Food Empowerment Project’s (F.E.P.) goal is to raise awareness about how our food choices can change the world. By making informed, ethical food choices, we can make a difference and take a stand against abuses. F.E.P. encourages people to use their individual choices to eat with their ethics and use their collective voices to help bring about positive change. We strive to do this in our outreach as well as on our website.
The main focus of our work and campaigns can be broken down into these areas:
F.E.P. works to promote ethical veganism through education, outreach, and by providing tools.
Our sister site VeganMexicanFood.com provides delicious recipes, not only for vegans of Mexican descent but for anyone who enjoys Mexican food, and is available in English and Spanish. VeganFilipinoFood.com, available in English and Tagalog, shares flavors from the Philippine Islands with vegans and vegan-curious.
All events that F.E.P. hosts are vegan, and we have been successful in encouraging other justice groups we have worked with to serve vegan fare at joint events.
F.E.P. also coordinates events in the local community to focus on animals who are raised and killed for food.
Food Chain is our free vegan retention newsletter to help people go and stay vegan. We previously ran a pilot by providing 12 monthly issues to 500 individuals interested in going vegan or who were newly vegan, and through a before-and-after survey, we are now determining the newsletter’s effectiveness in order to offer Food Chain to even more interested individuals.
Access to Healthy Food
When asked, F.E.P. works with community members to survey access to healthy foods and also conducts focus groups with local organizations in black and brown communities and low-income communities. We then inform public officials of our findings through our reports and encourage policy changes. Our work on the lack of access to healthy foods over the years has allowed us to collaborate with various community organizations as well as governmental bodies.
Our reports on access to healthy foods have been cited by the United Nations Human Rights Committee and are a resource for many schools and universities across the globe. In 2017, the city of San José, CA, and the city of Vallejo, CA, recognized and honored F.E.P. for our vegan food justice work, including our access work within their cities.
Currently, we are engaging in the corporate campaign Shame on Safeway to pressure Safeway/Albertsons to change their unjust policy that sometimes leaves neighborhoods without a grocery store for more than a decade.
We encourage people to “eat with their ethics” as this has effects on both human and non-human animals. F.E.P. is working to inform consumers around the globe about the worst forms of child labor, including slavery, that take place for chocolate. To assist consumers with their chocolate purchases, we have created a list of companies that make vegan chocolates that we do and do not recommend, and it is available in English, Spanish, and German. This list, which includes more than 700 companies, is updated monthly. In addition, we have apps (Android and Apple) that people can download for free to help them with their purchases.
We also work to get corporations to be transparent about where they source their cacao.
Farm Worker Rights
F.E.P. works to advance the rights of farm workers by supporting corporate, legislative, and regulatory changes. Currently, we are leading a coalition of organizations to overturn California’s “50-mile” rule that negatively impacts the education of children of farm workers.
We have also organized school supply drives for the children of farm workers, as well as food drives. Since 2015, we have distributed thousands of school supplies to the children of farm workers.