Restoration Economy

Food Chain Restoration for Pollinators: Regional Habitat Recovery Strategies Involving Protected Areas of the Southwest

Steve Buckley is the botanist for the Southwest Exotic Plant Management Team of the National Park Service. He works with parks throughout the southwestern United States to support restoration operations, seed collection, and plant materials development to support plant—pollinator interactions and invasive species management. Working with the BLM and other land management agencies, he oversees the Madrean Archipelago Plant Propagation (MAPP) Center in Patagonia, Arizona, and is finishing a doctorate at the University of Arizona on regional restoration strategies for pollinators.

Tucson Becomes an Unlikely Food Star

There are food deserts, those urban neighborhoods where finding healthful food is nearly impossible, and then there is Tucson.

When the rain comes down hard on a hot summer afternoon here, locals start acting like Cindy Lou Who on Christmas morning. They turn their faces to the sky and celebrate with prickly pear margaritas. When you get only 12 inches of rain a year, every drop matters.

A Conversation with Gary Paul Nabhan

30 Minutes spoke with Gary Paul Nabhan, Ph.D., about Tucson’s recent designation as a UNESCO World City of Gastronomy and what that means. He is the newly appointed director for Center

for Regional Food Studies. Nabhan discussed the breadth of Tucson’s food cultures as well as the importance of food justice and food security for everyone in our community.

My Turn: In search of equality for Arizona farmworkers

A half century since Cesar Chavez led a national boycott of grapes to highlight the civil rights of farmworkers, the status of both immigrant and native contributors to Arizona’s food system is still in debate. Although Chavez left an indelible mark on our agricultural history, we must look and see how much more equity Arizona’s food system has now than during Chavez’s march on Delano, Calif., 50 years ago.

How have the civil rights for farmworkers of various races and cultures fared over the past half-century in Arizona? And what next steps need to be taken to ensure justice and equity for all those who bring Arizonans their daily bread?

UA College of Social and Behavioral Sciences Launches New Center for Regional Food Studies

From agricultural sciences to folklore, cutting-edge nutrition to ancient food systems, UA researchers have a long history of researching, documenting and promoting the borderland culinary heritage that makes Tucson a distinct food city.

To coincide with Tucson’s designation as the newest UNESCO City of Gastronomy, the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences and the Southwest Center have established the University of Arizona Center for Regional Food Studies.

Tucson Designated UNESCO World City of Gastronomy

We’ve known it—those of us who eat here have tasted it. We’ve felt it in the soil under our fingernails. We’ve seen it in the magenta stain of prickly pear. We’ve heard it in the hammer mill grinding sweet speckled mesquite; smelled it in the exhale of steam from a crowded pot of tamales.

Tucson has always been a city of gastronomy. Today, it was designated a World City of Gastronomy by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), becoming the first city in the United States to receive such a designation.

The Road to UNESCO – Tucson ambitiously seeks to be recognized as the first creative city for gastronomy in the country—but is it realistic?

The winding, rocky road up to Gary Nabhan’s Patagonia home is definitely not suited for a sedan. It gets pretty hairy a couple of times while creeping up the path going just a few miles per hour upward, but there, at the top of a hill with a beautiful vantage of a couple local farms, is Nabhan’s rustic Southwestern home.

The irony is that, in trying to figure out what makes Tucson a gastronomic destination, driving an hour south of the city and into another county actually makes a lot of sense…