BFI is dedicated to incorporating a racial equity lens into every aspect of our work. We are committed to implementing planning strategies within our core programs of research, education, community engagement, and policy.
- For the first time, racial equity is incorporated into the 2021 Seed Grant RFP, released in October 2021.
- BFI is is collaborating with the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management to conduct an Anti-Racist Assessment of the Food Systems Minor.
- The Foodscape Mapping Project is a participatory, justice-oriented research and learning platform that uses the UC Berkeley campus as a living laboratory for students, staff, and faculty to generate food systems knowledge while simultaneously developing practical interventions to advance equity in the campus foodscape.
- BFI has partnered with the Berkeley Student Farms on “Land as Wellness: Student-led food, medicine, healing, and agroecology,” a project that seeks to provide mindfulness and therapeutic experiences to students within BSF’s BIPOC-led gardens.
We have held a series of events since our founding that focused on racial equity. Please read more here:
- “COVID’s Hidden Toll”: Discussion With Filmmakers & Policy Leaders (2020): A film screening and discussion about the inequities to farmworkers’ health from the COVID-19 crisis.
- Building Equitable and Inclusive Food Systems at UC Berkeley: Foodscape Mapping Project Policy Town Hall (2018): A presentation of policy recommendations drawn from the Foodscape Mapping Project for different campus entities to improve food and health equity at UC Berkeley, and to be more inclusive of marginalized groups in the food systems culture on campus.
- A Community Forum on Black Liberation and the Food Movement (2016): This forum aimed to address how structural racism and violence against Black communities extends into and across the food system, as well as the capacity of food system work to address Black liberation.
- Decolonizing Foodways Symposium (2015): Understanding food as a site for de/colonial struggles and strategies in the ways it is produced, consumed, circulated, prepared, and represented within a transnational advanced capitalist economy, this interactive community workshop grappled with what it means to liberate our diets from colonial relationships of production and consumption both in theory and in practice.
- Food, Representation and Identity in Contemporary American Cultures (2014) This full day workshop explored how food discourse helps produce and exclude certain permutations of race, class, gender, and sexuality. It framed food as both a site and a sign to understand how bodies are constructed, ideals are maintained and monitored, and how those constructs get undone through various interventions.
Building on the racial equity focus of our 2017 Farm Bill Symposium and Special Issue of Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, we are currently developing priorities for the 2023 Farm Bill. Our last three policy publications have incorporated racial equity as a core part of their analysis and recommendations. Read more here:
- Senior Nutrition in Pandemic: The California Great Plates Delivered Program (2021)
- Redefining Value and Risk in Agriculture: Policy and Investment Solutions to Scale the Transition to Regenerative Agriculture (2020)
- The Rise of Online Grocery Shopping During COVID-19: Impacts on Workers, Consumers, and Communities (2020)