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Whole Foods kicks off film series

'Let's Retake Our Plates' to focus on docus

Perhaps adopting the mantra “You are what you screen,” the Whole Foods Market chain is initiating a nationwide film series titled “Let’s Retake Our Plates.”

The compendium of 15 films, ranging from the Oscar-nominated doc “Food Inc.” to docudrama “Fast Food Nation” to the 1973 sci-fi feature “Soylent Green,” will unspool this month in more than 150 cities across the country in a variety of settings, from movie theaters to libraries to college campuses. Admission will range from free to $20 per family, with proceeds benefitting non profits like food banks and orgs devoted to sustainable lifestyles.

While the food space, has grown tremendously over the past decade — with chefs like Mario Batali, Bobby Flay and Anthony Bourdain becoming household names — the source and abuse of food is a relatively new programming phenomenon, with slow food movement pioneer and restaurateur Alice Waters (Chez Panisse, Berkeley’s Edible Schoolyard program) and school lunch reformist and celebrity chef Jamie Oliver (host of ABC’s “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution” ) increasingly in the news.

Whole Foods is backing the film series “to help consumers understand how the food choices they make have an impact on health and the environment,” according to a statement issued by the company, which operates more than 270 markets in North America and the U.K.

“Food, Inc.,” for example, examines the origins of what Americans eat, the industrialization of food and its impact on the environment. “I’m delighted that ‘Food, Inc.’ will be one of the films screened,” said “Food, Inc.” producer-director Robert Kenner, whose film will screen at three different L.A. and New York locations as part of the series.

Some of the screenings will be followed by Q&A sessions. For more info go to letsretakeourplates.com.

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