Mark Bittman Leaves The New York Times for ‘Central Role’ in a California Food Startup

Mark Bittman Leaves The New York Times for ‘Central Role’ in a California Food Startup

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In his new role, Bittman pledged to “make it easier for people to eat more plants.”

Mark Bittman, the longtime food columnist for the New York Times, will be leaving his post in order to take “a central role in a year-old food company,” Bittman announced in his last regular post for the Times, “A Farewell.”

Bittman, who has spent the last several years advocating for a better national food and health policy, will join a startup whose goal is to “make it easier for people to eat more plants,” a central tenet of Bittman’s own guidelines for an improved diet: Stop eating junk and hyper-processed foods, and eat more plants than you did yesterday, or the last year.

In November, during the Times’ inaugural Food for Tomorrow conference, Bittman also called out the fallacy of the oft-quoted problem of feeding an estimated global population of nine billion by the year 2050.

“The way to feed the nine billion is simple: eliminate poverty,” Bittman said. “The root issues of hunger are lack of equality and democracy, not lack of food supply. Hunger and malnutrition are not about agriculture, they’re about economics.”

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A year later, the food journalist has decided to begin “putting philosophy into action,” though details remain sparse. “Other arenas are calling me, and other people can and will carry the torch in the food world,” Bittman promised. “I’ll support them as best I can. And when it seems compelling, I’ll get my voice out there.”