Attention food policy geeks: Marion Nestle will be in town next week to deliver a lecture at Cal on food politics and the 21st-century food movement.

Nestle, a professor of nutrition, food studies and public health at New York University, is a Cal alumna with a prolific body of work examining the scientific and socioeconomic dimensions of food. She’s written several popular books, including Food Politics; Safe Food; What to Eat; Eat, Drink Vote; and Soda Politics. Her blog,, is also widely read.

Nestle’s lecture, which will take place March 21 at 4:10 p.m. at Cal’s International House, will cover the ways in which today’s global food system affects food insecurity and obesity. According to the website for the Berkeley graduate department, which is hosting the lecture:

“The paradox of today’s global food system is that food insecurity or obesity threaten the health and welfare of half the world’s population. Underlying these problems is an overabundant and overly competitive food system in which companies are forced to expand market channels to meet corporate growth targets. The contradiction between the goals of public health and food corporations has led to a large and growing food movement in the United States, which seeks policy changes to promote healthier and more environmentally sound food choices. This lecture considers the cultural, economic, and institutional factors that influence food policies and choices, and the balance between individual and societal responsibility for those choices.”

The lecture is part of the Barbara Weinstock Lectures on the Morals of Trade series, which was established in 1904 by Harris Weinstock on behalf of his wife, Barbara. After the first lecture was delivered, he wrote: “Thus, hope is in the air and there is a better and cleaner day in store for all destined to spend their lives in commercial pursuits. The thing to do at this hour is to accelerate the movement and to bring this hoped for day as near to our own as possible. The California University lectureship on the moral of trade is a small effort in that direction.”

Ralph Nader, Robert Reich and Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen have all delivered lectures in the series, so Nestle is in good company.

The lecture is free and open to the public.

Kate Williams has been writing about food since 2009. After spending two years developing recipes for cookbooks at America’s Test Kitchen, she moved to Berkeley and began work as a freelance writer and...