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The Leading Voices in Food

Our vision for The Leading Voices in Food podcast series is to offer wide-ranging perspectives and knowledge from researchers, community leaders, policymakers, farmers and more.  We want to introduce new ideas and people, shift your thinking in topics you know well, and contribute to movement towards equity and resilience in the food system. Transcripts for each interview are also posted.

We feature topics across the food system spectrum such as food insecurity, obesity, agriculture, food access and equity, food safety, food defense, and food policy issues. The series is hosted by Dr. Kelly Brownell, emeritus director of the World Food Policy Center, and professor of public policy and psychology at Duke University. Guest hosts Sarah Zoubek and Jennifer Zuckerman also contribute to the series.

To suggest a guest or research we should feature, please email Deborah Hill at

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Jean Buzby podcast

E195: How USDA is tackling food waste and loss

In the United States, over one third of all available food goes uneaten through loss or waste. That is a hard number to ignore when more than 10% of the US population is food insecure. What’s more, uneaten food is the single largest category of material sent to landfills. So what is the USDA doing to address food loss and waste? Our guest today is Dr. Jean Buzby, the Food Loss and Waste Liaison in the US Department of Agriculture’s Office of the Chief Economist.

Lytton podcast

E194: Foodborne illness and the struggle for food safety

When I was growing up, people didn’t fret much about food safety. Trichinosis from undercooked pork was about all I heard about. But today people hear about much more: norovirus, salmonella, campylobacter, staphylococcus, listeria, and there’s much more. So what in the world is happening? Our guest, Timothy Lytton, distinguished university professor and professor of law at Georgia State University knows an awful lot about this. He’s the author of a seminal book entitled “Outbreak: Foodborne Illness and the Struggle for Food Safety.”

Podcast Thomas Trabold, Ned Spang

E193: Challenges and opportunities: turning food waste into valuable products

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, food is the single largest category of material sent to landfills in the US, where it emits the greenhouse gas methane. It would be a win for climate if food waste could instead be transformed into commercially valuable products. Today, we’re talking with two researchers who are working out the feasibility of just that. Welcome to the Leading Voices in Food podcast. Our guests for today are sustainability and energy science researcher Thomas Trabold of the Golisano Institute for Sustainability at Rochester Institute of Technology. And second, we have food science and technology researcher Ned Spang from the University of California Davis Food Loss and Waste Collaborative.