A Note on Business, Climate and Action from the White House as the UN Meets in New York – Food Tank

A Note on Business, Climate and Action from the White House as the UN Meets in New York – Food Tank

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Greetings from New York City!

The UN General Assembly will meet here this week with Climate Week. People from all over the world are coming together — policymakers, activists, nonprofits, and so many others — to explore what we need to do to solve the climate crisis.

I had the chance to attend an interesting dinner hosted by Wholechain, founded by Food Tank friends Mark Kaplan and Jason Berryhill. They are great social entrepreneurs working to make our food and farming systems more transparent and traceable. We need companies to lead the way – and these people are part of making that happen. I had the chance to talk to people from companies like Akua Kelp, which makes delicious kelp burgers, Grain4Grain, which makes upcycled flour from spent grains, and so many others who make products that are both environmentally and socially sustainable.

The private sector cannot just make a profit from it. So many small and medium-sized businesses are at the forefront of these issues: from the day they launch, they start with mission statements that put the environment and social justice at the forefront. And then it’s the big companies, the big companies, trying to catch up with these smaller companies by making commitments.

But here’s what we need to keep in mind: I hope that when big companies live up to these commitments, they don’t just greenwash or greenwish by saying, “I hope these commitments we’re making by 2050 become a reality! ”

In 2050 it will be too late! We can’t just wish for a greener world in 30 years – we need commitments that policymakers, businesses and so many of us can act on now. We need to make these commitments more urgent and real, whether it’s pushing for deforestation-free soy or beef, or using upcycled ingredients from food production. We need to see this as the norm, not the exception.

The power of urgent action is what I had the opportunity to discuss with activist and ‘Orange Is The New Black’ star Alysia Reiner on the Food Talk podcast this week. She is a strong advocate for art, for reducing food and plastic waste on film and TV sets, for using love – not fear – to drive action, and more. I really hope you’ll listen to our conversation by clicking here.

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