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UNI lecture will explore 'The American Way of Eating'

September 26, 2013

Deirdre Heistad, director, UNI Liberal Arts Core, 319-273-2633,

Lindsay Cunningham, Office of University Relations, 319-273-6728,

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa -- Why do working Americans eat the way we do? This is the question award-winning journalist Tracie McMillan will address at the Reaching for Higher Ground (RHG) keynote lecture at 7 p.m., Monday, Oct. 14, in Lang Hall Auditorium on the University of Northern Iowa campus. McMillan will discuss the realities of America's food industry and her experiences working undercover in the food industry.

"Our food choices, formerly a source of sustenance, self-expression and family bonding, are now more often based on factors like convenience, time, cost and shelf life," said Deirdre Heistad, director of the Liberal Arts Core. "For many Americans, both young and old, the microwave has replaced the stove, and the fast-food restaurant has replaced the home kitchen altogether. Tracie McMillan's visit will provide the UNI community an opportunity to reflect upon the changing nature of food in our society, the necessity of repairing our connection to this basic human need and how doing so can contribute to our overall well-being."

McMillan is the author of the best-selling book "The American Way of Eating: Undercover at Walmart, Applebee's, Farm Fields and the Dinner Table." Her writing has been featured in The Washington Post and The New York Times. As part of the RHG series, her lecture follows this year's theme, "Food Matters," which aims to explore the social and economic impacts of food.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Heistad at 319-273-2633 or