13 June 2013

RAG RADIO / Thorne Dreyer : Mother Jones' Tom Philpott on Big Ag and the Politics of Food

Sustainable food writer Tom Philpott at the studios of KOOP-FM in Austin, Texas, June 7, 2013. Photo by William Michael Hanks / The Rag Blog.
Rag Radio podcast:
Mother Jones' Tom Philpott on
sustainable ag and the politics of food
"As a writer for Grist and now Mother Jones, Tom Philpott draws links between your kitchen, your food sources, your government, and the earth. An organic farmer, he knows how to pull weeds as well as yank the chain of Big Ag. " -- Utne Reader
By Rag Radio / The Rag Blog / June 13, 2013

Tom Philpott, sustainable food and agriculture correspondent for Mother Jones magazine, was Thorne Dreyer's guest on Rag Radio, Friday, June 7, 2013.

Rag Radio is a syndicated radio program produced at the studios of KOOP 91.7-FM, a cooperatively-run all-volunteer community radio station in Austin, Texas.

Listen to or download our interview with Tom Philpott here:

Tom Philpott writes about sustainable agriculture and the politics of food for Mother Jones and is the cofounder of Maverick Farms, a center for sustainable food education in Valle Crucis, North Carolina. As Utne Reader said, Philpott "knows how to pull weeds as well as yank the chain of Big Ag."

Among the issues Philpott addresses on Rag Radio are the extensive abuses of big agribusiness, especially in the meat industry and in the GMO seed business -- and the failure of government oversight in both. On the positive side, he points to the growing role played by community farming and cooperatives.

For five years, Tom Philpott served as a columnist, food editor, and senior food writer for the online environmental site Grist. His work on food politics has appeared in The New York Times, Newsweek, Orion, OnEarth, Gastronomica, and the Guardian, and he has been interviewed by Terry Gross on Fresh Air. Philpott also worked as a financial journalist in Mexico City and New York, most recently for Reuters.com.

Tom Philpott.
Maverick Farms has been featured in Gourmet and The New York Times, and in September 2008, Food & Wine named Philpott one of "ten innovators" who "will continue to shape the culinary consciousness of our country for the next 30 years." In 2011, Utne Reader named him one of "25 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World."

A graduate of the University of Texas, where he co-founded and ran the radical investigative magazine Polemicist in the late '80s/early '90s, Philpott currently divides his time between Austin and the farm in North Carolina.

Leslie Hatfield wrote at EcoCentric: "A path that led from a restaurant kitchen in Austin eventually took Tom Philpott -- by way of Mexico City and Brooklyn, New York -- to North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, where he now serves as co-founder/core group member at Maverick Farms, while also dishing out what may be the most consistently awesome food policy reporting in the blogosphere."

Tom Philpott and the Real Food Media Project’s Anna Lappé spoke on “Busting Food Myths” at the 5604 Manor Community Center in Austin, Friday, June 7, 2013.

Rag Radio is hosted and produced by Rag Blog editor and long-time alternative journalist Thorne Dreyer, a pioneer of the Sixties underground press movement.

The show has aired since September 2009 on KOOP 91.7-FM, an all-volunteer cooperatively-run community radio station in Austin, Texas. Rag Radio is broadcast live every Friday from 2-3 p.m. (CDT) on KOOP and is rebroadcast on Sundays at 10 a.m. (EDT) on WFTE, 90.3-FM in Mt. Cobb, PA, and 105.7-FM in Scranton, PA.

The show is streamed live on the web by both stations and, after broadcast, all Rag Radio shows are posted as podcasts at the Internet Archive.

Rag Radio is produced in association with The Rag Blog, a progressive Internet newsmagazine, and the New Journalism Project, a Texas 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. Tracey Schulz is the show's engineer and co-producer.

Rag Radio can be contacted at ragradio@koop.org.

Coming up on Rag Radio:
June 14, 2013: Peruvian social psychologist Cristina Herencia, official observer at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
Friday, June 21, 2013: Bill Fletcher Jr., African-American scholar, writer, and union organizer.

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