Hold your horses, Bittman fans — the esteemed food-writer-turned-CIO hasn’t hung up his journalist hat just yet. Starting today, the former New York Times opinion columnist on food joins Fast Company as an online contributor.
His first piece, plainly titled “This Is Going to Be Harder Than I Thought,” hits the web this morning and describes his entry into the start-up world as the recently crowned chief innovation officer of plant-based meal delivery service Purple Carrot.
“I had not seen an honest account of going through the start-up process, an as-it-happens story. And really, I wanted to write about it for myself,” Bittman explains. “But as a journalist — well, we don’t write things for ourselves. We publish. And as I thought about where to publish this, Fast Company was the clear choice. Fortunately, they felt the same.”
By most measures, the marketplace is driving the food system change that he advocated for at the Times. His transition comes after his recent Food for Tomorrow conference address (watch above) in which he lamented our government’s inaction on what he thinks are low-hanging food policy issues. It also arrives when loads of investments continue to pour into the food and drink space (especially toward sectors focused on food delivery and online commerce) and industry behemoths like McDonald’s, Perdue and Walmart are responding to demand for cage-free eggs, antibiotic-free meat and fair farm labor practices.
Although his latest writing endeavor might not appeal to as wide of an audience, he’s written that “the time is right to stop” his popular food op-ed column in his Times farewell. He also wrote that “when it seems compelling, I’ll get my voice out there.” Well, that didn’t take very long. We’re eager to follow.
Photo courtesy of Purple Carrot.