For example, you might argue that a soda tax is essential to preventing obesity in the us, or that the exploitation of undocumented farm workers must come to an end.

Opinion editorials (Op-eds) are an effective way to reach a wide audience about a specialized issue. For this assignment, you will write an Op-Ed about a topic in food studies that is of interest to you. The issue you choose should be of contemporary relevance and should have a clear call to action (e.g. legislation currently under consideration, a restaurant facing closure, etc.). Your Op-Ed should be between 1000 and 1,200 words in length, not including your title or name. You should imagine your Op-Ed is aimed to the readership of the New York Times or Wall Street Journal. The goal of this essay is to make a compelling argument about a contemporary food-related issue, problem, or controversy, with the end goal of persuading the reader or audience to take an action. For example, you might argue that a soda tax is essential to preventing obesity in the US, or that the exploitation of undocumented farm workers must come to an end.
An Op-Ed is a presentation of a particular viewpoint, but students should be careful to support their arguments with credible data and avoid extremities in tone. For an example, please see Mark Bittman’s Op-Ed on selling kids junk food or Steven Nissen and Nina Teicholz’s article on the food pyramid. Please note, while the Op-Ed may provide an example of structure and style, the Op-Ed will be evaluated using the grading rubric below.
You may look at other food op-eds if the ones above are inaccessible.
The Op-Ed should contain the following elements:
• A brief introduction that catches the reader’s attention, states the topic that will be addressed in the Op-Ed, and contains a clear thesis statement
• A succinct overview of the topic, its importance from a cultural and/or health perspective, and the contemporary issues facing your selected topic
• A clear and logical presentation of your viewpoint on the issue, supported by data from credible sources
• Identification of at least one potential counterargument and a response to these arguments
• A conclusion that re-emphasizes the author’s thesis, summarize the arguments presented, and contains a clear call to action that readers can take to help solve the issue
Grading Rubric:
Introduction: Introduction describes the topic the Op-ed will address and has a clear thesis statement
Topic Overview: A concise overview of the topic is presented, including its importance from a cultural and/or health perspective, and the contemporary issues facing your selected topic
Author viewpoint: Clearly describes their viewpoint on the topic, using data from credible sources to support their argument
Counterargument: Clearly describes one or more counterarguments and provides a convincing response
Conclusion: Conclusion re-emphasizes the author’s thesis, summarizes the arguments presented, and contains a clear call to action
Organization: The assignment is well-organized, easy to read, and thinking is expressed logically and clearly.
Spelling, grammar, referencebcis, and formatting are correct.

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