Friday, January 20, 2012

Fast Fact Friday: Foodie Force

Ok, I may have stretched alliteration too far, but you get the idea...certain culinary names are rising stars with clout. An article on the Daily Meal put forth the 50 most powerful people in food. The most crucial criterion considered is simple whether the person in question is capable "of substantially changing, improving, and/or degrading the quality and variety of the American diet or the way we think about it." So good or bad, who has the influence?

There are the usual suspects: Mark Bittman, Michael Pollan, Anthony Bourdain, Alice Waters, Josh Viertel, Michelle Obama. There are also those not as familiar, but I was pleased to see on the list: Julie Packard (of Packard Foundation and Seafood Watch); Indra Nooyi (PepsiCo...which is actually doing quite a lot in terms of sustainable ag),  Jeremy Stoppelman (Yelp!), Tom Vilsack (US Secretary of Agriculture). And there are the ones that don't surprise, but leave a bad taste in my mouth: Irene Rosenfeld (Kraft Foods...ew), Donnie Smith (Tyson - bad environmental track record), Hugh Grant (sadly not the actor, but CEO of Monsanto), Martha Stewart (yes, I'm sorry), Mike Duke (Walmart...shudder).

Daily Meal also had 10 Celebrities Fighting Hunger, which you should check out (regardless of the fact that Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, and George Clooney are all on the list). I was actually surprised that Susan Sarandon, Scarlet Johansson and Kristin Davis didn't make the list, but oh well.

Who would you want to see on the most powerful food folk lists?

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