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Going There: How We Eat

An assortment of organic vegetables are seen on display. A growing body of evidence documents how farming methods can influence the nutritional content of foods.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images
An assortment of organic vegetables are seen on display. A growing body of evidence documents how farming methods can influence the nutritional content of foods.

As our food system has rapidly evolved over the past few decades, issues surrounding where our food comes from and what it contains have become mainstream, often politicized, debates. However, when debating something like organic versus genetically modified food, which communities are included in the dialogue and who benefits when decisions are made? Can producers and consumers work together to make sure high quality food is accessible to everyone?

This week, I'm heading to Kansas City, Missouri to focus on these issues with people who are passionate about what's on their plates and how it got there. In collaboration with member station KCUR and Harvest Public Media, the two-part live event will feature dynamic storytelling and live performances. We will also take the discussion to social media with an engaging Twitter chat all about how we eat.

You can join that conversation on Tuesday, April 5 at 4:00 p.m. ET. Just use the hashtag #NPRHowWeEat to share your thoughts. The Twitter chat will be moderated by @NPRMichel.


Make sure to come back to this page on Tuesday to watch a video live stream of the event in Kansas City at 8 p.m. ET.

Joining us on Twitter are:

  • Kathleen Bauer, @GoodStuffNW, of Good Stuff NW is a food writer in Portland, Oregon, focused on field-to-plate issues such as seasonal eating, food justice, agricultural policies and how our food system can work better.
  • John Boyd, Jr., @JWBoydNBFA, is founder and president of the non-profit National Black Farmers Association. Boyd is a fourth-generation black farmer, businessman and civil rights activist.
  • John Gordon Jr., @BoysGrow, is the founder and executive director of BoysGrow, an agricultural and entrepreneurial program for inner-city boys in the Kansas City area.
  • Peggy Lowe, @peggyllowe, investigations editor for Harvest Public Media, a public media reporting collaboration that focuses on agriculture and food.
  • Luke Runyon, @LukeRunyon, reports for Harvest Public Media, and is based at member station KUNC in Colorado. He primarily reports on local food systems, cattle and agricultural technology

Featured Live Panelists:

  • Chris Boeckmann is the farm manager of the Lincoln University Busby Research Farm in Jefforson City, Missouri. He also operates a forage-based cattle operation in Loose Creek, Missouri with his family.
  • Ted Genoways is the author of The Chain: Farm, Factory, and the Fate of Our Food, a finalist for the 2015 James Beard Foundation Award for Writing and Literature.
  • Linda Hezel is the farm steward at Prairie Birthday Farm, a family farm in west central Missouri that supplies sustainable produced fruit, vegetables, herbs, eggs, honey, and edible flowers to area residents and local chefs.
  • Blake Hurst is president of the Missouri Farm Bureau. Along with his family, Hurst also raises corn and soybeans and operates a wholesale greenhouse business.
  • Wes Jackson is president of The Land Institute and the author of several books including New Roots for Agriculture and Nature as Measure.
  • Shanita McAfee Bryant is a winner of Food Network's culinary competition show Cutthroat Kitchen. She is also chef and Owner of Magnolia's Contemporary Southern Bistro.
  • Alex Pope is the founder of The Local Pig butcher shop in Kansas City.

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