Weavers Way General Manager to Participate in Animal Welfare Law Panel


PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 18, 2014 — Weavers Way General ManagerGlenn Bergman will join food entrepreneur Judy Wicks andJosh Balk, food policy director of the Humane Society of the United States, to discuss “How Corporations Can Be Proactive in Animal Welfare.”

The Aug. 21 panel is part of the 11th Annual Animal Law Conference sponsored by the Pennsylvania Bar Institute, the continuing education arm of the Pennsylvania Bar Association, and the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Animal Law Committee.

Glenn, Judy and Josh will focus on the treatment of animals we eat — a controversial topic, and one that is important to many Weavers Way shoppers. In introductory notes, Animal Law Conference organizers note that there is little law governing the humane treatment of farm animals – they are exempt from the federal Animal Welfare Act, and state animal cruelty codes exempt “activity undertaken in normal agricultural operation.” This leaves corporations in all segments of the food industry picking their way through legal and public relations minefields.

The panel will be moderated by Nadia Adawi, a Philadelphia attorney and animal advocate who specializes in animal law.

Weavers Way, the 40-year-old cooperative grocery store in Mt. Airy and Chestnut Hill, has been a leader in sustainable food sourcing, following the dictates of its members to seek out humanely raised meat and sustainably grown produce and work with vendors and suppliers who treat their workers fairly. A former restaurant chef and corporate food-service manager, Glenn Bergman has spent many years working the intersection of food buying and social justice.

"It's important for people to understand where their food comes from and how it got to their plates. How food animals are treated is one part of that story," Bergman said 

Judy Wicks, founder of West Philadelphia’s White Dog Café and author of “Good Morning, Beautiful Business,” is one of Philadelphia’s pioneers in promoting sustainable food sourcing. At the White Dog, she was one of the first restaurateurs to work directly with producers to ensure a supply of humanely raised meat. She founded Fair Food in 2001 to encourage a humane local food economy and increase its buying power.

Josh Balk is a co-founder of Hampton Creek Foods, a food technology company working to develop new ways to deliver healthy, sustainable food. The Humane Society advocates with legislators to pass laws against cruel animal husbandry practices such as gestation crates for pigs and battery cages for chickens, and with large corporations like Walmart to get them to change their purchasing practices.

The Animal Law Conference takes place at the CLE Conference Center in the Wanamaker Building, 100 E. Penn St. Legal professionals are invited to attend and earn continuing education credits. For information about the conference, contact the Pennsylvania Bar Institute at 800-932-4637 or info@pbi.org.

About Weavers Way: Founded in 1973 as a basement food-buying club, the Co-op today has four stores in two locations, Philadelphia’s Mt. Airy and Chestnut Hill neighborhoods, and a membership of some 5,200 households. To read the Weavers Way Product Philosophy Statement, visit the Weavers Way website at www.weaversway.coop/Product-Philosophy.