Karen Perry Stillerman

Senior analyst, Food and Environment

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Karen Perry Stillerman is an analyst and advocate for transforming the U.S. agriculture and food system to one that produces affordable, healthful foods for consumers; reduces air and water pollution; and builds healthy soil for the farmers of tomorrow. She holds a master's degree in public affairs and environmental policy. See Karen's full bio.

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Karen's Latest Posts


On October, Apples, and a Sustainable Food System

October is surely the best month of the year. From my closet emerge beloved boots and sweaters. And from my kitchen cabinets, baking dishes and heavy cast iron pans. With cooler temperatures and a bounty of fresh food in season, I want to cook again. And during this magical month, my kitchen plays host both to late-season tomatoes and okra and to fall crops including acorn squash and cauliflower. And, of course, apples—which is fortunate, because in a new video released today, UCS Fellow Mark Bittman is cooking up something simple but delicious with that October-est of fruits. Read more >

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organic vegetables for sale at farmers market

Organic Farming is Growing (But Not Everywhere)

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently released the results of its latest survey of organic farmers, and there’s good news. Organic farming is up nationally, with 12,818 farms generating $6.2 billion in certified organic product sales in 2015, up 13 percent from 2014. But the survey shows that all states aren’t pursuing organic farming equally. And one of the top organic states may surprise you. Read more >

Photo: Lance Cheung, USDA/CC BY 2.0, Flickr
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A Labor Day Recipe for a Fairer Food System

Labor day is meant to honor the contributions of workers to our collective prosperity and well-being. So what about the nation’s contribution to the well-being of workers, particularly food and farm workers? A new video from food writer and UCS Fellow Mark Bittman sheds light on the plight of these workers. Read more >

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Iceland from the air

A Look at Iceland’s Food and Farming System (Or, What I Ate on My Summer Vacation)

As a food lover and an agriculture geek, I frequently plan vacations around what there is to eat. This summer, I traveled to Iceland, ostensibly to admire its breathtaking scenery and ride its tough little horses. As a bonus, I escaped a couple weeks of DC’s stifling heat. But of course, I also took the opportunity to see (and taste) this unique country’s equally unique food and agriculture system up close. Read more >

Photo: Karen Perry Stillerman
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Photo: Iowa State University/Lisa Schulte Moore Photo: Iowa State University/Lisa Schulte Moore

How US Farm Subsidies Make Taxpayers Pay Twice (And How We Could Change That)

Usually, when you buy something, you pay for it just once. But if you’re a US taxpayer, you’re paying twice for the food system you’re “buying” with your hard-earned tax dollars. An example: today’s massive federal farm subsidies encourage farming practices that lead to toxic algae blooms, drinking water pollution, and other costly problems we have to pay for again downstream. By contrast, modest investment in just one proven alternative farming system would achieve annual savings—in the form of water pollution averted—of $850 million. Read more >

Photo: Iowa State University/Lisa Schulte Moore
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