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On October 3, 2018, I gave a preview talk, “Voyage to Anthropocene: Rocking the Future of Food” at Toronto’s Depanneur, owned and run by the inimitable Len Senater. Artery co-sponsored the event, which raised funds for the Depanneur’s work as a food hub. Len prepared a meal befitting an Anthropocene foodie and I discussed how food is implicated in the soon-to-be-made-official new geological epoch, the Anthropocene. I also discussed some of the ways that altering food production, distribution, preparation, consumption and waste management can help us make at least some of our food carbon negative. I showed results of one of my recent experiments developing fungi textiles as a by-product of food (and in this case drink) production as one of the ways to minimize the carbon footprint and maximize CDR (Carbon Dioxide Removal).

I met some amazing people that night—school teachers dedicated to learning and then teaching more about food sustainability and future food management, entrepreneurs dedicated to bringing people together in intimate settings, highschool students, university professors who teach futures and forecasting, food engineers, writers, and more besides. A fantastic evening for me made tasty with Len’s creative culinary explorations on the lower ends of the food chain. He made broths with yeast and seaweed, pesto with algae and nutritional yeast, a dessert with chickpea water that was so yum I could have eaten two.

 Len’s main course, a millet risotto with a smear of algae pesto (made with spirulina and nutritional yeast).

Len’s main course, a millet risotto with a smear of algae pesto (made with spirulina and nutritional yeast).

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I’ve written about Len Senater before. His work developing a Community Food Hub at his adorable shop, the Depanneur, has been instrumental to a lot of the projects I’ve carried out in Toronto. Many of the chefs with whom I have worked have relied on the Depanneur’s kitchens, which Len rents out by the hour. Len has also let me use the space free of charge for media interviews. He’s a real mensch and we’re lucky to have him here in Toronto. If you don’t already know about the Depanneur, visit their site and go to one of the many workshops, dinners or events. He does good work.

(updated 16 Oct, 3:15pm)

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