• Ellen Harris

#7 Table & Plate Bites of Wisdom

To gain wisdom and knowledge about the world of food it’s important to understand the interconnectedness of eating to history, culture, politics, recipes (or not), new and well-loved cookbooks, community action, thought leaders, and a multitude of stories in this case focusing on the African Diaspora.


Placed myself in time out and took Thursday and Friday off from work. Five months have passed since sheltering in place started for me. With no where to go, I truly needed time to step away from the day to day routine to re-invigorate myself.


For the past few months, I’ve been walking or biking each day; trying my best to counter the constant assault on what we’d thought was our normal.

The garden continues to be a place for self-care. Today, my summer garden partially came to an end. I cleaned out the scraggly parts and only the basil, jalapeño, bell pepper and okra plants remain. The kale, cilantro, cucumbers, zucchini, squash, and tomatoes produced a glorious bounty this spring and summer. And I'm grateful for today's small pickings.

I’ve shared the fruits of my labor with friends and neighbors. I’ve eaten some delicious, simple meals. I’ve saved a little money. Growing, harvesting, and cooking what I’ve grown has been my statement of well-being, resistance, and empowerment.


Table & Plate Bites of Wisdom are highlighted below. It’s good to connect to people doing righteous things in their communities around food sovereignty and justice.


Community Gardens & Local Farms

Learn about 6 Black-led community gardens and farms in Pennsylvania. https://www.paeats.com/feature/black-led-community-farms-pennsylvania/

Through 13 photos, see how a community garden offers comfort for Black farmers and volunteers in south Phoenix. https://www.azcentral.com/picture-gallery/entertainment/dining/2020/07/31/community-garden-offers-comfort-black-farmers-south-phoenix/5548882002/

Atiya Wells, the founder and executive director of BLISS Meadows, a community project in Baltimore city, is committed to creating a public space for nature education, gardening, and farming. She, especially, wants to create a place where urban dwellers, specifically Black people, can be educated about and feel safe in the outdoors. https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/bliss-meadows-community-garden

Food Policy, Politics & Social Justice

The organizations listed in this article are working to advance Black food sovereignty. https://civileats.com/2020/06/02/want-to-see-food-and-land-justice-for-black-americans-support-these-groups/

Excellent article on how food apartheid and economic inequality are among the factors leading to high rates of disease and death among Black and Brown Americans. https://civileats.com/2020/05/05/people-of-color-are-at-greater-risk-of-covid-19-systemic-racism-in-the-food-system-plays-a-role/

Meet Shauntrice Martin, who writes in this exceptional article about 4 ways to join the food justice movement as a total beginner. https://www.self.com/story/food-justice-tips

Culture Eats: Habits, Cooking, Networks, and Business

Discover how Black culinary historians are rewriting the history of American Food. https://www.yesmagazine.org/social-justice/2020/02/26/food-african-american-history/

Check out this guide to several local Black-owned food businesses in Charlottesville, VA. https://www.cavalierdaily.com/article/2020/08/a-guide-to-several-local-black-owned-food-businesses-with-reflections-from-their-owners

Meet Jordan Buckner, owner of TeaSquares, a line of superfood energy bars. For August, which is Black Business Month, he partnered with 6 other business to launch a discover box for Black-owned food and beverage brands. https://www.fb101.com/2020/08/good-food-brands-launches-a-discovery-box-for-black-owned-food-and-beverage-brands-during-national-black-business-month/

Read how Black-owned food businesses are during their thing since COVID-19 in the UK. https://gal-dem.com/the-rise-of-black-owned-food-businesses-since-covid-19/

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