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New Book Tells the Story of Sugar in Florida

On the Knife cover.png

The long and winding history of the sugar industry in the United States is complicated to say the least. The new book “On the Knife: A History of Sugar in Florida” distills that story into a narrative of the experimentation and entrepreneurship, and the politics and money, that has led to the modern sugar industry as we know it today. It also delves into the human health and environmental impacts that the sugar industry plays a part in.

We talk with its author, Nick Penniman. He spent his career in journalism, and was publisher of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and VP of newspaper operations for Pulitzer Publishing Company. He’s currently chair emeritus of the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, a trustee of the Everglades Foundation, and chair emeritus of the Conservancy of Southwest Florida.