A New Vision Brewing
Where are you from originally?
I am originally from Presque Isle, Maine.
What is your major?
I am a Marketing major with a Food Studies minor.
Which Food Studies course (s) are you currently enrolled in?
A course that I am currently enrolled in, which is related to the Food Studies Program, is ECO 323, U.S. Labor and Employment Relations. In this course we examine trends in U.S. labor history, and the institutions that help shape the pay and experiences that workers face. This semester we will be conducting interviews with restaurant workers in Southern Maine about their experiences in the workplace, and will later be presenting our research to a community panel.
What have you learned that has surprised you about food?
Learning about food production’s impact on the environment has been one of the most surprising topics. Before I took Food and the Environment [FSP 210] last semester, I never truly thought about all the resources that go into food production. Water consumption plays such a large role. The agricultural sector uses 70% of the Earth’s fresh water, and we must start adopting more irrigation technologies and water management practices. Lack of water in states such as California, which is one of the nation’s leaders in agriculture, is a worrisome issue which may lead to the U.S. relying on New England for their food. In order for food production to maintain the rate at which it’s going, we must be thoughtful and proactive.
How do you hope to continue working in this field once you graduate?
Once I graduate, I wish to open my own brewery. I have five years of experience in the restaurant industry as both a server and bartender, and hospitality is something I would love to be involved in for the rest of my life. My dream is to start a brewery that is creative, eco-conscious, and inclusive. I would love to locate this future business in an area of the state where tourism has declined, in hopes [of securing] the future of small business and rural communities in Maine.
In your opinion, what do you think is the most pressing issue related to food and the food industry?
I believe that one of the most pressing issues related to food and the food industry would be the concentration of power. So many of us don’t know who or where our food is coming from… or the corruption that comes with it. From seed industries to food retailing, this industry is evolving into a monopoly. This is an issue because we stop focusing on important issues such as: where does our food come from? How are the farm workers treated? And what pesticides or artificial ingredients have made their way into our food? If we all started making more conscious decisions, I believe we could see some much-needed change in our food system, which would increase not only the well-being of our people, but the Earth.