Travis Limoge
4 min readSep 30, 2020


As a cook I have a finite understanding of the innerworkings of the food system, not because I was taught these things as generally it is not offered knowledge, but because I chose to work in consciousness by educating myself about the process it took to get something from land, sea, or soil to my cutting board. I realized through this exploration that the fault was not in the hands of big agriculture or our government but the intermediaries and consumers who perpetuate the plague of capitalist objectives in the most basic human necessity, sustenance.

As I pushed further away from the belief that a middle man was necessary to supply my kitchen I began to look at my peers and their approach. What I saw was a group of people with the power to change the way we consume failing to do so, some out of fear that they could not challenge a system without eminent danger to their lively hood, the majority happy to continue feeding the gluttony that has brought us to anthropocene so long as it fills their pockets and wins them accolades.

My confusion and angst compounds at the use of silly catch phrases which pull consumers in to believing that what they are eating is more responsibly handled because it carries the denomination of “Organic” or “Farm to Table”. The truth is that these terms are just designed to comfort consumers but if you ask for their definition or validity from those that spew them I’m sure the answer will be cloudy at best.

It is not hard to decipher how we arrived here. A framework was designed in which those who follow the forceful guidance of their predecessors are rewarded and so long as they continue to follow the baseless protocols they had been taught in their rise through the ranks their practices would not be questioned as they had been set in stone as gospel.

The fantasy that the person who dawns a white lapeled coat and the prefix Chef is unquestionable in their practices perpetuates our problem. In reality this means that this person has a duty to be honest and forthright about their ethics and have a true understanding of what it is they are actually pushing forth to consumers.

Food has become a focal point in popular culture, countless faces who through simple training have become able to appropriate creations of the past are now the guides for how our civilization consumes. No eco-systemic or scientific knowledge is necessary to earn your place at the head of production, just a good story, the right look, and a willingness to play the game.

When the bell tolls and hard times call the clipboard wielding conductors place blame on the system, claiming that there is no other way and that they are victims of a power greater than themselves. They place blame on demand, god forbid they have to educate a consumer on the impact of their choices, better yet that they need to educate themselves.

There is hope. If those who supply make the choice to question the past and cut ties with archaic practices the ball can start to roll in the right direction. It will take faith in humanity as well as a willingness to roll up our sleeves, equalize pay, live within reasonable means, and understand that we play no greater role than the of a carrier of a message.

We must devalue credential of past work or a diploma from a technical college for none of this matters when we are discussing the eminent danger our planet faces. Value has to be based in practice, what is each person doing to better our environment while consuming or producing ethically. What is in your pantry? How much plastic do you use? Paper products? Each one of these seemingly meaningless pieces to the puzzle add up to a grand sum over the millions of kitchens around the globe.

There is no more important matter that faces our world at this very moment than the impact generations of neglect have had on our planets ability to survive. As figure heads for consumption it is time to call to the front the irresponsibility that has lead us here, demanding change while fighting for a future of harmony on this rock.

This work will take time, new relationships must be forged, trust must be rebuilt, education must change but with diligence we will find our way through the storm. It will take immense selflessness from those at the top and a community of powerful individuals pushing not for success but for equanimity.

For those who are ready to take the charge I urge you to speak loudly, do not let your voice be muffled by the power of the machine, the hour is upon us and we must push forth with pride.