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JBF Food Conference Day Two: Top 13 Quotes of the Day

Anya Hoffman

October 28, 2014

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The second day of the 2014 JBF Food Conference kicked off with a spirited discussion between Michael Pollan and Sam Kass, after which participants heard about innovative design, policy, and medical collaborations that harness the powerful relationship between food and health. Here are some of the most interesting things to come out of the conversation:

1) “How do you bring about change? Anyone who knows me knows that I think that lecturing people is not the answer.” – Jane Black, Journalist

2) “I don’t think it’s at all possible to make the change that we’re seeking without engaging with the entire supply chain.” – Sam Kass, Executive Director of Let’s Move! and Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition Policy, the White House

3) “Here’s the thing: pressure works. People on the hill don’t like having lots of people calling them and visiting them at their offices. I can’t tell you to do that—so I’m not. But engaged citizens have an impact.” – Sam Kass

4) “I think the pink slime episode was terrifying for the food industry. They’re nervous about their consumer and that’s a great opportunity for us.” – Michael Pollan, Writer, Journalist, and Professor, University of California, Berkeley

5) “To change food you have to create a culture in which people can afford good food and have enough time to sit down and eat it with their families, however their families are constituted.” – Michael Pollan

6) “The Affordable Care Act changed the way consumers are accessing insurance. Now consumers have choices. They’re shopping. Our business has a motivation to drive value and engagement.” – Eliza Ng, M.D. Vice President of Medical Affairs, Emblem Health

7) “Access to healthy food is a right. If we started the conversation from that point, the conversation would be very different.” – Maritza Wellington-Owens, CEO, Harvest Home

8) “Why don’t doctors talk to patients about healthy eating? The single biggest reason is it doesn’t work. When patients get home everything is working against them.” – David Stevens, M.D., Chief of Ambulatory Care, Kings County Hospital Center, on the need for the fruit and vegetable prescription program

9) “Instead of paying for the medicine on the back end, why don’t we invest in food at the front end?” – Michel Nischan, CEO, Founder & President, Wholesome Wave

10) “It’s not just about health, it’s not just about food. It’s about human spirit.” – Eliza Ng

11) “If I tell my patients to stop eating at Subway and start taking a peanut butter and jelly sandwich every day, I’ve just cut their risk of dying from all-cause mortality by 25 percent.” – Tim Harlan, M.D., Assistant Dean for Clinical Services at Tulane University School of Medicine; Executive Director, The Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine at Tulane University

“If you eat well and eat really good ingredients, it should be delicious, and it should be joyful, and it should be about indulgence in a way that’s healthy—and celebratory.” – Seamus Mullen, CEO/Owner, Tertulia; and Author, Hero Food

13) “We’re telling the story of global abundance through diversity. When it comes to food and when it comes to ideas about what the future of food will hold, Americans have the most diverse perspectives in the world.” – Mitchell Davis, on the American pavilion at Expo Milan 2015

Missed anything? Watch archived panels and talks here.

Check out the most memorable things we heard on Day One of the JBF Food Conference.

Anya Hoffman is a freelance writer and contributing editor at the James Beard Foundation. Find her on Twitter.