Deconstructing Dinner, an original new ichannel series for television and the web, investigates one of the most important issues in the everyday lives of Canadians: our food, and where it comes from.
The six-part documentary series, slated to premiere on ichannel in September, traces the path our food takes from farm and field to the kitchen table, and reveals the far-reaching impact that food production has on everything from local economies to the global environment.
The newly launched companion website will feature an extensive library of webisodes, along with recipes and a host of other supplementary features.
Deconstructing Dinner is written and hosted by food journalist Jon Steinman and produced for ichannel by award-winning filmmaker Declan O’Driscoll.
“The goal of Deconstructing Dinner is to help Canadians better understand the state of our food supply,” Steinman says. “We hope to inspire viewers to recognize the role each of us can play in making sure our food has a positive impact on individuals, communities and the environment.”
Each episode delves into our relationship with a particular food (eggs, garlic, wheat, tomatoes, honey and pork), drawing on insights from farmers, scientists, backyard gardeners and award-winning chefs like Canadian Michael Stadtlander and Michael Anthony of New York’s Gramercy Tavern.
Along the way, the series will tackle issues ranging from the impact of imported foods on local economies to the rise of backyard beekeeping, and will invite viewers to consider the benefits of moving beyond our reliance on the supermarket for everyday staples.
“Deconstructing Dinner asks what we are really paying for when we buy the ingredients for tonight’s meal,” says producer Declan O’Driscoll, whose previous ichannel documentary, Milk War, earned a prestigious James Beard Foundation Award in 2011. “We want to encourage viewers to play an active role in shaping a healthier, more beneficial food system.”
Don Gaudet, Vice President, Programming and Production for ichannel’s parent company Stornoway Communications, says: “More and more people are asking questions about our food system and embracing local, sustainably produced foods. As a network dedicated to exploring the issues that matter to Canadians, ichannel is the perfect home for a groundbreaking, provocative series about one of our most fundamental daily concerns.”
Canadian environmentalist and broadcaster David Suzuki has praised the series, saying: “One of our big problems today is that we live in a world that is shattered. We no longer see the interconnectivity of everything in the biosphere. Food is a way to reconnect the planet. That’s why I feel theDeconstructing Dinner series is an important one.”
The Deconstructing Dinner TV and web series was inspired, in part, by Steinman’s radio and podcast series of the same name, which was produced from 2006-2010. A full archive of the radio/podcast episodes can be found on the new website.
The Deconstructing Dinner website was developed for ichannel by The Seed Network of Nelson, B.C.
Deconstructing Dinner was produced with the support of the Canada Media Fund.