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Righteous Eats: Regulating International Food Delicacies

By Tara Graham
Dec 20
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Righteous Eats is a website produced by U.C. Berkeley undergraduate student Rachel Soeharto in my online research and web production course during the 2012 fall semester.


Food bans and regulations imply a certain criminal activity in acquiring an edible good. In some cases, this assumption is a fallacy, considering the multiple indices in which the food can be served in a “right” or ethical way. Both foie gras (French for fatty duck or goose liver) and shark fin soup function as prime examples of delicacies that are produced in controversial manners. Yet, both dishes contain ingredients that can be prepared, farmed, or fished in sustainable ways that do not harm the well being of an animal.

Ultimately, domestic food bans and regulations only serve to stifle efforts to change food preparation from a controversial to a righteous process. — Rachel Soeharto, Righteous Eats

My site aims to investigate alternative methods to the industrial, factory-like procedures that have transformed prized food items into controversial commodities. I propose that modifications in these industries can also reinfornce the movement to grant every citizen information on where food comes from.

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The Narrative #Selfie


Lose the shirt off my back? Nah.

When life got dicey, I opened my closet doors, bypassed the blouses, and earned a (modest) payday by selling used hangers in 25-pack bundles.

More recently, I put my hustle into play at 500 Startups, the world’s most active venture capital fund and startup accelerator, where I led content, branding, marketing, operations, and corporate partnerships for business development and global programs.

Before transitioning into tech, I worked in higher education, teaching online research and media production classes across a variety of disciplines at the University of California, Berkeley. During that time, I also worked as the Director and Executive Producer of Digital Media Projects at the Blum Center for Developing Economies, where I co-founded and led The #GlobalPOV Project, a mixed-media approach to thinking about poverty, inequality, and undertaking poverty action.

In addition, I was the Director of Media at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, where I had the opportunity to interview Bashar al-Assad in his presidential palace in Damascus, Syria, in late December of 2010. I asked Assad if he considered himself a dictator. He dodged the inquiry, but his actions in the immediate weeks, months, and years to follow answered the question . . . and then some. Sadly.

Before that, I was a practicing journalist and graduate fellow at the University of Southern California. During that time, I worked as a web reporter and photographer for KCET’s “SoCal Connected,”​ as an online editor for the London-based New Statesman magazine, and as the co-editor-in-chief of USC Annenberg’s award-winning digital news website. I got my start in journalism as a full-time associate editor (and employee #20!) at P✪PSUGAR, a Sequoia-backed content and commerce startup turned global media empire.

My freelance reporting has been featured in NBC, CBS, and ABC news broadcasts and in online publications, including The Huffington Post. I have also done manuscript editing for various authors with recognized commercial and university presses.

You can find me tap dancing in the dark corners of my imagination to a sold-out audience of — none. Like most everything else, it’s all for fun.

Let’s connect! Join me on Twitter or Instagram or LinkedIn.


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