The Fight for Fair Fruit: “Beyond the Seal”

Join the Buffett Institute at Northwestern for a screening of “Beyond the Seal,” a documentary created by two Northwestern alums about Fair Trade bananas and the people behind a movement to change the banana industry. There will also be a panel about the industry and movement.

Tuesday, April 19 at 7:00 PM
Harris Hall, room 108 (1881 Sheridan Road)
Northwestern University

The panel will include:

Dan Koeppel: Dan is a science writer living in Los Angeles, California. For the past decade, much of his work has focused on bananas and its social, environmental, and historic aspects. He has published more than 50 articles on the fruit, as well as Banana: The Fate of the Fruit that Changed the World (Penguin Books, 2008), which is now in its seventh printing and has been published in five languages. In 2011, he received a James Beard Award for his writing on bananas, and continues, today, to work on bringing sustainability and diversity to the global banana crop.

Katherine Nagasawa: A native of southern California, Katherine experienced cold for the first time when she moved to Chicago to study film and journalism at Northwestern. There she met Leah, and the two embarked on an ambitious journey to produce “Beyond the Seal.” This past year Katherine also traveled to Buenos Aires for her Medill journalism residency to work at La Nación on an interactive, investigative story about the people’s fight for reliable public data. She’s now based at WBEZ, where she’s helping produce “Heat of the Moment,” a new multimedia series about the people experiencing climate change.

Leah Varjacques: While studying video journalism and international studies at Northwestern, Leah reported on complex global issues, like environmental racism in Brazil and gender-based violence in South African mines. She became fascinated with social justice issues and their global interconnectedness while traveling and living in Latin America. Her experiences there, along with a growing interest in transmedia storytelling, inspired her to create Beyond the Seal. Leah now works for Free Spirit Media teaching high school students digital media and documentary filmmaking on the west side of Chicago.

Nicole Vitello: Nicole is the president of Oke USA Fruit Company, a 100% fair trade banana importer. After earning a degree in International Development from American University, Nicole spent 2 years working with farmers in Senegal, West Africa. After that experience, Nicole returned home to Rhode Island and founded her own organic vegetable farm business, Manic Organic, in 1999. She moved to Equal Exchange after 10 successful years and is working to promote the connection between small farmers in Peru and Ecuador and consumers in the United States.

Amber Zook: Amber is the produce lead at the Dill Pickle Coop, located in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, which offers healthy food choices and the benefits of cooperative practice to build a vibrant local community and more sustainable world. This opportunity has taught her about the value of healthy fresh food, the impact that it has on people’s lives and allowed her to support the farmers near and far that grow it.

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