Food: advocacy for public policy

anthropologue-chercheur-nutrition-publique-jean(Granby) To mark the 25th anniversary of Collective Kitchens of Quebec, the researcher Jean-Claude Moubarac was the guest of Collective Kitchens Montérégie Thursday. His conclusion: we abandon the kitchen in favor of “ultra-processed foods”, which changes our food system. Cook more, yes. But beyond an individual awareness, the solution must come from the top, he said.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. One speaker Jean-Claude Moubarac presented before the hundred people gathered at the Miner Heritage Farm Granby could not have been more significant: the multicolored packaging waste lying on a sewer mouth. “As I approached, I realized that almost all companies were represented,” laughs the public nutrition researcher, who captured the shot in a schoolyard. Coke cans of marked packages of the famous “M” fast food, bags of Doritos, all these brands that represent industry “ultra-processed foods” are the most responsible for our food deteriorating. “I saw one orange peel,” he continues.

“If we establish such a picture in 200 years, anthropologists might say, no wonder these people are gone!” Says Jean-Claude Moubarac, causing general hilarity. Exaggerated? Not that much. Himself an anthropologist Jean-Claude Moubarac recalled the importance of the kitchen to maintain a healthy diet.

The fact remains that the strike statistics: in 2004, in Canada, more than half of the calories consumed per day were from products not “transformed” but “highly processed”. A category including sugary cereals, industrial bread, spreads and flavored yogurt, among others.

The example of Brazil

“The more we consume highly processed foods, the less you consume protein, vitamins and minerals,” the researcher develops. Mexico is champion in this sense, registering the biggest sales of the world Coca-Cola, as well as the highest rates of obesity. But Canada has nothing to sit on its laurels: in 2013, we were the second largest consumers of ultra-processed products, just behind the Americans. A statistic that explains why during the 20th century, Canadians bought less “real ingredients” away from them in the process of cooking. Before fully recognize the value of the kitchen, Canadians crusts room and a guide which is insipirer, believes Jean-Claude Moubarac. “Instead of dictating what to eat, the Brazilian Food Guide aims to develop critical thinking people. We want them to become independent and they feed well throughout their lives, “he said. The Brazilian Food Guide offers including 10 steps to a healthy diet, one of which “develop, engage and share his culinary skills.”

A recommendation that applies well to the kitchen teaching in schools. “90% of Quebecers believe that young people should have cooking classes,” says Jean-Claude Moubarac. “We want young people fall in love with the food,” he says.

In addition to affecting health and the environment, the current food system has a direct impact on our culture. “The transition from the kitchen to the ultra-processed products erodes our cultural heritage,” notes the researcher. It’s in that it invites us to regroup to cook and share meals.

community kitchen

“The government must bring cooking and real food in the heart of public policy. Without civil mobilization, the status quo will remain, “concludes Jean-Claude Moubarac.

It is in this spirit that are organized for 25 years Collective Kitchens, rewarding healthy eating and socializing.

In Montérégie, 30 groups meet monthly to plan revenues by special groceries. The principle is simple: cook inexpensively (the equivalent of $ 1 or less per serving).

“Learning to eat well,” added the outgoing Director of Collective Kitchens, Julie Bourdon. It states that 70% of the clientele of the organization a household income of less than $ 25,000. Collective Kitchens in 2015, is: 342 days of food, $ 3,000 in portions and100 workshops given in Granby, Bromont and Waterloo.

Looking for a replacement
Director of Community kitchens in Montérégie, Julie Bourdon resigned Wednesday. She hopes to be able to fully devote himself to his councilor duties to the City of Granby. “I wanted to take the time to respond to citizens, to accompany them in their efforts,” said one who also holds the presidency of Granby_région Tourism Trade.

Julie Bourdon continue to work with the Collective Kitchens part-time until the end of June, the time for the transition of ongoing projects with his successor. The position of management is open. The job was posted Wednesday.

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