We’re delighted to share with you the plenary sessions from our True Cost of American Food conference, beginning with the opening sessions featuring our Chief Executive Patrick Holden, Wendy Schmidt, Jonathan Foley, Tyler Norris and HRH the Prince of Wales. You can also watch all of the parallel sessions, here.

Day 1: Why our food systems must change

The following key addresses from Jonathan Foley, Executive Director of California Academy of Sciences, and Tyler Norris, Vice President for Total Health Partnerships at Kaiser Permanente, give an overview of the evidence of the harmful outcomes of intensive agriculture on the environment and public health, and why the current economic climate perpetuates these systems of production.

Panel discussion: Why we need True Cost Accounting

Moderator: Danielle Nierenberg, President and Co-founder, Food Tank
Alexander Müller, Study Lead, TEEBAgFood
Kathleen Merrigan, Executive Director of Sustainability, George Washington University
Steve Hilton, CEO, Crowdpac

Panel discussion: The food business perspective

Moderator: Naomi Starkman, Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Civil Eats
Walter Robb, Co-CEO, Whole Food Markets
Fedele Bauccio, CEO, The Bon Appétit Management Company
Theresa Marquez, Mission Executive, Organic Valley
Howard Shapiro, Chief Agricultural Officer, Mars

Panel discussion: Food justice

Moderator: Anna Lappé, Author and Educator
Oliver Gottfried, Senior Advocacy and Collaborations Advisor, Oxfam America
Saru Jayaraman, Director of the Food Labor Research Center, UC Berkeley, Co-Director, ROC-United
Joann Lo, Co-Director, Food Chain Workers Alliance

Day 2: Case study analysis of US farming systems

Based on US farm case studies, Dr. Harpinder Sandhu presented the results of his groundbreaking research exploring the true cost of American food.

Moderator: Patrick Holden, Chief Executive, Sustainable Food Trust
Presentation: Harpinder Sandhu, Lecturer and Research Fellow, Flinders University

Responses from case study farms:

Jim Erdahl – Corn/soy farm case study, Minnesota
Albert Straus – Straus Organic Creamery California
Joel Salatin – Polyface farm case study, Virginia

Mechanisms for change

Moderator: Corby Kummer, Senior Editor, The Atlantic
Alexander Müller, Study Lead, TEEBAgFood
Daniel Imhoff, Author, Publisher and Small-scale Farmer
Paula Daniels, Founder, LA Food Policy Council
Scott Edwards, Co-Director of the Food and Water Justice project, Food and Water Watch
Janaki Jagannath, Coordinator, San Joaquin Valley Sustainable Agriculture Collaborative
Thomas Harttung, Chair, Sustainable Food Trust

Concluding plenary: Call to action

How can we ensure that the conference will contribute will contribute to a lasting improvement of the economic climate for sustainable agriculture? Conference participants share their visions and suggestions for future action.

Moderator: Ken Wilson, Former Executive Director of the Christensen Fund

Closing remarks: Ken Wilson

Closing remarks: Patrick Holden

Sign up to our Newsletter

Stay up to date with the latest SFT views and news