The tradition and culture of food have always been important to us at Patagonia. On our many travels, the meals—cedar-planked salmon with First Nations friends in BC, tsampa in yak-hair tents in Tibet, asado and chimichurri with Patagonian gauchos—become a vital part of the experience. What we eat does more than just fill our stomachs and nourish our bodies; good food lifts our spirits and helps us understand the world a little better.
So it only makes sense that we’d want to share some of our favorite food with our customers. But that’s just the beginning; we also believe there is great opportunity—and an urgent need—for positive change in the food industry. With Patagonia Provisions, our goals are the same as with everything we do: We aim to make the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, and perhaps most important, inspire solutions to the environmental crisis.
And nowhere is the crisis more pressing than in the food industry. Today, modern technology, chemistry and transportation combine to put more distance between people and their food than ever before. We harvest salmon indiscriminately or farm them in open-water feedlots, putting wild salmon in peril. We overgraze our prairies, fill our livestock with antibiotics, and drain fossil aquifers to water unsustainable crops. Chemicals reign supreme to maximize production, and the unknown impact of genetically modified organisms hovers over the entire industry. In short, our food chain is broken.
Patagonia Provisions is about finding solutions to repair the chain. We’ll start, as we always do, by rolling up our sleeves and learning everything we can about the sourcing of each product. In some cases, we’ll adopt the best practices already in existence; in others, we’ll have to find new ways of doing things, which, as we might have guessed, frequently end up being the old ways.
In the coming months and years, we’ll offer a growing selection of foods that address environmental issues, and continue to encourage support of local food producers. We’ll keep working with our favorite chefs to create the kind of healthy, nutritious food we like to eat on the trail or water and share with friends at home. If we do our job, our success can help establish a model for a new kind of food chain, one where we, as the Zen master might say, “turn around and take a step forward.”
Gospel Flat Farm, Bolinas, CA
Kellen Keene, The Murch Family and Halsey Family
Last fall, Dan Malloy and friends set out to bike and surf their native California coast. After two months and 700 miles, they were rolling back home to Ventura. "I learned more about the people and place here," he wrote, "Than I had in thirty-five years and a thousand trips by car."
The trip resulted in a book with photography by Kanoa Zimmerman and the thirty minute short film "Moving Pictures and Extra Features," shot by Kellen Keene.
DamNation is a film odyssey across America that explores the sea change in our national attitude from pride in big dams as engineering wonders to the growing awareness that our own future is bound to the life and health of our rivers.
Patagonia Presents DamNation | A Stoecker Ecological & Felt Soul Media Production | Executive Producer Yvon Chouinard | Produced by Matt Stoecker & Travis Rummel | Directed by Travis Rummel & Ben Knight | Edited by Ben Knight | Associate Producer Beda Calhoun | Original concept by Matt Stoecker and Yvon Chouinard.