This talk examines household food security practices among Latino/a dairy workers in Vermont, revealing how the standardized questionnaires developed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to examine and quantify food security at the household level are inadequate for fully understanding the complexities of food access for migrant households. For migrant workers and their families who seek to sustain culturally meaningful foodways from home, the realities of living and working in Vermont’s rural economy present significant challenges to achieving food security on their own terms.
Teresa Mares is an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of Vermont and is affiliated with the Transdisciplinary Research Initiative in Food Systems. Dr. Mares’ research focuses on the intersection of food and migration studies, and she is particularly interested in the ways that the diets and foodways of Latino/a immigrants change as a result of migration. Analytically, Dr. Mares engages with theories and concepts of citizenship and transnationalism, identity and foodways, and contemporary social movements. She is committed to applied, community-based ethnographic methodologies and is currently studying food access and food security among Latino/a dairy workers in Vermont.