5 Favorite Foodie Films

Alex Palzewicz, Eat Local, Food Waste, Learn More

We all turn to film and video for inspiration, escape, education and sometimes even in search of purpose. A well done film will take you on a journey and leave you a new person at the end. The following 5 Foodie Films (documentaries) will get you through the end of winter and keep you creative in the spring! There is no particular order or ranking, just five films that I chose for unique reasons.

Food, Inc. – 2008

This documentary may be over 10 years old now, but it still hits on many major remaining problems in the food industry. For example, it focuses on the issues of industrial livestock production and outbreaks of E. coli, as well as going back in time to help us understand where things went wrong.  What sets this documentary apart is how it arms viewers, aka consumers, with tools and inspiration to make better choices on what they purchase.

Wasted! The Story of Food Waste – 2017

In this film you see some of the world greatest chefs, food system experts and everyday people elaborate on issues surrounding food waste. More importantly, they’ll showcase what they’ve been doing to reduce it. Beer made from the crusts of bread, a compost system that goes towards delicious pork and my personal favorite, Chef Massimo Bottura, who opened Refettorio, a restaurant that feeds the homeless of Milan by using food that is considered “unsuitable” for supermarkets to sell.

Spinning Plates – 2012

This documentary hits the heartstrings for me. You follow the journey of three completely different types of establishments and learn about their struggles, successes, and passions. Meanwhile, some of the obstacles are overcome, while others eventually cause the demise of the business. My only critique is that they had dived deeper into the story of La Cocina de Gabby and the issues surrounding immigrants in the United States. Nonetheless, the film showcases how diverse establishments still share the similar passions and goals, as they are epicenters of gathering and nourishment.

Sustainable – 2016

Sustainable really gives me hope and inspiration for the future. It focuses on the collaborative efforts of farmers and chefs as they strive for a sustainable future. As I continue my work with Taste the Local Difference, I often think back to the themes of this film.

The Biggest Little Farm – 2019

So, this film isn’t out yet, but the trailer puts a tear in my eye. This is a story of a husband and wife building their dream farm, and the ups and downs of their journey. It reminds me of all the incredible farmers I’ve met in the Upper Peninsula and takes me back to my own agricultural past. Experiences like that help you better understand and appreciate the world around you. The Biggest Little Farm releases on May 10th.

Did we miss one of your favorite foodie films? Let us know in the comments below!

Alex Palzewicz is the Local Food Food Coordinator for the Upper Peninsula. Contact her at alex@localdifference.org

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