33 episodes

A better food system starts with one thing: vision. Food Lab Talk gives global food system changemakers a platform to articulate their vision for the future of food.

The series features interviews with inspiring individuals who are working on the frontlines of many of our most pressing food issues: reducing food loss and waste, enhancing food system transparency, facilitating shifts toward more balanced plant-forward diets, enabling informed individual choices for sustainable lifestyles, and accelerating the transition to a circular food economy. 

Join Google’s Michiel Bakker to meet the leaders taking bold action and answering what each of us can do to create a better food system for us all.

Food Lab Talk Michiel Bakker

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 7 Ratings

A better food system starts with one thing: vision. Food Lab Talk gives global food system changemakers a platform to articulate their vision for the future of food.

The series features interviews with inspiring individuals who are working on the frontlines of many of our most pressing food issues: reducing food loss and waste, enhancing food system transparency, facilitating shifts toward more balanced plant-forward diets, enabling informed individual choices for sustainable lifestyles, and accelerating the transition to a circular food economy. 

Join Google’s Michiel Bakker to meet the leaders taking bold action and answering what each of us can do to create a better food system for us all.

    30. Salaam Bhatti, Food Research and Action Center

    30. Salaam Bhatti, Food Research and Action Center

    Salaam Bhatti is the SNAP Director at the Food Research and Action Center, a 501(c)(3) that uses advocacy and strategic partnerships to improve the health and well-being of people struggling against poverty-related hunger in the United States. Tune in to learn how to bring together diverse perspectives, challenge established norms, and seek innovative solutions for modern society. 

    Salaam Bhatti: “The best way to find change is to go out and find like-minded people. Create a coalition to make that change happen. But if you want to perfect that, then you have to find people who disagree so that you can really understand why you believe what you believe. And maybe there are things that just need education, that just need more facts to help bring them to your side. Or maybe you were wrong and you can come to a compromise or an agreement. But until you get out of your comfort zone, the change you will try to make will only be fleeting and never systemic.”

    00:00 Intro to Salaam 
    01:25 From law to public benefit activism
    04:50 How sparking joy drives passion in food justice
    06:09 Addressing food insecurity for an equitable food system
    08:20 How zoning and economic inequalities exacerbate food insecurity
    10:55 Why building strategic alliances can bridge divides to pass policy reform
    14:28 Exploring the ripple effects of SNAP program changes on the economy
    18:00 Overview of the Food Research and Action Center
    19:14 Addressing poverty related hunger solutions and challenges
    21:20 How choice and increased access improves health outcomes
    26:17 Reimagining food policy for modern needs
    28:22 Why getting out of your comfort zone can lead to systemic change
    31:11 Takeaways for changemakers

    Links
    Food Research Action Center (FRAC)Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)Report: Household Food Security in the United States in 2022Quantifying the Impact of SNAP Benefits on the US Economy and Jobs
    Keep in Touch
    Subscribe, rate, review the show at foodlabtalk.com
    Follow Food Lab talk on YouTube and LinkedIn

    *The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

    • 33 min
    29. Christopher Gardner, Stanford School of Medicine

    29. Christopher Gardner, Stanford School of Medicine

    Dr. Christopher Gardner is a nutrition scientist focused on what foods to eat and what foods to avoid for optimal health, as well as the forces that can successfully motivate people to improve their food and beverage behaviors. His recent research interests include: “stealth nutrition,” which focuses on shifting diets through the integration of non-health related approaches, like the connection between food and climate change; institutional food; and the microbiome.

    Christopher Gardner: “I would say the biggest thing for me is humility. I am a nutrition scientist. I understand the mechanism. You should eat that. [But] there is the business aspect, the marketing aspect, the legal aspect, the policy aspect, the cultural aspect, the historical aspect, the storytelling aspect… The humility to recognize how many other disciplines and factors are tugging at people's tongues and hearts and brains, has really been the greatest learning experience for me.”

    00:00 Intro to Dr. Gardner
    01:03 How nutrition research becomes a Netflix documentary 
    04:22 Using humor to inspire retention
    06:09 The road from philosophy to nutrition science
    07:20 The dissonance with access to nutrition information
    09:21 Food & Society: External motivators and behavior change
    14:51 Why institutions have a powerful role in food systems transformation
    16:55 The "instead of what" and "with what" approach to behavior change
    21:26 The complex nature of food choice
    25:50 How “stealth nutrition” influences choice
    29:34 Embracing humility and creative storytelling in science communication 
    32:18 Takeaways for changemakers

    Links
    Stanford School of Medicine Nutrition Studies Research GroupNetflix Documentary - You Are What You EatThe Game Changers DocumentaryCardiometabolic Effects of Omnivorous vs Vegan Diets in Identical Twins A Randomized Clinical TrialMichael Pollan’s Omnivore Dilemma Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, MiracleEric Schlosser's Fast Food NationMarian Nestle's Food PoliticsCIA’s Greg Drescher on Using Deliciousness to Drive Change | Food Lab Talk Episode 13

    Keep in Touch
    Subscribe, rate, review the show at foodlabtalk.com
    Follow Food Lab talk on YouTube and LinkedIn

    *The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

    • 34 min
    28. Wendy Lopez and Jessica Jones, Diabetes Digital

    28. Wendy Lopez and Jessica Jones, Diabetes Digital

    Wendy Lopez and Jessica Jones are nationally recognized Registered Dietitians and Certified Diabetes Educators. They are the founders of Food Heaven – a multimedia platform originally founded for women and communities of color experiencing barriers to food, healthcare and nutrition education - and the newly launched Diabetes Digital - a trusted source for virtual personalized nutrition counseling dedicated to diabetes and prediabetes. In their highly successful podcast, videos, books and more, they dive deep into health and wellness topics with a lens on inclusivity and cultural competency.

    Wendy Lopez: “Needs vary based on what community you're talking about, what country you're in, what neighborhood you're in. Talking to the people that are impacted the most by the food system to learn more about what their needs are, what they would want out of a food system, is really important because they're the main stakeholders.”

    Jessica Jones: “It's also making sure that people have access not only to health promoting foods, but also culturally relevant foods. Because so often people want to come into communities and say, you should be doing this, or, these are the foods that are helpful. And it's like one list. But it's more effective, and we've seen this firsthand, trying to incorporate foods that people enjoy that are part of their cultures and not demonizing those foods.”

    00:12 Intro to Wendy and Jess
    01:55 The evolution of Food Heaven to Diabetes Digital
    03:46 How prioritizing cultural relevance builds inclusive, sustainable food systems
    06:35 Celebrating diversity to reduce stigma and shame
    08:09 Socioeconomic and cultural factors influence on choice
    10:42 Improving access to healthy, sustainable foods 
    12:50 Building trust through science and lived experiences
    15:01 How motivational interviewing balances nutrition advice and personal preferences 
    18:11 Embracing life’s fluctuations
    21:08 Why growing a diverse support community can enhance impact
    24:14 The importance of embracing “fun” in business development
    26:47 Takeaways for changemakers

    Links
    Food HeavenDiabetes DigitalDiabetes Digital PodcastMotivational Interviewing: An Evidence-Based Approach
    Keep in Touch
    Subscribe, rate, review the show at foodlabtalk.com
    Follow Food Lab talk on YouTube and LinkedIn

    *The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

    • 29 min
    27. Clancy Cash Harrison, Food Dignity Movement

    27. Clancy Cash Harrison, Food Dignity Movement

    Clancy Cash Harrison is a food equity advocate, registered dietitian, TEDx speaker, and international thought leader who challenges the way food insecurity is approached and discussed. Her mission to demolish the stigma around food access places her on the cutting edge of advocacy. Clancy is the founder of the Food Dignity® Movement, a strategic program for leaders who want to shift how they approach nutrition outreach by making healthy food access a priority.

    Clancy Cash Harrison: “How can we create solutions that work? First, I had to be humble enough to say I was wrong. One of the questions I started asking myself is, where am I wrong so I can be right? Now we have our volunteers asking the same question. What are we here to learn today from the people that we're working with?”

    00:24 Intro to Clancy
    01:49 How uncovering personal bias began the Food Dignity Movement
    04:56 Breaking down silos to collaboration 
    07:32 Defining hidden hunger 
    09:04 Why changemakers should adapt solutions to each unique audience
    11:33 Creating solutions that work: “Where am I wrong so I can be right?”
    14:19 Taking hunger out of the charity box
    16:30 Driving systems change through local agriculture
    17:41 How to use skepticism and appreciation to fuel changemaking
    19:10 The material impact of one $8,000 walk in cooler
    21:23 People are the experts in their life 
    22:50 Uncovering the “why” instead of judging food choices
    25:16 How admitting what you don’t know can fuel personal growth
    27:46 Call to action: find the cracks and be the glue 
    29:17 Takeaways for changemakers

    Links
    Food Dignity MovementClancy’s TEDxFood Dignity Movement Podcast Food Dignity Challenge Food Dignity Documentary 

    Keep in Touch
    Subscribe, rate, review the show at foodlabtalk.com
    Follow Food Lab talk on YouTube and LinkedIn

    *The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

    • 32 min
    26. Walter Willett, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

    26. Walter Willett, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

    Dr. Walter Willett is a physician and Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He also co-chairs the EAT-Lancet Commission, a group of 37 world-leading scientists working to determine how to provide a healthy diet for a future population of 10 billion people while respecting planetary boundaries. Dr. Willet’s career has centered on the development of methods to study the effects of diet on the occurrence of major diseases. His research has provided unparalleled insight into the long-term health consequences of our food choices.

    Walter Willett: “Look at where you are and start off working there. Ultimately at a much larger scale, you'd like to have an impact. But if you don't have control of the dials and the levers at that level, your own food service and wherever you happen to be working or studying can often be improved a lot, and you learn a lot from that experience. I certainly have. Almost everybody has part of their life in a workplace or in their community that they could be making some improvements. And a lot of times that's where the biggest changes start.”

    00:22 Intro to Walter
    02:43 Connecting human health and the climate crisis
    04:24 The Great Acceleration Theory
    06:29 Three pillars for food systems transformation
    08:47 Harnessing community action to catalyze systems change
    10:30 The history of our food choices and related complexity of shifting diets
    13:31 Levers to positively influence population diet quality
    16:21 What global consumption habits tell us about public health trends
    18:02 Lessons from effective grassroots movements
    20:50 Building trust, providing better data, and acknowledging uncertainty
    24:01 Integrating justice into food systems solutions
    26:37 Generational awareness and action on sustainability
    28:28 Embracing disciplinary diversity for systems transformation
    29:36 Why patience is the #1 skill for change management
    31:40 Takeaways for changemakers

    Links
    The EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, HealthThe Great Acceleration TheoryScientific Review: Food in the Anthropocene: the EAT–Lancet Commission on healthy diets from sustainable food systemsSummary Report: EAT-Lancet Commission Summary Report (includes Five Strategies for a Great Food Transformation)Research Article: Improvements In US Diet Helped Reduce Disease Burden And Lower Premature Deaths, 1999–2012; But Overall Diet Remains PoorVideo: What is a healthy and sustainable diet? The EAT-Lancet Lecture - Johan Rockström & Walter Willett
    EAT-Lancet 2.0
    Keep in Touch
    Subscribe, rate, review the show at foodlabtalk.com
    Follow Food Lab talk on YouTube and LinkedIn

    *The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

    • 34 min
    25. Sara Burnett, Burnett Strategy and Communications

    25. Sara Burnett, Burnett Strategy and Communications

    Sara Burnett has more than 18 years experience developing brand-building strategies and campaigns. As Vice President of Food Beliefs, Sustainability & Public Relations at Panera Bread, Sara was responsible for the company’s policies on food issues ranging from sustainability to food additives. She also provided menu labeling and education to inform customer choice. Throughout her career, Sara expertly blends her communication skills with a deep understanding of policy, social responsibility, and sustainability, authoring, and managing bold ESG strategies. She is currently the Principal at Burnett Strategy and Communications.

    Sara Burnett: “As food professionals, we can all find a way to convince ourselves that we're not part of the problem and we're not part of the solution. And we see it on both ends of the spectrum. When you're at a big food company, you're saying, oh man, it's hard to move this behemoth of an organization... [On] the small side of things, you might say, my voice isn't that big. But the reality is it is a very complicated and connected food system, and there is a role for everyone. So whether you're small or big, you're private or public, you're an NGO or a government… [we] all have an impact, and collectively we can do a lot more together.”

    00:27 Intro to Sara
    01:27 Sara’s career shift from health and wellness to sustainability 
    03:05 Collective action and impact: critical elements to a truly sustainable food system
    05:15 Coolfood menu labeling to nudge better-for-you choice
    07:54 How post-purchase education influences future decisions
    10:25 The surprising indirect impacts of calorie menu labeling 
    14:06 Building trust with customers by working with credible partners 
    17:04 The levers to support choice: transparency, demonstrating material impact, pursuing authentic solutions
    19:40 Merging emotion and science for successful change management
    23:20 Why a clear business plan can support resiliency and longevity for sustainability professionals
    26:56 Takeaways for changemakers

    Links
    Panera Food BeliefsWRI’s CoolfoodCoolfood Menu Labeling at PaneraHowGoodJanet Ranganathan Food Lab Talk Episode
    Keep in Touch
    Subscribe, rate, review the show at foodlabtalk.com
    Follow Food Lab talk on YouTube and LinkedIn

    *The views expressed by the guests in this podcast don't necessarily represent the host’s views, nor those of his employer.

    • 31 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

taytay1983---.. ,

Packs a punch

These short interviews deliver impactful new perspectives from inspiring leaders.
Michael has a way of finding guests who have inspiring stories/messages (Paul Newnham was a favorite) AND are able to share in such an entertaining way

BernieFoodTank ,

Great podcast!

The food tank team looks forward to every episode. Incredible guests.

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