Jenny’s Food & Ag Update October 27, 2015

 

  • Jeong Kwan, the Philosopher Chef (NYT) http://nyti.ms/1GqHc5m                                                                                    The most exquisite food in the world, say many celebrated chefs, is being made not in Copenhagen or New York, but in a remote temple complex south of Seoul by a 59-year-old Buddhist nun
  • Why Aren’t Presidential Candidates Talking about Food and Agriculture? (Union of Concerned Scientists) http://bit.ly/1NoC5Cy
  • Terrace Farming – an Ancient Indigenous Model for Food Security (Inter Press Service) http://bit.ly/1GBsokl
  • Syrian War Forces First-Ever Withdrawal from Global Seed Vault (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1Kn0tjc                                               After armed conflict destabilized Aleppo gene bank, scientists withdraw seeds from Arctic repository in order to safeguard critical research
  • Guess What? The Top 10 Most Vegetarian and Carnivorous Cities in America Are Not Mutually Exclusive (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1jSbC63
  • One of America’s Leading Op-Ed Writers Openly Brags About Punishing Waiter Through Tipping (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1PEWRA0                                                                                    “Make me anxious about whether you got the order straight, and no 20 percent tip will come your way.”

If nothing tickles your tastebuds, don’t be food into ordering apps.       Most Culinary Arts programs and Hospitality Management programs all teach menu engineering…

  • Behind The Founding Foodie, A French Trained Chef Bound Bay Slavery (NPR) http://n.pr/1Rpcs52
  • China’s Rising Carnivore Class: How the Growing Chinese Taste for Meat Impacts Us All (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Mgi1Fj                With billions to feed and relatively little land to farm, the changing Chinese diet is a serious global issue.
  • This New Approach to Ranching is Bringing Grass Back to the Arid Southwest (Civil Easts) http://bit.ly/1LOA92p
  • The Kenyans Making Cooking Stoves To Address A Deadly Problem (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1R7abMi                    Diseases linked to open-fire cooking kill more people worldwide than HIV and malaria combined.
  • Native (Bolivian) Women Green the Outskirts of the City, Feed Their Families (Inter Press Service) http://bit.ly/1Ki7XnA

 

Food Insecurity, Hunger, & Obesity

  • US Doctors Advised to Screen Child Patients for Signs of Hunger (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Ntrw11                                                                  The American Academy of Pediatrics issued unprecedented guidelines on how to determine child’s food security and provide resources for struggling families.
  • This European researcher thinks overeating can be solved by eating more delicious food (Vox) http://bit.ly/1S4vMpp                  And what about eating real food made from real ingredients?

 

School Food

  • This California district brings tasty, local, affordable food to the cafeteria (grist) http://bit.ly/1NU55F7                                                            In Riverside, yes, Riverside…

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • Salad workers hospitalized in chemical spill (The Californian) http://bit.ly/1PHRr7l                                                                                                    A toxic stew of chemicals spilled at Taylor Farms processing plant last week, sending 20 workers to the hospital…
  • Sexism in the Kitchen (NYT) http://nyti.ms/1W6Cy3y                            I can tell you some stories…
  • Report Shows Shocking Level of Employment Discrimination in Restaurant Industry (takepart) http://bit.ly/1hV4gxn            Advocacy group finds workers of color earn 56 percent less than white men with equal qualifications.
  • There’s A Shortage Of Cooks In America. Here’s The Simple Solution. (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1LFWJLs                      Expect price increases across the board if restaurants (finally!) begin to raise wages for the back of the house.
  • Subway leads fast food industry in underpaying workers (CNN) http://cnnmon.ie/1fK1VDZ                                                                Individual Subway franchisees have been found in violation of pay and hour rules in more than 1,100 investigations spanning from 2000 to 2013…
  • You Would Get Sick Less If Restaurant Workers Had Better Benefits (takepart) http://bit.ly/1Gqv8kF                                                Paid sick leave is good for public health.
  • Teamsters Say Union Buster C&S Wholesale Grocers Aims To Kill Jobs at Safeway (In These Times) http://bit.ly/1M9TBgq

 

Business & Economy

  • Israeli Restaurant Gives Jews and Arabs a Discount If They’ll Eat Together (takepart) http://bit.ly/1jBGWGN                                    Despite the ongoing violence between Palestine and Israel, a mutual love of hummus is bringing some folks together
  • Coca-Cola’s sneaky, evil politics: How Big Soda twisted race and used the Koch Brothers to fight a tax (Salon) http://bit.ly/1GMrrAF                                                                                        Have a Koch and diabetes. Big Soda responds to a cup-size limit by aligning with NAACP, nasty PR and the Kochs
  • When Your Teacher Asks If You Want Fries with That (Other Words) http://bit.ly/1PHUD3S                                                      McDonald’s Tricks Cash-strapped Schools Into Serving Up Their Own Students
  • Here’s What Really Happens When A Restaurant Bans Tipping (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1GiMfVC                                                 Six months after eliminating tips, this Pittsburgh eatery is thriving.
  • The World’s Largest Fast-Food Chain Is Going Antibiotic-Free – and Not Just for Chicken (takepart) http://bit.ly/1GrrXJC  Subway announced that it will cut medically important drugs out of all of its meat.
  • Cheap Crops, Not Fancy Ingredients, Keep Farmers in the Black (takepart) http://bit.ly/1RpesKH                                                                    While it might not be the best for the environment, growing commodities is where the money is at
  • Robert Reich: Working Full Time and Living in Abject Poverty – That’s What Today’s Minimum Wage Will Get You (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1W2B8XK

 

Protests

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

 

Food Fraud/Scandals

  • Can Beck’s Beer Be Labeled ‘German’ If It’s Brewed In St. Louis? No, Judge Agrees (NPR) http://n.pr/1ZYIyei

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Communities Push for legal Rights to Regain Power Over Fracking Companies (truthout) http://bit.ly/1PO86WY
  • Why You Might Not Want to Be Pregnant in Pennsylvania (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1LBQ1X3                                                                   Or anywhere else where fracking is prevalent.
  • How Australia Can Help California Survive Historic Drought (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1LQ1fHj                                                     Australians have been successful in managing scarce water resources. Californians could use some of their magic.
  • China Is Turning Its Fish Breeding Grounds Into Smartphone Factories (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1KvIlDW
    • Report: Coastal Wetland Conservation Blueprint Project in China: Main findings and recommendations (via Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1MK8Dnt
  • This Tiny Nation Could Be A ‘Tipping Point’ For Saving The Oceans (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1PPaM6R                        Palau just created one of the five largest fully protected marine reserves in the world.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • TTIP Already ‘Rewriting the Rule Book’ or EU Food Standards (Modern Scotsman) http://bit.ly/1MNeBUJ                          Campaigners say that corporate lobbyists, buoyed by the pending trade agreement, are already lobbying against key food safety measures
  • Tip of Iceberg? EU Rules Against Sweetheart Tax Deals for Corporations (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1MERXxQ              ‘All companies, big or small, multinational or not, should pay their fair share of tax,’ says European Commission… this includes Starbucks…
  • European Federation of Public Service Unions tells Commission: Following Starbucks and Fiat decisions go after McDonald’s and the rest… (EPSU) http://bit.ly/1GqKOUR
  • After Win for $15 in New York, ‘Wage Boards’ Hear Worker Testimony in 24 Cities (Labor Notes) http://bit.ly/1LOddBq
  • Syracuse Mayor Raises Minimum Wage For City Employees To $15 (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1MEUEiV                                     The change is effective immediately.

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • GE Soybeans Give Altered Milk and Stunted Offspring, Researchers Find (Independent Science News) http://bit.ly/1LVQKWF
  • Study Blows Company’s Bogus Claim About GMO Salmon Out of the Water (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1ONjDqk                            According to Canadian government study, AquaBounty doesn’t have a shred of evidence supporting their growth claims.
  • Scientific Review Dpt. of Fisheries and Oceans Canada: Environmental and Indirect Human Health Risk Assessment of the AquAdvantage Salmon (Food & Water Watch) http://bit.ly/1jFiW5E

 

Poisons

 

Pollinators

 

Animals

  • Report Suggests Taking a Second Look at Safety of Animal Drugs (Food Safety News) http://bit.ly/1OPZtMe
    • Report: America’s Secret Animal Drug Problem: How Lack of Transparency Is Endangering Human Health and Animal Welfare (Center for Food Safety) http://bit.ly/1S53ElY
  • Confronting America’s Wildlife Extinction Crisis (Center for American Progress) http://ampr.gs/1Gm6OjV                                           1 in 5 American Animal Species Is at Risk of Extinction

 

Healthy/Safe Food

  • 182 Sickened By ‘Extremely Contagious’ Shigella Bacteria in San Francisco Bay Area (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1id5lkk      Transmission usually occurs when fecal matter enters the mouth, health officials say.
  • Is Cheese the New Crack? Study Finds Pizza as Addictive as Some Drugs (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1kBsn6r                                                Highly processed foods like pizza, cake and chocolate affect the body and brain similarly to drugs.
  • Study: Which foods may be addictive? The roles of processing, fat content, and glycemic load. (PubMed) http://1.usa.gov/1cLolna
  • The Palm Oil You Want to Eat (takepart) http://bit.ly/1LG4scs      Ruddy ‘dendê’ is a far cry from the grease found in so many processed foods.

 

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update, October 19, 2015

 

  • Survey: Americans Trust Farmers and Value Cost, Nutrition in Food Choices (AgWeb) http://bit.ly/1X8bWfQ
  • The Future of GMOs, Meat Safety and Organics Under the Influence of the Same Corrupt, Corporate-Lapdog: the USDA (The Cornucopia Institute) http://bit.ly/1LuMddF
  • Urban farming grows along with (and on top of) Boston’s development boom (Boston Globe) http://bit.ly/1Ga4DQp
  • ‘Big Agri’ Doesn’t Serve Us: Reflections on World Food Day (the quint) http://bit.ly/1GKsdy3
    • On World Food Day, Celebrating the Power of Regenerative Organic Farming (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1juazK0        ‘Agroecology is political; it requires us to challenge and transform structures of power in society.’
  • Do We Treat Our Soil Like Dirt? (National Geographic) http://bit.ly/1jHK5El
    • Our Good Earth: The future rests on the soil beneath our feet (National Geographic) http://bit.ly/1fLUcUV
    • Can Farming Practices in Oklahoma Solve Climate Change? (Scientific American) http://bit.ly/1QA0tlj                                         The Sooner State is part of a trend toward leaving farmland untilled to tackle runoff and climate change, but some remain wary of associated  pesticide use
  • Farmers school themselves on soil health to revive dying dirt (Harvest Public Media) http://bit.ly/1VGZlmu
  • 2015 Whistleblower award goes to Prof Giles-Eric Séralini (VDW – Federation of German Scientists) http://bit.ly/1WVeePa
  • Civil Society Says NO To “Climate Smart Agriculture” And Urges Decision-Makers To Support Agroecology (Modern Ghana) http://bit.ly/1PjyqId
  • Why should I eat organic? You asked Google – here’s the answer (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1LHRqjY
  • Why Your Supermarket Sells Only 5 Kinds of Apples (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1imrsgS                                                                              And one man’s quest to bring hundreds more back.
  • Whitefly destroys 2/3 of Punjab’s cotton crop, 15 farmers commit suicide (The Times of India) http://bit.ly/1KbFWOo
  • Boosting wild insect populations (Mosaic) http://bit.ly/1LoOl2N     How can we encourage more insects in the wild?
  • A Bitter Harvest: Inside Japanese-American Internment Camps During World War II (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/1VWnosq
  • Neil Young Launches Conservation – Themed Website (Rolling Stone) http://rol.st/1Ke7gf4                                                                 GoEarth: http://goearth.org/ offers information on earth ecology, banning GMOs, the future of farming, climate change and social causes
  • Do industrial agricultural methods actually yield more food per acre than organic ones? (grist) http://bit.ly/1RJhElh
  • Antenna to abdomen dining – how sensory trickery could help you eat these critters (collectively) http://bit.ly/1QIFDQN
  • We’ve Bred Plants To Remove Their Natural Defenses. How Do We Get Them Back? (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/1LDNrDb
  • Growing pains (The Economist) http://econ.st/1ESXBz6           Storing wild seeds will save harvests – and lives
  • The farmers who’s starting an organic revolution in Cuba (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1N5qXg6                                                      Fernando Funes Monzote’s theories of ‘agroecolgy’ bear fruit as he aims inspire others to make the most of their land
  • Read the new publication by EAT and Sustainia an taste the food system of tomorrow: Eat In Sustainia http://bit.ly/1LSN03R

 

Food Insecurity, Hunger, & Obesity

  • Number Of Yemeni Children At Risk Of Starving To Death Triples Since March (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1QJ7LDl                     “We are facing the potential of a huge humanitarian tastrophe.”
  • In Face of Harsh Austerity, UK’s Hunger Crisis Sparks First Student-Led Food Bank (Occupy.com) http://bit.ly/1PyJe5z
  • Berkeley, Concord nonprofits awarded federal grants to expand farmers market food stamp use (Contra Costa Times) http://bayareane.ws/1OJqqje
  • The fat city that declared war on obesity (Mosaic) http://bit.ly/1Gdvnze                                                                               Oklahoma has lost a million pounds of fat. Ian Birrell meets the mayor who poled on the pounds then launched a healthy living crusade and changed his city’s infrastructure…

 

School Food

  • Tales from a School Food Service Director: It’s all about the Brand (USDA Blog) http://1.usa.gov/1KgIGds                          Purchasing local foods from local purveyors…

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • War over words (Meat + Poultry) http://bit.ly/1Msbqli                    DOJ sues Nebraska Beef for refusing to comply with the terms of a settlement.
  • Papa John’s Stores to Pay $500,000 Wage Theft Settlement (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1LVFKuh                                                                     “At a certain point you see a pattern and start to think maybe the parent company has something to do with it.”
  • The Unionization Tool Management Will Never Expect (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1jsOzz9                                                                  Members-only unions might not be as strong as regular unions, but they’re a lot easier to create in a hostile labor environment.
  • Co-op Meets Food Desert: Cash-Strapped Volunteers Get a Discount on Groceries (takepart) http://bit.ly/1VU3VIL     Members of Good Grocer in Minneapolis swap bagging and stocking duties for a break on the bill.

 

Business & Economy

  • The States Where $15 Isn’t A Living Wage (ThinkProgress) http://bit.ly/1QB3SjC
    • Report: Pay Up! (Alliance for a Just Society) http://bit.ly/1QB4CoU                                                                                Long Hours and Low Pay Leave Workers at a Loss
  • It’s Science: Raising the Minimum Wage Would Make America a Happier Place (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1Ly07LM                             The American Psychological Association is marshaling research that shows alleviating poverty improves mental health… Ya think?
  • One Of America’s Most Influential Restaurateurs Is Eliminating Tips (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1QtfQvH                                      The man behind Union Square Café and Gramercy Tavern says it’s a “bold decision for our team and our guests.”
  • McDonald’s Spams Schools With Infomercial on the Virtues of Fast Food (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1Mtf9Pz
  • Foes object when University of Kentucky vendor (Aramark) meets in-state food-buying goal with Coca-Cola, ice (Lexington Herald-Leader) http://bit.ly/1OxFmlU
  • Evicted and Abandoned: How The World Bank Broke Its Promise To Protect The Poor (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1aY4QHA    Year long investigative report on the hidden toll of the World Bank financed development in some of the worlds poorest populations
  • Children Left Vulnerable By World Bank Amid Push For Development (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1jHRbIX                    Palm oil and land grabs in Indonesia…

 

Protests

  • Polish ‘farm defenders’ arrested, imprisoned (The Ecologist) http://bit.ly/1LQv000                                                                                          The farmers come from Poland’s Pyrzyce (Western Pomerania) Province where 60% of farmland has already been sold off to foreign buyers.
  • Mock Drilling Rig Erected at Colorado Governor’s Mansion by Anti-Fracking Activists (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1VYknYu  Governor John Hickenlooper said that Coloradans are no longer mobilizing to protect their communities from the harms of fracking. He was wrong.

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • I found this meal in a bin behind a supermarket – and it was delicious (collectively) http://bit.ly/1Ki2HAg
  • Upscale UK Grocer Skips the Trash, Sends Leftover Food to Charity (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/1LB6oGP
  • Flash in the pan? Guy Dimond sense-checks the buzz around sustainable restaurants (collectively) http://bit.ly/1ReHa0H

 

Food Fraud/Scandals

  • Two Wendy’s Employees Leave Racist Note in Little Girl’s Meal (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Gbtd3q                                                                          A Colorado mother says the incident forced her to explain the “n word” to her 7-year-old daughter.

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Mohawks stand up against Montreal’s plan to dump (raw) sewage in St. Lawrence River (Waging NonViolence) http://bit.ly/1OM1tDR
  • How Michigan’s Emergency management Law Poisoned Flint’s Children (Occupy.com) http://bit.ly/1kdByJS
  • Fracking Increases Oklahoma Earthquakes from Two a Year to Two a Day (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1hKIa0H                                          The state, which is not near any major fault lines, has felt 585 earthquakes that were a 3.0-magnitude or greater in 2014 – three times the 180 quakes felt by California.
  • The Surprising Link Between California’s Drought and Syria (takepart) http://bit.ly/1MHEppy
    • This Devastating Chart Shows Why Even a Powerful El Nino Won’t Fix the Drought (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1LkAt9R
  • The Feds Just Got Sued for Letting Nestlé Bottle Water in California’s Drought Country (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1VSUsBt                                                                                                 A new lawsuit claims that Nestlé illegally diverting water to supply its Arrowhead brand.
  • Scuba Diver’s Haunting Photos Show Devastating Impact of Ocean Trash on Marine Life (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1PySMxs        From plastic to discarded fishing nets, staggering levels of garbage in the world’s oceans are taking a deadly toll.
  • This Stunning Power Plant Will Use Ocean Tides to Power More Than 150,000 Homes (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1hKHSqq              With virtually zero carbon footprint, the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon in Wales will also feature a sports arena, aquaculture farm and seaside sculpture garden.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India takes junk food off school menu (Times of India) http://bit.ly/1LVjFFX
  • Venezuela President Announces 30% Minimum Wage Increase (Telesur TV) http://bit.ly/1MKF35Q                                                          The increase will come into effect on Nov. 1. This is the 30th minimum wage hike over the last 15 years.

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Continuing Demise of GMOS (Institute of Science in Society) http://bit.ly/1X6SXlI                                                                                          More than two-thirds of EU nations opted for bans on growing GM corps; Monsanto stock fell25%, losses deepen, and 12% of workforce slashed.
  • Syngenta withdraws two GM crops following widespread rejection by EU governments (Greenpeace) http://bit.ly/1N8Aws3                                                                      Agrochemical company Syngenta has withdrawn two out of four of it’s GM maize awaiting EU approval, following widespread rejection of GM crop cultivation by two thirds of EU governments.
  • How Monsanto Solicited Academics to Bolster Their Pro-GMO Propaganda – Using Taxpayer Dollars (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1NNMZEL                                                                            Thousands of emails reveal how the biotech giant enlisted public university academics to prop up their massive PR machine.
  • Poland Becomes Fourteenth European Nation to Officially Ban GMOs (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/1W0knww

 

  • Indian scientist warns of ‘golden rice’ impact (Dhaka Tribune) http://bit.ly/1jDNnZa                                                                                               … the basic safety concern over “Golden Rice” is the presence of retinoic acid, a metabolite of vitamin A. Retinoic acid is known to cause birth defects…

 

Poisons

  • Pesticides in Paradise: Hawaii’s Spike in Birth Defects Puts Focus on GM Crops (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1QF6pcx                                   Local doctors are in the eye of a storm swirling over whether GMO corn is a source of prosperity or if birth defects and illnesses.
  • Lawsuits Rack Up Against Monsanto Over Cancer-Linked Herbicide (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1Lyp75C    Agrochemical giant conducted ‘prolonged campaign of misinformation’ to convince users and government that Roundup was safe
  • Five Percent of California Produce Laced with Too Much Pesticide, Report Finds (Organic Authority) http://bit.ly/1hJGBQz
    • Another Reason to Go Organic: California’s Kale Has Illegal Pesticides (takepart) http://bit.ly/1W0kiJc

 

 

Pollinators

 

Animals

  • America’s Third Largest Egg Producer Commits to Cage-Free Future (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1LW0geg                                                       In 2008, California voters said no to cage confinement. Since then a steady stream of companies have made the switch to cage-free eggs.

 

Healthy/Safe Food

  • People Are Furious About The Government’s New Dietary Guidelines (Modern Farmer) http://bit.ly/1Nj6DWf
    • Building a case, over time, for adding sustainability to nutritional guidelines (The Conversation) http://bit.ly/1L9HuMX
  • 86 Food Products Contain (Potassium Bromate) Possible Cancer-Causing Additive (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1Mu3Zd9
    • A Possible Carcinogen Is Still Lurking in America’s Bread (takepart) http://bit.ly/1keids5                                                        Countries around the world have banned potassium bromate – why hasn’t the US?
  • Letting Pepsi Police Itself Isn’t Very Sweet (Other Words) http://bit.ly/1GjmjJe                                                                                                The government didn’t get a chance to see whether a new calorie-cutting additive in Mug Root Beer is safe.
  • Soda Wars: How Big Beverage Targets Poor People and Compromises Their Health (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1PyRm62  Soda sales may be declining among the more affluent, but a complex battle over public health rages on.

 

Education

  • Get ‘jumpstart’ on farming with beginners’ academy November 6-7, 2015, Placer and Nevada Counties, UC Cooperative Extension (The Union) http://bit.ly/1PyTMSa
  • GoFarm Hawaii is accepting applications for beginning farmers at AgCurious sminar, Leeward Community College, begins 11/10/15 http://bit.ly/1ZMcg5W

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update October 14, 2015

  • For US Tribes, a Movement to Revive Native Foods and Lands (Enviromnet360, Yale University) http://bit.ly/1h75mpz                  On ancestral lands, the Fond du Lac band in Minnesota is panting wild rice and restoring wetland damaged by dams, industry, and logging…
  • A soil pilgrimage (The Asian Age) http://bit.ly/1RaaRjs            Organic farming is the answer to drought and climate change. If we do not respect the soil and if we do not recommit ourselves to ahimsa, we can rapidly disintegrate as a civilization. – Vandana Shiva
  • Goddesses of Food: Changing the Way We Think About Women In the Kitchen (Heritage Radio Network) http://bit.ly/1RApGg3
  • SC flooding expected to hit some farm crops hard (CNBC) http://cnb.cx/1OrEizX                                                                                      Heavy rain and flooding in the Carolinas and other parts of the Southeast are expected to result in significant losses to peanut, cotton and soybean crops…

 

Food Insecurity, Hunger, & Obesity

  • Generous Kids Celebrate Birthdays by Making 900 Sandwiches for Homeless People (takepart) http://bit.ly/1FYjJbN              Guests were asked to bring loaves of bread to the outdoor extravaganza
  • El Nino could leave 4 million people in Pacific without food or dinking water (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1jqEp1A

 

School Food

  • How Some Schools Manage To Get Healthy, Local Food On The Menu (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1OpUMbT                               And they’re doing so despite a number of challenges.

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • Fair Food Program helps end the use of slavery in the tomato fields (Washington Post) http://wapo.st/1R1WePj
  • Tragic Harvest: Three Part Series (Star Tribune) http://strib.mn/1QhF0gE                                                                                    The family farms that dot the Midwestern landscape are some of the most dangerous place in America to work…
  • Indigenous Migrant Farmworkers Demand Change in the Fields (Earth Island Journal) http://bit.ly/1Loo9c8
  • Fast-Food Workers Take the Fight for $15 to the White House (takepart) http://bit.ly/1G5UlAz                                                                Chain employee Terrence Wise shared his story alongside President Barack Obama during Wednesday’s ‘Summit on Worker Voice.’
  • There is power in a union: Here’s how we beat inequality & rebalance our economy (Salon) http://bit.ly/1k06rRW      Supporting strong unions isn’t just smart policy – it’s also smart politics. 2016 candidates, take note…
  • Fighting Racism From the USDA, Black Farmers Gain Power Through Co-ops (truthout) http://bit.ly/1jmqGsZ

 

Business & Economy

  • In American South, Local Food Systems Key to Transition Away From Extractive Industries (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1jWlfAZ          The local foods movement has become much more than a short-lived dietary or environmental trend. In Appalachia, it may help fuel a new economy.
  • Message to the Government from the Corporations: Give Us Money to Improve Workers’ Wages (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1OZ0lxW                                                                                               The government wasn’t created to spend taxpayers’ dollars to reward corporations that have stifled worker wages.
  • The Meat Industry Is Licking Its Chops Over Obama’s Massive Trade Deal (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1LyjG8K
  • Poor Diets or Lack of Exercise? Guess Which One Coca-Cola Thinks Is Driving Obesity (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1hx8hrH     Coca-Cola is funding a group of academics whose scientific research emphasizes that exercise, not diet, is key to addressing obesity.
  • The Same Chain That Ran a Veggie Attack Ad Is Launching a Vegetarian Menu (takepart) http://bit.ly/1Vt0Ija                              Two years after slamming vegetables in a Super Bowl spot, Taco Bell is looking for some meatless love.
  • 6 Food Giants That Have Caved in to Consumer Demand to Be Healthier (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1P7qdYC                              Consumers increasingly want fresh, natural and minimally processed food – and food companies are responding.
  • Feeding a New Economy: Local Food Systems in the South (Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation) http://bit.ly/1GDf4a1                   Last year, the local-food economy was valued at nearly $12 billion…
  • To Fix National Poverty Crisis, Study Shows Even $15 Wage Won’t Do the Job (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1jxE1ye        New report says federal minimum wage should actually be $16.87 to match high cost of living nationwide.
  • Report: Pay Up!: Long Hours and Low Pay Leave Workers at a Loss (Alliance for a Just Society) http://bit.ly/1jxEjVV
  • Family Farming: Bucolic Myth vs. Economic Reality (The Cornucopia Institute) http://bit.ly/1k3QOJj                                        Why Does Superior Food Production Generate Inferior Income?

 

Protests

  • Punjab Farmers to Begin Rail Blockade Today, Trains Affected (NDTV) http://bit.ly/1Pj8FYK                                                              Hundreds of farmers in Punjab have threatened to block rail traffic at many places across the state today and tomorrow, in protest against the state government’s “anti-farmer” policies.

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • After the Frack: Hydraulic Fracturing’s Intense Thirst (Earth Island Journal) http://bit.ly/1L5mOpk                                                 Water withdrawals and siltation create havoc on aquatic ecosystems
  • A New Kind of Frackademia? New Environmental Inspectors Offered Free Industry-Funded Classes on Fracking (DeSmog) http://bit.ly/1FScvFS
  • Scientists play catch up as new chemical contaminate Great Lakes birds (Environmental Health News) http://bit.ly/1Gvpf0j      Experts say new flames retardants and stain repellents in Great Lakes wildlife offer further evidence of a broken regulatory system
  • Coho Salmon Are Choking to Death on Urban Pollution – but There’s a Fix (takepart) http://bit.ly/1hxf1pF                                            A new study finds that filtering storm water runoff through gravel, sand, and compost can save the endangered species.
  • We’re About to Cause the Worst Coral Die-Off in History (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1L5qpnd                                                             A third global bleaching of coral reefs is underway following a massive and persistent underwater heat wave.
  • Plastic oceans: What do we know? (BBC) http://bbc.in/1YTiGzX
    • Anthropogenic Debris in Seafood: Plastic Debris and Fibers from Textiles in Fish and Bivalves Sold for Human Consumption (The Cornucopia Institute) http://bit.ly/1N647Cs

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • Stop Calling the TPP a Trade Agreement – It Isn’t (Moyers & Company) http://bit.ly/1P1Ud87                                                                 TPP is a corporate/investor rights agreement, not a trade agreement. Trade is a good thing; TPP is not. 
  • EPA’s Environmental Justice Plan Would Perpetuate Racism, Opponents Say (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Ra331d                    Opponents argue that the Environmental Justice’s 2020 proposal is heavy on process and light on tangible steps to address discrimination.

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Monsanto’s Stock Is Tanking. Is the Company’s Own Excitement About GMOs Backfiring? (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1FXduF6
  • Monsanto’s Tobacco Files: University Scientists Caught Conspiring With Biotech Industry to manipulate Public Opinion on GMO’s (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1KPfTDz

 

Poisons

  • DuPont Found Liable in Teflon Toxin Trial (The Intercept) http://bit.ly/1WPF6Qw
    • The Chemical in Cupcake Wrappers and Cookware Might Be Causing Cancer (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1P0XHI4        Thousands of sick people are suing the Teflon manufacturer.
  • 6 Things to Know About the EPA’s New Pesticide Rules (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/1OllWAw                                                                               The agency has updated its pesticide protections for the first time in nearly 25 years. Will the people behind our food be any safer?
  • North Carolina’s contaminated town: Former rice farmers struggle to survive on poisoned land after decades of abuse by irresponsible companies (Daily Mail) http://dailym.ai/1P8Zqet

 

Pollinators

  • The Future Of Our Food Depends On Honeybees, And The USDA Is Spending Million To Save Them (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/1ZtdXFj

 

Animals

  • Sick And Starving Animals Liberated From Nightmare Backyard Butcher (The Dodo) http://thedo.do/1LI9dYm                                     The Hamptonburgh, NY property was rented to people who run a restaurant serving farm fresh meat. The animals at the farm were intended to be future meat dishes…

 

Healthy/Safe Food

 

Resources

  • USDA Awards $34.3 Million to Support Communities’ Local Food Infrastructure, Increase Access to Fruits and Vegetables (US Dpt. of Agriculture) http://1.usa.gov/1FZeTef                                        Funding Supports Local Food Systems, Farmers Markets and Healthier Eating for SNAP Participants

Pumpkin Perfection

Produce of the Week

As the weather gets colder, sweaters get thicker and leaves turn golder– perhaps, your stomach is craving something bolder. The big, bold, and beautiful pumpkin.

Source: decoradventures.com

This gorgeous gourd is a staple food in October, from pumpkin pies on Thanksgiving to those ghoulish Jack O’Laterns for Halloween. Beyond that,  the pumpkin has much more to offer, it is incredibly rich in vital antioxidants, and vitamins.

Fun Fact: The largest pumpkin ever grown was 1,502 pounds on October 7, 2006.

 

Eating pumpkins fits well into a health-conscious diet. Pumpkins are low in calories and high in fiber. They are also low in sodium. The seeds are high in protein, iron, and the B vitamins.

Researchers believe pumpkins may reduce the risk of heart disease, some cancers and is also believed to delay aging. Pumpkin seeds are a great source of protein, minerals, vitamins, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Source: the-girl-who-ate-everything.com

Source: All about Pumpkins

Pumpkins do best when the seeds are directly planted in the ground. If your growing season is very short, seed indoors in peat pots about 2 to 4 weeks before last spring frost.

Source: offbeathome.com

Almost all the parts of the pumpkin plant; fruit, leaves, flowers and seeds, are edible. Pumpkins can be used in a variety of delicious recipes either baked, stewed, fried; however, it is best eaten after steamed in order to get maximum nutrients.

Pumpkin dishes are popular around the world, in China pumpkin leaves are consumed as cooked greens or in soups. In India, pumpkins are used in sweet desserts, soups, and curries.

Source: Nutrition Facts

Source: thewickednoodle.com

Check out our Produce of the Week Pinterest board for more recipe ideas, gardening tips, and fun tidbits!

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update October 7, 2015

 ·      Returning Veterans Find a New Path in Sustainable Agriculture (takepart) http://bit.ly/1PhuIie                                                                Swapping army greens for green houses, vets are transitioning to life as civilians.

·      Opportunities for Immigrant Women on the Rise at Hot Break Kitchen (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/1Z6Qrhn                                                       The Harlem bakery provides job training and skills, while honoring culinary baking traditions from women around the world.

·      Garifuna Communities of Honduras Resist Corporate Land Grabs (Council on Hemispheric Affairs) http://bit.ly/1QR9nuy

·      Dreams squashed when massive zucchini vanishes from Canada’s largest urban farm (Calgary Herald) http://bit.ly/1KOTUXi

·      Due Process of Law Foundation and allied organizations present Amicus Curiae on injury to the rights of Maya People (Due Process of Law Foundation) http://bit.ly/1jNiC4G

·      Global Alliance on Climate Smart Agriculture: solution or mirage? (Oxfam International) http://bit.ly/1N1fhLA

·      Lines Out the Door for Amy’s Organic, Plant Based Drive-Thru Restaurant! (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/1JCHEIh

·      Seeding the Demand for Ancient Grains (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/1FsePBQ                                                                                               Meet two Pacific Northwest farmers responsible for brining back low-gluten wheat varieties like einkorn and emmer

·      I Visited Cuba’s Farms and It Made Me Rethink Obama’s Rapprochement (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1RnQ3Wz                                       Is the communitarian spirit deeply enough ingrained in Cubans that it will prevail despite temptations from abroad?

·      This Is What All Those Confusing Food Labels Really Mean (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1hlt8OL

·      Nearly 2 Million Boxes of Cereal Recalled for Not being Gluten-Free (takepart) http://bit.ly/1VCIelQ                                                             Three months after supposedly eliminating gluten from its flagship cereals brand, General Mills issues an embarrassed apology.

·      To save chocolate, big food companies have started collaborating (grist) http://bit.ly/1VDEj2I

·      What makes a restaurant “sustainable”? (1 Million Women) http://bit.ly/1PfI9iT

·      A Dairy Farmer in Enosburg (VT) has Installed a New Robotic Milking System (My Champlain Valley) http://bit.ly/1McEHVg

Food Insecurity, Hunger, & Obesity

  • 10 Million at Risk of Hunger Due to Climate Change and El Niño, Oxfam Warns (Inter Press    Service) http://bit.ly/1RlklJB
  • The Silent Scourge Wiping Out Crops in Africa (takepart) http://bit.ly/1j9BGdp                                                                                     Farmers are going hungry because they lack ways of keeping food from rotting or being destroyed by pests after harvest.

School Food

  • School Nutrition Group Flip-Flops on Protecting Children’s Health (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1h3v0v6

Labor/Unions/Coops

·      Gender Pay Gap Drives Inequality (Institute for Policy Studies) http://bit.ly/1M8ibbO                                                                                              66% of low-wage employers in the US are corporate with the 50 largest employers of low-wage workers paying their executives an average of $9.4 million per year…

o   Report: Big Business, Corporate Profits, and the Minimum Wage (National Employment Law Project) http://bit.ly/1aFHwNZ           Low-Wage jobs are concentrated in a small number of industries, 57.4% are in food services

·      Protecting the People Who Help Feed Us (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1KUcsIL

·      University of Washington to raise minimum wage for workers to $15 an hour (UW) http://bit.ly/1VmCdEe

·      Unions in Jeopardy (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1N1fhLA                   For decades the Supreme Court supported rules to protect bargaining. That era is over.

Business & Economy

·      ‘Whole Foods Is Supposed to Be Cage-Free!’: Colbert Skewers High-End Grocer for Using Prison Labor (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1JQr6N6

·      Why Debates Over the Fed’s Interest Rate Miss the Point (Truthout) http://bit.ly/1VxbZyZ                                                                           An economic system grounded on workers co-ops as the chief form of enterprise organization would function differently.

·      This salad brought to you by… a vegetable factory? (grist) http://bit.ly/1OkpvqF

Protests

·      All-Day Breakfast at McD’s Isn’t a Cause for Celebration for Pesticide Activists (TakePart) http://bit.ly/1hpvb4j                     McDonald’s potato farms are blamed for incidents of chemical drift that affects nearby communities.

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

·      Volunteers help harvest tons of squash in Rome NY (WKTV) http://bit.ly/1M8oX0Y

·      Mealworms are better at recycling Styrofoam than we are (grist) http://bit.ly/1Mbu68E

o   These Tiny Worms May Help Save Our Plastic Waste Problem (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1j5ZPRO                                                     They can eat and break down polystyrene foam with mighty gut bacteria.

·      UN Serves World Leaders Food Scraps For Lunch (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1KLyQAK                                                                                   A bid to drive home a message about wasting food.

o   Garbage-to-plate dining: Waste not, want not! (1 Million Women) http://bit.ly/1JItkxZ

·      America’s Weird Preference for ‘Perfect’ Shaped Vegetables – Funny Looking Ones Taste Exactly the Same (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1LFhQBt                                                                                                     We were trained to like ‘perfect’ produce by the USDA, look at their specification sheets for each and every fruit and vegetable grown in the US, not to mention all the other agricultural products… http://1.usa.gov/17Z0cHz

 ·      If You Thought K-Cups Were Bad, Wait Until Pods Come to Soda (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1LqradR                                                       Keurig’s newest product will let you make name-brand soft drinks at home.

·      Is recycling as awful as the New York Times claims? Not remotely (grist) http://bit.ly/1Lgut5l

Water & Our Oceans

·      Thirst for Truth: Who’s to Blame for Flint’s Water Crisis? (truthout) http://bit.ly/1iULpUb

·      Who are the rich Californians using millions of gallons of water a year? It’s a secret (grist) http://bit.ly/1hnucBD

·      Report: Water Hazard: Aquatic Contamination by Neonicotinoid Insecticides in the United States (Center for Food Safety) http://bit.ly/1MrGSWa

·      Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal Highlights Fracking’s Threat to Human Rights (truthout) http://bit.ly/1hia18c

·      Does one of the world’s most abundant animals need protection from our appetite? (ensia) http://bit.ly/1KPS0tc                                           As demand grows and habitat disappears, scientists ponder tighter controls on the Antarctic krill harvest.

·      Illegal overfishing and return of Somalia’s pirates (Al Jazeera) http://bit.ly/1GuGi2t                                                                                             Plunder of Somali waters by foreign fishing vessels could mean the return of hijackings, locals warn.

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

·      The Trans-Pacific Free-Trade Charade (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1L8zfgV

o   Enormous Trade Deal Cold Upend the Global Food Industry (takepart) http://bit.ly/1FVWS0g                                                                         The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a step closer to becoming a reality.

·      US Announces Plans to Combat Illegal Fishing and Other Steps to Protect Oceans (NYT) http://nyti.ms/1MdpiiY

o   Obama Declares First New Marine Sanctuaries In 25 Years (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1QUDK3g

·      EPA Updates Standards to Increase Safety and Protect the Health of America’s Farmworkers / Revised standards give farmworkers health protections under the law similar to those already afforded to works in other industries (EPA) http://1.usa.gov/1OGXRUS

·      Meat-Loving Republicans Cowed the White House Into Ignoring Expert Nutrition Advice (Slate) http://slate.me/1LgWSZ5

o   Analysis finds strong support for sustainability, less meat in Dietary Guidelines (Friends of the Earth) http://bit.ly/1Gs4YIZ

o   The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee Report: Support for Sustainability in the Public Comments (My Plate, My Planet) http://bit.ly/1LgP8GE

o   Analysis finds strong support for sustainability, less meat in Dietary Guidelines (Friends of the Earth) http://bit.ly/1Gs4YIZ

o   A Lot of People Think Sustainability Belongs in the Federal Nutrition Guidelines (takepart) http://bit.ly/1Gvuay2                     Analysis of public comments show support for factoring environmental concerns into the definition of a healthy diet.

·      As Scientists Call for Action, California Leads the Way in Banning Microbeads (Nation of Change) http://bit.ly/1KRYlk0

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

·      Monsanto’s Migraine: Big Fiascoes Facing the World’s Biggest Seed Company (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1L8QWBv                                   The problems are piling up at the company’s front door.

·      Monsanto and Syngenta Tighten Stranglehold on Global Food Supply (truthout) http://bit.ly/1jMNrWY

·      Opt-Outs Abound as majority of EU Says No to GMOs (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1LbTVZO                                                                               15 out of 28 European Union member states declare their intention to send territorial exclusionary requests to agrochem companies

o   Germany tells EU it will opt out of growing GMO crops (Reuters) http://bit.ly/1N2EdT1

o   Ban on GMO crops in Northern Ireland welcomed (Green Party Northern Ireland) http://bit.ly/1FpwjjD

They only partially opted out… Disappointment that Ireland did not opt out of GMO food production – Ferris (Sinn Féin) http://bit.ly/1Z9pYQc

o   Govt decides to ban GMO food production in Russia: Deputy PM (CNBC) http://cnb.cx/1MYVQ65

o   Poland Becomes 14th European Nation to Officially Ban GMOs (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Z8xafg                                                                             The sixth most populous EU country is the latest to reject genetically modified organisms in their food production.

·      Dirty Money, Dirty Science (foodtank) http://bit.ly/1V7Ilpd

·      How an Agrichemical Industry Mouthpiece Is Trying to Undermine GE Labeling with Bogus Legal Analysis (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1iWsd8v                                                                                                       A recent claim in a Forbes op-ed is flat-out wrong and shows no understanding of constitutional law.

o   Supreme Court Free-Speech Decision Clobbers GMO Food Labeling Activists (Forbes) http://onforb.es/1KZCKaj

o   3 Journalists Who Are Disturbingly Cozy with the Agrichemical Industry (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Lrke06

An investigation of Big Ag firms using the Freedom of Information Act to access state public records has implicated three reporters.

o   Monsanto and its Promoters Vs. Freedom of Information (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1FQlMyn

·      American Academy of Pediatrics Cuts Ties with Monsanto (Organic Consumers Association) http://bit.ly/1KQOOwT

·      China Is Genetically Engineering Mini Pigs To Sell As Pets (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1FPZ0q7                                                           The $1,600 mini pigs are created suing gene-editing techniques and cloning.

Poisons

  • When Conservation Means Killing (ensia) http://bit.ly/1WudmRq                                                                             Herbicides and insecticides are key tools in managing invasive species – but managers are working to find more environmentally friendly substitutes
  • US workers sue Monsanto claiming herbicide caused cancer (Reuters) http://reut.rs/1O0OuxF                                       Environmentalists and agribusiness are waging a pitched battle over the use of pesticides.

Pollinators

Animals

  • Buffalo return to Montana’s Great Planes – a victory for environmentalists but a blow to ranchers (The Independent) http://ind.pn/1WE6AZh

Healthy/Safe Food

·      Burger King’s Halloween Black Whopper Is Causing Green Poop (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1OjiDby                                                       You might be done with the burger, but the burger’s not done with you.