Ten Questions with Robert Egger, Founder and President, L.A. Kitchen

From foodtank.com, by Kate Reed
Ten Questions with Robert Egger, Founder and President, L.A. Kitchen

Food Tank, in partnership with the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau, Farm-to- Fork Program, and University of California- Davis, is excited to announce the 1st annual Farm Tank Conference at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento on September 22-23, 2016. This two-day event will feature more than 35 different speakers from the food and agriculture field. Researchers, farmers, chefs, policy makers, government officials, and students will come together for interactive panels.

The event will feature interactive panels moderated by top food journalists, networking, and delicious food, followed by a day of hands-on activities and opportunities for attendees.

Food Tank recently had the opportunity to speak with Robert Egger, Founder and President, L.A. Kitchen, who will be speaking at the summit.

Food Tank (FT): What inspired you to get involved in food and agriculture? 

Robert Egger (RE): I wanted to build an economic link between rural farm surplus and urban demand for local food. This allows our social enterprise to support farmers, create healthy meals, and provide paychecks for training grads we hire.

FT: What do you see as the biggest opportunity to fix the food system? 

RE: We need to create an inter-generational coalition of voters to elect new leaders who understand this issue. While generations are being pitted against one another, I think that food policy can be a unifying principle.

FT: What innovations in agriculture and the food system are you most excited about? 

RE: Two words--Social Enterprise. These new businesses give equal attention to people, planet and profit, and allow consumers to make their philanthropy how they spend their money everyday, not the check at the end of the year. Dinner can become and agent of change.

FT: Can you share a story about a food hero that inspired you? 

RE: I love George Washington Carver. Henry Ford offered him fame, fortune and opportunity, yet he stayed loyal to the work and community at Tuskegee. He proves that you can stay local, and still make powerful strides.  

FT: What drives you every day to fight for the bettering of our food system? 

RE: The knowledge that 10,000 people turn 70 everyday, and they'll need access to affordable, nutritious food to stay active and healthy.

FT: What’s the biggest problem within the food system our parents and grandparents didn't have to deal with? 

RE: Knowledge. They didn't even understand the level of waste involved in the food system, or that the food they ate was killing them. They never thought that private wealth would trump public health.

FT: What’s the first, most pressing issue you’d like to see solved within the food system?

RE: How do we feed more people, healthier food for less money. Affordability and access!!  

FT: What is one small change every person can make in their daily lives to make a big difference? 

RE: Eat less meat. At my age, I have two choices--cut back on meat, or tequila. It won't be tequila. 

FT: What’s one issue within the food system you’d like to see completely solved for the next generation? 

RE: Clear, concise labeling.

FT: What agricultural issue would you like for the next president of the United States to immediately address? 

RE: I like to see a national food policy council established.

 

Buy your tickets today. We're offering $50 off in August, use "Save50" at checkout. 

To find out more about the event, see the full list of speakers, and purchase tickets, please click HERE. Interested participants who cannot join can also sign up for the live-stream HERE.

To join us at Food Tank's São Paulo, Brazil Summit in October 2016, please click HERE. To join us at Food Tank's Chicago, IL Summit November 16, 2016, please click HERE.

Want to become a sponsor of the Food Tank Summit? Please click HERE

Want to suggest a speaker for one of the Summits? Please click HERE

Want to watch videos from previous Food Tank Summits? Please click HERE

Sponsors for this year's Food Tank Summit in Sacramento include: Almond Board of California, Annie’s Inc., Barilla Center for Food and Nutrition, Blue Apron, Clif Bar & Company, Driscoll's, Fair Trade USA, Farmer’s Fridge, Food and Environment Reporting Network, Inter Press Service (IPS), Niman Ranch, Organic Valley, and VegFund. More to be announced soon.

Join the discussion using #FoodTank across Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter!