May 192014
 

Today was a great day. I got the chance to join our class up in the Sierras on the hunt for the ever illusive morel! I try to get out with the classes as much as I can, but usually have to leave them in the very capable hands of our resident mushroom expert Patrick. The Sierras are amazing, and basically deserted, so we had the place to ourselves. We found a good haul of different species of edible mushrooms. From coral mushrooms, which was my big find; to coccora, which is an edible amanita (the same family as the most deadly of all, the Death Cap); to the delicious morel. One hunter found a huge haul, and everyone went home with some great finds.
Getting out into nature is a great reset. I’ve been mostly ocean bound these days, spearfishing, abalone diving and surfing, so it was nice to get up in the crisp mountain air for a change. If you want to get out there yourself check do it now, because mushroom season is almost over for the year! Classes here.

Mar 262014
 
 March 26, 2014  Posted by at 11:21 pm Tagged with: , , ,  No Responses »

The bill to repeal the glove law, AB2130, passed the Assembly yesterday 18-0! Thanks to everyone who sent in letters of support, they really made a difference. We still have to get through the Assembly Appropriations Committee and then on to the Assembly Floor and the Senate. Still a long road to go, but the unanimous vote today shows that folks in Sacramento see this is a bill that the people dont want. Exciting stuff!

Iso

Mar 242014
 
 March 24, 2014  Posted by at 9:49 pm Tagged with: , , , ,  4 Responses »

Tomorrow is a big day. Its the day the health committee decides whether to repeal the glove law. Your support on this petition is one of the reasons they’re meeting at all, but now we need to show them you really mean it.

Two ways to help:
1. Send a letter of support to Benjamin.Russell@asm.ca.gov. There is a sample letter below, but you can also let them know in your own words that you support AB2130 (the bill to repeal the law). If you send a letter please let me know.

2. Go to Sacramento! I know its a drive, but its important that we have people there to show their support. The meeting is at 1:30pm in room 4202 of the State Capitol. Let us know if you can make it.

Thanks again for your support. Your voice is working to change a misguided law that will effect millions of people. We’re in the homestretch now, we can do it!

Iso

 

Sample Letter:

[Date]

The Honorable Dr. Richard Pan

Assemblymember, 9th District

State Capitol, Room 6005

Sacramento, CA 95814

Fax: (916) 319-2109

Re: AB 2130 (Pan) – SUPPORT

Dear Assemblymember Pan,

[Name of your organization] writes to express our support of your AB 2130, which would

roll back the recently enacted law prohibiting bare hand contact with ready-to-eat food.

This prohibition, created last year by AB 1252 (Committee on Health), will require bars and

restaurants to buy and discard thousands of disposable gloves, imposing a significant financial

burden and environmental impact. The numerous glove changes workers will be required to

undertake will further result in a loss of operational efficiency. Though we are in full support

of ensuring food safety for restaurant customers, small restaurants and bars were not involved

in the discussion surrounding AB 1252. As a result, substantive changes that directly affect our

business and livelihood were put into place without our input.

[Optional: include a brief statement about your organization and the problems created by the

glove law.]

We thank you for introducing AB 2130 to roll back the glove law.

Sincerely,

[Name and title]

cc: Members of the Assembly Health Committee

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feb 252014
 
 February 25, 2014  Posted by at 12:14 am Tagged with: , , , ,  No Responses »

You did it! You signed and they listened! Assemblymember Pan, the chair of the Health Committee (the committee that passed the Glove Law), announced emergency legislation today to repeal the law! We’re not done yet, we still have to make sure the bill goes through, but they havnt heard any major opposition so it’s looking good. This is super exciting, and a real example of how powerful we are as a group. This is my first time wading into politics, and granted, its a law that was clearly ridiculous, but its really amazing how quickly this all happened. The people spoke and the government listened: If only all politics could work so well….

Thank you all for the support so far, and I’ll make sure to keep you updated as we move forward.

Iso

Feb 112014
 
 February 11, 2014  Posted by at 12:33 am Tagged with: , , , , , ,  No Responses »

 

Been working working working on getting this campaign going. After just a few days we have over 2500 signatures on our petition! We’re going to be meeting with Assemblyman Phil Ting tomorrow, hoping to convince him to champion the bill. Met with the new head of the GGRA (Golden Gate Restaurant Association), Pattie Unterman from Hayes Street Grill, and Earl Shaddix from Bayview Underground Market to talk strategy. We’re going to really start pushing this out to media after we get Ting to agree to work with us (fingers crossed!).

Next steps are getting more folks in the city to be aware of the campaign. Going to be organizing some folks to canvas the cities restaurants, getting people to sign the petition. If you want to get involved, email me at iso@foragesf.com. This is exciting stuff! I really think we’re getting somewhere in pushing back against this misguided law.

Iso

 

Feb 072014
 
 February 7, 2014  Posted by at 9:53 pm Tagged with: , , , , ,  No Responses »

Im sure there are some of you out there with similar concerns, so I wanted to post this email I got, as well as my response:

 

“Too many of us SF diners have gotten stomach problems from so-called nice clean restaurants.  This should not be merely about respect for the chef.  Instead it should be about respect for the health of your customers!    Your credibility is being shot if you think your email recipients would even consider that the former is more important than the latter.   Also, your proposal to change the law implies restaurant chains are as not as clean as small restaurants, when we all know it’s far more likely to be the opposite!

Signed,
A diner and his friends who are tired of expecting a stomach problem every few months of dining at so-called nice clean SF restaurants.”
My Response:
“Thanks for the input. I think that all these issues are important, and the truth of the matter is that gloved hands are not any cleaner (and often much dirtier) than washed bare hands. Having worked in restaurant kitchens, people with gloves on are much less likely to change those gloves when changing tasks (taking out the garbage then cutting vegetables), than someone is to wash their hands. It’s really just a truism of the logistics of working in a kitchen. I definitely am not downplaying your desire to avoid getting sick (food poisoning sucks!), but this is not the solution, its just a mirage of safety that actually makes you less safe.
Thanks
Iso”
Sign the petition here: http://chn.ge/1neaVig