I’m completely committed to insisting that breastfeeding is a food issue, one of food politics and all the ways power comes into play, of food security, and of food sovereignty, in OUR right to decide how we eat and feed. This poem is by Holly McNish is so strong and Mama-Tigerly righteous, I want to take part in it’s going ever more viral.
Also of interest: Anthrolactology is a blog maintained by a Medical Anthropologist with a keen interest in breastfeeding issues for refugees. Lots of links, resources and education on her site.
Has everyone read this fascinating New Yorker magazine long-read on breastfeeding and the micro-biome?
And in doing some searches for this post, I just found EMBA, the European Milk Bank Association, “where you will find information from many of the 200+ milk banks operating in more than 20 countries throughout Europe as well as news from milk banks and about the use of donor human milk around the world.” Viva sharing!
A few past KitchenCounterCulture posts:
A GIF that shows the male gaze…
Gorgeous Images of the Sanctity of Mary Feeding Jesus
Breastmilk Banking. My first baby benefitted greatly from another woman’s breastmilk while I was getting my flow going, so I’m all for this!
Nessie Reid is a creative food activist working on issues of waste, access to land, and as the film above shows, on the political ecology of the dairy industry through a project called The Milking Parlour.
Recently she arrived in a public space in the city of Bristol with two cows. We can read about her mission, and the agricultural and environmental issues she raised, here.
If you are interested in the culture, politics, ecology and economy of food in Palestine, may I recommend FoodJusticePalestine, a quite remarkable website curating diverse articles and voices from around the web on many aspects of eating and growing there.
Had I been following this site earlier, I might have been aware, for example, of the neoliberal trade context that makes Nutella a normal part of life in occupied territories, despite an initial dismay, elucidated for me by Aisha Mansour in this article. I’ve also come to question my own assumed unequivocal support of fairtrade products from Palestine, a movement that is well intentioned (and so much about solidarity) but needs to be examined in terms of issues of food sovereignty at the broadest levels.
“International fair-trade companies have also decreased Palestinian self-sufficiency. These companies offer local farmers a slightly higher price for their products than the price in the local market, but the real price of this practice is that high-quality local (baladi) produce is removed from the local market and sold to the global market at much higher prices. This has increased inequalities in Palestinian society, creating a minority of wealthy businesspeople, and leaving an entire population with low quality, imported food.”
There’s much more on this Tumblr site – articles about foodways, Permaculture, trade deals, land rights and more. In fact it brings together so many aspects of how and why food is interesting to me. So I wanted to share it on my blog. Have a look and fall into a rabbit hole of fascination… You don’t need to join Tumblr to view, but joining means you can follow people and ‘scapbook’ your own posts.
Here’s “Man in the Maze,” a short film about Food System problems (hideous) and people-centered solutions (beautiful). The film is specific to “the geopolitical boundary with the greatest economic disparity in the world” but offers inspiration to people anywhere working hard “to rebuild the food system up from the bottom in a participatory way,” as Gary Paul Nabhan puts it in the interview — “to heal that food system, our economies, our bodies, and the land.”
Thanks to the lovely Charlotte Spring for the recommendation.
Just watched this inspiring talk via The Foodways Project, “an exploration of the intersection between food, identity, and power. [Their} mission is to undo racism through food-focused education, empowerment, and activism in a movement led by people of color.”
Visit their blog for a collection of video resources on the theme of Celebrating Indigenous Foodways for Native American Heritage Month, where I happened upon Valerie Segrest’s talk, linked above.
“Climate Emergency.” Well, yes. That’s why, whoever we are, when we know with our minds, and feel the conviction in our hearts, we need to work towards the transformations that will allow a better, or less bad, future. This is top down work, changing systems and methods, and landscapes, and bottom up work, regarding what we consume, tolerate, and accept as acceptable.
So: peat bogs, mushrooms, climate change. I’m a food blogger, and I want to talk about this. Read the rest of this entry »