Tom Philpott is a food and agriculture correspondent for Mother Jones and the cofounder of Maverick Farms, a center for sustainable food education in Valle Crucis, North Carolina. For five years, Philpott served as a columnist, food editor, and senior food writer for the online environmental site Grist. His work on food politics has appeared in The New York Times, Newsweek, Orion, OnEarth, Gastronomica, and the Guardian, and he has been interviewed by Terry Gross on Fresh Air. Before moving to the farm in 2004, Philpott worked as a financial journalist in Mexico City and New York, most recently writing daily dispatches on the stock market as equity research editor for Reuters.com. In 2011, Utne Reader named him one of “25 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World.” On this special episode of What Doesn’t Kill You, Phil talks about the use of corn and soy as fuel additives, and how commodity farming creates various issues in the food business today, including raised costs and environmental effects. Given the dwindling of the farm population, Phil also talks about what he sees as the way forward for farmers today, and how and if the new farm bill will deal with these current issues. Tune-in to learn more about these problems, and how to continue staying involved in these important matters today through motherjones.com, or connecting with Tom himself. This program has been sponsored by Heritage Foods USA.
“Both the House and the Senate in the past year have passed a version of the farm bill that is shifting to subsidized insurance. It’s this crazy subsidy system that will continue this chain of farmers just getting by.” [26:10]
— Tom Philpott on What Doesn’t KIll You