Leading Chefs at ‘State’ of the Union Summit

Mr. Coohill and Mr. Asher go to Washington.

Don’t expect Tom Coohill to be at his namesake Denver restaurant or Daniel Asher to be at Boulder’s River & Woods over the next few days. They join such star chefs as Tom Colicchio, José Andrés and Andrew Zimmern at the second meeting of the 2017 Plate of the Union Farm Bill Summit today and tomorrow in Washington, D.C.

 Chefs and food industry leaders from around the country are there to review and discuss food policies surrounding the 2018 Farm Bill. This is a follow-up to the first session in April, when the group, led by the agricultural advocacy organization Plate of the Union, reported its findings and recommendations to the House and Senate.

 Every five years, Congress is tasked with passing the farm bill, which affects things such as how food is grown, what it costs the consumer, the safety of drinking water and whether all Americans have access to healthy, affordable food.

 “One of the main goals of this program that we’re working hard on is addressing hunger,” Chef Tom says. “We’re looking to revamp the labeling system in this country which, if it were done accurately with a standardized approach on the sell-by date, we could be feeding way, way more people with the food that just gets thrown away at the grocery store every day. If we were to get this through, it would basically cure hunger in the United States, because 40 percent of food just goes to waste right now.”

 Plate of the Union is a food advocacy organization with a stated mission of encouraging U.S. agriculture to focus on organic and sustainable practices with positive impacts on land and water, resulting in everyone being able to access “healthy, affordable food – regardless of their zip code – that is fair to workers, keeps farmers on the land and protects our environment.”

Good luck, Chefs.