Finding the adequate nutritional balance within our food is often of paramount importance. When looking at the history of the current food system serving Canadians, it becomes apparent that only for a short time have we been experimenting with such a modern approach to eating. Processed foods and industrial farming are seen as convenient innovations, but how has such a model affected the nutritional composition of our food?
Two speakers addressed this concern at the 2007 Growing Up Organic Conference held in Toronto on February 17th. The conference was organized by the Canadian Organic Growers. This broadcast will examine how, since the innovations coming out of World War II, the nutritional content of the Canadian food supply has plummeted.
Through the assistance of CKLN in Toronto and Heather Douglas, Deconstructing Dinner was on hand to record the conference. This broadcast features the final session of the conference where panelists were posed the question, "Is Organic Worth the Price?".
Thomas Pawlick, Author, The End of Food: How the Food Industry is Destroying Our Food Supply - And What We Can Do About It (Kingston, Ontario) - Pawlick's lecture was titled "Our Children's Food, Our Children's Survival". A veteran newspaper and magazine journalist with more than 30 years experience in Canada and abroad, Thomas has taught at both Canadian and foreign universities and colleges. The End of Food exposes the cause of the food crisis--an industrial system of food production geared not toward producing nourishing food, but maximum profit for corporations. Thomas is currently on leave from his position as Associate Professor in the School of Journalism at the University of Regina. Following the book achieving best-seller status, the University cut his salary, cut his research funding, removed him from email lists, and removed all copies of his book from the shelves of the campus book store. Thomas Pawlick is currently restoring a small scale organic farm north of Kingston, Ontario with his son.
Ellen Desjardins, Public Health Nutritionist - Region of Waterloo Public Health (Kitchener, ON) - Ellen's presentation is titled "Eat up! It's good for you! - what the scientific literature says about the health benefits of organics". Ellen has worked in various programs throughout the province and at the federal level for the past 20 years. Ellen has co-authored numerous articles in the area of food security. She has also chaired work-groups and prepared position papers for the Ontario Public Health Association on food systems, public health concerns about food biotechnology, and mercury in fish. In 2005, Ellen was a founding member of the new national organization Food Secure Canada.
"Food for Fighters" - Produced in 1943 by the United States Office of War Information, this short provides a glimpse into the origins of our current food system. The film was designed to promote the innovations that provided soldiers overseas with nutritionally adequate food. The audio version featured on this broadcast is available in its visual format from the Prelinger Archive at www.archive.org.