Food and the City


Nicola Twilley (founder and author of the blog Edible Geography) and Sarah Rich (a former senior editor of Dwell who writes about food, sustainability, and design) are collaborators on The Foodprint Project. They hosted Foodprint NYC— “the first in a series of international conversations about food and the city” —on February 27, 2010. In “Food and the Shape of Cities,” they talk about the perhaps surprising relationship between urban architecture and food systems. (Note: The article appears in Urban Omnibus, an online project of the Architectural League of New York. Thanks to Slow Food Seacoast’s Outreach Coordinator Amy Pollard for bringing the article to our attention!)

More resources:

The Foodprint Project is a contextual exploration of food. From the cartography of food supply chains to the molecular anatomy of flavor, from the migration of ethnic recipes to the future of urban agronomy, foodprints look beyond the plate to the social, political, artistic and economic forces that shape the way we eat.”

Foodprint NYC [was] the first in a series of international conversations about food and the city. From a cluster analysis of bodega inventories to the cultural impact of the ice-box, and from food deserts to peak phosphorus, panelists will examine the hidden corsetry that gives shape to urban foodscapes, and collaboratively speculate on how to feed New York in the future. The free afternoon program will include designers, policy-makers, flavor scientists, culinary historians, food retailers, and others, for a wide-ranging discussion of New York’s food systems, past and present, as well as opportunities to transform our edible landscape through technology, architecture, legislation, and education.”

The program schedule for this free public event included four thought-provoking panels:

  • Zoning Diet (How do zoning, policy, and economics shape New York City’s food systems?)
  • Culinary Cartography (What can we learn when we map New York City using food as the metric?)
  • Edible Archaeology (How has today’s food culture in New York been shaped by social changes, economic fluctuations, and technological innovations throughout the city’s history?)
  • Feast, Famine, and Other Scenarios (What are the opportunities and challenges of New York City’s possible food futures?)