MEDIA AVAILABILITY: “Plate of the Union” Campaign in Des Moines Jan. 21st to Meet with Presidential Campaigns

January 20, 2016


Media Contacts:
Ja-Rei Wang, Union of Concerned Scientists,, 202-331-6943
Claire Benjamin DiMattina, Food Policy Action,, 202-631-6362

“Plate of the Union” Campaign in Des Moines Jan 21st  to Meet with Presidential Campaigns

Mark Bittman, Former New York Times Columnist, National Non-Profits, and Community Groups Call on Presidential Candidates to Commit to Food System Reform

Mark Bittman, former New York Times columnist, and Ricardo Salvador, director of the Food and Environment program at the Union of Concerned Scientists, will be in Des Moines on January 21 to meet with the staff of presidential campaigns ahead of the Iowa caucuses on behalf of a growing coalition of community groups, farmers, parents and scientists.

The group is calling on the candidates to reform the U.S. food system so that every American has equal access to healthy, affordable food that is fair to workers, good for the environment and keeps farmers on the land.

Current federal policy supports the production of commodity crops, such as corn and soybeans that are used to produce processed junk food. Unhealthy eating leads to numerous diet related diseases, including type-2 diabetes and heart disease, costing tax-payers billions of dollars each year in health care costs. This out of balance system should instead encourage the production of healthy fruits and vegetables.

The group is mobilizing scientists, farmers, chefs, students, parents and good food advocates to engage presidential candidates in the coming months.

Bittman and Salvador will be meeting with community groups and available to talk to reporters from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. by appointment and from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at HoQ restaurant, located at 303 E 5th St., Des Moines, IA 50309.


Plate of the Union is a collaborative campaign organized by Food Policy Action, Food Policy Action Education Fund, the Union of Concerned Scientists, and the HEAL Food Alliance to raise the voice of Americans who care about food and farm issues during this election season. More can be found at


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