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What’s the Point?

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

I’ve been asked many times to explain the purpose of my attending the 2009 Hazon Food Conference. SO let me lay out the stated goals of the conference in order to provide some sort of paradigm for my own goals and then my personal experiences.

Goals of the Food Conference

    Be a clearing house for ideas:

Inspire and motivate participants to think more deeply and broadly about their food choices and food systems.

    Build Jewish community and a Jewish Food Movement:

Provide a vibrant and joyful model of Jewish life that embraces Jewish tradition, learning, and spirituality, as well as sustainable and healthy eating.

    Expand horizons:

Inspire participants who are more familiar with contemporary food issues to see the Jewish connections; equally, engage and motivate more Jewishly-knowledgable participants to explore contemporary food issues locally and nationally.

    Challenge and inspire participants:

To take health and the health of the community and earth into account in making decisions about food and eating.

    Strengthen leadership capacity:

For volunteers helping to create the conference, as well as for volunteers and professionals who serve as change agents in their own communities.

    Convey a sense of importance and joy around food issues:

Impart the understanding that contemporary food issues are significant, and that positive change is possible through education, community, and cooperation.


Over the past couple of years, I have begun to consider more and more of these food issues. When faced with new information, my factory default is to read. Books such as Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and The Omnivore’s Dilemma ignited a desire to learn more about what we eat and what we ought to be eating. But for these new ideas to feel personally authentic, I needed to restate them within a Jewish framework. And that is where Hazon enters the picture.

Each of these goals is worthy of its own post. And so I will take my time with each one in order to share my thoughts as well as reflect back on whether or not each particular goal impacted my own experience.

I hope that you will join me on my journey…

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Nancy D. permalink
    Wednesday, 30 December 2009 3:56 pm

    I think it’s great that you attended the conference and love what you said (and how you said it) about why you went. It’s interesting to me how people’s minds work so differently – my first reaction to your post about attending the conference was not, “What’s the purpose of that,” but, “How COOL is that?” I would have never guessed that outside of Kashrut, food/eating could be placed into a Jewish framework and there would actually be a conference held to do so!!
    As a Jew-By-Choice (almost), one of the many, many, things that I love about being Jewish is that it’s not just a PART of my life – it’s about who I AM as a person; how I view the world, what/how I eat/don’t eat, how I spend my time, what I study. On some level, the “purpose” of doing anything I do is about becoming more fully the person I truly am – a Jewish woman.

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Thursday, 31 December 2009 3:49 pm

      You are so right about the different questions that capture people’s interest. I am going to go out on a limb and guess that some of the perplexity stems from folks’ perception of me as a devout consumer of meat and processed foods.

      But it’s just a guess…

  2. Saturday, 2 January 2010 9:41 pm

    i can’t WAIT to read more.

    i love that last one – joy – what a great goal.

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Monday, 4 January 2010 3:05 pm

      isn’t that a novel idea? Joy and food??? Wouldn’t it be nice if we could slow down and enjoy what we are eating???

  3. Sara permalink
    Monday, 4 January 2010 7:36 am

    Love it … can’t wait to read more!!

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Monday, 4 January 2010 3:05 pm

      Thanks for the encouragement!!!! I think you’ll enjoy today’s post…

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