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Past NPI Brown Bags

The UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute Brown Bag seminar series allows the current NPI staff and affiliated colleagues to hear from guest researchers, policymakers, and program leaders – to learn, to inspire, and to stretch our thinking about public health.

Below is a list of past NPI Brown Bags speakers. A YouTube playlist of Brown Bag presentation recordings is also available online

Date Topic and Speakers

December 3, 2020

Structural barriers influencing food insecurity, malnutrition, and health among Latinos in the San Joaquin Valley during COVID-19

Denise D. Payán, PhD, MPP, Assistant Professor of Public Health in the Department of Public Health at the University of California, Merced

During the COVID-19 pandemic, mass unemployment and loss of income have contributed to rapid increases in food insecurity in the U.S. Latino households have especially faced multiple health, social, and economic vulnerabilities. This presentation reported preliminary findings from two COVID-19 related studies examining: 1) the socio-economic impacts of the pandemic on Latino immigrants in rural communities, and 2) changes to food delivery in emergency food outlets during the pandemic. Policy and programmatic recommendations were discussed.

[Presentation recording] [Slides]

June 30, 2020

CalFresh Healthy Living, University of California: Programmatic Strategies, Adaptation to COVID-19, and Areas for Intentional Collaboration with NPI

Kamaljeet Khaira, Barbara MkNelly, and MaryAnn Mills; CalFresh Healthy living

CalFresh Healthy Living, University of California previously known as UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program is a SNAP-Ed program implemented by UC Cooperative Extension teams in 32 counties. This Brown Bag session highlighted programmatic strategies - including adaptation due to COVID-19 - with the goal of identifying potential areas of more intentional collaboration with NPI.


February 6, 2020

How Low-Income Parents Use Food to Create Meaningful Social Experience

Caitlin Daniel, Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of California Berkeley & Nutrition Policy Institute

Drawing on interviews and grocery-shopping observations, this talk shows how low-income families use food for social and symbolic reasons: to make their children happy, to convey care, and to feel like competent caregivers. It discusses how attending to the social dimensions of food choice complements structural and material perspectives that emphasize access, money, and time.


January 16, 2020

Mandela Partners: Building an Equitable Food System with Food Access Programming

Ciara Segura, Mandela Partners & Gail Woodward-Lopez , UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute

Ciara introduced Mandela Partners, a non-profit organization that has run innovative and community-centered programming to address ensuring fair pricing for small farmers who grow sustainably while simultaneously keeping the cost of produce affordable enough for low-income residents. Their food access programs were created to secure residents’ right to access fresh, affordable, and healthy food in convenient and familiar spaces in their neighborhoods. 

Gail shared Key findings and highlights from NPI's work conducting an evaluation of the Mandela Partners’ healthy retail activities from 2014-2017 as part of a CDC REACH grant.


November 21, 2019

Building on low-income consumer perspectives and practices to inform healthy retail interventions

Sridharshi Hewawitharana, UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute

Sridharshi Hewawitharana, data analyst with the Nutrition Policy Institute, presented findings from three projects funded by the California Department of Public Health, Nutrition Education & Obesity Prevention Branch (NEOP) projects: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Participant Voices; Communities of Excellence in Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Prevention (CX3); and a healthy retail literature review. She outlined the barriers low-income consumers face to healthful eating, the strategies they use to address those barriers, and the evidence regarding healthy retail interventions. 

[Presentation recording] [Slides]

October 3, 2019

Nutrition research in a hard-to-reach population

Susana Matias, Cooperative Extension Specialist  from UC Berkeley Department of Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology

Latino farmworkers represent a vulnerable and understudied population, with high rates of chronic disease and limited access to health care. Susana Matias, Cooperative Extension Specialist  from UC Berkeley Department of Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology presented findings from a cohort study of Latino farmworker families in Central California and a randomized trial conducted in Salinas and Oxnard. Her results elucidated their health risks, as well as promising intervention strategies in this medically underserved population.

September 5, 2019

Advancing equitable food systems through evidence-based policy 

Sabrina Adler and Nessia Berner Wong of ChangeLab Solutions

As an organization focused on using law and policy to advance health equity ChangeLab Solutions must balance the evidence-base research for action and the values and expertise of the communities we work with. Sabrina Adler, JD and Nessia Berner Wong, MPH from ChangeLab Solutions joined NPI to share examples of this approach in practice at the national, state, and local level; as well as how food system values influence this work. For more information please listen to the brown bag recording.

[Presentation recording]

August 29, 2019

Community-based participatory approach to developing affordable, healthy menus 

Karen Jetter PhD, researcher with the UC Agricultural Issues Center 

Described the development of a community-based participatory research project with the Mechoopda Indian Tribe of Chico Rancheria in California in 2010 to develop two weeks of menu that are both affordable and meet the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Using market basket research techniques, Jetter worked with tribal community members to determine the cost of the menu to be as low as $25 per day for a family of four, or $750 for a 30-day month. At the time, maximum Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits for a low-income family of four was $668. In 2015, after adjusting for inflation and increase in food prices, the menu cost $27.95 a day or $838 a month, much higher than the maximum SNAP benefits in 2015 which decreased to $639 a month. This 4.3% decline in SNAP benefits while food prices were increasing makes it hard for the most economically vulnerable to afford a healthy diet. For more information, please see Jetter's presentation slide deck and the Brown Bag recording.


July 11, 2019

The digital frontiers of junk food marketing that targets kids of color

Lori Dorfman DrPH, director of Berkeley Media Studies Group, a program of the Public Health Institute,

Lori Dorfman described how the era of Big Data and mobile marketing has transformed the food marketing landscape that ensnares children and youth today. All children deserve the opportunity to be healthy and thrive, but an all-too-common marketing practice in which food and beverage companies target kids of color with ads for junk food and soda is compromising the health of young African Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans. In her presentation, Dr. Dorfman outlined the current landscape of junk food and sugary drink targeted marketing, and shared concrete actions that kids, parents, advocates, researchers, and policymakers can take to help hold industry accountable. A PowerPoint slide deck, developed by Berkeley Media Studies Group with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, is available for free download on their website, and Dr. Dorfman encourages advocates and others to adapt and use the presentation to help raise the visibility of targeted marketing as a health equity issue. For more information, please see the following publications: Health equity & junk food marketing: Talking about targeting kids of color and Big Data and the transformation of food and beverage marketing: undermining efforts to reduce obesity?

June 25, 2019


Rethinking School Lunch Oakland

Mahasin Mujahid and Moira O'Neill

Since 2009 more than 70 percent of Oakland Unified School District’s (OUSD) students have qualified for free or reduced-price lunch—well above the national average. Recognizing that persistent risk of hunger and poor health outcomes impact educational outcomes, OUSD with the Center for Ecoliteracy, launched Rethinking School Lunch Oakland (RSLO). RSLO is comprehensive systems change approach to school meal reform that requires, among other things, infrastructure and equipment investment to improve the quality of school food. Mahasin Mujahid, Associate Professor and Chancellor's Professor of Public Health at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, and Moira O'Neill, Associate Research Scientist in the Institute of Urban and Regional Development, and a Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Law, Energy, and the Environment at UC Berkeley, lead a discussion on RSLO, its implementation and its impact on student eating, particularly in schools where food insecurity appears prevalent.

May 9, 2019


Pesticides in Food: Residues, risks and reality

Dr. Carl Winter, Cooperative Extension food toxicologist and vice chair of the Department of Food Science and Technology at UC Davis

Pesticide residues in foods represent an issue of considerable public concern. How much residue is in our foods and are these amounts risky? Dr. Carl Winter, Cooperative Extension food toxicologist and vice chair of the Department of Food Science and Technology at UC Davis, addressed these issues and provided answers to several popular consumer questions about food safety. Dr. Winter is a Fellow of the Institute of Food Technologists and the 2012 recipient of the Borlaug Council for Agricultural Science and Technology Communication Award. View the presentation, read the slides and hear Dr. Winter sing about food safety.

[Presentation recording] [Slides] [Food safety song

March 26, 2019


Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act

Ken Hecht, UCANR Nutrition Policy Insititute Policy Director

The Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act authorizes all of the federal school meal and child nutrition programs that provide funding to ensure that low-income children have access to healthy and nutritious foods. The child nutrition programs touch millions of children each day and improve educational achievement, economic security, nutrition and health. Ken Hecht lead a discussion on the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act and potential changes to improve the current policy.

March 21, 2019


The impact of litigation on physical education and student fitness in California

Hannah Thompson PhD, UC Berkeley School of Public Health and UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute

In this talk, Thompson discussed the benefits and limitations of using litigation to change educational practices and improve student health. Litigation has recently been used in California in an attempt to increase physical education (PE) provision in schools; several lawsuits have been filed against 129 school districts found to be noncompliant with state PE law.  Thompson covered findings from two Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded studies examining 1) districts’ and schools’ perceptions of the lawsuits' impact on PE quantity and quality, as well as the unintended consequences of a litigious approach, and 2) the impact of these lawsuits on students' cardiorespiratory fitness. 

March 7, 2019


Suzanne Rauzon on trends in obesity and school prevention interventions

Suzanne Rauzon, UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute

Suzanne Rauzon directs community-based prevention research projects that have a policy and environmental focus, particularly in schools. She is the study director of the Thriving Schools Initiative evaluation for Kaiser Permanente. In this talk, she looked at the recent trends in obesity, a decade of achievements in school interventions in obesity preventions, and what’s next


February 28, 2019


Pregnancy and lactation: an early window into women's cardiometabolic health

Erica Gunderson PhD, Division of Research, Kaiser Permanente Northern California.

She conducts longitudinal studies to better understand the relationship of pregnancy and lactation to the development of obesity-related metabolic diseases and cardiovascular disease in women. Her research focuses on gestational diabetes mellitus and modifiable risk factors to prevent progression to type 2 diabetes during midlife. She has led numerous studies based on the multi-center NHLBI NGHS and the CARDIA cohorts of young black and white women.

February 14, 2019


Lauren Au on demystifying the grants process

Lauren Au, Assistant researcher at the Nutrition Policy Institute

Au led an interactive grants workshop that showcased examples from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

January 31, 2019


The evolution of CA4Health: From community transformation to community of practice

Susan Watson MPH, program director for the CA4Health community of practice to advance chronic disease prevention and health equity across California, and the California Adolescent Health Collaborative 

Watson discussed how CA4Health leveraged its role as a community transformation grantor focused on rural and smaller communities to become an inclusive statewide community of practice advancing chronic disease prevention and health equity across California. CA4Health did this by building capacity, increasing intersectional awareness and advocacy, and highlighting the importance of community voice in the democratization of health. Throughout her career, Watson has prioritized working on issues related to equity, community health, and the elimination of racial and ethnic disparities. 

[Presentation recording] [Slides]

December 6, 2018


Overview of the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources 4H; Master Gardener; Master Food Preserver; and Nutrition, Family & Consumer Sciences Programs

Missy Gable, Master Gardener Program; Shannon Horrillo, 4H Youth Development Program; Katie Panarella, Master Food Preserver; and Nutrition, Family & Consumer Sciences programs

UC ANR Statewide Programs are organized to focus research and extension on solving priority problems in the management of California agriculture, natural resources and human development. UC ANR program directors explained how UC ANR is working to integrate programs to support food literacy, healthy eating and improved food security for Californians.

[Presentation recording] [Slides]

November 8, 2018


Reports from student summer interns

Katie Bern, Melanie Colvin, and Joyce M. Lee; NPI summer interns

This special NPI Brown Bag featured talks by three NPI summer interns who are Master of Public Health candidates at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health. Joyce M. Lee will talk about “Recruitment & Data Collection: Lessons Learned from the Market Match Evaluation,” Katie Bern will present her summer projects at the National Drinking Water Alliance and Melanie Colvin will discuss her work on the Healthy Beverages in Child Care project.

October 11, 2018


How survey methods affect measurement

Claire Cullen, Consultant at the World Bank Gender Innovation Lab, PhD student at the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government, visiting student researcher at UC Berkeley’s Department of Economics.

Cullen discussed how survey methods affect measurement. In a recent paper, she analyzed the magnitude and characteristics of misreporting on intimate partner and sexual violence using self-reported survey data from Rwanda and Nigeria. She compared women's reports of experiencing emotional, physical or sexual violence using three different survey methods: an indirect method (list experiment) and two direct survey methods (face-to-face questions asked by an enumerator, or audio-assisted self-administered survey on an electronic tablet). She found that women's reports of intimate partner and sexual violence in Rwanda are double when measured using the indirect list method compared to the two direct methods currently used in most surveys.

October 4, 2018


Presentation on English Channel swim

Lauren Au, Assistant Researcher at UCANR Nutrition Policy Institute

Demonstrating her commitment to physical activity and health, Lauren Au completed her inspiring 28.1 mile English Channel swim in 11:01 hours in the summer of 2018. Au shared her exciting journey, including what foods she ate to keep nourished during the swim, her first meal post-swim, the marine life she encountered, lessons learned, and what she has planned next.

September 27, 2018


The Equitable Food Initiative & Fair Trade USA

Lilian Autler, EFI Workforce Development team and Nathalie Marin-Gest, director of Fair Trade’s produce and floral program

The Equitable Food Initiative (EFI) is a multi-stakeholder program that partners with growers and retailers in the produce industry to create a more transparent food chain, safer food and healthier places to work. Autler of the EFI Workforce Development team will provided an overview of the results of EFI’s 2017 impact evaluation report with a focus on EFI’s positive impact on the lives of farmworkers. Fair Trade USA is the leading certifier of Fair Trade Certified products, working with producers and workers in more than 50 countries.  Marin-Gest spoke about that program, including a review of agricultural issues on all sides of the border and related impact from the more than 1.5 billion pounds of produce sold on Fair Trade terms that has generated significant improvements in the lives of farmers and workers.

 [Presentation recording] [Slides]


September 13, 2018


Data management presentation

Sri Hewawitharana and Shelly Mandel, UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute

This training discussed elements of data management to keep in mind while designing study protocols involving data collection, as well as a brief look into initial data management steps to take once data has been collected. Topics included: ID creation, data security, an overview of the strengths and weaknesses of a variety of data collection methods, data validation, variable naming conventions, codebook creation and an overview of some descriptive statistics used to check data quality.

September 6, 2018


Food Insecurity and Health: Addressing a Complex Social Problem Through Programs, Policies and Partnerships

Hilary Seligman MD, UCSF Professor in the School of Medicine

Dr. Seligman discussed how to address a complex social problem through programs, policies, and partnerships. Emerging evidence supports the long-held contention that food insecurity impacts health. Dr. Seligman reviewed this evidence and new insights into its economic implications. She then examined the concept of strategic science and how it can be used to make research more impactful, using examples from her own work developing food security programs (such as EatSF), examining policies that support food security (such as SNAP) and partnering with community-based organizations who share these goals (such as Feeding America).

August 23, 2018


Health and nutrition programs accessed by mixed-status families in an anti-immigrant climate: Perspectives from Mexican parents living in California

Isabel Rangel, UC ANR Nutrition Policy Institute

Rangel presented the results from her capstone project exploring how the current anti-immigrant climate is affecting the ways that mixed-status families, composed of at least one undocumented parent and one documented child, are accessing health and nutrition programs in California. Her passion for addressing Latinx health inequities stems from her experiences of being raised in rural farmworker communities both in Mexico and in California’s Central Valley.

August 2, 2018


Research to policy

Tia Shimada, director of programs at California Food Policy Advocates, and Lorrene Ritchie, director of the Nutrition Policy Institute and UC Cooperative Extension specialist

Shimada and Ritchie discussed how research can—and should—shape public policy. They drew on years of partnership between advocates and academic researchers to share lessons learned about designing, conducting and disseminating policy-focused research. They also talked about how advocates work with researchers of all stripes—from tenured faculty to think-tank data wonks—to advance state and federal policy.

July 26, 2018


The University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources Jigsaw

Mark Bell, University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources vice provost of strategic initiatives and statewide programs 

Bell talked about the interrelationship of the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources’ (UC ANR) strategic initiativesstatewide programsprogram teams and workgroups and the new UC ANR public value statements. UC ANR improves the lives of Californians through its research and extension in the areas of agriculture, the environment, natural resources management, and human and community development. The division develops and delivers solutions to local problems in such areas as farming, nutrition, veterinary medicine, water quality and conservation, and offers programs for youth and families. The effects of these efforts have been widespread—from the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, and the fibers that clothe us, to the programs that sustain our natural environments and provide educational programs for inner-city at-risk youth.

July 12, 2018


Furthering food and nutrition policy in Australia

Andrea Begley, senior lecturer in dietetics and public health at the School of Public Health at Curtin University in Western Australia

Action to progress food and nutrition policy in Australia has not been successful in the past decade even though diet is the leading contributor to the burden of disease and the latest release of national nutrition survey results convincingly demonstrate the nutrition problems. Political responses in the form of programs or interventions can best be described as patchy. Serious questions remain about the capacity of the three tiers of government to plan, coordinate and implement effective solutions. Begley discussed current attempts to improve diet quality, as well as ideas for furthering food and nutrition policy in Australia

June 28, 2018


Impacts of Federal Nutrition Assistance Programs

Marianne P. Bitler, Professor in the UC Davis Department of Economics

Bitler discussed research on the effects of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants & Children (WIC) on participants' food acquisition, diet and health outcomes. She also discussed research on the long-term effects of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (previously known as the Food Stamp program) on participants' earnings and use of disability benefits.

June 26, 2018


Farming for Native Bees: Seeking a Solution to the Honey Bee Crisis

Ingrid Feng, Native bee researcher at the UC Berkeley Urban Bee Lab

Feng discussed the decline of honey bee populations and the potential of using wild native bees as an alternate pollination source for our nation's crops. Research shows that wild native bees have the capacity to pollinate just as efficiently as honey bees. Support for native bees in agricultural, wild and urban settings has implications for agriculture, conservation and public health, however. While native bees may alleviate the immediate honey bee crisis, they do not resolve the underlying problems resulting from dependence on one bee species for crop pollination. 


June 1, 2018


Safety Net Investments in Children: The Evidence on SNAP

Hilary Hoynes, UC Berkeley Professor of Economics and Public Policy

Hoynes reviewed what is known about the long-term effects of SNAP on health and economic outcomes. She examined how giving more food assistance to families when children are young translates into outcomes in adulthood. She will presented results from some of her work in progress, “Is the Social Safety Net a Long-Term Investment? Large-Scale Evidence from the Food Stamps Program.”

May 24, 2018


A Conversation about Genetically Modified Food,  Part 2: Plant Genetics and the Future of Food with Pam Ronald

Pam Ronald PhD, Professor at the University of California, Davis, and Director of the Institute for Food and Agricultural Literacy,

Pam Ronald PhD discussed how integrated approaches are needed to enhance sustainable agriculture. The genetic engineering of crops launched in 1996; the marker assisted breeding of today and the genome editing of tomorrow are examples of a continuum of new technologies aimed at helping farmers produce food in a productive and ecologically based manner. Learn more

May 10, 2018


The built environment and health equity in Alameda County

Anna Lee, Guenet Sebsibe, and Jenny Wang, the Alameda County Public Health Department 

Policy, program, and partnering efforts to increase health equity in Alameda County were discussed during this presentation. Policy efforts include the Place Matters program, a local policy initiative addressing land use and transportation policy issues that involves collaboration with public health programs and community organizations. Program efforts include the Healthy Retail Program, which works with small corner stores in food deserts to offer healthier options. Partnering efforts include collaborations with schools, early childhood- as well as youth-serving organizations, parks and recreation centers, faith-based institutions, retail stores, low-income senior and family housing, and grassroots and community-based organizations.

May 3, 2018


Using mapping technology in public health and nutrition work

Maggi Kelly, Professor and cooperative extension specialist in the Environmental Science, Policy and Management department and affiliated professor of Geography at UC Berkeley

Kelly spoke on how to use mapping technology in public health and nutrition work. Spatial data collection, analysis, and visualization has changed dramatically in the last decade and we now are able to use this 21st-century mapping toolkit to address contemporary challenges in public health, nutrition, food systems, food security, and obesity research, among other fields. In this talk, Kelly reviewed recent advancements in data, analysis tools and communication, and highlight key cases from her work and elsewhere that illustrate the exciting and dynamic geospatial landscape.

April 17, 2018


The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans: The Role of Science, People, & Politics

Angie Tagtow, Strategic advisor 

Tagtow, has more than 25 years of experience working at local, state, federal, and international levels in agriculture, food and nutrition policy; public health; and food and water systems. In 2014, she was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as the Executive Director for the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, where she co-led the development and launch of the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Tagtow talked about the process of developing the 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGAs) as well as proposed cuts to the federal nutrition education and food and nutrition programs, touching on the nutrition and health status of the U.S. population, the background of the DGAs, the anticipated process of developing the 2020-2025 DGAs and opportunities for engagement and action.

April 5, 2018


University of California Basic Needs: Impact, updates, and future directions

Ruben Canedo, University of California System Basic Needs Co-Chair

Canedo provided an update on the latest systemwide basic needs data, the impact of system and campus efforts and the next phase of these efforts. He is an alumnus of UC Berkeley and a co-founder of the Undocumented Student Program at UC Berkeley. He serves as Director of Strategic Equity Initiatives for UC Berkeley's Division of Equity & Inclusion. This role allows him to serve as both UC Berkeley's Basic Needs Committee Chair (since 2013) and UC System Basic Needs Committee Co-Chair (since 2014). Ruben is also part of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation's "Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation (TRHT)," a comprehensive, national and community-based process to plan for and bring about transformational and sustainable change to address the historic and contemporary effects of racism. TRHT seeks to unearth and jettison the deeply held, and often unconscious, beliefs created by racism—the main one being the belief in a “hierarchy of human value.”

March 26, 2018


On effectively communicating science with policymakers and government officials

Anne Megaro, UC ANR's Government & Community Relations Director

Megaro talked about the importance of communicating science with non-scientists to affect science-based policymaking and how this can most effectively be accomplished. Her doctoral research focused on bioactive fatty acids in milk and their impact on human health. Upon graduation, in an effort to pursue goals of serving as a liaison between scientists, consumers, and government entities on issues involving agriculture, nutrition and food safety, Anne was competitively selected to participate in the AAAS Congressional Fellowship in Washington, D.C. Upon completion of the fellowship, Anne moved back to California and was hired to be the consultant to the California State Senate Committee on Agriculture. In this position, she was responsible for writing clear, comprehensive, and non-partisan analyses for all bills that came before the committee; designing and organizing committee oversight and informational hearings; and collaborating with legislators, stakeholders, government agencies and the public to resolve concerns or issues related to bills or policies. Currently, Megaro guides UC ANR employees in nurturing relationships with government officials and community members.

March 22, 2018


Recruitment and Retention Strategies - Lessons Learned from the MASALA Study

Dr. Zubaida Qamar, research project manager for the Mediators of Atherosclerosis in South Asians Living in America (MASALA) Study at UCSF

Qamar provided a brief overview of the various community-based recruitment and retention strategies that have been successfully implemented for the participants of the MASALA Study. She also described some of the unique recruitment and retention challenges faced by the MASALA participants residing in and around the Bay Area and the approaches used to overcome these barriers. Such strategies could provide guidance to the recruitment and retention efforts of community-based intervention and disease-prevention studies for underserved groups, moving in the direction of eliminating health disparities.

March 16, 2018


Funding research to enhance the economic and environmental resilience of our food supply

John Reich PhD, Scientific Program Director of the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR)

Reich spoke about FFAR's work and funding opportunities. FFAR brings together leading experts to identify and investigate the researchable questions whose answers have the potential to enhance the economic and environmental resilience of our food supply. FFAR funds research in two broad categories—more productive/sustainable agriculture and better health through food—and seven Challenge Areas including: Food Waste and Loss, Protein Challenge, Water Scarcity, Innovation Pathway to Sustainability, Healthy Soils/Thriving Farms, Urban Food Systems, and Making My Plate Your Plate. 

March 1, 2018


Kaiser Permanente's 10-Year HEAL Zone findings

Laura Rubin MPH

Rubin shared findings from the last round of Kaiser Permanente’s 10-year Healthy Eating, Active Living (HEAL) Zone Initiative, which ended in June 2017. The initiative funded place-based collaboratives to work across multiple strategies and sectors to increase access to healthy foods and opportunities for physical activity. Rubin reviewed the population-level findings, shared stories of the successes and lessons learned, and shared a short video and reflections from the sites. 

February 22, 2018


The role of policy and environment in shaping behavior and health outcomes

Punam Ohri-Vachaspati PhD, MS, RD, professor of nutrition in the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion at Arizona State University (ASU)

Ohri-Vachaspati discussed the role of policy and environment in shaping behavior and health outcomes. She leads the ASU Food Environment and Policy Research Group, teaches graduate-level courses and mentors students interested in exploring public health approaches for improving healthy food access, eating behaviors and health outcomes. In 2016-17, Ohri-Vachaspati completed the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellowship, working on health care and nutrition issues in Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-NY) office. Ohri-Vachaspati spoke about her NIH-funded research projects.

February 15, 2018


Dietary interventions for clinical practice

Stutee Khandelwal MD, MPH, assistant professor of Medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine, UCSF Fresno Medical Education Program

Khandelwal discussed dietary interventions for clinical practice. This was a special NPI Brown Bag seminar, in partnership with the UC Berkeley School of Public Health-Public Health Nutrition program, and the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program. This talk was oriented to students, medical residents and clinical practitioners.

February 1, 2018


The role of transportation and land use in obesity

Daniel A. Rodríguez, Chancellor's Professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley

Discussed his research, which focuses on the relationship between transportation, land development, and the health and environmental impacts that follow. His most recent work focused on the health and equity impacts of urban transportation policy. A majority of Professor Rodríguez’s work is driven by practical problems and finding solutions for planners and policy-makers. Working within the health, nutrition, economics, engineering, geography, and public policy disciplines, he has examined how changes to the physical attributes of the environment, such as the location of bus routes, rail lines, supermarkets, and trails, are related to changes in physical activity.

January 25, 2018


Contributors to fruit and vegetable consumption in diverse food environments

Daniel A. Rodríguez, Chancellor's Professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley

Rodriguez discussed his research, which focused on the relationship between transportation, land development, and the health and environmental impacts that follow. His most recent work focused on the health and equity impacts of urban transportation policy. A majority of Professor Rodríguez’s work is driven by practical problems and finding solutions for planners and policy-makers. Working within the health, nutrition, economics, engineering, geography and public policy disciplines, he has examined how changes to the physical attributes of the environment, such as the location of bus routes, rail lines, supermarkets and trails, are related to changes in physical activity.