“Every living creature on this earth interacts intimately with its environment via its food, Humans in our developed technological society, however, have largely severed this connection, and with disastrous results. Though affluent people have more food choices than people of the past could have ever dreamed of, and though one person’s labor can produce more food today than ever before, the large-scale, commercial methods and systems that enable these phenomena are destroying our Earth, destroying our health, and depriving us of dignity. With respect to food, the vast majority of people are completely dependent upon a fragile global infrastructure of monocultures, synthetic chemicals, biotechnology, and transportation.
Moving toward a more harmonious way of life and greater resilience requires our active participation. This means finding ways to become more aware of and connected to the other forms of life that are around us and constitute our food—plants and animals, as well as bacteria and fungi—and the resources, such as water, fuel, materials,tools, and transportation, upon which we depend. It means taking responsibility for our shit, both literally and figuratively. We can become creators of a better world, of better and more sustainable food choices, of greater awareness of resources, and of community based upon sharing. For culture to be strong and resilient, it must be a creative realm in which skills, information, and values are engaged and transmitted; culture cannot thrive as a consumer paradise or spectator sport. Daily life offers constant opportunities for participatory action. Seize them.”
— Sandor Ellix Katz, excerpted from “Introduction”, The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from Around the World (Chelsea Green, 2012)