Recipe for America: Why Our Food System is Broken and What We Can Do to Fix It

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“Jill Richardson is a fresh voice in the movement to create a healthier and sustainable food system. This book will be part of the burgeoning food social movement, as it provides a guide to the most important issues and how to work on them.”—Marion Nestle

“Jill’s work at Daily Kos represents the best of the people-powered movement. It’s a pleasure to see her work reach a new plateau and come to the attention of a wider audience.”—Markos Moulitsas

America’s food system is dominated by agribusiness and corporate farms, whose destructive practices pollute the environment, are cruel to animals, and offer us unhealthy food choices. Despite this dire situation, most people have little idea how to eat differently, or healthier.

In Recipe for America, food activist Jill Richardson shows how sustainable agriculture—where local farms raise food that is healthy for consumers and animals and does not damage the environment—offers the only solution to America’s food crisis. In addition to highlighting the harmful conditions at factory farms, this timely and necessary book details the rising grassroots food movement, which is creating an agricultural system that allows people to eat sustainably, locally, and seasonally.

A call to action for those who are concerned about what they eat and the health of the planet, Recipe for America shows how sustainable eating nourishes our bodies, our economy, and our environment, and how it is the best hope for the future of food in America.

Jill Richardson blogs about food issues at Daily Kos and at her own blog, La Vida Locavore ( She is also a member of the advisory board of the Organic Consumers Association.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The evils of industrial agriculture are rehashed in this impassioned but sketchy exposé. Food activist and blogger Richardson ticks off a familiar menu of food-system dysfunctions: overreliance on pesticides and fertilizer, exploited farmers and workers, horribly abused livestock, obese children who are fed subsidized junk food in school. (She personalizes her critique with reportage from a stint working at Whole Foods and recollections of a period in her life when a lack of access to fresh produce led her to gain weight on a diet of ice cream and beer.) She contrasts these ills with a vision of sustainable agriculture long on bucolic impressionism—“the baby lambs head-butted their mothers enthusiastically and wagged their tails”—and short on systematic analysis. The author's rabid advocacy of locavorism is especially myopic; she brushes past the costliness and impracticality—“When buying eggs I ask the farmer how many chickens they own and if these chickens are on pasture”—and ignores critics who argue that locavorism is an energy-inefficient fad. Only the choir will be convinced by Richardson's shallow take on these complex issues. (Aug.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780981504032
  • Publisher: Ig Publishing
  • Publication date: 7/1/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 5.58 (w) x 8.32 (h) x 0.49 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Good for Starters

    I've read many books on this subject, so there was nothing new to me in it. I thought it was a great book for someone just starting to investigate the origins of food, and the consequences of eating the traditional, supermarket-supplied food. Comments were a little too favorable to the current administration, which has not actually done anything, although they are long on promises. I will keep it in my collection, and pass on the name.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    A new kind of book from a very new author

    Jill Richardson is young but profoundly well-read about the topics of food security. Recipe for America is her first book, but her writing style is mature and insightful. The book does a great job of demystifying the political and economic influences and systems around the American food system and she proposes full solutions for addressing the problems therein.

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