day, is a day that’s centered around eating. And lots of it.

UFW photo, worker picking grapes

Something that many of us don’t think about, perhaps ever, are the people who bring us our food. I don’t plan to go into a lengthy explanation, but something that really blows my mind is that every single thing I eat was cultivated and picked by someone, from the soybeans in the soy milk I’m drinking in my coffee as I write this to the coffee itself all the way to the roasted vegetables I’ll be eating with my dinner later. Farm workers picked the grapes that were used to produce the wine I’ll be sharing with friends. Many of these items were painstakingly harvested by hand.

We are very fortunate to live in a time of abundance, a time when we can go to the store and choose from a wonderful array of foods that are just waiting for someone to buy them. Today I am thankful for the farmworkers, farmers, and everyone along the production lines who make my meals possible.