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University of British Columbia (UBC) Podcasts

UBC Podcasts allow University of British Columbia alumni, students, faculty and others to access a wide variety of UBC-related digital content, from public lectures and talks to student-created music and more. Stay connected to UBC by subscribing to UBC podcasts.

Monday, May 14, 2007

The 100-Mile Diet: A Year of Eating Locally

This book chronicles Alisa Smith and J.B. MacKinnon's attempt to feed themselves for a year on food grown and produced within 100 miles of Vancouver.

The publishers describes The 100-Mile Diet as "The remarkable, amusing and inspiring adventures of a Canadian couple who make a year-long attempt to eat foods grown and produced within a 100-mile radius of their apartment.

When Alisa Smith and James MacKinnon learned that the average ingredient in a North American meal travels 1,500 miles from farm to plate, they decided to launch a simple experiment to reconnect with the people and places that produced what they ate. For one year, they would only consume food that came from within a 100-mile radius of their Vancouver apartment. The 100-Mile Diet was born.

The couple’s discoveries sometimes shook their resolve. It would be a year without sugar, Cheerios, olive oil, rice, Pizza Pops, beer, and much, much more. Yet local eating has turned out to be a life lesson in pleasures that are always close at hand. They met the revolutionary farmers and modern-day hunter-gatherers who are changing the way we think about food. They got personal with issues ranging from global economics to biodiversity. They called on the wisdom of grandmothers, and immersed themselves in the seasons. They discovered a host of new flavours, from gooseberry wine to sunchokes to turnip sandwiches, foods that they never would have guessed were on their doorstep.

The 100-Mile Diet struck a deeper chord than anyone could have predicted, attracting media and grassroots interest that spanned the globe. The 100-Mile Diet: A Year of Local Eating tells the full story, from the insights to the kitchen disasters, as the authors transform from megamart shoppers to self-sufficient urban pioneers. The 100-Mile Diet is a pathway home for anybody, anywhere."

Call me naive, but I never knew that flour would be struck from our 100-Mile Diet. Wheat products are just so ubiquitous, “the staff of life,” that I had hazily imagined the stuff must be grown everywhere. But of course: I had never seen a field of wheat anywhere close to Vancouver, and my mental images of late-afternoon light falling on golden fields of grain were all from my childhood on the Canadian prairies. What I was able to find was Anita’s Organic Grain & Flour Mill, about 60 miles up the Fraser River valley. I called, and learned that Anita’s nearest grain suppliers were at least 800 miles away by road. She sounded sorry for me. Would it be a year until I tasted a pie? (A Talk of the Town public lecture originally presented on 14-May-2007)

Posted by Web Communications, UBC Public Affairs 10:40 AM  #Permalink

Thursday, May 10, 2007

My Best UBC Memories

In this special podcast compilation of audio clips, a number of 2007 University of British Columbia graduating students speak on how their time at UBC has influenced their personal and professional growth.

Each of the graduates is featured in the May 2007 edition of UBC Reports, the university's monthly news publication.

To read these graduates' complete stories, or to learn about the latest research and teaching achievements at UBC via e-mail subscription, visit www.publicaffairs.ubc.ca/ubcreports.

Posted by Web Communications, UBC Public Affairs 3:51 PM  #Permalink

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