Interviews & Profiles

Down to a Science

“How did we ever get to the point where we need investigative journalists to tell us where our food comes from and nutritionists to determine the dinner menu?” This question comes early in UC Berkeley journalism professor Michael Pollan’s forthcoming book, “The Omnivore’s Dilemma,” due out April 11 from the Penguin Press. It’s essentially the

Diet Fads and American Eating

LINDA WERTHEIMER, host: This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I’m Linda Wertheimer. Coming up, the skinny on Luciano Pavarotti. But first, Michael Pollan is an author. He’s written about food, gardening, the environment, building his own small house in the woods. That book is called “A Place of My Own.” He’s now turned his

The Cheapest Calories Make You the Fattest: A food-chain journalist looks for stories in our meals

Why are Americans so fat? According to Michael Pollan, it’s not just supersized portions and sedentary lifestyles that make obesity the second-highest cause of preventable death in the United States. It’s corn. When exploring the causes of the obesity epidemic, Pollan, a contributing editor to the New York Times Magazine and proponent of “food-chain journalism,”

The High Price of Cheap Food Mealpolitik over lunch with Michael Pollan

If you’re reading this on a fair Sunday, journalist Michael Pollan is probably in his garden. That’s where he harvests a lot of his ideas for his award-winning books and articles on what’s for dinner and how it got to our plate. Orville Schell, dean of the UC Berkeley School of Journalism, persuaded Pollan, former

Factory Farming

A new report finds high levels of PCB contamination in farmed salmon, at a time when American consumption of the fish is growing rapidly. Factory farming keeps the U.S. meat and fish supply cheap and plentiful, but at what cost? Join NPR’s Neal Conan and his guests.

Q & A: A Conversation with Michael Pollan

“The first time I opened Peter Singer’s Animal Liberation, I was dining alone at the Palm, trying to enjoy a rib-eye steak cooked medium rare.” The Palm is a restaurant known for its beef, the sentence is the opening of an article in the New York Times Magazine, and the author, Michael Pollan, is now

Overabundance of corn and its effect on the economy

ALEX CHADWICK, host: As you sit down to Thanksgiving dinner, consider for a moment the side dishes. One of the items that may be there can do more than provide nourishment. It can also affect public health, the economy, even national politics. Corn is the subject of this report from DAY TO DAY’s Mike Pesca

Writers on Gardening

Planting, nurturing, toiling, rooting, blooming, culling and crafting are all literary metaphors borrowed from the age old obsession with plants and flowers. In this hour of Talk of the Nation, Neal Conan talks with some award winning writers who are also master gardeners and discover the pleasure of borrowing from one vocation to grow the

My Summer in a Garden

BOB EDWARDS, host: Early last month, MORNING EDITION began a series called The Armchair Gardener, a winter distraction for listeners unable to dig in the dirt. The first installment followed three zealous plant lovers through the gardening section of a bookstore. Today an all but forgotten author who helped invent American garden writing. Here’s NPR’s

Michael Pollan discusses his new book, The Botany of Desire

What do sweetness, beauty, intoxication, and control have to do with plants? Well…everything according to Michael Pollan, the author of the best selling The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s-Eye View of the World. In this hour of Science Friday, we’ll take a look at the way people and plants–including apples and marijuana–interact with each other,