Today I have one of the most exciting announcements ever, and since this is independence day celebration week, I can't imagine a more fitting American shindig than this one.

             Jan. 25, 2020, Cincinnati, Ohio, a national ROGUE FOOD CONFERENCE will showcase the latest greatest efforts in food freedom.  Our tagline is CIRCUMVENTION NOT COMPLIANCE.  For the few of you who are unfamiliar with food regulations, be assured that the time has come in this country, unfortunately, where circumventing the law is more doable than complying with the law.

             It's a shame when things get to that point, but that's where we are with big brother government, all in our best interests, of course.  Maine's attempt at a localized Food Sovereignty Ordinance movement has been quashed by the state and federal government.  Cottage food laws are being adopted slowly in states, but they seldom extend to meat and poultry in any meaningful way.

             So here we are, with society craving convenience foods like ready-to-eat but the only ones who can satisfy it are the mega-industrial food corporations who can spread licensing and compliance overheads across millions of pounds and dollars.  The playing field is so prejudicial against scale that the real innovators in the food space--the little guys-- need to innovate ways over, around, and under these malevolent tyrannies.

             By the way, although regulation advocates say they're about food safety, they're more about market access than food safety. I trust a lot more what comes out of our home kitchen than the kitchen at McDonald's.  You can sell the output of one; you can't the other.  I defy anyone to prove that we had more food pathogens and toxicity prior to government intervention.

             Price, availability, and safety all hinge on consumer choice in the marketplace.  Right now, consumers do not have freedom of food choice.  But numerous innovative folks have figured out loop holes to gain neighbor access to food options.  So it is with extreme pleasures and gratitude that I can announce this 2020 ROGUE FOOD CONFERENCE, which will explore and publicize the numerous work-arounds within our heavily regulated food space.

             We'll hear from people who sell pet food.  Some have created a food church.  Some operate under a non-public co-op country club arrangement.  These schemes are highly creative, hated by the food police, and loved by people who, as consenting adults, gratefully enjoy the empowerment of food choice freedom.  When people lament the deplorable state of American food (we lead the world in junk food) too often their only solution is more regulation, from nutrition labeling laws to food temperature requirements to licensing plans.

             But another alternative exists:  it's called freedom.  We've tried top down regulatory oversight to change the food system, only to see it become nutrient deficient, sugar laden and sterile.  It's time to try a bottom up approach with some freedom instead of bureaucracy.  Based on the thousands of farmers and consumers I talk with each year, if we actually had neighbor to neighbor food freedom, the authentic integrity food movement would catapult in size and sales.  The only thing that keeps it on the lunatic fringe is the over-burdensome heavy-handed regulatory environment.  Absent that, farms like Polyface would take massive chunks of market share from Wal-Mart and company.  And our prices would plummet.  How about that?

             Look it up, folks, ROGUE FOOD CONFERENCE 2020.  It won't be a Tea Party, but it'll be the most American gathering of innovative food freedom advocates you'll ever want to enjoy.  We won't be asking for a government program.  We won't be filling out forms for grant money stolen from taxpayers.  We won't be asking for higher taxes or more government intrusion.  All we ask is to be left alone to enjoy consensual food choice and to publicize ways to express our choice.  How's that for loaded verbiage?  I hope everyone comes.

             Does your lack of food choice bother you?