2012 Brooklyn Food Conference
On Saturday, May 12th the 2012 Brooklyn Food Conference was held at Brooklyn Tech High School. Thank you to all our 500 volunteers, to our sponsors, to our workshop and plenary speakers, to our expo exhibitors, and to all the people who came to participate. Six thousand people came to the conference to share their knowledge of the food system and to learn from each other. Organized by the Brooklyn Food Coalition the goal of the Conference was to change the food system to serve the needs of the people and the planet. We had 160 workshops, a youth summit, a giant expo, kids activities, child care, plenary speakers, and delicious food.
Ultimately, we want to wrest the food system from the hands of corporate greed and return it to the people. Elders, youth, kids, parents, young people, farmers, business owners, food workers, non-profit advocates, public health leaders, environmentalists and economic development specialists all got together to demand these changes. We want a food system that provides healthy food for all, a system that is environmentally and socially sustainable, and that provides good, dignified jobs in the food system. We got together to demand changes in the laws that govern our food system—to stop subsidizing agribusiness and start supporting small farmers, processors, and local businesses.To stop serving our kids substandard food in school and start feeding them the nutritious food they deserve to start a healthy and successful life. We want food coops, farmers markets, community gardens, community supported agriculture and good food stores in our neighborhoods. And we want to make sure our food workers have jobs with decent wages and working conditions.
The point of the Brooklyn Food Conference was to get all those who long for a just food system together to network, share, and build the power to change that system. On May 12, the Brooklyn Food Coalition and our many allies began that journey. Many more steps will have to be taken together. But the joy of the work, the sense of community and purpose greased the wheels of change that day. More joy, more good food, more good work together lay ahead. Brooklyn is up for the challenge!