U-M Presents the Community of Food, Society and Justice Conference October 17-18

Originally published: 
September, 2019

The ways that we meet the nutritional needs of our communities, while also protecting the planet, promoting healthy lives, and ensuring food justice are among the greatest challenges facing our Nation and the world today.

The Community of Food, Society & Justice Conference, October 17-18, will engage students, faculty, staff, farmers, and the community in rigorous dialogue around these challenges, based in interdisciplinary scholarship that recognizes structural relations of power are necessary in order to confront race, class, and gender privileges on issues such as food justice. The conference is free and open to the public thanks to its co-sponsors: the U-M Residential College, East Quad Garden, Michigan Dining, U-M Sustainable Food Systems Initiative, U-M Sustainable Food Program, U-M Campus Farm, Knight Wallace House, U-M Program in the Environment, Michigan Law Environmental Law and Policy Program, the School for Environment and Sustainability, U-M Museum of Anthropological Archaeology, U-M Department of Anthropology, and the Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series.

The Community of Food, Society & Justice Conference will consist of two plenary talks by leading thinkers and activists in the national food systems community, and four panels. Lauren Bon, a Los Angeles based artist whose work explores land art projects that galvanize social and political transformation, will deliver the Penny Stamps Distinguished Speaker Series talk on Thursday evening at the Michigan Theater, 603 East Liberty St., Ann Arbor, to kick off the conference. On Friday, Tracie McMillan, investigative reporter and author of The American Way of Eating: Undercover at Walmart, Applebees, Farm Fields, and the Dinner Table, will deliver the conference keynote address. Panelists include food producers, academics, public health practitioners, and activists who will discuss several topics, including: reclaiming heritage seeds, what academic institutions can learn from farmers, what strategies to promote healthy food are working and why, and supporting local food producers. Panelists include Laura Vollmer from the University of California Nutrition Policy Institute, Melvin Parson from the Michigan-based We the People's Growers Association, Akello Karamoko from the Plum Street Market for Keep Growing Detroit, Rowen White from the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance, and others.

You can see the full schedule here. The location for the events on Friday, October 18th is East Quadrangle's Keene Theater at 701 East University Ave., Ann Arbor.

Attendance is free and open to members of the public.

Researchers can submit a poster for the conference at this link.