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Home » Kimbal Musk: Reinventing The Role Of Restaurants In Changing Americas Food Culture at TEDxBOULDER (Transcript)

Kimbal Musk: Reinventing The Role Of Restaurants In Changing Americas Food Culture at TEDxBOULDER (Transcript)

Kimbal Musk – TRANSCRIPT

I love the restaurant business. It’s great. Boys and girls meet their special someone in restaurants. Friends break bread with friends in restaurants. People start revolutions in restaurants. It’s awesome! I would love for someone to start a revolution in my restaurant. We’re at the center of our society, one of the hubs of our communities, and one of the drivers of our culture.

And when it comes to food, we have amazing power in telling people how and what to eat. And over the past few decades we have not been very responsible stewards. We’ve changed America’s culture, from a food culture to a fuel culture. Let’s get it to you as fast and cheap as we can, and let’s process the hell out of it! For kids, it’s even worse. They only know plated food comes in plastic wraps or in a McDonald’s box.

Fat and sugar is all they know. Going to a vegetable garden is like going to the zoo. And the results are horrifying. 1 in 7 kids enter kindergarten obese today. How did we get here? Well, let’s go back just a few years, just fifteen years, sixteen years, in 1995, we weren’t doing too badly, I mean, still 1 in 5 were obese, but, not too bad.

Indiana, up there — the only state that was over 20% obese. It’s in the pink. Then, things, kind of really fell off the cliff. By 1998 — we had over 10 states with 20% of obesity. By 2000, talk the country, and we started to see 25%. By 2004, there was almost no state under 20% obesity, and now we started to see over 30% obesity. By 2008, almost every state was over 30% obese, and in 2010, 46% of adult Americans are obese.

Now we’re in Boulder, it’s not our problem, right? It’s their problem, let them eat whatever they want. Well, it is actually our problem. In 2010, it cost us $ 450 billion in medical care and lost productivity. That’s three times the cost of universal health care, four times the cost of the Iraq war at its peak, and it’s getting worse fast. It’s expected to double by 2018.

It’s a real problem and we’ve got to deal with it. So, what can restaurants do about it? Restaurants have an amazing power to impact the food culture, obviously. We have the power to really make the change, and be part of the change. And for that, I just want to give you a little background of myself.

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