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Twin Cities Gets Set for the James Beard Foundation’s Taste America Dinner Oct. 28

Twin Cities Gets Set for the James Beard Foundation’s Taste America Dinner Oct. 28


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Join all-star Jose Garces of Garces Restaurants for a night of great food and talented individuals

Get ready for a night of Latin-inspired cuisine and hospitality from Jose Garces.

The James Beard Foundation continues its fourth annual Taste America tour on Oct. The foundation is traveling to 10 cities across the country to host one-of-a-kind fundraising dinners highlighting local cuisine and headlined by a visiting all-star chef and local star chef, as well as cooking demos, artisanal tastings, and book signings.

The exclusive dinner benefiting the James Beard Foundation will take place at Radisson Blu Mall of America with a VIP reception beginning at 5:30 p.m. and a cocktail and tasting reception starting shortly thereafter. Dinner begins at 7:30 p.m. and will feature a menu crafted by Taste America all-star and James Beard Award winner Jose Garces of Garces Restaurants in Philadelphia; local star Thomas Boemer of Corner Table and Revival in Minneapolis and St. Paul; pastry chef Michelle Gayer of Salty Tart; and host chef Dinesh Jayawardena. The night will be emceed by WCCO-TV Anchor Jason DeRusha.

The reception will feature tastings from Jorge Guzman of Surly Brewing Co.; Ann Kim of Pizzeria Lola; Sarah Master of Mr. Roberts Resort in Pengilly; Marshall Paulsen of Birchwood Café; and Sameh Wadi of Saffron Restaurant & Lounge.

For more information on this event, click here.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Making Space for Civic Life with Manny Yekutiel

How do we better political conversations? What does it mean to be meaningfully involved in our community?

To answer these questions, Manny Yekutiel set out to create a one-of-a-kind events space, cafe, and bookshop in San Francisco&aposs Mission district. The result was Manny&aposs, a central and affordable place to become a better informed and more involved citizen.

In this episode, Manny explains how compelling physical spaces are essential to making civic engagement more accessible and why we shouldn&apost make people choose between having a social life and a political life.

He also explains how his work is continuing a long tradition of civic gathering spaces in the US and in San Francisco. Together, we explore the importance of physical events in an age where we increasingly cannot have them, discuss how Manny has had to adapt his business to a socially distanced world and talk about the importance of storytelling in successful political movements

If you&aposre a long time activist, new to politics, or just looking for ways that you can get more involved in the issues that you care about, this episode has stories and lessons that you can learn from and put into action in your life.

Learn more about Manny&aposs on their website and be sure to follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and TwitterThe food at Manny&aposs is provided by Farming Hope, an organization focused on using food to provide unhouse and formerly incarcerated individuals with job trainingManny&aposs is supported in large part by community sponsors Borderlands Books in San Francisco is an excellent example of another community-supported spaceTo learn more about race in America, Manny recommended the film Just Mercy along with the books White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo and How to be an Antiracist by Ibram X Kendi Manny recommended reading Team of Rivals to learn more about Abraham Lincoln Manny is pondering what San Francisco and other major metro areas will look like after COVID-19 and found this New York Times article about the decline in tourism in Venice to be thought-provokingThe Ezra Klein Show is one of Manny&aposs favorite podcasts Manny recommended Swing Left to learn how about supporting Democratic political racesManny&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Vanishing" by Mariah Carey

Episoder

Food Gone Good With Apeel

We’ve all had the experience of buying that apple, or avocado, and having it go bad before you can eat it. It’s so widespread that there are memes about it now.

Have you ever wondered what exactly makes food go bad and what we can do to slow this process down? The folks at Apeel Sciences took this real conundrum of how to make our favorite foods last longer and answered it with a game changing new product. Apeel is an innovative, plant-based coating that goes on your favorite fruits & veggies to keep them fresh for longer, which means less wasted food, less stress about squandering money on avocados you never get to eat, and more delicious meals!

To learn more about how this works and what it means for the future of food waste, we chatted with Jessica Vieira, head of sustainability at Apeel. We discussed all things ripeness and food waste and explored how Apeel is making it easier than ever to waste less food on the farm, at the store, and in your home.

Learn more about Apeel on their website and Instagram.To see where you can buy produce with Apeel, head here! Jess outlined that the key factors that make fruit go bad are water loss and oxidation. This article from Wired does a great job explaining how Apeel works to keep produce fresh for longer. Jess shared that one of the first farmers to benefit from Apeel was growing finger limes, a fruit as quirky and fascinating as it sounds. Jess shared that food waste accounts for 8% of Greenhouse gas emissions globallyJess&aposs go-to karaoke song is "I Want You Back" by the Jackson 5To learn more about Jess and her background, connect with her on LinkedIn

Who Owns Our Farmland? A conversation with Jillian Hishaw.

When it comes to making farming truly sustainable in the long run, the elephant in the room is land ownership. Healthy soil matters, but so does who owns the soil.

Did you know that there were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 1920 and fewer than 45 thousand today? Overall Black landowners own only 0.8 percent of land in the US today.

What accounts for this huge racial disparity in land ownership? We’ve brought in agricultural law expert and farmer advocate Jillian Hishaw to help teach all of us some important legal lessons that shape everything about who farms in the US.

Learn more about Jillian by heading to her website. You can also get in touch with her by emailing [email protected] Jillian on Instagram, Facebook, and TwitterYou can pre-order Jillian&aposs book, "Systematic Land Theft" here. You can get Jillian&aposs other book, "Don&apost Bet the Farm on Medicaid" here. For a full breakdown of who is farming in the United States, check out the most recent USDA Census.Jillian&aposs go-to Karaoke song is "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" by Natalie Cole.

Zero Waste Clothing with Zero Waste Daniel

Did you know that over 20 billion pounds of textiles are thrown away in the United States every year?

Just like the food industry, the clothing industry creates a shocking and honestly overwhelming amount of waste. So what can we do about it?

After getting frustrated with how much fabric he saw going to waste in the fashion industry, Daniel Silverstein quit his job and started his own company, Zero Waste Daniel, focused on turning fabric scraps into stylish new clothes. For every piece of clothing they make, they recover about a pound of fabric scraps from going to waste.

He stopped by our podcast to teach us how he&aposs working to make the fashion industry less wasteful.

Learn more about Zero Waste Daniel and where you can buy their clothes on their website and be sure to follow them on Instagram. Daniel was the third podcast guest to recommend the documentary "The True Cost," which takes a necessary but sobering look at the dark side of the fashion industry. Daniel&aposs go-to karaoke song is "No Scrubs" by TLC.

Examining Environmentalism with Isaias Hernandez

Does environmentalism have a racism problem? Is veganism elitist? Why do so many young environmental activists suffer from burnout?

These are some of the thorny but important issues that Isaias Hernandez fearlessly tackles everyday. He is an educator and speaker who’s passionate about environmental justice, veganism, and zero-waste.

Our conversation was thought-provoking and packed with insights about our food system, environmentalism, plant-based diets, and more!

Learn more about Isaias and his work by heading to his website, connecting with him on LinkedIn, and checking out his Instagram (@queerbrownvegan). Isaias shared his love of vegan conchas, a traditional Mexican dessert. Isaias&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Kali Uchi.

Plant-based Dairy with Miyoko Schinner

Plant-based eating is here to stay.

Most of us have heard about the health benefits and the environmental benefits of going plant based thanks to documentaries like “The Game Changers” and “What the Health.”

While eating plant-based sounds great on paper, a lot of us wonder how you can possibly replace the unique taste of dairy products like butter and cheese. So, is dairy really the final frontier for plant-based eating? Miyoko Schinner thinks it is.

Miyoko is the founder of Miyoko’s Creamery, a company that makes incredibly delicious vegan, plant-based cheeses and butters. In this episode, she&aposs sharing her journey as a plant-based entrepreneur, dishing out advice for how to eat more plants, and more! This is a conversation that vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike will get something out of.

Learn more about Miyoko&aposs Creamery on their website and Instagram. Check out Miyoko&aposs books: "Artisanal Vegan Cheese," "The Homemade Vegan Pantry," and "The Vegan Meat Cookbook." If you&aposre feeling plant-curious, Miyoko recommends trying the Veganuary challenge. We discussed the fact that 80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for animal agriculture. Miyoko recommends watching the Vegan 2020 documentary on Youtube. Miyoko also has a fun cooking show called "Miyoko&aposs Home Comforts." Learn more about Miyoko&aposs animal rescue, Rancho Compasion.

Understanding Our Grandmothers' Recipes With Hawa Hassan

Nothing makes you feel quite as warm, fuzzy, and cozy as eating some of your comfort foods from childhood. What is it about these meals that is so magical? How can they bring us meaning and connection even across oceans and decades?

Hawa Hassan has spent her life exploring the magical power of family memories and recipes. She turned this experience into a marvellous cookbook called “In Bibi&aposs Kitchen: The Recipes and Stories of Grandmothers from the Eight African Countries that Touch the Indian Ocean.”

In it, she shares the recipes of 8 African grandmothers and writes a moving and delicious love letter to African food that’s also a thought-provoking testament to the universal power of family recipes. We&aposre chatting food, family, spices, and more with Hawa!

Learn more about Hawa on her Instagram and be sure to check out her amazing cookbook.Our photo of Hawa comes from photographer Khadija M. Farah. Hawa also has an incredible line of hot sauces called Basbaass. Some of Hawa&aposs go-to spices to have you your pantry to make Somali food are: cardamon, cumin, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper. Hawa is also a big fan of Xawaash, a Yemeni spice blend that Hawa often calls the "Garam Masala of Somali cuisine." Learn how to make Hawa&aposs Suugo Suqaar, a delicious Somali take on pasta sauce. Hawa&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Man! I Feel Like A Woman!" by Shania Twain.

Demystifying Diet With Brooklynne Palmer

We’ve all heard the phrase, health is wealth. We know that how we eat is one of the biggest things that determines how healthy we are, but it seems like eating healthy is such a moving target sometimes.

There’s new studies, trends, and diets coming out every week and it can be genuinely hard to separate fact from hype and misconception when it comes to the seemingly simple act of feeding ourselves. Why is it so hard to figure out what to eat?

Brooklynne Palmer is a medical student with a passion for sharing sound, nutritional advice that helps all of us invest in our physical and mental health. In this conversation we dive into answering the million dollar question: What does healthy eating look like and how we can make it easier to do? We also discuss why we should all be skeptical dietary headlines, the key difference between a dietician and a nutritionist, and how fad diets focus too much on weight and not enough on health.

Learn more about Brooklynne by checking out her Instagram page. Brooklynne stressed that we all ought to take nutritional studies with a grain of salt, since many of them are funded by food industry groups that would like us to eat more of their foods. She also cited the now famous incident of a scientist trolling the media and public by publishing a bogus study that chocolate was healthy just to prove how gullible and biased towards catchy diet headlines the media had become. Contrary to popular belief, most Americans are eating more than enough protein. Brooklynne&aposs principles of a healthy diet: eat less high-sodium processed food and eat more high fiber foods and fresh fruits and vegetables.

Growing Your Own Food with Epic Gardening

When it comes to sustainability, the holy grail a lot of people dream about is growing your own food. What better way to eliminate food miles, cut out the pesticides, and become self sufficient, right?

However, as anyone who has ever tried gardening can attest, it’s pretty intimidating at the start. Knowing what to plant, when to plant, and how to get started requires a lot of research. Once you get going you realize that it’s not as simple as just putting something in the ground and waiting.

Slugs eat your precious lettuce, birds and squirrels descend on your beloved berries, leaves turn yellow for some reason, and you’re never sure if you’re watering things too often or not enough.

That&aposs why we couldn&apost wait to sit down with Kevin Espiritu of Epic Gardening. He&aposs built a thriving Youtube channel, podcast, and Instagram aimed at getting 10 million people to learn how to grow their own food. In this conversation, he&aposs sharing some garden tested wisdom we can all benefit from.

Learn more about Kevin by checking out Epic Gardening&aposs website, Youtube channel, and Instagram. Kevin also has an excellent book all about gardening: The Field Guide to Urban Gardening. If you enjoy Kevin&aposs take on gardening, be sure to listen to his podcast. Kevin has put out too many excellent videos on common gardening questions to list here, but some of our favorites are his guide to common watering mistakes and 5 veggies you can grow in under a month. To better understand your soil, Kevin recommends getting in touch with your local extension office to arrange a soil test. Kevin&aposs must-have gardening gear: A good pair of pruning shears, a pair of micro-tip shears, a Japanese hoe, a garden apron, and a garden cart to hold your favorite tools. Understand the facts and fiction of regrowing plants from common vegetable scraps. Kevin highly recommends the book "Six Seasons" by Joshua McFadden. Kevin&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Drops of Jupiter" by Train.

Diversifying Wellness with Maryam Ajayi

What is wellness and who is it for? Outside of the colorful healthy smoothies and Lululemon branded yoga classes we see on our Instagram feeds, what does wellness really mean in 2020?

Maryam Ajayi has a lot to teach us about the wellness world and its blind spots when it comes to racial diversity and inclusion. She argues that the world and industry of wellness has a long way to go until it prioritizes the health and wellness of all people.

In this candid conversation she shares her personal journey from Republican lobbyist to wellness practitioner. She also outlines her vision of a more equitable and healthy world, and shares how we can get there, one breath at a time.

Learn more about Maryam Ajayi on her website and Instagram, as well as her organization Dive in Well. Maryam&aposs go-to comfort meal for loved ones is a roast chicken. Maryam&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Kiss By a Rose" by Seal

Humanizing the Food System With Real Food Real Stories

Real Food Real Stories is an organization on a mission to humanize our food system, one story at a time. We sat down with their founder and director to learn how they&aposre using storytelling to make food more just and sustainable in the long run.

Learn more about Real Food Real Stories on their website and Instagram and be sure to check out their Curious Eater podcast. Jovida and Pei Ru are fans of Diaspora Co spices and Eatwell Farm. We discussed our mutual admiration of Nik Sharma, who we also had the pleasure to interview on another podcast. "How We Show Up" by Mia Birdsong is a must-read book about the power of community and recognizing our interdependence. Pavlova is a delicious dessert and a favorite of Jovidas. Pei-Ru loves singing "Morning Sun" by Melody Gardot with her son.

Appreciating African Cooking with Kess Eshun

Close your eyes and imagine you’re eating at a fine-dining restaurant for a special occasion. What cuisine are they cooking? French? Italian? Spanish? New American?

Why not Ghanaian, Nigerian, or Ethiopian food? Which cuisines do we choose to elevate and which do we sideline or leave out of the conversation entirely?

Today’s guest is Kess Eshun, a Ghanaian chef and pastry chef who makes a living creating magical meals that weave together her memories of growing up in Ghana with her culinary journey here in America. She’s here to take us on a delicious and informative journey that all food lovers will get something out of.

Learn more about Kess on her website and Instagram. She also has an app! For an extra flaky pie crust, Kess recommends freezing your butter and then grating it. She also recommends using vodka in your pie crust for en even better texture. One of Kess&aposs favorite Ghanaian dishes is Red Red, a dish of stewed black-eyed peas in palm oil. Learn how to make Kess&aposs Jollof Rice in this fun video! If you&aposre looking for a game-changing African ingredient to have around, Niter Kibbeh (Ethiopian spiced ghee) is incredibly flavorful and easy to make at home. Kess&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston. "I Will Always Love You" always gives us chills.

The Truth About Chocolate with Ynzo Van Zanten

We all love chocolate, but what do we actually know about where our chocolate comes from and how it’s made?

The fact is that 70% of the world&aposs chocolate is grown in West Africa, in an industry that currently employs more than 2 million child laborers. How did chocolate and child labor become so intertwined and what would a more ethical chocolate industry look like?

We sat down with the chief chocolate evangelist from Tony’s Chocolonely, Ynzo Van Zanten, to find out.

Learn more about Tony&aposs Chocolonely on their website. You can join the fight for a more ethical chocolate industry by signing this petition. To better understand the dark side of the chocolate industry, Ynzo recommended watching the chocolate episode of the Netflix Series "Rotten." Check out the trailer for season 2 here. As a reference, 60% of the world&aposs chocolate supply comes from Ghana and the Ivory Coast, much of which is currently grown using child labor. Read their most recent Annual Report to learn about the impact on the chocolate industry. Ynzo&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Islands in the Stream" by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

The Economics of Farming with Noelle Fogg Elibol

Everyone knows that farming is hard work, but a lot of us still fantasize about quitting our 9-5 and starting a small farm somewhere. So how hard is it to start farming, really?

According to the USDA, only 1 out of 2 small farms survive beyond their first five years, and out of those, only 1 out of 4 survive after 15 years. Why is it so hard to make a living by growing food?

To separate faring fact from farming fiction, we sat down with Noelle Fogg Elibol of Kitchen Table Advisors, a nonprofit dedicated to making agriculture a more viable business model for small farmers. In this fascinating conversation she share lessons about how we can to make farming a sustainable way of life for generations to come.

Learn more about Kitchen Table Advisors and check out their Instagram to stay up to date on their work. The USDA defines a small farm as any farm with gross income under $250,000 per year.It&aposs important to note that according to the USDA, "while most U.S. farms are small – 91 percent according to the Census of Agriculture – large farms ($250,000 and above) account for 85 percent of the market value of agricultural production. Noelle is proud to have worked with Javier Zamora of JSM OrganicsIf you want to get in the weeds of agriculture, there&aposs no better place than the most recent US agriculture census, conducted in 2017. The Heal Food Alliance does important work to build a food system that is healthy, accessible, and affordable for everyone. Noelle recommended reading "The Omnivore&aposs Dilemma" by Michael Pollan, "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer, and "The Fate of Food" by Amanda Little to better understand our food system. Noelle also recommended watching the documentary Food Inc.

Hetal Vasavada of Milk and Cardamom

It&aposs safe to say the world is pretty obsessed with food blogs and Instagram pages these days. Have you ever wondered: "who runs these pages and how do they end up making amazingly beautiful food and recipes for a living?" Meet Hetal! After burning out on her career in health care, she ended up as a contestant on season 6 of Master Chef, which launched her into the world of food media. Since then, she has published a cookbook of Indian-Inspired desserts that’s been featured in the New York Times, and runs a truly delightful blog, Instagram, and online bakery called Milk and Cardamom that’s well-worth a follow. In our thought-provoking conversation dig into:

What it&aposs actually like to be on a food competition show and how shows heavily edit, manipulate and type cast their contestantsWhy Indian cuisine often gets misunderstood or oversimplified in the United StatesThe most fun and most overlooked parts of what it&aposs like to run a food blog and Instagram as part of your businessWhat principles, ingredients, and gear Hetal recommends for all home bakers How Indian desserts differ from European dessertsWhat she&aposs learned as mother about the importance of writing down recipes and getting children involved in cooking

Whether you&aposre already a fan of Hetal&aposs or just a curious cook looking to learn more about baking, spices, Indian cuisine, reality TV, and food history, this discussion will satiate your appetite.

You can learn more about Hetal, see her recipes, order her cookbook, sign up for a cooking class, and even order her desserts on her website. Hetal helpfully clarified that most Indian food you can find in the United States is Mughal-influenced. The Mughal empire controlled India for 300 years and left a strong mark on the cuisine. Some of Hetal&aposs favorite Gujarati Indian restaurants in the US are Ghee in Miami, Tailor in Nashville, and Besharam in San Francisco. Indian desserts use a lot of cardamom, which Hetal dubs "the Indian vanilla" because of how common it is in sweets. She also noted that ghee is used as a key baking fat, along with toasted flour and nuts for their distinct flavors. One of Hetal&aposs signature dessert recipes is Gulab Jamun, which she&aposs also reinterpreted as a miniature bundt cake. Hetal recommends always using a scale to weigh out ingredients while baking. Other go-to baking gear for her is her stand mixer, and infrared thermometer. For parents worried about picky eaters, Hetal&aposs top tips are to get your child involved in the cooking process. She&aposs also a huge fan of the Daniel Tiger PBS program for kids. Hetal&aposs waste fighting tip is to save your onion and garlic skins and make a rich and aromatic stock that you can then freeze in silicone ice cube trays! Hetal&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Rumor Has It," by Adele

Eliminating Ocean Plastic with Mimi Ausland

The United Nations Environmental Program recently estimated that "for every square mile of ocean" there are about "46,000 pieces of plastic."

Many of us have seen the truly sobering videos and photos of the Pacific garbage patch, which is twice the size of Texas. To help us understand the thorny problem that is plastic pollution in our oceans, we&aposre chatting with Mimi Ausland, a passionate activist and founder of Free the Ocean, an organization dedicated to getting plastics out of our oceans.

Learn more about Free the Ocean on their website and Instagram.The Free Rice project&aposs click-to-give model was an inspiration for Mimi in starting Free the Oceans. Mimi works closely with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove plastic from the ocean. Need another reason to care about ocean health? The majority of our planets oxygen comes from marine plants! Mimi is a fan of compost tumblers We discussed this fascinating story of how Bay Area green waste becomes valuable compost for farms and wineries. Mimi&aposs go-to karaoke song is "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Farming for the Future with Yemi Amu of Oko Farms

What should the future of agriculture look like? What if instead of focusing on growing food to feed our cities, we pivoted to growing food within our cities?

This seemingly revolutionary concept is the inspiration behind a growing number of urban farms across the country. To learn more about the power and possibilities presented by growing food in a modern American city, we sat down with Yemi Amu, founder of Oko Farms in Brooklyn. In our thought-provoking conversation we cover:

Why aquaponics is such a revolutionary, yet surprisingly ancient, way to grow food. How urban farms like Oko help increase food security, mitigate climate change, increase biodiversity, and even reduce stormwater runoff. Why Yemi uses the term "food swamp" instead of "food desert." What&aposs stopping urban farming from making the jump from a niche concept to a truly viable way of feeding more communities in America.

Get ready to dive into the weeds of sustainable farming and urban gardening, quite literally!

You can learn more about Yemi&aposs work at the Oko Farm website and Instagram. Some other notable urban farmers that came up in our conversation include Will Allen of Growing Power and Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Yemi recommends reading "Microbia: A journey into the unseen world around you" by Eugenia Bone. Yemi is an fan of Yute, and underrated vegetable. Yemi&aposs go-to karaoke song is Pretty Young Thing by the one and only Michael Jackson.

The Love, Art, and Business of Food With Lachelle Cunningham

What&aposs it like to be a Black food entrepreneur in 2020? To understand this better, we&aposre joined by a true culinary Renaissance woman of the Twin Cities. Lachelle Cunningham runs a catering business in Minneapolis, runs culinary education at the Good Acre, and is an advocate for food as a tool for economic development and better health. In this conversation we cover:

How Lachelle&aposs work helps her clients overcome racial trauma and realize their dreams. What many people misunderstand about working in the restaurant industry. How home cooks can waste less food and become less reliant on recipes by thinking like a caterer.

This episode touches on a tapestry of fascinating topics at the intersection of food, entrepreneurship, race, history, and more!

Learn more about chef Lachelle on her website. In addition to running her own catering company, Lachelle is proud to be an educator at The Good Acre in Minneapolis. Lachelle referenced Black Wall St, an important, but often tragically forgotten community and incident in the history of Oklahoma and the United States. Lachelle is a big fan of cleaning out your fridge as a way to help prevent food waste and make cooking easier. Here&aposs a guide to help you get started. Lachelle&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Erykah Badu, especially "Tyrone."

Redefining Healthcare With Dr. Tiffany Lester

Is our country&aposs obsession with health actually making us healthier?

Even before COVID-19 hit, health and wellness in modern America was big business, and a growing feature of our social media feeds. However, is our society focused on the right aspects of health or are we viewing it in a healthy way? This week we&aposre getting a refreshingly holistic take on the world of health. Dr. Tiffany Lester is here to shed some light on this complex and often misunderstood field, including:

Why it&aposs a mistake to see healthcare as a debate between traditional medicine and functional medicine, and how they really can help inform each other. Why properly managing sleep and stress needs to be a bigger focus for most Americans. What all the fuss about gut health is really about and why we all should nourish our microbiome. Why it can be risky to take trendy supplements like Ashwagandha, magnesium, or fish oil without understanding them properly first.

In a year defined by one of the biggest health crises of the modern era, this episode has eye-opening perspectives and practical advice for all of us to live healthier, happier lives.

Learn more about Tiffany on her Instagram page and her home base on Parsley Health. Season 2 of the podcast The Dream is all about the wellness industry. TIffany recommended using Google Scholar and PubMed for legitimate health and nutrition studies. Tiffany says that higher-priced fish oils are often higher quality. Tiffany&aposs go-to karaoke song is anything by Whitney Houston.

Farming as Healing with Amber Tamm

How can growing food heal us and ground us in a world that seems to have gone crazy?

After the devastating trauma of her father murdering her mother while she was in school, Amber Tamm lost herself, and then found herself, in the world of farming. Today she&aposs a floral designer, horticulturist, and farmer in New York City focused on nourishing a better food system, one plant at a time.

In this fearless conversation she shares:

Why so many modern farming practices persist despite not being environmentally or economically sustainable. What working on farms taught Amber about the prevalence of racism and sexual assault in agriculture. Why Black farmers are often left out of the narrative of farming in America. What changes she seeds as necessary to improve our food system for better and for always.

If you&aposre looking to understand agriculture, race, or American history in a new way, this episode has a lot to offer you.

Amber&aposs headshot is by Safiyah Chiniere. Check out her Instagram here. Learn more about Amber Tamm on her Instagram page and her website. There were nearly 1 million Black farmers in 2020 but there are just 45,000 today. Black farmers won 1.25 billion dollars in the Pigford racial discrimination lawsuit against the USDA. We discussed the book "Farming While Black" by Leah Penniman of Soul Fire Farm. Amber admires Indian scholar and food sovereignty activist Vandana Shiva. Amber recommends learning more about the story of activist Assata Shakur.

The Future of Nonprofits with Robert Egger

Have you ever wondered why hunger in America is such a persistent problem, despite all of the volunteer hours, money, and yes, food, that nonprofits throw at it every year?

If so, this episode will drop some much-needed knowledge on you. Robert Egger is a nonprofit icon, speaker, and activist who founded DC Central Kitchen as well as LA Kitchen. He has won a Humanitarian Award from the James Beard Foundation, been named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year, as well as an Oprah angel, and one of the ten most caring people in America by the Caring Institute.

In this candid, passionate, and far-ranging conversation we cover his decades-long career in the food nonprofit space. We discuss why charities so often fail to make lasting change and how we can finally break out of band-aid solutions to poverty and hunger and create real and lasting positive changes that help everyone.

A Note From Imperfect: As a friendly heads up, this episode contains a fair amount of profanity, so be advised if that&aposs not your thing or you&aposre listening with young children.


Watch the video: James Beard Foundations Taste America (June 2022).