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The once and future organic king

(article, Kim Carlson)

Remember the days when British food was the butt of jokes, when all we heard about were soggy chips and biscuits dense as hockey pucks? Those days are long gone, mates. In the 21st century, the Brits are known for their good food sense. 

It isn’t just the gastropubs that are giving British food a good name, or The Fat Duck, which is often mentioned as one of the world’s finest restaurants, or the fun-loving and talented chef Jamie Oliver, with his serious efforts to reform school lunches. 

The Brits really get the whole sustainable food thing. And it turns out that no one gets it more than Prince Charles himself, as described in a recent New York Times article.

An advocate of maintaining rural culture in Britain, the prince has maintained an organic farm for years. Further, he produces and sells (apparently delicious) foodstuffs that are made of high-quality, sustainably grown ingredients; sales of the Charles chow benefit U.K. charities.

Although the article doesn't say how these efforts are received by the current British press, it hasn't been easy for the prince, who was slammed for his efforts early on. Now, interestingly, it’s American food luminaries — chef Alice Waters, author Eric Schlosser, and others — who speak most highly of the prince’s efforts as champion of the sustainable-food movement:

bq(blue). Alice Waters, who drove the organic movement in the United States, is smitten. “He is, in private, really one of the most forward-thinking, radical humanitarians I have ever talked to,” she said.

While American politicians and leaders are slower to join the efforts to deindustrialize our food supply, the prince is gung-ho:

bq(blue). To Ms. Waters and her troops, no one else of the prince’s stature has spoken out on the issues they hold dear: responsible stewardship of the land, preservation of rural life, and the need for good food grown without chemicals or worker exploitation.

He’s the Prince of Wales and the monarch of a movement.