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Is the Pastrami Sandwich Killing Jewish Delis?

Complete video at: Peter Levitt and Karen Adelman, proprietors of Saul's Deli in Berkeley, CA, discuss the economic, social, and environmental costs of the iconic pastrami sandwich. Levitt says the giant sandwiches are killing off independent delis across the nation. He supports making the sandwich smaller and the meat better. ----- This excerpt is taken from a program titled "Referendum on the Jewish Deli Menu," featuring Karen Adelman, Peter Levitt, Gil Friend, Evan Kleinman, and Michael Pollan. It was recorded in collaboration with Berkeley, California's Saul's Restaurant and Deli, on February 9, 2010. What does sustainability mean for the future of Deli cuisine and culture? Local, organic versus industrial systems, externalized costs of cheap food and...collective memory and food traditions. Even "authentic" cuisine can obstruct progress towards more just, sustainable food. How does a business committed to being part of the solution persuade traditionalist customers of the importance of change? For example, towering pastrami sandwiches once signified success, security and abundance, an immigrant's celebration of the American Dream. But given the realities of meat production in America today -- 99 percent is factory farmed -- how can we continue to stand by this as an icon? What taste memories and flavors of The Deli have been provided by an industrial food system? How can we look at our nostalgia critically? How might we evolve a shared cuisine together and how can we bring our people along with us -- away from grieving the disappearing deli, into the conversation and into the future? - Saul's Restaurant and Deli
Length: 03:14


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