Archive for the 'Food Conference' Category

Students on the rise: “lets get CoFed”

Yoni Landau inspired by the Hazon Food Conference and as a result is putting together a training in Northern California for students to take their campus food movements to the next level and then implement a sustainable, student-run business model to act as a hub. The organization is called the Cooperative Food Empowerment Directive (CoFed). Thanks, Yoni, for sharing your work and your thoughts with the Hazon family!

Think of the last time you saw something that pissed you off enough to do something amazing about it. Maybe it was a long grocery line or a bumper sticker for the Tea Party, or maybe it takes a humanitarian crisis like Haiti to really get your adrenaline going.

For me, it was orange chicken.

Hazon’s Food Programs Featured on Civil Eats Blog

Check out this post about the Jewish Food Movement on Civil Eats. It is great to learn about the Food Movement from two of Hazon’s core characters – Judith Belasco, Hazon’s director of food programs and Sue Carson, one of Hazon’s key lay-leaders in the food movement. Sue co-chaired the 2008 Hazon Food Conference and helped start a Hazon CSA program at her synagogue in Merion Station. The article includes these reflections from Sue about her experiences at the Conference:

Make Cheese Not War


Avi Rubel is the North American Director of Masa Israel Journey, the umbrella organization for immersion programs in Israel for young adults (18-30). When not sending people to Israel, Avi can be found making cheese, bread, kombucha or fermenting or pickling all kinds of goodies in his Brooklyn apartment and recording his adventures on his food blog, Make Cheese Not War. In the weeks after the Hazon Food Conference, he shared some of his thoughts about his experience with Hazon in California.

Click below to read his posts:

Combating Food Deserts in Louisville, Kentucky


Thanks to Rachael Don for this guest post! Rachael is a Registered Dietitian in training and co-editor of the Jess Schwartz Jewish Community Day School’s Hazon CSA newsletter in Scottsdale, AZ.  A former healthcare administrator, she holds an MBA and a Masters in Health Services Administration. When she’s not cooking organic vegetables, Rachael is caring for her three young sons and husband, David in Phoenix, AZ. She shares these thoughts with the readers of that newsletter and all of you!

Hazon in Colorado


Learn with Hazon’s Executive Director and Founder, Nigel Savage, get updates about our work to build a healthier and more sustainable Jewish community and a healthier and more sustainable world for all. Participate in the conversation as we explore the dynamic interplay of food, Jewish tradition and contemporary life.

Brain Food: Jewish Educators at Hazon’s Food Conference

HazonFood2010_dgartner_img_7015Check out this amazing article about our first ever Jewish Food Education Network  pre-conference track from Hazon’s supporters at The Covenant Foundation.

This year The Covenant Foundation made it possible for all members of our Jewish Food Education Network, JFEN, to attend the entire Food Conference, including a special pre-conference track designed specifically for those involved and  interested in the field of Jewish Food Education.

“I feel really positive about the energy and engagement here,” said [star educator Vicky] Kelman, who presented a session on the centrality of family mealtime in Jewish culture and consciousness. “There is tremendous commitment and passion around JFEN and Jewish food education.

Mazal tov to Udi!


Hazon staff love granola. We’re blessed to often get home-made batches from our colleagues, but when we need granola for 600+, we turn to Udi’s Granola. Udi and his team have been supporters of the Hazon Food Conference for years. And, if that wasn’t enough to convince us that we like them, Udi’s Granola was a winner in the  San Francisco Chronicle’s granola reviews. Here’s what they said in the article:

Panelists described the first-place Udi’s ($4.99/13 ounces at Whole Foods) as “toasty and nutty,” with “a mild honey flavor” and “nice small flakes.” They liked the “oaty-ness” and “simple flavor” and thought it had an “old-fashioned taste.” Two would buy this brand, two might and one would not.

Veguary – Teen Activists Take on Meat Consumption


Andrew Udell is a 16 year old student at the Abraham Joshua Heschel School in New York City. Andrew is a co-founder, together with his friends Lizzie Davis and Skyler Siegel, of Veguary. I asked him a few questions about his plan to help save the world one month at a time.

What is Veguary and how did it start?

One day at shul, my Rabbi posed a question to our smaller minyan about our effect on the world.  One thought led to the next, and I just started thinking about how eating meat affects the world.  I decided to do some more research about vegetarianism, and I came across some really daunting facts that were difficult to handle, yet important to know. I wanted to try out being a vegetarian for a little while. I started doing some more thinking, one thing led to the next, and with the help of a few friends, we founded Veguary and built the site in a few months. Veguary refers to the second month of the year, in which those enthusiastic about fighting global warming, improving their health, or making a positive difference in the world commit to reducing or eliminating their meat intake by pledging on our website at

Why February? Was it for the name?

What the Hazon Food Conference Means to Me

Thanks so much to Aaron Lerman for this great guest post.  Aaron is the Vice-President of Bet My Life Charities, which seeks to educate and train athletes for races ranging from the casual 5k to Ironman Triathlon…and to raise money for some worthy causes. When he’s not working with the charity he can be found eating falafel, traveling the world, riding bikes or learning more about health. At home in Chicago, he designs and develops window treatments and other home products for retail stores…so if you’re in the market for some curtain rods, this is the guy to talk to! This next spring Aaron is looking to get down and dirty by creating his own backyard garden which has been a long awaited (and delayed) project.

Aaron Lerman

Upon walking into the Birthright Israel NEXT salon at Hazon, I could feel the excitement and energy in the room. Dozens of people were talking, laughing, re-connecting and of course eating on this first night of the conference. This high-energy atmosphere permeated every event I attended during the conference… and did I mention there was lots of eating?

Now, looking back on my time at the Hazon Food Conference in Monterey, California, I wanted to share what the conference meant to me, and how the energy of the event has continued to stay with me.

What Would Moses Drive? And Other Questions about Jews and Climate Change

(This post originally appeared on and is reprinted with permission)


What would Moses drive? This was the title of a session on climate change at the Hazon Food Conference, held December 24 to 27 in Pacific Grove, Calif. Indeed, this is a question for the ages. Or for right now.

The conference came just a few days after the close of the United Nations’ climate talks in Copenhagen, Denmark. The conference also marked the end of a journey by a very wacky school bus, which cruised across the country on used vegetable oil to raise awareness about the Jewish Climate Change Campaign [read more about that here and here]. So it made sense for Jewish educator and environmental visionary Adam Berman to ask the question.

As it turns out, it didn’t really matter when this conference on a Jewish food movement that emphasizes sustainability took place. Really, Jews should be asking themselves what the quintessential member of the Tribe would do about climate change every day, and modeling solutions themselves. Luckily, Jewish practices translate beautifully into concrete tactics.

Spotlight: Food Justice at the 2009 Hazon Food Conference

2009 Hazon Food Conference

In this article for JTA, Sue Fishkoff discusses the “food justice” track at last week’s Hazon Food Conference. Among the topics in focus: workers’ rights issues, food access in low-income neighborhoods, Fair Trade operations, and community gardens as a tool for empowerment.

Kosher “Organic Batter Blaster” vicariously attends the Hazon food conference


My dear friends The Wandering Jew and David Levy over at Jewschool, sick with envy that they couldn’t attend the Hazon Food Conference this year, produced this tongue-in-cheek video to vicariously participate nonetheless. Please enjoy their playful snark as we consider how the hell this product fits into the eco-kashrut movement.

Eat My Heart Out

Thanks so much to Sara Rice for this great guest post.  Sara recently attended the Hazon Food Conference and is the Noshin’ columnist at


I didn’t go to Jewish camp. Or Jewish day school — or even regularly attend a shul growing up. As a somewhat-recent convert, I don’t have any of the memories involving particularly eventful Pesach seders or Purim carnivals that many of my Jewish friends do. But it makes me all the more appreciative of my time at Hazon Food Conference 2009. Where else can I sing birkat hamazon with 400 other Jews who I know get “eating and being satisfied” in the same way I do? Where else would I have the opportunity to make havdalah with such exuberance that the floor is visibly reverberating under my feet from the combined force of, at minimum, 200 others? These are now my memories, and these are my people — foodie Jews who care about taste, ethics, the environment, and even just the beauty of a bowl of dried fruit. But to say we were all the same would be absurd; I met people with all different careers — sex therapist, caterer, Jewish educator, math and philosophy student, farmer, botanist, historian, and author; people of all ages, from barely born to octogenarians; nationalities from the U.S. to the U.K., to Israel, and even Argentina.

Who Will Eat the Goat?

Thanks so much to Lailah Robertson for this great guest post about her experience and the Hazon Food Conference. Lailah is a San Francisco freelance writer who writes the blog In My Box about her CSA box and all the delicious vegetarian, gluten-free things she makes with it. This post is NOT intended to endorse any particular diet or agenda, e.g. to say that being vegan (abstaining from all animal products) is the only way to live, or that vegetarians are hypocrites. It merely hopes to be an exploration of one of the least considered aspects of our food chain.

Nigel Savage, founder of Hazon, asked us two questions during his keynote speech last night at the Hazon Food Conference. It felt like the beginning of one of those Jewish parables, the ones where the wise rabbi asks or tells us something that means more than it seems on the surface, where you ponder on the teaching and the world opens up in a new way.

“Stand up if you eat meat, but you wouldn’t if you had to kill it yourself,” Nigel called out. A number of people in the packed hall rose from their seats. I applauded them for their self-awareness and honesty, while of course maintaining a certain degree of vegetarian smugness.

Then he asked us another question. “Stand up if you are vegetarian, but would eat meat if you killed it yourself.” This time fewer people stood up, but it was still a significant number.

Then Nigel told us the story of the goat.