Students, staff, faculty and others in the campus community: Don’t be left out of an important conversation UC Davis is having this fall and winter on the topic of food insecurity/hunger/poverty. One way to jump in is by reading Raj Patel’s Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System and attending related events — all part of our 15th annual Campus Community Book Project. We began the book project in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, as a way to bring our diverse community together around a common theme, and to acknowledge that not all of our opinions will be the same, and yet we can still be respectful of one another.
With this list, we’re giving you an idea of the kinds of events that are on the schedule: tours and films, workshops and tastings, lectures and panel discussions, most all of them free. The project culminates with the author’s visit, Monday, March 13, for two events: a free forum in the afternoon and a talk that night (the Mondavi Center is selling tickets).
1. Tour our edible campus
Tour the various places on campus where food is grown and innovations are being made, including the Student Farm, where students explore sustainable food systems. You can also tour the Salad Bowl Garden and learn more about the Edible Campus project in celebration of World Food Day.
2. Hear how our students are tackling food insecurity
A panel of UC Davis undergraduates will discuss the variety of organizations that are tackling this subject on campus. This panel was inspired by UC Davis news story by Julia Ann Easley: “UC Davis Crops and Compassion Help Feed Those in Need.”
3. Learn about food justice
4. Discover innovations in food sustainability
Several events will examine how to build a sustainable food system for a growing world, including a lecture on conventional vs. nonconventional agriculture and an open house at the Horticulture Innovation Lab Demonstration Center, where you’re invited to “Explore Horticulture Innovations.”
5. Make the connection between food and health
Events in this area cover everything from the health of immigrant farmworkers to the impact of U.S. food and nutrition programs on children's well-being.
6. Add to your food knowledge
Students are reading Stuffed and Starved in a number of classes and in a First-Year Aggie Connection group. Kasey Daniel is facilitating the connection, in this case, the Culinary-Cultural Connection. Its description states: “Together we will read the Campus Community Book Project … enjoy culinary delights and explore social justice issues surrounding the world’s food.” The connection is sponsoring a student-and-staff panel on “Exploring the UC Davis Food System.”
His campus visit on Monday, March 13, includes a Forum@MC on the topic of “Setting the Table for 9 Billion: Sustainability and Food Security for 2050” (4-5 p.m., free, Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts), and a talk with the same title as his book Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System (8-9:30 p.m. tickets required, Mondavi Center). The evening program will include a book signing (with copies available for sale).