WE(ED)S project aims to shift people’s relationship with edible plants

WE(ED)S is a project about shifting people’s relationship with edible plants otherwise known as weeds.

The project, launched by the Hawai’i-based organisation Eating in Public, aims to challenge how people define weeds, and to “open a dialogue on how to reduce the dependency on capitalism, create a food secure future, and reclaim the commons – a space one enters via one’s labour, not wealth”.

Many weeds are edible plants full of nutritional benefits, yet they are often overlooked and dismissed because they are perceived as “weeds”. Weeds freely grow on kerbsides and are readily available locally, and are free.

Eating in Public emphasises “the commons” – which is essentially nature that is free to all – as well as growing your own, rather than relying on companies or capitalist systems to buy food.

The process of foraging, an age old tradition of hunting and gathering food responsibly, is once again winning favour as many people choose to search for their own food then purchase it from shops.

Founded in 2003 by the Hawai’i-based Gaye Chan and Nandita Sharma, Eating in Public exists to challenge systems including the state and capitalism.

Eating in Public say: “Following the path of pirates and nomads, hunters and gathers, diggers and levelers, we gather at people’s homes, plant free food gardens on private and public land, set up free stores and other autonomous systems of exchange, generally without permission.

“Unlike Santa and the State, we give equally to the naughty and the nice. We do not exploit anyone’s labor nor offer any tax-deductions. We are, in all the word’s various definitions, free.”

Eating in Public

Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea

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