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Join the Fight to Provide Healthy Food for Struggling Families

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

By Nora Pouillon

For those of us lucky enough to sit down every day to healthy, nutritious meals, it’s easy to forget that millions of American families in the grip of the recession are struggling to put food on the table and often end up consuming cheap, heavily processed food that puts their health at risk.

As I write this, Congress and those of us who elect them have an opportunity to help. Every five years Washington has to pass a piece of legislation, known as the farm bill, that provides vital, albeit meager, assistance to more than 45 million people – half of them children – in the form of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (formerly called Food Stamps).

The Senate is about to consider a version of the bill that would cut funding for this vital program by more than $4 billion while giving huge crop insurance subsidies to highly profitable agribusiness operations.

I, along with a number of my friends and colleagues, have sent a letter to all members of Congress urging them to restore these cuts and even increase federal investment in healthy food initiatives.

If you want to join me, Michael Pollan, Marion Nestle, Alice Waters, Tom Colicchio, Mario Batali, Ken Cook, and many other food, nutrition and health advocates, in adding your name to this effort, you can do so here.

By signing, you’ll be sending a message to your Senators calling on them to support Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-NY) amendment to restore cuts to nutrition programs and redirect $500 million to healthy food programs.

Nora Pouillon is a pioneer and champion of organic, environmentally conscious cuisine. In 1979, she opened Restaurant Nora in Washington, DC, which became the nation's first certified organic restaurant in 1999.

Nora was instrumental in creating the organic certification standards for restaurants, guaranteeing that at least 95% of all food served originates from certified organic sources. She currently serves on the board of directors of seven health and environmental organization that include the Amazon Conservation Team, DC Environmental Film Festival, Earth Day Network, FRESHFARM Markets, The Organic Center, SeaWeb, and Wholesome Wave.


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