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Maisie Ganzler
Maisie Ganzler joined Bon Appétit Management Company in 1994 and has since been instrumental in shaping the company's overall strategic direction. In 1999, Maisie helped develop the Farm to Fork program, a groundbreaking company-wide initiative to buy locally, and has since helped create and launch a number of Bon Appétit’s other progressive sustainable initiatives and purchasing policies, among them farm-animal antibiotics reduction in 2002, and the Eat Local Challenge and cage-free shell eggs in 2005. Most recently, Maisie has been focused on farmworker rights. She is co-chair of the Equitable Food Initiative, a new integrated labor standards initiative led by United Farm Workers, Pesticide Action Network, and the Consumer Federation of America.

Entries by Maisie Ganzler

How You Can Fight the Drought by Eating Ugly Vegetables

(5) Comments | Posted October 16, 2015 | 5:12 PM

As a Californian, I face daily reminders of "The Drought," as we now universally know it, from commands on electronic freeway signs to conserve water, to notices in restaurants about only serving water by request, to my own dismal backyard, which I'm looking out across as I write this. Even...

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Have Some Tea and Sympathy for Fair Trade Month

(0) Comments | Posted October 2, 2015 | 1:55 PM

My mother always says "traveling makes you smarter." Travel broadens the mind, and the heart. I think everyone has had the experience of being in a foreign country (or even county) and making a human connection that deepened how they view the people who live there. Empathy arises only when...

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In a World... Without Eggs

(1) Comments | Posted August 25, 2015 | 3:45 PM

[Imagine movie-trailer, deep baritone:] "In a world where 48 million chickens have been destroyed..."

It sounds like the teaser for a science-fiction or horror movie, but it also happens to be the opening line of a recent all-staff newsletter I sent out about the impact of avian influenza (commonly known...

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Deep Thoughts: Is Your Seafood Canyon-Safe?

(0) Comments | Posted July 13, 2015 | 4:02 PM

As it happens, I live on the edge of a vast underwater canyon: the Monterey Canyon. And while I understand its importance from a marine ecosystem perspective, I never thought much about where in the world similar canyons exist or whether they are protected, like my valued California one is....

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The Latest Kitchen Gadget: A Farm

(1) Comments | Posted June 5, 2015 | 5:04 PM

Often when I'm considering what topics to write about in this column, the choices range from slightly depressing to total bummer. We have a lot of work to do in the food movement to right some longstanding wrongs. As a result, I normally choose topics that could benefit simply from...

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Got Food? Thank a Farmworker This Week

(1) Comments | Posted March 23, 2015 | 5:34 PM

An apple a day keeps the doctor away...but not if you're a farmworker picking 7,000 lbs. of apples per day on average for around 2 cents per pound. Apple pickers carry the fruit around their necks in a 40-lb sack that they empty into 1,000-lb. bins on the ground --...

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Happy New Year to California's Hens

(1) Comments | Posted January 5, 2015 | 4:51 PM

Back in February of 2014, I urged egg producers (via a column here) to stop playing obstructionist games and get behind AB 1437, the California law passed in 2010 which mandates that all shell eggs sold in my state must come from cage-free hens. As of January 1, that...

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What Small Farms Actually Need Will Surprise Even Locavores

(0) Comments | Posted October 1, 2014 | 12:49 PM

Everybody loves small family farms, from Republicans to Democrats and hipsters to ultra-religious folks. As a nation, we romanticize them -- the last link to our pioneer past, perhaps.

But in addition to being the salt of the earth, working hard from sun up to sun down, et cetera et...

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Remember Dolphin-Safe Tuna? Let's Make FAD-Free Tuna the Next Trend

(2) Comments | Posted September 16, 2014 | 10:31 AM

Perhaps because the vast majority of the tuna Americans eat comes a precooked beige in cans, people seem to forget it's a fish. Jessica Simpson famously asked if "chicken of the sea" was chicken or fish. Well Jessica, tuna are fish -- and they're in big trouble.


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Helping the Food Industry Shake Its Salt Habit

(2) Comments | Posted June 25, 2014 | 1:01 PM

Salt. It sits on nearly every table in this country. It's used in multiple clichés (see title). It's so prevalent that a history of salt became a best-seller some years back.

Humans need it to live, but at the levels that Americans currently consume it, sodium could be the...

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Dear Egg Industry: Free Your Mind and Get on Board With Upcoming Law

(1) Comments | Posted February 4, 2014 | 7:31 PM


Back in 2008, voters in California passed Proposition 2, which required California egg companies to ban the use of cages for chickens. As a California-based food company, we're proud our home state has led the way in abolishing this inhumane practice. This is...

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Walking the Walk on Farmworker Rights

(0) Comments | Posted November 20, 2013 | 3:19 PM

Fair Food Campaign marchers in Florida. Photo courtesy CIW.

It's Thanksgiving time once again, and our tables will be filled with delectable dishes, many of them made with ingredients grown on American farms.

As someone whose job it is to know as...

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5 Tips for Taking the Eat Local Challenge - Plus a 100 Percent Local Dessert Recipe

(0) Comments | Posted September 23, 2013 | 12:07 PM


At this point in American food culture, everyone's heard of "eating local." "Locavore" has entered the dictionary. Farmers markets are popping up like, well, weeds, and so are community supported agriculture programs. But it wasn't always thus.

Nine years ago, a few of...

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Deep Dish Pizza: A Love Story

(0) Comments | Posted June 25, 2013 | 11:13 AM

It's my job to take pizza seriously -- and I mean that. At Bon Appétit Management Company, we have only one corporate recipe after 26 years in business, and it's for what we lovingly call "Bauccio Pizza," after our CEO and COO, Fedele and Michael Bauccio. Proud of their Italian...

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Why We're Celebrating Endangered Foods for Earth Day

(4) Comments | Posted April 20, 2013 | 1:09 PM

Last May, I was standing in some strawberry fields in Salinas, CA, listening to Tony Serrano of ALBA Organics talk about seeing the effects of climate change in just the past decade. Ten years ago, the farmers he works with hadn't been able to grow strawberries in certain areas because...

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Veg & Vodka: 5 Food Resolutions You Might Actually Keep

(4) Comments | Posted January 7, 2013 | 5:38 PM


As the new year commences, so do the resolutions, and I'm no exception. (In fact, this year I have resolved to take dance classes: not for the exercise, but to fulflll my longtime fantasy of being a backup dancer for Janet Jackson. That's another...

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My Holiday Wish: Let's Change the Lives of America's Farmworkers

(8) Comments | Posted December 20, 2012 | 4:28 PM

Starting in childhood, we are encouraged to make wishes during the holidays. As kids, these are usually for gifts. As an adult, I find myself wishing for more substantive things. OK, every once in a while I wouldn't mind seeing a new pair of hiking boots waiting to be unwrapped....

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The Non-Controversy Surrounding Local Food

(16) Comments | Posted November 26, 2012 | 4:18 PM

A recent glut of books, studies and news articles aim to perpetuate the argument that local food is actually less environmentally friendly than its industrially raised counterpart. Claims range from "factory farms are better for the environment because they are more centralized" to "local farmers are not sophisticated enough to...

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