Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Internationalist Bookstore in Chapel Hill - a bookstore that supports grassroots efforts

Last Wednesday, Jan 25, Sara Kate and I did a presentation on our book Veggie Revolution at the Internationalist Bookstore in Chapel Hill, NC. I want to put in a plug for the Internationalist. They (Biff in particular) did a great job of publicizing the event and we had a great turnout. It was the liveliest audience we've had. I expected, being a college town (UNC), that a lot of the folks would be well-informed and opinionated about the meat industry and our American food system, and that was the case. We had lots of excellent questions about animal rights, veganism versus vegetarianism, where the alternative food movement is headed, and what we can do to keep it rolling.

I was amazed to find out just a couple of weeks ago that the Internationalist Bookstore is a nonprofit organization, and is staffed almost entirely by volunteers! It exists to support grassroots efforts at social reform - authors, organizations, and so on. This spring the Internationalist will be hosting a panel to discuss the sustainable agriculture movement, and Sara Kate and I hope to be part of that. The Chapel Hill area (actually nearby Pittsboro) seems to be a focal point for the sustainable ag movement. Pittsboro is home to the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, also the Rural Advancement Fund, the Rare Breeds Conservancy, and Central Carolina Community College, which has a thriving and innovative academic program in sustainable agriculture. It's an energizing community - lots of local organic farmers and farms using sustainable methods in the area. Exciting things are happening there.

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