If you haven’t noticed lately, there’s been a good food revolution taking place across the country for quite some time now. As consumers become more and more educated about the foods they eat, they’re letting companies know what they want by the food purchases they make, and companies have been quick to respond. At a time when high-tech medicine such as drugs and surgery are becoming more costly, many people are looking to low-tech options such as whole and natural foods to heal our bodies.
The demand for local, organic foods and natural groceries has not only increased at the local grocery store level, but within the communities themselves through farmers markets, CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture), school gardens, cooking classes and new businesses that offer local and sustainably raised foods that can be delivered right to your door.
“We can drive the change by what we eat.”
In the Library, we’ve noticed a healthy circulation of materials in this area as well. A number of popular books and movies about food and the food industry have really taken off such as: The Omnivore’s Dilemma: a natural history of four meals by Michael Pollan and Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the food giants hooked us by Michael Moss, along with documentaries such as Food, Inc. and Fed Up to name just a few.
So when the Library was contacted by a Chicago-based film company to host a screening for a food documentary, I took the time to take a closer look and liked what I saw. I hope you’ll agree and join us for the Library screening of the documentary Food Patriots on Wednesday, May 11 at 6:30 p.m., followed by a Q&A session with the films creators, Jennifer and Jeff Spitz.
Food Patriots is an eye-opening documentary by filmmaker Jeff Spitz about a very serious subject: the safety of our food. It begins very much at home with Spitz, his wife Jennifer, and their two sons. Their son Sam, a college student and star athlete, went out to lunch and ordered a healthy entrée, a chicken Caesar salad. Then he got a stomachache.
What Jeff thought would resolve itself within a couple of hours, morphed into a blur of hospital visits and tests followed by antibiotic after antibiotic, all of which failed to make his son well. The Spitz’s finally learned that Sam had been infected with a superbug that was antibiotic resistant.
“It was a huge wake-up call,” said Jennifer. Their son did eventually improve, however, Jeff and Jennifer decided they were going to be more mindful of their food choices. Jennifer started by raising chickens in the backyard of their Northbrook home, and Jeff chronicled their journey.
The result is a light and uplifting story whose message inspires audiences to make a 10% change in how they buy, eat, and talk about food. In addition to their own story, the film introduces others who have taken small steps that eventually led to big changes in the food supply for not only their families, but their communities.
“We can drive the change by what we eat,” says Jennifer. Impossible dream? Next time you shop for food, take a look at the organic produce section at your grocery store and compare to how big it was a year or even three years ago. It’s true that one person really can make a difference. Let’s remember that the next time we go to the grocery store.