Jenny’s Food & Ag Update May 4, 2018

  • In the Desert, Tucson Models Affordable Food Access (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2HEVYLc
  • Can Organics Help Rural America Rebound? (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2HGtcYr                                                                                      Some see organic farming a sure-fire way to improve struggling farm communities. Others say it will take a lot more than higher premiums to make a lasting economic difference.
  • Here’s Even More Evidence That Hand Dryers Are Pretty Disgusting (Vice) https://bit.ly/2HxLV8h                                                          A new study found that they’re actually blowing bacteria onto your hands.                                                                                                                                    If hand dryers are not sanitized, as an ice machine must be, they will encourage bacterial growth, the temperatures are perfect, 50°F – 176°F (10°C – 80°C), dependent on the type of bacteria, water activity, and pH… (Brooklyn CUNY) https://bit.ly/2Go0Rrp
  • Napa County Measure C proponents say ag preservation needs oak woodlands protection (North Bay Business Journal) https://bit.ly/2IWasDs
  • Last year’s devastating wildfires left behind an unexpected bounty: morel mushrooms (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2HvA7CQ                                                                          Unexpected to some…
  • On The Hunt For The Elusive Morel Mushroom In Ohio’s Appalachian Country (NPR) https://n.pr/2FlM7Ff

 

Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding, Fishing & Production

  • Two Years Ago, I Was a College Student – Now I’m a Farmers and It’s Completely Changed My World (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2r65ePa                                                                                                The work of farming itself is remaking and shifting the way that I approach the world.
  • The Women Reviving Heirloom Grains and Flour (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2HtMWyf                                                                                    Female grain growers, millers, and artisan bread bakers are collaborating to lift women’s role in bread into the spotlight.
  • Stressed, Struggling, and Suicidal: America’s Farmers Are Begging or Mental Health Services (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2HoZCWY                                                                                Trump’s trade war promises even more uncertainty.
  • Suicide Rates Among Farmers are Alarmingly High. Can Federal Legislation Help? (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2vnfPtx                              The STRESS Act would provide support, but some farmers say it’s little more than a band-aid and real policy changes are needed.
  • Rural Kansas is dying. I drove 1,800 miles to find out why (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2r3YjoG                                                            A native Kansan returns home to find that the broken promises of commodity agriculture have destroyed a way of life.
  • The future of seafood is bait-to-plate transparency on blockchain (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2HwvbkY                              Sometime soon, American eaters may be able to purchase tuna labeled with a QR code that can be scanned to reveal when and where the fish was caught, and by whom…

 

Food and Culture

  • An Indigenous Corn Makes a Comeback (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2HFZCVc                                                                                              In New York, the Iroquois White Corn Project is riving an ancient and sacred variety of white corn in hopes of improving Native nutrition and health.
  • Don’t Mess With The Sweet Potato Pie: A Museum Wrestles With ‘Authentic’ Black Menu (NPR) https://n.pr/2IOWpQm
  • Ouch, No! Some Scots Cry As Their Beloved Soda Gets A Less Sugary Revamp (NPR) https://n.pr/2HuAth7
  • When Did Food Network Change Its Diet? (BuzzFeed) https://bzfd.it/2vPuZIf                                                                                        Food Network once taught us the difference between kale and chard. Why did it pivot to brioche French toast topped with pulled pork?

 

Seeds & Cultivars

 

Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity, Malnutrition, and Nutrition

  • The food industry’s food stamp problem (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2K47JsX                                                                                              We recently obtained data on SNAP employers from six states and found that thousands of people who work in fast-food and retail jobs don’t make enough money to buy groceries.
  • Amazon gets huge subsidies to provide good jobs – but it’s a top employer of SNAP recipients in a least five state (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2F2HpMr                                                                  One third of Amazon employees in Arizona need food stamps to feed themselves.
  • Photos: Who Actually Benefits From Meals on Wheels (The Nation) https://bit.ly/2Gs0NIh                                                                       And why did the Trump administration think it was a good idea to cut funding for these vital programs?
  • Brining meals to people with food insecurity may deliver savings to the healthcare system (Los Angeles Times) https://lat.ms/2IrqNQf                                                                                        The research I conducted back in 2008 to justify transforming Oakland California’s Meals on Wheels and Congregate meals programs to local and sustainable foods showed that good nutrition does indeed reduce hospital admissions and length of hospital stays… The data is out there.
  • Can the Recovery Quench America’s Food Desserts? (US News & World Report) https://bit.ly/2qZMnVf                                                              In a time of seeming prosperity, millions of Americans struggle with food access and security.
  • Perpetuating the Cycle of Poverty (The New Republic) https://bit.ly/2HuaDJf                                                                                          How the Republican Party’s proposals to reform the food stamp program will keep people down
  • Republicans Propose Strict Work Requirements for Food Stamp Recipients (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2HjovGf                                  “This bill attempts to change SNAP from a feeding program to a work program.”
  • Study: From Welfare To A Workbased Safety Net: An Incomplete Transition (University of Michigan School of Social Work) https://bit.ly/2H1TMtO                                                                                      The reform and related policies did increase the economic well-being of working poor families with children. But given the economic conditions in the last 15 years, TANF has decreased the economic well-being of the nonworking, nondisabled poor, as evidenced by the increased number of disconnected and extremely poor families.
  • Recent Welfare Reform Research Findings (2004) (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities) https://bit.ly/2veOee0          Implications for TANF Reauthorization and State TANF Policies
  • The Trouble With Medicaid Work Requirements (The Atlantic) https://theatln.tc/2nefXUo
    • Research Report: Work Requirements in Social Safety Net Programs (Urban Institute) https://urbn.is/2E326aW                      A Status Report of Work Requirements in TANF, SNAP, Housing Assistance, and Medicaid

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • Americans Waste 150,000 Tons of Food every Day – That’s a Pound Per Person (Newsweek) https://bit.ly/2vy4N4I
    • A New Study Shows the Stunning Amount of Food People Toss in the Garbage Every Day (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2HgIbvc                                                                                         And it’s people eating the healthiest who are throwing away the most food.
    • Study: Relationship between food waste, diet quality, and environmental sustainability (PlosOne) https://bit.ly/2vurSoV
  • The food that goes bad in your fridge amounts to trillions of gallons of wasted water (Sacramento Bee) https://bit.ly/2JcrQnK
  • For One Fine-Dining Chef, Cutting Food Waste Saves The Planet And The Bottom Line (NPR) https://n.pr/2K1Dsv3

 

Healthy/Food Safety

  • National E. coli Outbreak Is Worsening, a Ban On Romaine Lettuce Is Recommended (MSN) https://bit.ly/2HzZabf
    • CDC Warns People To Steer Clear Of Romaine As E. Coli Outbreak Spreads (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2HlleCS          So far 53 people in 16 states have been infected
      • Toss the romaine lettuce now – or risk getting E. coli illness, health officials warn (Helena Independent Record) https://bit.ly/2qMq0mM
      • A surprising clue in the E. coli investigation: Sick inmates in an Alaska Prison (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2I1nhxg                                                                                The outbreak that originated with Yuma, Arizona-grown romaine lettuce has taught us one thing so far: that it’s much easier to spot a pattern when everyone’s eating the same thing.
  • Here’s what it costs restaurants when a foodborne illness outbreak occurs (CNBC) https://cnb.cx/2Hvn8Ez
    • A new study puts a price on the cost of foodborne illness outbreaks in the United States, which can range from a couple thousand dollars to millions
    • A team of researchers from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health simulated a number of different types of outbreaks using common causes like norovirus, E. coli, and salmonella.
    • Panera Bread is the most recent restaurant to be linked to a foodborne illness outbreak.
  • Study Warns Eating Out Can Increase Phthalates, Lead To Disease (International Business Times) https://bit.ly/2qM8Sxx

 

Education

  • Launching the Next Generation of Latinx Farmers in Washington’s Skagit Valley (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2r3LWK5    The region is home to a handful of training programs helping to support new farmers and local food producers.

 

Children & School Food

  • School Garden Apprenticeship – Teen Summer Jobs Available (Cropmobster Community Exchange, SF Bay) https://bit.ly/2qPLlL9

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • The Restaurant Industry Ran a Private Poll on the Minimum Wage. It Did Not Go Well For Them. (The Intercept) https://bit.ly/2EXwgMH
    • The restaurant industry is struggling to convince eaters that workers don’t deserve minimum wage (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2HkJtW8                                                                                      A leaked poll conducted by the industry lobby found that diners don’t mind higher prices if they raise worker wages.
  • Fast food chains like In-N-Out are quickly becoming jobs people want to have (Business Insider) https://read.bi/2JBIOfD
  • “He Grabbed My Butt. I Dumped an Entire Tray With 10 Glasses of Red Wine on Him.” (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GYWiVJ
  • Migrant Dreams: Canada’s Broken Promise (Al Jazeera) https://bit.ly/2HWCvXG                                                               What happens when Indonesian migrant workers trapped in debt-bondage in Canada decide to fight back?
  • Farmworkers Are Living 20 to a House in California’s Bountiful Salinas Valley (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2HWoRQT                  “They can’t get people to move here, or stay here, because there’s nowhere for them to live.”                                                                            Welcome to California’s housing crisis…
  • In the American West, Arbitrary Poverty Designations Are Shortchanging the Rural Poor (In These Times) https://bit.ly/2HpzOt3
  • Immigrant Detainees Forced To Work For $1 A Day: Lawsuit (International Business Times) https://bit.ly/2qRoBvg
  • Why We Have to Go Back to a 40-Hour Work Week to Keep Our Sanity (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2JtIDmk                                                    One hundred fifty years of research proves that shorter work hours actually raise productivity and profits – and overtime destroys them. So why do we still do this?
  • Reversing Past Oppression, Cooperation Jackson Builds a Better Future (Counter Punch) https://bit.ly/2K3frDH

 

Protests

  • Animal Rights Activists Target Slaughterhouses as Worldwide Movement Grows (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2v80HA3                  Animal rights activists launch a “war of ethics and morals.”
  • What’s Really in McDonald’s Happy Meals? Here’s the Awful Truth (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2HBUT7W                                                The fast-food chain is misleading the public by claiming to care about the millions of animals killed for its menu.
    • McDonald’s Sells More Chicken Than Beef. This Campaign Demands it Treat Birds Better (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2HgpTdm                                                                            Animal welfare groups are tackling the welfare of chickens destined for McNuggets and McChickens. But past victories don’t guarantee a success.

 

Pollinators

  • Honeybees Are Struggling to Get Enough Good Bacteria (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2qNsEIM
    • Study: Bacterial communities associated with honeybee food stores are correlated with land use (Ecology and Evolution) https://bit.ly/2HkEJeI

 

 

Animals

  • If You’re Like Most Americans, You Think Farmed Animals Are Treated Well: That’s Simply Not True (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2r7o1cV                                                                                          Katie Cantrell wants to educate people about what really happens on factory farms.
  • Jury awards hog farm neighbors $50 million (Raleigh News & Observer) https://bit.ly/2KiRBEd                                                              Could the tide be turning on Confined Animal Feeding Operations?

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • The Bayer-Monsato Merger is Bad News for the Planet (Web of Debt) https://bit.ly/2r1taTF
    • Here’s Why US Farmers Overwhelmingly Oppose Monsanto-Bayer Merger – and So Should You (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2q4Yeke                                                                                    The proposed merger is bad for everyone – except Bayer and Monsanto.
  • African American owned coffee shop looks to become next Starbucks with a different philosophy (KTVU 2) https://bit.ly/2qKoykN
  • Big food companies are trying to use free trade agreements to kill health warning labels (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2ERskNs
  • Yosemite’s secretive Starbucks: café opens in park, to delight and dismay (The Guardian) https://bit.ly/2GzzWsX                                            A new Starbucks provides convenience and caffeine to visitors, but to many it represents a trend of commercialism and 25,000 people petitioned to stop it from opening
  • On-third of American households have struggled to afford either food, shelter or medical care (Market Watch) https://on.mktw.net/2I43pfn

 

Food Fraud/Scandals/Weird

  • The South Texas Fajita Bandit Has Been Sentenced to Fifty Years in Prison (Texas Monthly) https://bit.ly/2Fk70QM                              The nine-year meat hustle has caught up with the former Cameron County Juvenile Detention Center worker.

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Flint Residents Pay to Drink Polluted Water While Nestle Pumps Great Lakes for Profit (Truthout) https://bit.ly/2HwRVgV
    • Michigan is practically giving away clean water – but not to Flint (Popular Science) https://bit.ly/2HfuCb4
  • Thousands of Poor Detroiters Are About to Get Their Water Cut Off (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2F3dwM1                                            The city prepares for its fifth annual water shutoff.
  • There Is an Area of Plastic in the Ocean That’s Three Times the Size of France. This 23 Year Old Thinks He Can Clean It Up. (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2JcRWXQ
  • The Arctic faces record levels of pollution from microplastics (Think Progress) https://bit.ly/2JxwWLF                                           Scientists trace the plastics back to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, fishing nets, and cigarettes.
    • ‘Nowhere is immune:’ Researchers find record levels of microplastics in Artic Sea ice (Nation of Change) https://bit.ly/2Kez77I
  • Iceland sets target of 191 kills as country resumes whaling (The Guardian) https://bit.ly/2Hb6cE1                                                        Authorities grant whalers a quota to hunt the endangered fin whale this summer after a two-year pause

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • India: Monsanto Loses Right to Patent Seeds (Daily Pioneer India) https://bit.ly/2rh89EV                                                                                            Delhi high Court’s ruling which forbids Monsanto from stopping supplies to seed companies is a boost to domestic seed companies, and will cub the ability of multinationals to establish seed monopoly.
  • In ‘Huge Win for Pollinators, People, and the Planet,’ EU Bans Bee-Killing Pesticides (Common Dreams) https://bit.ly/2vWAkNW                                                                      “Authorizing neonicotinoids during a quarter of a century was a mistake and led to an environmental disaster. Today’s vote is historic.”
  • Taiwan Announces Ban on All Plastic Bags, Straws, and Utensils (Global Citizen) https://glblctzn.me/2CRjezn                                            All single-use plastic must be phased out by 2030.
  • ‘A Scourge on Our Seas’: UK Government Takes Aim at Single Use Plastics (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2vrNhis
  • French MPs force vegetarian food producers to mince their words (The Guardian) https://bit.ly/2HhGGsJ                                  Makers of ‘vegetarian sausages’ and similar items will no longer be able to use meat-related terms after new ruling
  • Wins For Sustainable agriculture in FY 2018 Omnibus (National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition) https://bit.ly/2HBAeh0
  • Kirsten Gillibrand Takes Aim at ICE After an Arrest at a New York Dairy Farm (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2F56eXM                    “Officers should not be allowed to raid private property without a warrant.”
  • Trump Just Gave Factory Farms a Huge Break (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2FrvgAC                                                                                          This harmful industry doesn’t deserve support from the federal government.
  • Pesticide Executives Are Running Ag Policy for Donald Trump (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2qPL3E3                                                          The USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service is the “eyes, ears, and voice for US agriculture around the world.”
  • US Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services becomes multi million-dollar federal wildlife-killing program (Nation of Change) https://bit.ly/2FkmUuH                                                                                        “The Department of Agriculture needs to get out of the wildlife-slaughter business.”
  • Trade war backfire: Steel tariff shrapnel hits US farmers (Reuters) https://reut.rs/2vam4Rz
    • Trade War Hits Another Red State (MSN) https://bit.ly/2qQOP0Z
    • Trade War Is About to Screw Over California’s Remaining Republicans (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2qAabyz              China’s tariffs will hard in the Golden State’s farm country.                In California the Central Valley is the heart of the Republicans strong hold…
  • Trump administration approves oil drilling, pipeline in Carrizo Plain (San Luis Obispo County, CA) National Monument (The Tribune, San Luis Obispo) https://bit.ly/2r1uV2E
  • Why Is Trump Trying to Kill Front-of-Package Nutrition Labeling? (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2r7p2lf                                                        Prohibiting warning labels would be a huge win for the food industry and a big loss for consumers.
  • Everything you need to know about New York’s proposal to eliminate the tip credit (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2HhvwE4
  • State (California) can label widely used herbicide (Roundup) as possible carcinogen (SF Chronicle) https://bit.ly/2Ja0y1c
  • Philadelphians Drink Less Sugary Soda, More Water, After Tax (NPR) https://n.pr/2HlfYlT
    • Consumption of sugary drinks plummeted after Philadelphia passed the country’s highest soda tax (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2HbmatH
  • Tulsa says no more Dollar General, curbing exploitation of black neighborhoods (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2qMFWW2
  • Chellie Pingree: Get Ready for the 2018 Farm Bill Fiasco (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2HahSGQ
    • The House Farm Bill Ignores What Farmers Want (and Farm Groups Call BS) (In These Times) https://bit.ly/2HTzsOY
    • Opinion: The Republican Farm Bill is as Broken as our food System (foodtank) https://bit.ly/2HLVQqX
    • The 2018 Farm Bill’s Hidden Agenda to Push Millions to Push Millions off Food Stamps (In These Times) https://bit.ly/2HbvgXm
    • Republican Farm Bill Calls On Many SNAP Recipients To Work Or Go To School (NPR) https://n.pr/2EJz5RA
    • GOP House’s Farm Bill Would Gut a Key Conservation Program (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2HeU8Bq                          Some see organic farming as a sure-fire way to improve struggling farm communities. Others say it will take a lot more than higher premiums to make a lasting economic difference.
  • Why the GOP food stamp overhaul might not work (Politico) https://politi.co/2Hu4M7z                                                                            There’s little evidence that SNAP job training works, let alone that it can be scaled up quickly for millions more people.
  • ‘Sick Joke’: House Agriculture Committee Advances Farm Bill Attacking Environment, Endangered Species (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2He5wxj

 

GMOs/CRISPR/Cloning/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Should Farm Animals Be Genetically Modified to Remove Their Capacity to Feel Pain? (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2Hxvf0D          Creating a “brainless chicken” opens up serious ethical questions.

 

Technology

  • The Secret Truth Behind Food Flavorings (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2vXHv8N                                                                              Processed food contains some surprising additives to create specific flavors.

 

Poisons

  • Lawmakers want the EPA to ignore impacts of pesticides on endangered species (Environmental Health News) https://bit.ly/2qN5wJL                                                                                              It would be hard to overstate the dangers of this Farm Bill rider
  • Environmentalists and Farmers Seek Court Decision Halting Use o Dow’s ‘Agent Orange Pesticide (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2qM7Otp
  • Monsanto bullies EPA on Glyphosate ruling (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2KfITXk                                                                                Monsanto has launched a campaign to pressure the EPA into declaring glyphosate safe.
  • A Cancer on Society: Monsanto Claims Right Not to Speak About Roundup (Common Dreams) https://bit.ly/2qSEbWK            Monsanto doesn’t want the world to know their product is labeled a “problem carcinogen.”

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update April 14, 2018

 

  • 20% of US Diets Responsible for Almost Half of Country’s Food_Related Emissions, Study Finds (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2FQt0Ih
    • Study: Greenhouse gas emissions and energy use associated with production of individual self-selected US diet (IOP Science) https://bit.ly/2DS3j48
  • ‘Dangerous’ Decline in Biodiversity Threatening Humanity’s Wellbeing Worldwide (Common Dreams) https://bit.ly/2uglHnT
  • Has #MeToo Changed Your Relationship With Restaurants? (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GjuaLU                                                        We want to hear from you.
  • Researchers Just Found a Hidden Cause of California’s Smog Problem (Climate Desk) https://bit.ly/2GlzdIn                                Fertilized soils may be contributing up to 40 percent of the state’s nitrogen oxides emissions.
  • Residents Near Hog Farms Just Got Much, Much Worse (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2J5JV7B                                                                                  It just became much easier for large livestock operations to pollute near people’s homes.
  • ‘Buy local’ food programs deceive consumers and are rarely enforced, a USA today Network investigation finds (az central) https://bit.ly/2GurzMY                                                                                            In just one example, peanuts are trucked into Oklahoma. But that doesn’t stop a manufacturer from getting a “Made In Oklahoma” brand…
  • Behind the Rise and Fall of Growing Power (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2FCRpRp                                                                                            The urban farming powerhouse had global reputation. Then, it collapsed last year under mounting debt, prompting big questions about what happened and what comes next.
  • Scientists examine threat to food security if we meet the Paris climate targets (The Guardian) https://bit.ly/2ImkEoH                        Even with aggressive climate policies to limit global warming, food security in some areas will be threatened
  • Half a Degree of Warming Makes a Big Difference to Global Food Security, Study Finds (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2JlhzGS
  • Study: Changes in extremes, fresh water availability and vulnerability to food insecurity projected at 1.5°C and 2°C global warming with a higher-resolution global climate model (The Royal Society Publishing) https://bit.ly/2GrdcvQ
  • Climate Change Threatens US Culinary Traditions, From Maple Syrup to Hot Sauce (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2Gyl4Yx
    • Study: Managing for delicious ecosystem service under climate change: can United States sugar maple (Acer saccharum) syrup production be maintained in a warming climate? (International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystem Services & Management) https://bit.ly/2HbmSb6
  • Six “Organic” Dairies in Texas Outproduce 453 Organic Dairies in Wisconsin (The Cornucopia Institute) https://bit.ly/2H0PLci

Breathe easier under a plan to cut airborne dust and manure at cattle feedlot (Tri-City Herald) https://bit.ly/2HjJ56E

 

Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding, Fishing & Production

  • Sorry, pretty much everyone: young farmers are the least diverse – and smallest – group of farmers in the country (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2GmRFVg
  • Female Farmers in the (San Francisco) East Bay Cultivate a Sense of Community (East Bay Express) https://bit.ly/2E4JtD3

Facing the most severe economic drought in recent history, New York’s dairy farmers are battling economic and emotional distress.

 

Food and Culture

  • After Years Of Violence, Chef Offers Colombian Farmers Pride And Profit (NPR) https://n.pr/2G4YWEP
  • Food Historian Reckons With the Black Roots of Southern Food (Smithsonian Magazine) https://bit.ly/2IkOOZA                                        … Michael Twitty shares the contributions that enslaved African-Americans and their descendants have made to southern cuisine
  • The Long Run Home (Earth Island Journal) https://bit.ly/2EkF4ff  A vanishing tribe, a critically-endangered fish, and the race to pull them back from the brink.

 

Seeds & Cultivars

  • The Red Delicious is an apple atrocity. Why are we growing billions of pounds of them each year? (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2DsRVvq                                                                                            As tastier breeds like Honeycrisp and Gala edge the Red Delicious out of grocery stores, what happens to the forgotten fruit?

 

Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity, Malnutrition, and Nutrition

  • Republicans in Congress Are So Eager to Slash Food Stamps, They’re About to Make a Big Mistake (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GJhoGA                                                                                            A battle over SNAP work requirements
  • Spring Break Leaves Some College Students Looking For Their Next Meal (Wisconsin Public Radio) https://bit.ly/2pZHIlq  Experts say hunger on campuses is all too common
  • Food, Housing Insecurity May Be Keeping College Students From Graduating (NPR) https://n.pr/2uLh19Z
  • Only 30 percent of American food aid pays for actual food (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2GHZm7K                                                    The next farm bill may change that. If the Food for Peace Modernization Act passes, it would mark the most radical – and progressive – change to America’s food-aid commitments in sixty years.

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • Turning (EU) food waste into animal feed could take a chunk out of livestock emissions (Horizon Magazine) https://bit.ly/2Ivr4BM
  • Instead of reshaping domestic waste management, US asks China to lift its scrap waste ban (Nation of Change) https://bit.ly/2GEhHT5
  • Trashed: Inside the Deadly World of Private Garbage Collection (ProPublica) https://bit.ly/2EWuOvr                                                        Waste removal is one of the most dangerous jobs in the country. On the darkened streets of New York City, it’s a race for survival.

 

Healthy/Food Safety

  • The Coca-Cola Invasion Is Causing Mexico’s Slow Death by Junk Food (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2H6NnOU                                          Mexico’s traditional diet of beans and corn has been replaced with pizza and hamburgers.
  • FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb want to define “healthy” and “natural” (New Food economy) https://bit.ly/2GmsL44                    And maybe take the dairy out of yogurt, too.
  • Here’s the Federal Government’s Big Chance to Improve Public Health and Reduce Animal Suffering – at the Same Time (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2Ia8uiw                                                                   The USDA must make plant-based eating priority in the 2020-2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
  • The Science About Eating out That Will Scare You Into Cooking Your Own Dinner (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2pUqWVV                A new study links restaurant meals with higher levels of plastic-based chemicals in the body.
  • Would You Like Some Phthalates With Your Sandwich? (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2GqmsMG
  • Study: Dietary sources of cumulative phthalates exposure among the US general population NHANES 2005-2014 (Environmental International)
  • Study: Phage particles harboring antibiotic resistance genes in fresh-cut vegetables and agricultural soil (Environment International) https://bit.ly/2GXiLPN

 

Food Fraud/Scandals/Weird

  • What turns some law-abiding Canadians into smugglers? The high price of imported cheese (PRI) https://bit.ly/2FejxWP

 

Children & School Food

  • What Children Understand About Food Insecurity (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2GnGBTK                                                                          Researchers have begun asking children about their households’ lack of food – and making surprising discoveries.

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • Waiting Tables or Harvesting Food, Why Fair Labor Is Still About Civil Rights (Yes!) https://bit.ly/2GXI0EQ                                                   For too many women, deciding whether to stand up to harassment at work is a choice between earning a enough tips to put foo on their tables or not.
  • Tennessee ICE Raid Signals Return to Large-Scale Workplace Raids (Southern Poverty Law Center) https://bit.ly/2EqzxDT
  • Five days in pictures: Farmworkers fast for freedom from sexual violence in the fields (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2GjI5S7
  • Union Behind The ‘Fight For $15’ Cuts Funding For Fast Food Campaign (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2JasuD5                                In the Trump era, the Service Employees International Union is pumping less money into organizing McDonald’s workers, filings show.
  • A Heimlich Maneuver for Stopping Harassers (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GIR6Bj                                                                                              And four more ideas on how to clean up restaurant culture.

 

Protests

  • Calling Out Trudeau ‘Betrayal, Water Defenders Mobilize Against Kinder Morgan Pipeline (Common Dreams) https://bit.ly/2IOIZED

 

Pollinators

  • Flying insects tell tales of long distance migrations (Science News) https://bit.ly/2EtUeif                                                                                Well timed travel ensures food and breeding opportunities
  • How honeybees’ royal jelly might be a baby glue, too (Science News) https://bit.ly/2GZGzox                                                                                A last minute pH shift turns goo sticky and keeps queen larvae from falling out of the cells.
  • Jeff Bezos and Amazon Can Help Save the Bees – So What Are They Waiting For? (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2GBLewI                    Several major retailers have committed to stop selling harmful neonic pesticides to protect bees. Not Amazon.

 

Animals

  • Large-Scale Animal Agriculture Is Threatening Rural Communities. Congress Is About to Make It Worse. (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2DRD4et                                                                    Missouri communities fend off a rise in feedlots.

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • The death of the “Big Food” era is imminent after the industry’s biggest lobbying group crumbles (Quartz) https://bit.ly/2oUpJwc
  • Bills to Ban Local Soda Taxes Are Moving In the States, Coke and Pepsi Borrow from the Tobacco Playbook (The Center For Media And Democracy) https://bit.ly/2JfwKRQ
    • Foodwatch Germany slams Coca-Cola’s denial of health threat (Deutsche Welle) https://bit.ly/2GK9DNx                                            The German consumer watchdog Foodwatch accused Coca-Cola of denying the obvious health damage caused by its soft drinks. But the government has no plans for a UK-style sugar tax.
  • Edibles Market Is Exploding. You Can Bet Big Corporations Are Watching. (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GJ4b0J                                “They recognize the writing on the wall.”
  • A UK Grocery Chain Banned Palm Oil. Here’s Why That’s Not Enough. (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2qoZNKY
  • How Three Black Women Use Food as Tools for Resistance (East Bay Express) https://bit.ly/2GkWLkE                                                        Away from the confines of restaurants, Monifa Dayo, Hella Black Brunch, and Soul Oakland create meals to spark change.
  • Why Is China Treating North Carolina Like the Developing World? (Rolling Stone) https://rol.st/2G7U992                                    How lax regulations made it cheaper for China to outsource pork production – and all of its environmental and human costs – to the US.
  • With its purchase of Whole Foods, is Amazon’s goal to revolutionize food distribution? (The Conversation) https://bit.ly/2pTy6Zq
  • NECCO Wagers: Fans Stock Up As America’s Oldest Candy Company Faces Closure (Newsweek) https://bit.ly/2JMxZYU
  • Popular B.C. chefs ask provincial government not to renew salmon farm licenses (National Observer) https://bit.ly/2q9Dh8F
  • Don’t Call It Pot: My Dinner With San Francisco’s Cannabis Gourmets (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2umkP1g                                    A new group of elite entrepreneurs are trading in marijuana-infused luxury foods.
  • In Oaxaca, Mexico, A Locally Made Soda Takes Aim At Coca-Cola’s Supremacy (NPR) https://n.pr/2pDlq9Z
  • Why is farmers’ market bread so ridiculously expensive? (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2IiiV3P                                                          Don’t blame growers and bakers for the $10 heirloom loaf. Blame American farm policy.
  • As Vermont’s Milk Industry Continues To Free-Fall, Canadian Dairies Are Thriving (NPR) https://n.pr/2uVM3fs

 

Food Fraud/Scandals/Weird

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • This is What a West Without Water Will Look Like (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2tPliZp                                                                                    A huge swath of the US is facing massive droughts. It’s only going to get worse.
  • Is Coal Waste Leaching Into America’s Drinking Water? (The New Republic) https://bit.ly/2pRM9j1                                                                          Coal ash ponds are contaminating ground water across the country, but the consequences are unclear because the government doesn’t monitor them.
  • From ‘Sea to Shining Sea,’ Industrial Ag Fouls America’s Waterways (Common Dreams) https://bit.ly/2ud1bok                   Given agriculture’s role in destroying our most precious natural resource, you’d think the US Congress would do everything in its power to protect your water.
  • The Great Lakes Are Filling Up With Giant Green Blobs (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2q2lak2                                                                Industrial agriculture fuels them, and new science shows that they emit way more greenhouse gas than previously thought.
  • Oysters could clean up the New York harbor. But regulators worry people will eat them (New Food Economy) https://bit.ly/2EdaWm0
  • The Trouble With Tuna Poke Bowls (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2uk9EWN                                                                                        The Hawaiian dish is all the rage – but the oceans are paying the price.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • Alarm Sounds After EU Regulators Greenlight Bayer-Monsanto #MergerFromHell (Common Dreams) https://bit.ly/2FT4Flj  Critics of the deal warn the decision will allow the companies, “together with BASF, to become data giants in agriculture – the ‘Facebooks of farming’ – with all the pitfalls that entails.”
  • Are White South African Farmers Facing “Genocide”? Why These Claims Illustrate Australia’s Discriminatory Refugee Policy (Truthout) https://bit.ly/2GY1BSb
  • ICE arrests farmworkers, sparking fears in the Central Valley over immigrants and the economy (Los Angeles Times) https://lat.ms/2JaXbIb
  • Strict Work Requirements to Get Food Stamps, But Not Farm Subsidies (Environmental Working Group) https://bit.ly/2Ef5cbg
    • New USDA Subsidy Program Will Send Hundreds of Millions of Dollars to Cotton Farmers (Environmental Working Group) https://bit.ly/2Eew1N0
    • The Market’s Advice: Plan, Plant, Plant (Cotton Grower) https://bit.ly/2GOtEpf
  • USDA secretary accused of siding with industry over science in new report (The Guardian) https://bit.ly/2H2iqOe                                  A Union of Concerned Scientists report said Sonny Perdue was ‘sidelining science’ and called for congressional scrutiny of the agency
  • After Supreme Court ruling, Flint residents will finally see officials in court (grist) https://bit.ly/2DQn0cP
  • The EPA edited out farmworker concerns about pesticides (grist) https://bit.ly/2GIrHLe
    • EPA reportedly ‘distorted’ meeting notes and workers could be more vulnerable to pesticide exposure (Think Progress) https://bit.ly/2IjlItn
    • Trump saved a pesticide Obama wanted banned. Then, it poisoned several farmworkers. (grist) https://bit.ly/2IipVxg
  • FDA Issues Mandatory Recall For Kratom Products Over Salmonella Risks (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2GygzwV          The order targets products distributed y Triangle Pharmanaturals, which refused a voluntary recall request.
  • NLRB Just Dealt a Major Blow to the Fight for $15. Now’s the Time to Take Stock of the Campaign. (In These Times) https://bit.ly/2E2fkUJ
  • Trump signs bill that kills Obama-era rule targeting wag theft, unsafe working conditions (Chicago Tribune) https://trib.in/2pqGvUL
  • Bipartisan Bill Introduced to Fix EQIP, a Broken Farm Conservation Program (modern farmer) https://bit.ly/2GFXah3
  • Farmers Are Collateral Damage in Trump’s Trade War (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GiAEuq
    • China Joins the Fray, Reacts to US Tariffs With Huge Tariffs of Their Own (modern farmer) https://bit.ly/2J0FHOG
    • “Farmers for Free Trade” Runs Ad During, “Fox and Friends” To Get Trump’s Attention (modern farmer) https://bit.ly/2pRCr0a
    • What Chinese Tariffs Targeting American Crops Will Mean For Farmers (NPR) https://n.pr/2GuVKqf
    • US Farmers Likely To Be Among Hardest Hit By Chinese Tariffs (NPR) https://n.pr/2GF25eV
    • The First American Casualties of Trump’s Trade War With China (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2GzVuqb                                Tariffs on pork and soybeans reverberate through the Heartland.
  • Trump Want to Ban Health Warnings on His Favorite Food (Mother Jones) https://bit.ly/2u6f4UY                                                        He’s using the NAFTA renegotiations as a tool in the effort.
  • No More Bottled Water For Flint, As Michigan Declares Taps ‘Restored’ (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2H7f1h5                            The whistleblower who exposed elevated blood lead levels in Flint children says the decision is premature.
  • Flint Residents Chocked By State’s Decision To End Bottled Water Delivery (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2GK3rZL
  • Kansas Governor Signs “Tyson Bill,” Despite Protests (modern farmer) https://bit.ly/2GmJIey                                                                  Kansas governor Jeff Colyer just signed a bill that, on the surface, looks like a minor change in poultry production legislation – that is until you talk to the people who have been protesting for the past six months.
  • How a Kansas Town Held off a Tyson Plant (Civil Eats) https://bit.ly/2pTilll                                                                                    Tonganoxie residents are the latest in a wave of rural communities standing up to Big Ag.
  • Michigan OKs Nestlé Water Extraction, Despite 80K+ Public Comments Against It (NPR) https://n.pr/2GZTnLw
    • Despite Overwhelming Opposition From Residents, Michigan Permits Nestlé to Draw More Groundwater for Bottling (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2JlEPEj                                                              Out of 81, 862 comments filed, only 75 were reportedly in favor of granting the permit.
  • LaPage (Maine Governor) looks to override local pesticide rules in 30 municipalities. But why? (Portland Press Herald) https://bit.ly/2Eb9Rey                                                                                      More communities are developing ordinances meant to protect residents from toxic chemicals linked to cancer and birth defects.

 

GMOs/CRISPR/Cloning/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

 

Technology

  • Robots Are Trying To Pick Strawberries. So Far, They’re Not Very Good At It (NPR) https://n.pr/2IEswmr

 

Poisons

  • Researchers Link Glyphosate to Shorter Pregnancies (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2q4HVoo
    • Study: Glyphosate exposure in pregnancy and shortened gestation length: a prospective Indiana birth cohort study (Environmental Health) https://bit.ly/2FNG14C
  • Popular Beer and Wine Brands Contaminated With Monsanto’s Weedkiller, Test Reveal (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2G80gLc          Some brewers and vintners are taking steps to avoid contamination from glyphosate.
  • Thanks to Scott Pruitt, 30 Million Pounds of Brain Damaging Pesticide Will Be Sprayed on Corps in Next 5 Years (Environmental Working Group) https://bit.ly/2pVcVab                  The EPA’s own calculations suggest that babies, children and pregant women all eat much more chlorpyrifos than is safe.

 

Sponsorship: West Coast Seeds

Grow Calgary is a non-profit organization run completely by volunteers and we help with team building activities for groups, organizations, schools, and business. For the past 5 season we have helps give fresh produce to over 30 local social agencies with feeding programs like the Drop in Centre, The Women Emergency Shelter and Inn from the Cold.

Grow Calgary has an 11 acre farm located west of Canada Olympic Park on the South side of the TransCanada Highway. Grow Calgary will be currently entering our 6th season in 2018 and also are very excited to be celebrating our 5th birthday on May, 13th.

Now a definition of non-profit is that we are not established for the purpose of making any money we are purely in it for making a changes in our community.

Now none of this would be possible if it weren’t for our many sponsors.

West Coast Seeds

West Coast Seeds donations help Grow Calgary with our early Germination events, Aggie days, and Earth Science Society event,

West Coast Seeds are non-treated and  Non-GMO  and are used for organic growing. Non-GMO  means they are not genetically motivated and come naturally from the plant.

West Coast seeds are Non-treated and are naturally dried they are not applied with a polymer spray which would have contain  seed coating that would have growth promoters, fertilizer, or chemicals to protect the seed from pathogens which would usually be fungicides.

West Coast Seeds 2

West Coast Seeds has over 850 different kinds of open-pollinated and hybrid vegetable seeds.  West Coast Seeds are featured certified organic seeds for growing food like beets, carrots, onions, tomatoes and so much more.

For more information check out their website West Coast Seeds.

 

The Importance of Composting.

Grow Calgary has compost donated to them from a few partners like Bona Roma. Grow Calgary accepts compost within a three or four km radius from around the 11 acre farm west of C.O.P.

composting 2Now compost is actually decomposed organic material, now this would includes leaves, grass clippings, and waste from your kitchen.

Now all of this decomposing matter is very vital for the growth of a plant.

Compost can improve the configuration of soil and it helps hold the right amount of moister, nutrient and air to properly aerate the soil and help plants grow.

Composting

Compost in fact has the ability to change up even the toughest forms of clay soil and sandy soil alike.

Compost is a great way to help reduce the waste problem and it is also helps as an awesome improvement for mulch and soil.

The benefits of composting are easily found there is the reduction in garbage volume and it is also a natural alternative the helps cut back on the use of chemical fertilizers.

Compost also helps improve ventilation and drainage of the soil so the plant can grow.

composting 3

Now by adding the improved ventilation and drainage it helps decrease the need for watering.

There are something’s that can not be composted and are important to be weary of what you throw in your compost.

  • Meat, like fish and animal fats, these decomposing material may attract unwanted critters to your compost pile.
  • Certain kinds of paper like newspapers or office paper these kinds of papers may contain chemicals and are not good for your plant and should instead be recycled.
  • Ashes from grills, now wood ash can be useful in very small quantities but BBQ grill ashes shouldn’t go into the compost.
  • Pet feces these things can actually can add diseases to your compost and have an unpleasant odour. But good manure to uses for compost would be chicken horse cow, and even rabbit.
  • Treated sawdust from lumber mills because sometimes the wood could be treated with harmful chemicals.

 

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update March 24, 2018

 

  • I left my serious job for the frivolous food industry. But chefs can bring change to the table (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2FBhBvG    If chefs back sustainable food, consumers will follow, writes Lucky Peach founder Chris Ying
  • New Study Is First to Demonstrate That Biodiversity Inoculates Against Extinction (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2G5Avu8
    • Study: Trophic redundancy reduces vulnerability to extinction cascades (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America) http://bit.ly/2GE7zHB
  • California Farms Are a Silent but Sizable Source of Air Pollution (Scientific American) http://bit.ly/2nHdiEg                                              Soil microbes convert fertilizer to nitrogen oxides, emitting about as much of the gases as on-road vehicles in the state
  • This Is How the Future Tastes: 6 High-Tech Foods That Are Changing the Way We Eat and Drink (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2pCB7gA

 

Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding, Fishing & Production

  • Black Farmers Reviving Their African Roots: “We Are Feeding Our Liberation” (Yes!) http://bit.ly/2GfGWIL                              Community farmers in DC say crops and methods of their African ancestors hold an essential key to restoring Black health.
  • This Farmer Turned Congresswoman Sees a Way out of America’s Health Crisis (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2FLnHKg                        Maine Rep. Chellie Pingree got her start in organic agriculture.
  • The Real Organic Project: Disgusted With the USDA, Farmers Make Their Own Organic label (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/2Fl6CTc
  • Trade War Prospect Shakes Part of Trump Base: Midwest Farmers (NYT) http://nyti.ms/2tzwRUi                                                      Rural voters voice concern that retaliation against tariffs could take aim at American agriculture, which posts a trade surplus.
  • The Surprising Ways Tigers Benefit Farmers and Livestock Owners (Scientific American) http://bit.ly/2IxPdbZ                                A recent study finds that the often-feared big cats actually help keep crops and domesticated animals safe from other threats

 

Seeds & Cultivars

  • The Next Green Revolution (National Geographic) http://on.natgeo.com/2pxitHO                                                                    Modern supercrops will be a big help. But agriculture can’t be fixed by biotech alone.

 

Food and Culture

  • So THAT’S Why We Call It Pizza ‘Margherita’ (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2GrBrXx                                                                                          Sorry, it has nothing to do with margaritas.
  • Food for Thought: Was Cooking Pivotal Step in Human Evolution? (Scientific American) http://bit.ly/2Cl1NLC                   The dietary practice coincided with increases in brain size, evidence suggests

 

Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity, Malnutrition, and Nutrition

  • Now People Who Need It Can Text for Food Aid (National Geographic) https://bit.ly/2pxTowu                                                                    A startup in Chicago is rethinking the way low-income Americans apply for social services.
  • Salvation Army Opens Its First Nonprofit Grocery Store To Combat Food Deserts (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2FKsNCi
  • Dirt Poor: Have Fruits and Vegetables Become Less Nutritious? (Scientific American) http://bit.ly/2FHuuo3
    • Study: Changes in USDA Food Composition Data for 43 Garden Crops, 1950 to 1999 (Save Our Soils) http://bit.ly/2rcAigB

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

 

Healthy/Food Safety

  • Human health implications of organic food and organic agriculture: a comprehensive review (Environmental Health) http://bit.ly/2hPDZ6Z
  • Carnivore’s Dilemma (National Geographic) http://on.natgeo.com/2ptubCs                                                              Unhealthy. Nutritious. Cruel. Delicious. Unsustainable. All-American. In the beef debate there are so many sides.

 

Children & School Food

  • Children need microbes – not antibiotics – to develop immunity, scientists say (The Toronto Star) http://bit.ly/2e1oNQ7            Hyper-hygienic environments can lead to chronic conditions

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • The Tipping Equation (NYT) http://nyti.ms/2p8N6TQ                           At restaurants across America, servers calculate how far is too far, weighing harassing behavior against the tips they need to make a living wage.
  • Support the Farmworkers Fasting to End Sexual Assault in Wendy’s Supply Chain (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2InWE5v
  • Blood, sweat, and coffee (The Week) http://bit.ly/2GosHkT            The backbreaking work of the coffee makers. Roughly half of Americans drink coffee every day. Rarely do they think much about the people half a world away who picked the beans.
  • Prisoners Across Florida Went on Strike. Instead of Fair Wages, They Got Solitary. (In These Times) https://bit.ly/2DRqtb4
  • New allegations suggest Oakland chef Charlie Hallowell was long aware of harassment charges (SF Chronicle) http://bit.ly/2p5ZOBX
  • Truckers’ Lawsuit Tells Company the Gig’s Up (Capital & Main) http://bit.ly/2HrPADr                                                                                        Truck drivers spent unpaid hours awaiting assignments from dispatchers, as well as burning up time at vehicle inspections or completing shipping paperwork – time that would be compensated if they were classified as hourly or salaried employees, instead of as contractors.

 

Protests

  • Thousands of farmers march to India’s Mumbai to demand help (Reuters) http://reut.rs/2FxBsMv
    • Sea of farmers in Mumbai, here’s what they say (The Indian Express) http://bit.ly/2p3wi0B                                                              Having walked over 160 km in six days, the men and women traversed their final 20 km into central Mumbai even as the state government scrambled to prevent the embarrassment of a gherao of the legislature as threatened by the CPI (M)-affiliated All India Kasan Sabha.
  • Massive protest in Mumbai shakes up Modi government (Asia Times) http://bit.ly/2GujhER                                                                              The governments ability to deliver a loan waiver and crop failures, poor returns, and forcible land acquisition has led to huge discontent among farmers
  • Ahead of Major Protest to Stop Kinder Morgan Pipeline, Company Files Injunction Against Water Protectors (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/2GaXt0x                                                                    “Kinder Morgan is intimidating environmentalists who are standing up for BC against a dirty tar sands pipeline.”
  • Farmworkers Bring Human Rights Fight to Wendy’s Doorstep, Fasting & Calling For Boycott Over Abuses (Democracy Now!)
    • Farmworkers Call Out Wendy’s For Failure To Act On Sexual Abuse And Harassment (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2pu4C5c

 

Pollinators

  • The Number of Monarch Butterflies Wintering in Mexico Is Down Again (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/2pesuZF                              The plight of pollinators isn’t limited to bees.
  • Monarch Butterfly Migration Could Collapse, Scientists Warn (EcoWatch) https://bit.ly/2God9A6

 

Animals

  • US Ranks Second Worst Nation in the World on New Animal Cruelty Index (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2G1Pvdz                                    Yet animal protection is one of the fastest growing social justice movements of our time.
  • Sea Eagles are Returning to Scotland and Preying on Sheep. Will Lasers Help? (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/2Iy1gpM
  • Better Beef (Scientific American) http://bit.ly/2HHPFTB                  Can a remade cattle industry save the Amazon rainforest?
  • With Just 76 Orcas Left, Washington Governor Orders Protections for Beloved Killer Whales (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2DBQhYn

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Is the USDA the Latest Site of Corporate Takeover in the Trump Administration? (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2FSXyIM                            Big Ag’s increasing influence has some farmers wondering whether it’s time to abandon the organic label altogether.
  • Factory Farm Industry Wants USDA to Let Slaughterhouses Kill Animals Even Faster (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2FDDIlg              America’s system of industrial farming treats animals, the environment, workers and consumers with utter disrespect.
  • Science organizations and Coca-Cola’s ‘war’ with the public health community: insights from an internal industry document (Epidemiology & Community Health) http://bit.ly/2G4MhoH
  • McDonald’s offering (UK) farmers grants of up to £10,000 to deliver animal welfare initiatives on their farms (Farming Online UK) http://bit.ly/2FyYBu2
  • Coca-Cola Sees Public Health Debate as ‘a Growing War,’ Documents Reveal (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2u3URiX                      Coca-Cola intentionally funded the Global Energy Balance Network (GEBN) as a “weapon” in a “growing war between the public health community and private industry” on the causes of obesity, according to a press release sent to EcoWatch by consumer group US Right to Know.
  • Walmart Files Patent for Robot Bees (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2GD0hnF                                                                                            With the mass die-off of bees spelling trouble for agriculture, the world’s largest retailer has filed patents for the use of “unmanned vehicles,” or drones, to aid with pollination and crop production.
  • The Quinoa Boom Goes Bust in the Andes (North American Congress on Latin America, NACLA) http://bit.ly/2paO5lw              The quinoa boom was an opportunity for farmers in the Andes to make profits from their cops. But the incursion of large-scale farms outside the Andean highland into the market dashed these dreams.
  • Breaking The Drought In Food Deserts (Pacific Standard) http://bit.ly/2CGnUJb                                                                                        What happens when a grocery store opens in an inner-city neighborhood?
  • Rebuilding A Resilient Puerto Rico (Medium) http://bit.ly/2tRbmhY                                                                                            How this social enterprise’s solar powered oven may be the key to help.
  • Guaranteed Minimum Agriculture (Medium) http://bit.ly/2mCVg4P                                                                                            Why Basic Jobs might fare better than Universal Basic Income.

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • From Not Enough to Too Much, the World’s Water Crisis Explained (National Geographic) https://bit.ly/2IJAieQ              Many more cities than Cape Town face an uncertain future over water. But there are emerging solutions.
  • What You Need to Know About the World’s Water Wars (National Geographic) https://bit.ly/2ua3x7j                          Underground water is being pumped so aggressively around the globe that land is sinking, civil wars are being waged, and agriculture is being transformed.
  • Coke Nestle Near Ownership of World’s Second Largest Aquifer (MPN News) http://bit.ly/2EZotlN                                                                     A concerted push is underway in South America that could see the Guarani Aquifer, one of the world’s largest reserves of fresh water fall into the hands of transnational corporations such as Coca-Cola and Nestle.
  • Report: Take Back the Tap: The Big Business Hustle of Bottled Water (Food and Water Watch) http://bit.ly/2ostw4m
  • WHO launches health review after microplastics found in 90% of bottled water (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2pePtnq              Researchers find levels of plastic fibers in popular bottled water brands could be twice as high as found in tap water
  • Bottle Water, Brought to You by Fracking? (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2pamnGz                                                                                              The line between fracking and bottled water industry is one more reason to take back the tap.
  • From Asthma to Cancer, ‘Blistering’ New Report Details Human Cost of Fracking (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/2GqQJvO      “Those of us in the public health sector started to realize years ago that there were potential risks,” says on researcher. “Now we see those risks have turned into human harms and people are getting sick.”
  • Study: Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (Physicians for Social Responsibility) http://bit.ly/2Dny6FX
  • Toxic Coal Ash Being Dumped in Puerto Rico, Which Already Suffers Worst Drinking Water in the Nation (Democracy Now!) http://bit.ly/2FCdlMs
  • Microplastic pollution in oceans is far worse than feared, say scientists (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2DjAoWB                                      A study reveals highest miroplastic pollution levels ever recorded in a river in Manchester, UK and show that billions of particles flooded into the sea from rivers in the area in just one year
  • Area Of Plastic In The Great Pacific Garbage Patch Is Three Times The Size Of France (Huffington Post) https://bit.ly/2pzdiqM                                                                                        And there’s up to 16 times more trash than scientists had thought.
  • Once Written Off for Dead, the Aral Sea Is Now Full of Life (National Geographic) https://bit.ly/2IKVKjz                                      Thanks to large-scale restoration efforts, in the North Aral Sea has seen a resurgence of fish – a boon to the communities that rely on it.
  • ‘Beast From the East’ Drives Sea Life Die-Off (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2DyW9lb                                                                                          March certainly came in like a lion in the UK and Ireland, as “The Beast from the East” brought freezing temperatures, up to 20 inches of snowfall and travel disruption to the British Isles.
  • Fishing Boats ‘Going Dark’ Raise Suspicion Of Illegal Catches, Report Says (NPR) http://n.pr/2Glgopz
  • Mackerel of Mussels? How Seafood Eater Can Make the Most Sustainable, Eco-Friendly Choices (AlterNet) https://bit.ly/2DGlTME                                                                                      When it comes to fishing’s environmental impact, not all seafood is equal.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • European Commission gives green light to Bayer-Monsanto merger (Nation of Change) https://bit.ly/2I4tdo6                                  “The coming together of these two is a marriage made I hell – bad for farmers, bad for consumers, and bad for our countryside.”
  • Angering Organic Farmers and Advocates, Trump’s USDA Kills Animal Welfare Rule (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/2FE1ycC    The rule would have “specified a set of standards for organic livestock and poultry designed to minimize stress, facilitate natural behaviors, and promote well-being.”
  • USDA Kills Rule For Organic Farms That Would Ensure Animals Could Go Outside (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2pfXCba              The rule would have put in place a variety of new animal welfare standards for farms producing certified organic meat, milk, and egg.
  • Your Organic “Cage-Free” Eggs Might Come From Hens Locked Up All Day (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2FRPKGX                              The Trump administration is rolling back rules meant to change that.
  • National Farmers Union: Organic Livestock Standards Rule Withdrawn to Detriment of Family Farmers, Organic Label http://bit.ly/2FPqpxl
    • The Rule: National Organic Program; Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices-Withdrawal (Federal Register) http://bit.ly/2BELwgD
  • Trump signs bill that kills Obama-era rule targeting wage theft, unsafe working conditions (Chicago Tribune) https://trib.in/2pqGvUL
  • ‘Truly Wicked’: Trump EPA Dissolves Program That Studies Effects of Chemical Exposure on Children (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/2t0sUHY
  • The Government’s Own Watchdog Says Massive Poultry Companies Are Exploiting Small Business Loans (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2pkEn0V                                                                                                The surprising way US taxpayers are propping up multinational meat companies.
  • They’re Lovin’ it: Dems Press NLRB about Bungled Rule Repeal, McDonald’s Case (District Sentinel) http://bit.ly/2FnqysH
  • Study: Backyard Chicken Regulations Are Not Up to the Task (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/2Gc5ORU
    • Study: A Method for Guarding Animal Welfare and Public Health: Tracking the Rise of Backyard Poultry Ordinances (Journal of Community Health) http://bit.ly/2GC0SWl

 

GMOs/ Cloning/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

 

Poisons

  • The fight to save the EPA (Nation of Change) https://bit.ly/2pD077n                                                                                        With environmental regulations under attack and EPA budgets being slashed, can the destruction of the be prevented?
  • Swarming the Aisles II: Food Retailers Fail to Protect Bees From Toxic Pesticides (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2pisCIi
    • Score Card: Swarming the Aisles II: Rating top retailers on pesticide reduction and organic food to protect pollinators (Friends of the Earth) http://bit.ly/2DoruqK                                    Food Retailers Fail to Protect Bees From Toxic Pesticides
  • Lead exposure may be linked to 412,000 premature US deaths yearly, study says (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2DnbbdV              Figure is 10 times larger than previous reports have suggested, potentially pointing to threat on par with smoking
  • Glyphosate exposure in pregnancy and shortened gestational length: a prospective Indiana birth cohort study (Environmental Health) http://bit.ly/2FNG14C
  • What’s Going on With the Roundup-Causes-Cancer Monsanto Lawsuit? (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/2GEiMYw
  • Monsanto’s Toxic Legacy: An Investigative Reporter Talks Glyphosate (In These Times) https://bit.ly/2GksIZD

 

Resources

  • Hedgerows and Farmscaping for California Agriculture (Community Alliance with Family Farmers) http://bit.ly/2FQZkKd                                                                                                A Resource Guide For Farmers

 

The Future of Earth

Welcome to the Earthship, this is the first in urban Earthship which is modelled after a bigger one in the country and now there are many others have coloured the country side.

Grow Calgary is proud to have over 200,000 volunteers come out and join us in team building activities.

Earth Ship

This Earthship is made up of repurposed materials recycled tires, cans, and bottles that are the foundation of this awe striking building.

The inner and outer rooms of the Earthship face south.

The Earthship also includes solar panels and the chance to treat recycle grey water, produce food and regulate temperature.

In the cold winter months which all Albertans know to well, and during this time the temperature in the Earthship has never dropped below minus one.

This is one of many station that volunteers get to join in and help with early germination.

With over 26 different stations to participate in it really is a new experience every time, and it will get people coming back for more and more.

Our Earthship is constructed out of old tires rammed with earth, cans and bottles that act almost like bricks, and featuring a new solar panel system.

This amazing building helps Grow Calgary produce more food for the at risk and vulnerable in Calgary.

22045747_1502924486422508_5195467280806881888_nAt Grow Calgary there are a total of 25 different water tanks as well as   numerous 45 gallon tanks this can hold about 200, 000 L of water.

 

Grow Calgary helps over 20 organizations with feeding programs, like the Drop in Centre, Alpha House, and the Women’s Shelter.

The Earth Ship is around 500 square foot located on our 11 acre section of land west of C.O.P..

This Earth Ship has no living people in it but is home to plenty of plant life for early germination.

We hope to see you at our next event!

 

IMG_0212

Helping the Needy in Micro-Doses

Grow Calgary is a non-profit organization dedicated to feeding Calgary’s hungry, most vulnerable and at risk citizens. We grow vegetables, like tomatoes, potatoes, leafy greens and this year we plan on trying to grow jalapeños  in our Earth Ship.

micro 3

Yet this year we are stepping up our game and, in fact, has started the first annual  micro-home design and building competition in June to help shelter the homeless.

Now it would make sense to build a massive building with many units inside it , but the cost is outlandish going upwards to $300,000 or more, when a micro-homes can be built for around $3, 000.

 Micro Home

Now the goal of this competition is to gain the knowledge, wisdom and research of quality designs so we can build resourceful and energy efficient micro-homes.

There will be three categories in which to enter:

100 foot temporary structure that will be located at CRiBs Micro-community site at Grow Calgary 11 acre farm located west of C.O.P.

 400 feet temporary structure under which would be located off site.

Online which people from all over the world can submit their designs and micro-homes.

Check out our Facebook event. 

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update for March 10, 2018

 

  • The Future of Food (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2zhatxQ                       How do we build a just, sustainable food system?
  • Expropriating land without compensation is impossible – take it from Zimbabwe (Quartz) http://bit.ly/2GWrDnI
  • Natural Pest Control Method Taking Flight (Earth Island Institute) https://tinyurl.com/y8zsg9rd                                                Farmers from Israel to California are embracing barn owls over toxic rodentcides
  • Urban agriculture is the key to a sustainable future (Aljazeera) http://bit.ly/2CXbcEY                                                                                              We can beat climate change by growing food in small urban environments, like rooftops, balconies and even walls.
  • Oscar-Nominated ‘Knife Skills’ Showcases Ex-Cons And Odd Ducks In The Kitchen (NPR) http://n.pr/2FpbxCo
  • Farming for a Small Planet (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/2toKMMZ                                                                                          How we grow food determines who can eat and who cannot – no matter how much we produce.
  • UN moves towards recognizing human right to a healthy environment (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2G8ZVVr                      Formal recognition would help protect hose who increasingly risk their lives to defend the land, water, forests, and wildlife, says the UN special rapporteur on human rights and the environment
  • Rich People are Ruining Wine (The Atlantic) http://theatln.tc/2tzZ9OC                                                                                       … and Napa Valley is forever changing as a result.
  • How Tax-Dodging Billionaires Use Farmers as Props (Inequality.org) http://bit.ly/2txodpk                                                          Urban millionaires are trotting out the tractors and overalls in a bizarre effort to roll back their taxes.
  • Donald Trump Has Sold Out Family Farmers (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2IchS61                                                                                          Trump claims he’s “fighting for our farmers,” but his policies mainly benefit agribusiness.
  • The Warped Environmentalism Of America’s Biggest Industrial Meat Producer (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2DgrgBP              Tyson Foods has a plan to stave off regulation and put a friendly face on its pollution.
  • Harvard Brain Collection Will Help Scientists Dive Inside Eating Disorders (NPR) http://n.pr/2tzaRsH
  • New Study: Eat Your Strawberries Before Climate Change Wipes Them Out (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2p3XOdn                      Avocados, almonds, peaches, and many other California crops are also threatened.
    • Study: Climate Change Trends and Impacts of California Agriculture: A Detailed Review (Agronomy) http://bit.ly/2t1HM97

 

Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding, Fishing & Production

  • This Kenyan Farmer is Modernizing – and Maintaining a Circular Mindset (Ensia) http://bit.ly/2FTF2gU                                          Traditional agricultural practices often aim to maximize value of resources and minimize waste. Can we Save that thought?
  • New Wave of Lavender Farmers Hope to Revive Barren Stripmines into Fields of Purple (100 Days in Appalachia) http://bit.ly/2sy1zNg
  • A ‘Floating Fillet’: Rice Farmers Grow Bugs To Replenish California’s Salmon (NPR) http://n.pr/2oXCHJD
  • A slow-motion catastrophe threatens 350-year-old farms (Food & Environmental Reporting Network) http://bit.ly/2FajHid              Sea level rise might be causing salt to creep into the soil along the Chesapeake Bay
  • Validation of a Process-Based Agro-Ecosystem Model (Agro-IBIS) for Maize in Xinjiang, Northwest China (Agronomy) http://bit.ly/2Hm3Sp4

 

Food and Culture

  • Why Doesn’t Tucson’s Mexican Food scene Get More National Attention? (NPR) http://n.pr/2D5iPcy
  • Indigenous and Rural Women Conserve Mother Earth and Empower Their Communities (Truthout) http://bit.ly/2Gefs6v
  • The Great Norwegian Porridge Debate, Or Tradition Vs. ‘Science’ (NPR) http://n.pr/2FvsmvG

 

Seeds & Cultivars

  • The Syrian Seed Bank That Keeps Going Despite the War (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2ti7si2                                                                              As Syrian people experience inconceivable loss, somehow, the seed bank in Tal Hadya continues to operate
  • This Colorado vault is keeping your favorite foods from going extinct (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2FvQ7Hk                          Inside the collection site preserving the world’s biodiversity, hundreds of thousands of microbes, plant and animal cells at a time.
  • Is ‘seed to table’ the next big food trend? One top chef hopes so. (Food & Environmental Reporting Network) http://bit.ly/2FjkfSY

 

Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity, Nutrition, and Malnutrition

  • Jim Hightower: A Food Stamp Indignity Worthy of Dickens (Other Words) http://bit.ly/2FqoAYu                                                      Behind the White House’s demeaning “Food box” idea is a plan to eliminate food aid for poor people xomletely.
    • I’m a Founding Investor in Blue Apron, and Let Me Tell You: Trump’s ‘Harvest Box’ Is No Blue Apron (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2BwqnIa                                                                                          The boxes are the epitome of hypocrisy for a party that spent eight years howling with rage about a first lady who just wanted school lunches include more vegetables.
  • Climate Change Is Fueling An Impending Malnutrition Crisis, Even For The Well – Fed (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/2FhEPXO
    • Study: Global and regional health effects of future food production under climate change: modeling study (The Lancet) http://bit.ly/1RrKqok
  • Rohingya refugees sell aid to fund basic diet (Aljazeera) http://bit.ly/2D1RLLk                                                                                      Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh say they are selling aid and other belongings so they can buy fish and vegetables.
  • How I learned to Be Hungry (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2p3bGVk    America’s nutrition conundrum can mean swinging between two extremes of bad eating.

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • One way to get companies to care about food waste? Make it profitable (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2Fue1iY
  • Grocery bags and takeout containers aren’t enough. It’s time to phase out all single-use plastic (LA Times) http://lat.ms/2GBOLHO

 

Healthy/Food Safety

  • More fraud in Brazil food industry; labs falsified pathogen tests (Food Safety News) http://bit.ly/2Ii63vk
  • The Impact of Genetic Changes during Crop Domestication on Healthy Food Development (Agronomy) http://bit.ly/2Ftp8sr
  • Nutrient Management in Aquaponics: Comparison of Three Approaches for Cultivating Lettuce, Mint and Mushroom Herb (Agronomy) http://bit.ly/2tvSncP

 

Children & School Food

  • Philando Castile Charity Covers Entire School District’s Lunch Debt (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2Fj4MFr                                              The cafeteria supervisor’s memory will live on in the charity be ensuring no student goes hungry.

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • Florida Farmworkers Push for Fairness in the Fields (Inequality.org) http://bit.ly/2oU6XoD                                                      South Florida was known as hotbed for modern-day slavery. Now, the Coalition of Immokalee Workers are using their innovative model to bring dignity to the tomato fields.
  • When Harassment Is the Price of a Job (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2FYD4KO                                                                                              As decades of activism meet the #MeToo moment, could the food –service industry be poised for sweeping change?
  • ‘It Becomes Your Job to Provide the Girlfriend Experience’” Women’s Stories of Work in Food Service (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2CaUaTB
    • Amid a Fast-Food Industry Plagued By Sexual Harassment, This Mother and Daughter Said “No More” (In These Times) http://bit.ly/2tkYNeJ
  • Why Today Is a Sad Milestone for Minimum-Wage Workers (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2FopJ2x                                                                                 It took 41 days for federal minimum-wage workers to catch up to what they made in 2009.
  • These Cities Aren’t Waiting for the Supreme Court to Decide Whether or Not to Gut Unions (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2FxEGML                                                                                      They’re finding ways to support organizing now.
    • How the Supreme Court’s Janus decision could squeeze food service workers (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2tkYNeJ
    • Behind Janus: Documents Reveal Decade-Long Plot to Kill Public –Sector Unions (In These Times) http://bit.ly/2F38x1L

 

Protests

 

Pollinators

  • The Buzz Fades (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2mHmeZL                   Under-resourced in an overworked agricultural system, honeybee colonies are gradually failing in most temperate regions.
  • Unlikely allies are crowdsourcing funding and habitat to save the monarch butterfly (Environmental Defense Fund) http://bit.ly/2I1CNZs

 

Animals

  • Mysteries of the Moo-crobiome: Could Tweaking Cow Gut Bugs Improve Beef (NPR) http://n.pr/2G3RMSf

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Food By Local Farmers. Distribution System By Ants. (Ensia) http://bit.ly/2EAOrfW                                                                                      Looking for a way to help sustainable food system grow, Cullen Naumoff turned to nature.
  • Here’s Why Environmentalists Are Cheering The Latest Burger At Sonic Drive-In (NPR) http://n.pr/2FUdB6H                                          The idea behind the blended beef-mushroom burger is the mixing chopped mushrooms into our burgers boosts the umami tastes, adds more moisture and reduces the amount of beef needed. And reducing the need for beef has a big impact on the environment.
  • An ADM – Bunge Merger Would Drive More Concentration in Commodity Grains (Open Markets Institute) http://bit.ly/2Fu6oNq
  • Salvation Army To Open First Grocery Store, Located In Baltimore (The Shelby Report) http://bit.ly/2GbXvFI
  • PCC Community Markets To Open Flagship Store In Downtown Seattle (Shelby Report) http://bit.ly/2FDQ0cv                                            … PCC, branded as the largest community-owned food market in the US…
  • Amazon, Walmart and Target are squeezing traditional grocery chains on price (Recode) http://bit.ly/2FL9LfR                                            A tough environment for local grocers is getting tougher.
  • The Real Reason Pizza Hut Just Rolled Out the Extra Cheesy (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2FpWNHA                                                             It has little to do with taste.
  • Three chicken producers that control 90 percent of the market are accused of price-fixing – again (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2CWN31w                                                                                    Tyson’s CEO calls the accusations chicken little.
  • The Amazon-Whole Foods behemoth keeps growing – feeding on malls, young shoppers, and itself (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2t8vnAe                                                                                              We’re keeping tabs on the beast that is Amazon-Whole Foods (alternatively, A-Whole) for you. This is our weekly round-up of news, separated from the rest of the noise.
    • Getting Your Product on Shelves at Whole Foods Just Got Harder (The Wall Street Journal) http://on.wsj.com/2C4BMM7                                                              Whole Foods is asking suppliers for more fees and deeper discounts to enhance profits
    • This creamery took on millions in debt for a contract with Whole Foods. Then Whole Foods bailed> (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2FqoWOU
    • Atlanta Fresh Closes its doors after Whole Foods Terminates 7 –year contract, 14 month in” ‘In hindsight, we were naïve…” (Food Navigator) http://bit.ly/2DgUBfD
  • Trump’s war on NAFTA is already taking a heavy toll on US farmers (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/2D0yOsB                                      As Mexico begins to look for imports elsewhere, working families suffer.
  • Food Stall Serves Up A Social Experiment: White Customers Asked To Pay More (NPR) http://n.pr/2tgBRwS

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Cape Town May Avoid Running Out of Water (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2oSM3Hj                                                                                              The city’s serve water restrictions may have averted Day Zero.
  • The Tainted Water Crisis In Upstate New York That Andrew Cuomo Can’t Shake (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2IeOdJv
  • What can Nebraska teach the American West about managing water? A lot. (Environmental Defense Fund) http://bit.ly/2FVBL0H
    • Report: The Future of Groundwater in California: Lessons in Sustainable Management Across the West (Environmental Defense Fund) http://bit.ly/2EBo85Z
  • Widespread Drought Across US Stokes Fears About A Repeat Of 2012’s Wrath (NPR) http://n.pr/2t7ZF69
  • Coal ash is polluting groundwater across the country, according to new utility data (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/2FfgJgm
    • Trump signs resolution to permit dumping mining waste into waterways (The Washington Post) http://wapo.st/2CYqgm1
  • International Fishing Trawlers are Driving Up Demand for Ocean Bushmeat in West Africa ( Earth Island Institute) http://bit.ly/2thb7fL

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • EU – US trade spat: ‘This is the last thing we need,’ say EU farmers (Food Navigator) http://bit.ly/2FuD7y5                                                          A trade dispute between the US and EU would hit the agricultural sectors of both countries hard, farming association Copa and Cogeca has warned.
  • EU Antitrust Chief Says “Beware” of Bayer – Monsanto Control of Farm Data (Open Markets Institute) http://bit.ly/2Gcaln6        Margrethe Vestager, the European Union’s top antitrust enforcer, appears also to be focusing on how much control a combined Bayer-Monsanto would have over the data generated from private farms.
  • Jordan ends bread subsidy doubling pita prices (Aljazeera) http://bit.ly/2D1aRkN                                                                                            Price of large pita bread nearly doubled in bid to ease the country’s budge woes.
  • Kiir’s (South Sudan) government using food as war weapon, UN reports (Aljazeera) http://bit.ly/2D1Y5lY
  • Regenerative certification meant to add to USDA Organic, no supplant it, developers say (Food Navigator) http://bit.ly/2FvBhx5
  • Poultry farms aren’t small independent business, says the agency (SBA) that funds them (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2HmFVOB                                                                                              A new report concludes that poultry farms are so completely controlled by big meat processors that they may not qualify for small business loans.
    • Report: Evaluation of SBA 7(a) Loans Made to Poultry Farmers (Small Business Administration) http://bit.ly/2oXCl6C
  • Where’s the beef? The cell-cultured variety is still ‘meat,’ says attorney as cattlemen petition USDA over clean meat labeling (Food Navigator USA) http://bit.ly/2p3hOgi
  • EPA Says Glyphosate “Likely Not Carcinogenic,” Despite Scientific Findings to the Contrary (Beyond Pesticides) http://bit.ly/2oXE9N8
  • EPA eased herbicide regulations following Monsanto research, records show (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2GeE6nB
    • Monsanto says its pesticides are safe. Now, a court want to see the proof (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2p8JlNx                                This week’s events will mark the first time that the science used to justify certain pesticides will be analyzed under oath for all to see
  • Michigan governor admits his prison food privatization scheme has failed (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/2oUrCsG                                Years of maggots, scandals, and cost overruns proved critics right.
  • California Court Blacks State Ag Department from Spraying Pesticides (Earth Island Journal) http://bit.ly/2tiVZ1t                  Agency failed to adequately review impacts or provide proper notice of pesticide use, rules judge
  • ‘History in the making’: California aims for world’s highest farm animal welfare law (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2IbqycQ
  • How an Iowa Law Requiring Grocers to Sell Conventional Eggs is Stirring Controversy (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2FmiPLg        Supporters of a new bill say its purpose is for more equity for low-income consumers, but advocates claim it’s propping up industrial agriculture.
    • Bill requiring sale of conventional eggs gets final Iowa Senate OK amid complaints it’s anti-free market (Des Moines Register) http://dmreg.co/2p753S2
  • Austin Just Brought Sick Leave to the South (The Nation) http://bit.ly/2onwC92                                                                                        Thanks to a savvy, progressive coalition, Austinites will no longer have to work through heart attacks, flus, and stomach bugs.

 

GMOs/ Cloning/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Not just elections? Russia meddles in GMO debate, too (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2FMiC0W                                                English-language Russian news outlets are publishing loads of anti-GMO click bait. Whoever thought Vladimir Putin would be an “clean eating” advocate?
  • Is Russia Using the GMO Debate to Troll Americans? (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2DiysgN                                                                      Surprising new findings about the media sites accused of meddling in the US elections.

 

Food Technology

  • Silicon Valley wants to give us eggs without chickens, and meat without animals. Do we want that? (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2F5CTl8                                                                                            What the alt-protein revolution tells us about the future of eating.

 

Poisons

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update for March 2, 2018

 

  • Food and Farm Policy Bringing First-Time Candidates to the Campaign Trail (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2GUO50k                        Around the country, resistance to the Trump administration’s policies have spurred a political awakening. Theses first-time candidates are running on food and farm policy platforms.
  • Southern Italians Are Tussling Over Tomatoes (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2CGuPB5                                                                                          The latest twist in a food-based ware between Campania and Puglia.
  • Vegetarian Protein Is Just As ‘Complete’ As Meat, Despite What We’ve Been Taught (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2HUyUFQ        We’re hanging on to notions from a 1970s diet fat that’s a “complete” waste of our time.
  • Making Salt From an Ancient Ocean Trapped Below the Appalachians (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2ov0IYd                          West Virginia was once a seabed.
  • This Swedish Indoor Urban Farm Wants To Revolutionize How We Live And Eat (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2I03bTp                  But people can’t live on microgreens and exotic salads alone.

 

Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding, Fishing & Production

  • A Digital Map Leads to Reparations for Black and Indigenous Farmers (Yes!) http://bit.ly/2ouY1GU                                                          The map’s creators envision equitable distribution of land and resources through “people-to-people” reparations.
  • How A Skeptical Rancher, Aided By An Outdoors Brand, Turned Climate Friendly (NPR) http://n.pr/2HSQlX9
  • New Study Details How Climate Change Will Affect California Agriculture (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2F6s3ap
  • Farmers Face Tough Choices as Clubroot Invades Canada’s Canola Fields (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2CkxjJG

 

Food and Culture

  • The Restaurant Where Grandmas Cook to Share Their Cultures (Yes!) http://bit.ly/2FvC5mB                                                                                A New York City restaurant does more than serve home cooking from around the world. It prepares each dish with the love that only a grandmother can provide.
  • Saying Farewell to Mr. Okra, New Orleans’ Musical Produce Seller (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2F0FprY                                              His chant and truck were symbols of the Crescent City.
  • How Killer Rice Crippled Tokyo and the Japanese Navy (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2CFdxo7                                                                        One stubborn doctor pioneered a cure.
  • Choke-Proof Food That Tastes Like the Real Thing (The Atlantic) http://theatln.tc/2oyRpHC                                                                                    In Japan, where more people die each year from choking than in traffic accidents, mush is getting a high-tech treatment.

 

Seeds & Cultivars

  • World’s Largest Seed Bank Hits One Million Unique Food Crops (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2FAosmb                                                                  The Svalbard Global Seed Vault in the Arctic Circle – also know as the “doomsday vault” safeguarding the world’s most diverse collection of seeds – now holds 1,059,646 unique crops varieties after receiving more than 70,000 samples…
  • Finding a Lost Strain of Rice, and Clues to Salve Cooking (NYT) http://nyti.ms/2GFm6Sg                                                                                        The search for the missing grain led to Trinidad and Thomas Jefferson, and now excitement among African-American chefs.
  • Dan Barber’s Seed Company Seeks to Sow the ‘Democratization of Flavor’ (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2teB7sv                                                Can renowned chef, a seed breeder, and a farmer reinvent your favorite vegetables? That’s the hope behind Row 7 Seed Co.
  • Cucmelon (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2EPWXrq                        Mexico’s “mouse melon” is actually a tiny cucumber. I love these they are only available at the end of the summer, and well worth the wait…

 

Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • ‘We loot or we die of hunger’: food shortages fuel unrest in Venezuela (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2rrGm72                                      As the country’s economic problems mount, towns and cities have been hit by an outbreak of looting and violence.
  • California State University study finds 42 percent of students struggle to afford food (SFGate) http://bit.ly/2F91Xnh
  • Rewards Program Encourages SNAP Recipients To Make Healthy Choices (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2FLLjLA                                  Cities and states are trying new ways to entice food stamp recipients to eat their fruits and vegetables. But the Trump administration’s plans to slash food stamp benefits could change all that.
  • How Might Trump’s Food Box Plan Affect Health? Native Americans Know All Too Well (NPR) http://n.pr/2Fwhu1q

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • We Are So Forked (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2El5Y7J                 Wait, we toss out how many plastic utensils every year?
  • Fast Food Garbage Makes up 50% of Street (and Pacific Gyre) Litter (TriplePundit) http://bit.ly/2FDhXyE                                              The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, aka the Pacific Gyre is roughly the size of Texas and contains about 3.5 million tons of trash, floating between Hawaii and San Francisco.
  • ReThink NYC Transforms Five-Star Food into Meals for the Hungry (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2CGaITD                                                  The new nonprofit collects surplus food from high-end restaurants and delivers it to missions and soup kitchens in New York City.
  • French Food Waste Law Changing How Grocery Stores Approach Excess Food (NPR) http://n.pr/2Ft2otr
  • Is there life after plastic? The new inventions promising a cleaner world (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2F9PH9Z                                              As the backlash against plastic waste grows, industry is replacing and redesigning single-use products, from recyclable bottles to biodegradable film

 

Healthy/Food Safety

  • 48 Million Sickened Every Year by Tainted Meat (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2F5pMAq                                                                                             We can thank the factory farm industry for the increased incidence of foodborne illness in the US.                                                                                        As a chef, we are held responsible for the contamination of the food we serve, when that contamination comes from our production methods (CAFOs,) and the produces are not held responsible. If you have ever seen a cattle feed lot, as the many in the Central Valley of California, of course this meat is going to make us sick. These poor creatures are living and sleeping in their own waste…

 

Children & School Food

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • Culinary women serve up their own #MeToo moment in Sweden (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2taeBka                                                  Hundreds of chefs, scientists and farmers to attend Malmö forum to confront sexism in the industry
  • Restaurant fined $4,000 for refusing to hire a waiter because he wasn’t Asian (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2EW0dln
  • The Forgotten History of New York’s Bagel Famines (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2ETFUR9                                                    Remembering Local 338 and the world’s toughest bagel bakers.
  • Can Food Co-ops Survive the New Retail Reality? (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2oI5MbN                                                                                             As mega-retailers like Amazon-Whole Foods and Costco go after their customer base, community grocery stores are being forced to reinvent to stay relevant.

 

Protests

 

Animals

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Oyster Vending Machine (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2owdRAf      For those late night mollusk cravings. Ars-en-ré, France
  • KFC Says ‘FCK’ In Full-Page Ad Apologizing For Chicken Shortage (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2ouLZgd                                                        The fast-food chain is trying to soothe ruffled feathers with humor.
  • How can a fast food chain ever make money from a $1 burger? (BBC) http://bbc.in/2HV1TcB                                                                        Would fast food need to be almost free for you to buy it every day?
  • Amazon And Whole Foods Disagree on Products Like Coca-Cola (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2F1N2PO
    • Amazon took over Whole Foods and dropped prices: What’s happening 6 months later? (SFGate) http://bit.ly/2HSr6Eg
  • Underground Farm Delivering Rare Herbs to New York’s Top Chefs (Gastro Obscura) http://bit.ly/2ELufqY
  • Organic Farming Gets a Boost from Kashi’s Innovative Certification Program (TriplePundit) http://bit.ly/2EMXruw
  • Sign of the Times: Largest Meat Producer in US Announces Vegan Product Line (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2osSYae                                        Tyson Foods concedes that the demand for plant-based protein is growing.
  • I Was Wrong About the Rural-Urban Divide (Yes!) http://bit.ly/2sVtHdn                                                                                  Economics and politics in rural Wisconsin…

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Risk Assessments of Fracking Focus on Environmental Impacts, but Miss the Human Rights Implications (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2oHLzTv                                                                                              It’s critical that we understand the human rights repercussions of environmentally risky actions.
  • Approaching Day Zero (The Week) http://bit.ly/2ERZa1z              With Cape Town nearing ‘Day Zero,’ the world may be seeing a grim portent of a drier future.
  • Are You Drinking Radioactive Water? Use This Interactive Map to Find Out (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2ChaHtz                                              170 million Americans drink radioactive tap water as Trump nominee faked data to hide the caner risk.
  • Plastics Found in Majority of Deep Water Atlantic Fish, Posing Potential Threat to Human Health (Truthout) http://bit.ly/2ESjHDl
  • The Trump Administration Just Got Sued Over an “Unusual Mortality Event” in the Ocean (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2Fvgf2D                                                                        Environmental groups are not happy.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • Ag Secretary Perdue Talks Trade, Immigration at World Ag Expo (The Business Journal) http://bit.ly/2EpbYMI
  • Trump Wants to Deny Struggling Americans Access to Healthy Farmers Market Food (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2sQFtWx              Getting to choose what you eat seemingly doesn’t apply to poor people.
  • EPA Shuttering Program That Aids the Study of Chemical Effects on Children (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2FliIz3
  • Wisconsin just made it way harder to get food stamps (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2oxcnG4                                                                      Drug testing, work requirements, healthy food: Some of the new rules are legal. Some require a waiver. And in one case, Governor Scott Walker seems to be flouring federal law entirely.
  • Arkansas banned a weedkiller. Now, Monsanto is suing (Salon) http://bit.ly/2EZIoS4                                                                                              There is a new type of seed that won’t die when exposed to herbicide dicamba and has created a crisis in the US.
  • Fearing a cage-free insurgency, Iowa lawmakers leverage federal food aid to keep caged eggs on the shelf (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2CmcUnG                                                                                Producers of conventional eggs seem to be pursuing whatever avenues possible to keep their product on the shelf.
  • California Court Ruling Ends Decades of State Pesticide Spraying (Center for Biological Diversity) http://bit.ly/2GY46CO                 Judge Strips State Food and Agriculture Agency of Authority to Use Chemicals
  • Native Communities are Fighting for More Inclusive Farm Bill (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2Cmc7TU                                                                Farm policy has long ignored tribal governments and communities. A coalition of tribes aims to change that.
  • What Is the “Protect Interstate Commerce Act” and Why Does It Matter? (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2GXaXfz                                    HR 3599 and 4789, written by Congressman Steve King (R-IA) for inclusion in the 2018 Farm Bill, would disallow any state or local regulation of agricultural products that come from another state…

 

GMOs/Cloning/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology/Food Technology

  • Perhaps You’d Like to Try Lemon or Raspberry Flavored Oysters (Atlas Obscura) http://bit.ly/2sRdF4b                                                         After years of testing, a French gastronaut is offering everyone’s favorite happy hour mollusks in a rainbow of flavors.
  • New Technology Aims To Take The Sugar Out Of Gelato – Not The Flavor (NPR) http://n.pr/2sjuC7f

 

Poisons

  • These Popular Pesticides Are Really Bad for the Birds and the Bees (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2owxRDY                                                  And farmers are about to deploy them on a land mass nearly twice the size of California.

 

Events

  • Cultivating the Paddy to Cultivate the Future: Joy and Challenges of a Small Scale Farmer in Rural Japan                                                    March 5, 2018, 4:00pm – 5:15pm                                                      University of California Berkeley, Morgan Hall Lounge        http://bit.ly/2FMHLJ4
  • Can agriculture technologies change gender dynamics and food security? Pump it Up or the Women’s Community Gardens in Zimbabwe                                                                                                                  March 6, 2018, 12:30pm – 2:00pm                                                        University of California at Berkeley, Center for African Studies        223 Moses Hall                                                                http://bit.ly/2EQYObm
  • New Hampshire Food Alliance Statewide Gathering,                      March 9, 2018, 8:30am – 3:30pm                                                              Colby-Sawyer College                                                                                            New London, NH                                                                http://bit.ly/2BdwAIR
  • A Conversation with Marion Nestle and Alice Waters                  March 19, 2018, 5:00pm – 7:00pm                                                  Sponsored by UC Berkeley School of Public Health                        David Brower Center                                                                                            2150 Allston Way, Berkeley, CA 94704                http://bit.ly/2ERSG2z
  • National Good Food Conference                                                              March 27 – 30, 2018                                                                                          Hyatt Regency Albuquerque                                                          Albuquerque, New Mexico                                        http://bit.ly/2BPhVnQ
  • 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference                                              April 25 – 27, 2018                                                                                              Duke Energy Convention Center                                                      Cincinnati, Ohio                                                                    http://bit.ly/2CuJzac
  • Where Women Gather: A Celebration of Women in Agriculture Conference and Symposium                                                                              June 28 -30, 2018                                                                                                    Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale                                                                      New Haven, Connecticut                                            http://bit.ly/2CgGRW8

 

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update for February 22, 2018

 

  • Your “grass-fed” milk may actually not be. But a new technology could change that (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2sCpj2K        Scientists can now tell us how much time diary cows spend outside. Why that may improve accountability and transparency in the organic industry.
  • Using Flourescence Spectroscopy To Identify Milk from Grass-Fed Dairy Cows and To Monitor Its Potodegradation (Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry) http://bit.ly/2Fa4Chj
  • Big Data Suggests Big Potential for Urban Farming (City Lab) http://bit.ly/2Cnma6A                                                                                                A global analysis finds that urban agriculture could yield up to 10 percent of many food crops, plus a host of positive side benefits.
  • Like Lemons? Quinoa? Thank This Food Explorer For Brining Them To Your Plate (NPR) http://n.pr/2HvUZdH
  • This Man Uses Drones to Expose Factory Farms – and His Videos Are Going Viral (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2GptDnS                                High-tech drones are helping to expose the horrors of industrial farming.
  • Eureka! California-Grown Coffee Is Becoming The State’s Next Gold Mine (NPR) http://n.pr/2ExkXPP

 

Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding, Fishing & Production

  • Europe’s Dirty Little Secret: Moroccan Slaves and a ‘Sea of Plastic’ (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2EMSftP                                                      I seemed like a wonderful idea – driving the Spanish coast from Barcelona all the way down to the Straits of Gibralter…
  • The Spotted Lanternfly Is Invading Pennsylvania, Threatening Fruit Growers (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2FeYjJf

 

Food and Culture

  • A Mexican Village Where Aztec-Era Agriculture Remains (City Lab) http://bit.ly/2HvyKoa                                                                                  “We could solve the subsistence problem ourselves without asking anything of the government… “ says an owner of 12 chinampas. “If things continue like this the chinampa economy will have disappeared completely in 20 years.”
    • One of the last remaining communities still farming like the Aztecs (inhabitat) http://bit.ly/2Fk3mIg                                               With slideshow…
  • Arizona’s Tepary Beans Preserve A Native Past, Hold Promise For The Future (NPR) http://n.pr/2onYR7C
  • Community And Vegetables Grow Side-By-Side In Syrian Refugee Camp Gardens (NPR) http://n.pr/2EJ3WOJ

 

Cultivars

  • Hill Rice: A Lost Gem of African American Cooking Rediscovered in Trinidad (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2CBk03u                      There are hundreds of rice cultivars, many of which are dry land rice, not paddie rice.
  • We have bred “selfish” plant for thousands of years (ScienceNordic) http://bit.ly/2EGdfDd
    • Study: Evolutionary agroecology: individual fitness and population yield in wheat (Tricticum aestivum) (PubMed) http://bit.ly/2BFaIGM
  • Jim Hightower: Long live the Jersey tomato (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/2sMAF49                                                                                      Instead of trying to squeeze nature into a high-tech, corporate model, our food system should cooperate with nature.

 

Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • Climate Change, Conflict Leaves 224 Million Undernourished in Africa (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2ooe5JR                                                    An official with the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) warns that climate change and conflict are leading to food insecurity for millions of people living in Africa.
  • From FDR’s food stamps to Trump’s harvest boxes: The history of helping the poor get enough to eat (The Conversation) http://bit.ly/2BCV3aN
  • Why Reform SNAP? Food Aid Is Working (City Lab) http://bit.ly/2C2IiHv                                                                                          There’s no better tool in the federal government’s antipoverty arsenal.
    • Yes, Replacing Food Stamps With a Blue Apron Style Delivery System Is As Bad As It Sounds (Talk Poverty) http://bit.ly/2HeaLte
    • Trump’s ‘Harvest Box’ delivers an empty promise (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/2EMX42S                                                                  The administration and its GOP allies are threatening these Americans with ever greater hunger and privation.
  • One in every 12 seniors citizens is hungry (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2C30fWu                                                                                              The wisest among us are profoundly at risk.
  • I’s Not the Food Deserts: It’s the Inequality (City Lab) http://bit.ly/2rsWllx                                                                                                      A new study suggests that America’s great nutritional divide goes deeper than the problem of food access with cities.

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • Why do supermarkets sell organic food wrapped in plastic? (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2mYj1oS                                                                        We find organic mushrooms in non-recyclable trays next to plain veg in compostable wrapping – This is also true in the US
  • We Are Drowning In Plastic, and Fracking Companies Are Profiting (Yes!) http://bit.ly/2o9rB4C                                                      Plastic production wreaks havoc on people and the planet – from fracking wells and pipelines in Pennsylvania, to air pollution from plastic plants in Scotland.
  • Supermarket Food Waste: What’s Most Likely to Get Tossed? (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2sGEckz                                                     More research confirms: the banana is the king of supermarket food waste.

 

Healthy/Food Safety

  • Clean labels’ dirty little secret (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2sH4JhV                                                                                            How the biggest trend in processed food exploits confused about what “natural” and “artificial” really mean.
  • ‘Ultra-processed’ products now half of all UK family food purchases (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2DUp9oz                                       … health experts warn increasing popularity of industrially made food will lead to negative effects such as obesity and poor health
  • The controversial law that allows salmonella into the human food chain (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2oj5KYP                              Campaigners want to change a loophole which allows producers to sell meat known to contain salmonella
  • Scientists calculate carbon emissions of your sandwich (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2GbLOOK                                                                   All-day breakfast filling identified as worst offender
    • Study: Understanding the impact on climate change of convenience food: Carbon footprint of sandwiches (Sustainable Production and Consumption) http://bit.ly/2nbduuy
  • ‘Dirty meat’: Shocking hygiene failings discovered in US pig and chicken plants (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2sFucIw                Previously unseen government records detail ‘deeply worrying’ incidents in pork and poultry plants, raising fears of ‘dirty meat’ enter the UK under a post-Brexit trade deal
    • Red tape in the meat industry? It’s the difference between life and death (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2sKFafx                        Without regulations that scrutinize food standards and trade deals, we cannot trust the safety of the food on our plates
  • Why blockchain won’t fix food safety – yet (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2FOCteI                                                                                              The new software being developed by Walmart and IBM depends on full and honest information, meaning the blockchain will only be as strong as its weakest link.
  • Prison food is making US inmates disproportionately sick (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2EnbCpc                                                    Lapses in food safety have made US prisoners six times more likely to get a foodborne illness than the general population.

 

Food Fraud/Scandals/Weird

  • Boneless chicken wings: It’s not a lie if you believe it (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2FaV85a                                                                  How a fried ball of breast meat became the “boneless wing.”

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • If farmers paid for childcare, would it bring workers back to the fields? (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2BV7rDZ                      Without it, parents face the difficult choice of either brining their kids to the fields or not working at all.
  • Agricultural workers have the highest rates of suicide in the country (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2n8zgPm                            But in Washington state, lawmakers have introduced a bill to make getting help a little easier.
  • Report: ‘Shady Bosses’ Stealing $15 Billion in Wages from Low-Income Workers (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/2EEquQE        “Wages are far too low to begin with, so when money is stolen right out of workers’ paychecks, we have to have effective tools in place to get that money back.”
    • Minimum wage fight, a sweeping failure to enforce the law (Politico) http://politi.co/2CtLtDZ                                                              Raising hourly pays is a rallying cry for 2018, but states often fail to get workers the money that’s owed them.
  • No overtime, no workers’ comp for Grubhub drivers, says California judge (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2CfiCmW          What a first-of-its-kind court ruling means for the future of the gig economy.
  • Koch Brothers-backed group tries to stand in the way as states pass paid sick leave (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/2sO74HG      The National Federation of Independent Business, a Koch Brothers-backed lobbying group, leads the way in campaigning against paid sick leave throughout the US
  • Slavery risk warning over UK’s scallop fisheries (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2nMMpyO                                                                                Register singles out industry with retailers told to check suppliers are clear of any link to bonded labour
  • A New York farmworkers was fired for organizing. State Supreme Court says that’s legal (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2o6I0qv  It would have been a shoo-in case for farmworkers’ rights. Then the Farm Bureau stepped in.

 

Protests

 

Animals

  • For how long can we treat the suffering of animals as an inconvenient truth? (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2GonxEo                  A revolution is coming in our relation ship with ‘lower’ creatures, provoked by a great knowledge of their cognition. Labour’s new plans for animal welfare are just a start
  • India’s farmed chickens dosed with world’s strongest antibiotics, study finds (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2GD92xj                          Warning over wider global health impacts after findings reveal hundreds of tonnes of colistin – the ‘antibiotic of last resort’ – are being shipped to Indian’s farms
  • Dutch cow poo overload causes an environmental stink (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2HosX3u                                                                  Diary farms in the Netherlands are producing so much dung they can’t get rid of it safely. Now the WWF is calling for a 40% cut in herd numbers to protect the environment

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Few Big Ag companies have yet to follow through on data transparency pledge (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2nIoEHY
  • Organic food and drink sales rise to record levels in the UK (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2E8RpYT                                                                        In a sixth year o consecutive growth, organic sales rose by 6% to a record £2.2bn, driven largely by independent outlets and home deliveries
  • Even The Hamburglar Might Like McDonald’s New Vegan Burger (We Did) (NPR) http://n.pr/2FhPK0d                                                          When McDonald’s recently announced the introduction of a vegan burger in Sweden and Finland, Twitter responded with a mix of earnest enthusiasm, a little disgust, and a touch of guilty hand wringing…
  • KFC Closes More Than Half Of Its UK Restaurants, After Chicken Shortage (Huffington Post) http://bit.ly/2EGvOr5                                    As of Tuesday, 646 of the fast-food chain’s restaurants remain closed – and people aren’t taking it well.
  • Not so fresh: why Jamie Oliver’s restaurants lost their bite (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2F8zZIX                                                                      The chef’s chains are facing a crisis on the high street. Where did they go wrong?

 

Food Fraud/Scandals/Weird

  • (Spanish) Police Pull Over Suspicious Cars, Tons of Oranges Come Tumbling Out (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/2CA4Jja

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • New study concludes some bottled water is actual tap water (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/2HDtGOt                              Unknowingly, American’s are paying $16 billion a year to drink water from a bottler that otherwise be free, or cost a fraction of the price.
  • Nearly 2 Million Americans Exposed to Potentially Toxic Level of Lead in Tap Water (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2ogF5e9                      Children are particularly vulnerable.
    • Since the Lead Crisis, Reading Scores in Flint Drop Dramatically (Environmental Working Group) http://bit.ly/2o7Fnou
  • 3M pays up after Minnesota sued over poisoned drinking water (Grist) http://bit.ly/2sMxKZp
    • 3M to pay Minnesota $850M in surprise settlement over chemical disposal (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/2Gy9XhR        “3M fought for almost a decade… spending hundreds of millions on lawyers to dodge their way around the law… but today became their day of reckoning!”
  • 73% of Deep-Sea Fish Have Ingested Plastic (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/2GtLhXF                                                                                      Marine scientists from the National University of Ireland (NUI) in Galway found the plastic bits in 73 percent of 233 deep-sea fish collected from the Northwest Atlantic Ocean – one of the highest microplastic frequencies in fish ever recorded worldwide.
  • Ocean acidification threatens Bering Sea Crabs. But can they adapt? (KTOO Public Media) http://bit.ly/2yzru9R

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand wants to give dairy farmers their money back (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2C4qj3G
  • Trump’s EPA Just Made a “Highly Unusual” Concession to a Big Pesticide Company (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/2obWftC            After demanding $4.8 million in penalties for a Hawaii pesticide-exposure case in 2016, the EPA let Syngenta off for $150,000.
  • Trump Budget Would Undo Conservation Gains on Farms and Ranches (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/2CqNtwE                                        Funding for farm conservation programs would be slashed by $13 billion over 10 years, impacting the environment and farmers alike.
  • As Trump tries to tighten the definition of “hungry,” all 50 state have made it easier to sign up for food stamps (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2Crpe1A
  • New (California) state ballot measure would reward people who build rainwater collection systems (The Mercury News) http://bayareane.ws/2FdZJ6G
  • Washington salmon farm fined $330,000 for August’s eclipse escape (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2Faz4b4
    • Cooke Aquaculture fined for farmed salmon escape (The North Coast News) http://bit.ly/2o6AJXT                            Washington State Department of Ecology announced Tuesday that Cooke Aquaculture will be penalized for violating the terms of its water quality permit in relation to the company’s net pen failure last August.
  • After six years, environmental cleanup around 11 North Carolina hog farms will finally be mandatory (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/2HnZqqD                                                                  Conservationists are calling the decision a win against “environmental racism”
  • To Protect Young Farmworkers, California Rejects EPA Rollback of Pesticide Policy (Environmental Working Group) http://bit.ly/2szr0OA
  • Austin becomes the first city in the South to Mandate paid sick leave (ThinkProgress) http://bit.ly/2EDqQv9
  • Trump budget would undo gains from conservation programs on farms and ranches (The Conversation) http://bit.ly/2C9z7Fp

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Court Rejects Trump Administration Secrecy in Genetically Engineered Salmon Case (Center For Food Safety) http://bit.ly/2E2OIHl

 

Poisons

  • The Precautionary Principle Asks “How Much Harm Is Avoidable?” Rather Than “How Much Harm Is Acceptable?” (Truthout) http://bit.ly/2Crgx7c
  • Cotton (New South Wales) growers facing complete crop loss after alleged herbicide drift (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/2nYGKVB                                                                                    5,000 hectares of cotton thought to be affected by off-target spray drift, says Bernie Bierhoff of Walgett Cotton Growers’ Association