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The Work of Culturing: Local Food Expo, Cheese Tasting, and Talk by Heather Paxson

On this Friday, March 7th, Tufts will be hosting the first of a series of events aimed to bring together food-related activism and academic study at this university and  local organizations.  The event will begin at 1 PM, featuring an expo of local food businesses, organizations, and activist collectives. So far, the confirmed groups who will be tabling are Groundwork Somerville, Equal Exchange, Shape Up Somerville, Union Square Main Streets, MF Dulock Meats, Aeronaut Brewing Company, New Entry Sustainability Farming Project, Dining Services, Food for Thought, Real Food Challenge, and Tom Thumb Student Garden.

The event will continue with a cheese tasting from 2 to 3 PM of Vermont Shepherd and Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, among others.  The tasting will be followed by keynote speaker Heather Paxson, an anthropologist from MIT, who will be discussing small-scale cheese-making and the politics surrounding raw milk. This talk will be followed by a panel of professionals, including a Tufts anthropology professor, a Bauer fellow, the executive director of Union Square Main Streets, and an associate professor from the Friedman School of Nutrition.

 Heather Paxson: Raw (Milk) Politics: Safety and Skill in Small-Scale Cheesemaking

Source: MIT Anthropology Faculty

Source: MIT Anthropology Faculty

A lead organizer of the event, professor Alex Blanchette of the Tufts  Anthropology department, comments on the event: “Organized by faculty in Anthropology and Environmental Studies, we intend this event to the be first in an ongoing series that brings together the rich array of faculty research and student work already happening at Tufts around the politics of growing, distributing, and eating food. Looking at food helps us ask new questions across diverse domains including human health, ethics, environmental sustainability, and social justice. This particular event is centered on the broad question of what kinds of work are needed to make local food systems flourish.”

Again, this event will be Friday, March 7th and take place from 1 to 4:30 PM in the Coolidge Room of Ballou Hall. Hope to see you all there!

-Izzy Levenson

Cover Photo Source: The Kitchen Skinny

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