Jenny’s Food & Ag Update June 28, 2016

 

  • Organic Farming Could Feed The World, If Only We Would Let It (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/28QPs47                                                      A new report argues against critics who claim industrial agriculture is the only way to meet the nutritional needs of a growing population.
  • Report: Farming for the Future: Organic and Agroecological Solutions to Feed the World (Friends of the Earth) http://bit.ly/28Os6f6
  • How Native American Tribes Saved A Giant, Ancient Squash From Oblivion (NPR) http://n.pr/298Q5Xk
  • Why Conserving Crops’ Wild Cousins May Be Critical for Human Survival (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/290Z3VO                                                  As global food requirements grow with skyrocketing human population, genes from wild relatives of common corps could play a big role.
  • Time to invest in agriculture that can survive changing climates. Like, now. (grist) http://bit.ly/28Js2ZT
  • University Farmers Bring Heirloom Purple Wheat Back From Brink of Extinction (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/28YcDu5
  • “Less Meat, Less Heat”: China’s Plan to Drop Meat Consumption Gets Praise (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/28M35yl                        New dietary guidelines would reduce the country’s livestock-related carbon emissions by 1 billion tons by 2030
  • Those LED Lights in Supermarket Dairy Cases are Making Milk Go Bad (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/28ZEN6d
  • For some growers, farmers markets just aren’t what they used to be (The Washington Post) http://wapo.st/28PtTRI
  • Chicago: Thanks to MightyVine, You Can Having Local Tomatoes, 365 Days a Year (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/29398Ch
  • How the Texas BBQ Boom Marginalizes Its African-American Roots (First We Feast) http://bit.ly/28NLsvP                                    National media’s obsession with brisket from Austin undermines the rich legacy of black pitmasters in East Texas.
  • This City Is Home to 820 Urban Farms and Quickly Becoming America’s Urban Ag Capital (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/28W7ehZ
  • Meet the Modern Farmer: Robin Emmons (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/28XllmP                                                                                                    A family crisis turned Robin Emmons into a farmer.

 

Hunger, Food Access & Insecurity, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • 1 in every 113 human beings is forcibly displaced from their home right now (The Washington Post) http://wapo.st/28NXEQc
  • As Venezuela Erupts Into Chaos, 87 Percent of Its Citizens Can No Longer Afford Food (First We Feast) http://bit.ly/28YEkPY        President Nicolás Maduro is now facing the possibility of a recall referendum.
  • 1 in 10 Cal State Students is homeless, study finds (LA Times) http://lat.ms/28KIjxO                                                                                          About one in 10 of California State University’s 460,000 students is homeless, and one in five doesn’t have steady access to enough food…
  • CSU shocker: Up to 57,000 students homeless (SF Chronicle) http://bit.ly/28Tc5PY                                                                                            Many ore are hungry, not eating regularly
  • Study: Serving Displaced and Food Insecure Students in the CSU (CSU) http://bit.ly/28MCseK
  • Food Pantries Address a Growing Hunger Problem at Colleges (NYT) http://nyti.ms/28SY0pQ
  • A Striking Number of College Students are Food Insecure. Can Campus Farms Help? (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/28WWMpr            A community college in Brooklyn has launched what might be the fires on-site farm-to-pantry college program in the country.
  • The numbers are staggering: US is ‘world leader’ in child poverty (Raw Story) http://bit.ly/21qMh32                                                        America’s wealth grew by 60% in the past six year, by over $30 trillion. In approximately the same time, the number of homeless children has also grown by 60%.
  • Here’s the surprising reason that malnutrition is rising around the world (The Canary) http://bit.ly/28Mb5Q1

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • Garbage in, energy out: creating biofuel from plastic waste (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/294rIpB                                                                              An Australian startup has found a way to transform end-of-life plastics into bio-crude fuel. But is this a sustainable solution or just pollution displacement?                                                                                     Plastics are made from natural gas in the US and oil in most of the rest of the world…
  • The Dirty Truth About Cold-Pressed Juice (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/28XliIa                                                                                                     The real cost of the juicing fad? Food waste. Tons of it.

 

 

Healthy/Safe Food

  • Don’t believe the slander: Americans are eating less crap. (grist) http://bit.ly/28XtKsr
    • Study: Dietary Intake Among US Adults, 1999-2012 (JAMA) http://bit.ly/28UVPxZ
    • Raise a Cup – of Coffee; WHO No Longer Says It Can Cause Cancer (AlterNet)
  • Raise a Cup – of Coffee; WHO No Longer Says It Can Cause Cancer (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/2976KaJ
  • Burger King’s new ‘Mac ‘n Cheetos’ sticks leave the world gasping in horror (Raw Story) http://bit.ly/290ZhMC
  • Do you want to live a longer healthier life? New evidence shows eating this food group can help (The Canary) http://bit.ly/28RqttL

 

Children & School Food

  • How One Groudbreaking Set of Rules is Changing the Food in LA Schools and the System Behind It (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/296CUWU

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • $15 Minimum Wage in California: Who Is Affected By The Plan To Raise California’s Minimum Wage? (California Institute For Rural Studies) http://bit.ly/28KUnSy

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • This Startup Wants You To Have Your Disposable Spoon And Eat It, Too (NPR) http://n.pr/292zSTY
  • Nestle Should Not Continue Profiting From Extracting Water From Public Lands (Buzz Flash) http://bit.ly/28ODXHf
  • A Bayer and Monsanto Merger Would Be Disastrous for Humans and the Environment (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/28Xc3dl                          The union of Monsanto’s seeds and Bayer’s herbicides would perfectly position the merged giant to fully exploit a toxic but highly profitable cycle of increasing herbicide use and weed resistance.
  • How Organic Agriculture Boosts Local Economies (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/28WBeOx                                                                                        New research has found that “organic hotspots” boos median household incomes by an average of $2,000 and reduce poverty levels by an average of 1.3 percentage points.

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Hot Mess: States Struggle to deal with Radioactive Fracking Waste (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/28MfRMb                    Potentially dangerous drilling byproducts are being dumped in landfills throughout the Marcellus Shale the few controls
  • High Levels of Toxins Found in Bodies of People Living Near Fracking Sites (Earth Island Journal) http://bit.ly/28Yr2kR
  • California Fresh Groundwater Reserves Triple in New Assessment (circle of blue) http://bit.ly/290zfcb                      Researchers urge caution in underground disposal of oil waste, to protect deep water sources.
  • Clean water should be a basic human right. Why are we charging so much for it? (grist) http://bit.ly/28VFgrs
  • A New Interactive Map Reveals How 6,500 Factory Farms Are Putting North Carolinians at Risk (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/28XeMQP                                                                                          “For far too long, North Carolinians have been kept in the dark about the true impact these industrial factory farms are having on communities and waterways.”
  • Lawsuit Filed Against 3M for Dumping Toxic Chemicals Into the Tennessee River (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/293E2ZJ
  • Delta management plan tossed by judge (San Jose Mercury News) http://bayareane.ws/28VkcxY
    • Update: (California) Delta Plan Litigation Comments (Restore The Delta) http://bit.ly/28Wq2SS                                                          FAQs, Research & Important Links
  • Unprecedented Bleaching Event Portends Mass Death of World’s Coral Ecosystems (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/28NgLMA          ‘It’s time to shift this conversation to what we can do to conserve these amazing organisms in the face of this unprecedented global bleaching event’
  • Collapse of kelp (California) forest imperils North Coast ocean ecosystem (Press Democrat) http://bit.ly/28Qg3ik
  • Dutch prototype clean-up boom brings Pacific plastics solution a step closer (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/291Vtsj

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • This (UK) government guide is being slammed for promoting industry wealth over public health (The Canary) http://bit.ly/28L9c5I
  • The US Take Action To Minimize Animal Testing (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/292zrJd                                                                                      Animal activists are praising the first update to a substance-testing law in over 20 years.
  • USDA Says Paul LePage’s Food Stamp Freakout Will Harm Children (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/28Or8z7                                The governor of Maine Threatened to drop food stamps if the feds won’t let him prevent poor people from buying candy and soda.
  • Victory!! Pesticide Contamination Prohibited fro Organic Production (Center For Food Safety) http://bit.ly/28R6j6I

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Vermont’s GMO labeling law: DuPont, Syngenta fight disclosure of internal studies (Brattleboro Reformer) http://bit.ly/28YaM6o

 

Poisons

  • The Developing World Is Awash In Pesticides. Does It Have To Be? (ensia) http://bit.ly/28WDXHJ                                                    Herbicides, insecticides and fungicides threaten the environment and human healthy in many parts of the world. But research is pointing to a better approach.

 

Pollinators

  • Truck Full of Dead Bees Delivered to the EPA (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/28WiNH6                                                                                            The Keep Hives Alive Tour, a traveling protest of farmers, agriculture scientists, and activists, has been traveling around the country bringing its message to the masses.

 

Animals

  • Seagulls Are Now Carrying One of the World’s Deadliest Superbugs (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/28QdDMz                            And they can migrate thousands of miles and drop it on our doorstep

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update June 20, 2016

 

  • Meet the McDonalds Cashier Taking On Her CEO for Climate Change (Yes!) http://bit.ly/1tuox36                                                                  If raising a family on a McDonald’s salary wasn’t hard enough, Tina Sandoval is working to transform the fast-food industry into one that is good for both people and planet.
  • The Women Behind Harlem’s Farmers Markets (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/1tu8PVI                                                                                              Three fresh food crusaders are building community while keeping Harlem real.
  • The Rising Stars in New York City Food Policy Class of 2016 (NYC Food Policy Center at Hunter College) http://bit.ly/1Q62SbP
  • How Africans Are Saving Their Own Soil (National Geographic) http://on.natgeo.com/1ZYMJoR                                                                          An archaeologist stumbles on a hidden farming practice that’s been passed down through generations….
  • Study: Indigenous African soil enrichment as a climate-smart sustainable agriculture alternative (Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment) http://bit.ly/24XYz3N
  • Cultivating a Coalition of Sustainable Farmers With Loren Cardeli of A Growing Culutre (Eco Centric) http://bit.ly/28JMQln
  • Austerity (The Secret Ingredient) http://bit.ly/1OqZace              Hosted by Tom Philpott, Raj Patel, & Rebecca McInroy
  • Nyeleni Newsletter no. 26: Land Reform and Food Sovereignty (Food First) http://bit.ly/24RJb91                                                                        A wave of financial capital is crashing down upon the resources held in rural corners of the planet in the world today. In this process we see a financialization of rural goods and assets along with a (re)capitalizing of capitalistic extractive efforts through agribusiness…
  • Antibiotic Resistance Requires Global Response Similar to AIDS, Climate Change (Inter Press Service) http://bit.ly/1YngDEp
  • The list of the 50 best restaurants in the world is out, but some questions the word “best” (Quartz) http://bit.ly/25Z5w78
    • The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 1-50 http://bit.ly/1WM9xtR  And only a single woman chef, as part of a couple, is on the list…
  • We’re in for a Major Peach Shortage in the Northeast this Summer (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/1tCcUrk                                          In the Northeast, lovers of stone fruit – peaches, nectarines, apricots, plums, and cherries – are in for a tough summer, thanks to a very weird season for Northeastern farmers.
  • Your food is better traveled than you are (grist) http://bit.ly/1ruKjm1                                                                                        Where our cultivars come from…
  • Surprising global origins for regional food favorites (BBC) http://bbc.in/24QK6qr                                                                                                It is generally agreed that there are five crops that changed the world that came from the Americas: tomato, potato, maize, chile peppers, and chocolate, although it can be argued that vanilla, beans, sweet potatoes, hard squash, beans, and the sunflower also played a role…
  • ‘Moon Of The Faith:’ A History Of The Apricot And Its Many Pleasures (NPR) http://n.pr/1ZYWnrm
  • Land Grabs Soar, Worsen Land Conflicts and Climate Change: Report (telesur) http://bit.ly/1XshHaS                                                          The new wave of corporate land grabbing across the developing world has caused an increase in grassroots resistance.
  • New leaked chapter of Asia trade deal shows RCEP will undercut farmers’ control over seeds (GRAIN) http://bit.ly/1tz7NrT                  … since the ink dried on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), people have become aware of another mega-trade deal being negotiated behind closed doors in the Asia-Pacific region…
  • It’s Not Just Restaurants – Scientists Are Fascinated With Fermented Foods Too (takepart) http://bit.ly/1Px3Isq                          As researchers learn more about the human microbiome, there’s increased interest in how diet influences the microbes that call us home.
  • Chef Michael Smith named (Canadian) “Half Your Plate” brand ambassador (Canadian Grocer) http://bit.ly/1UEUHPO
  • Honeybees are the Stars at New York City’s Coolest Filed Trip (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/1tCclOl                                                Brooklyn Grange bee field trip…

 

Hunger, Food Access & Insecurity, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • The numbers are staggering: US is the ‘world leader’ in child poverty (Raw Story) http://bit.ly/21qMh32                                    America’s wealth grew by 60% in the past six years, by over $30 trillion. In approximately the same tine the number of homeless children has also grown by 60%. This is a choice we have made as a country, to ensure homelessness, student debt and our infrastructure falling apart at the expense of those who can least afford it. We will spend more in remediation of the consequences of these choices, than we would have spent ensuring that we don’t have the highest poverty rate in the developed world.
  • (Canadian) Child benefit to pull record number of kids out of poverty, minister says (Toronto Star) http://on.thestar.com/1UznxAU                                                                The Canada Child Benefit will slash child poverty by a record 40 per cent when cheques begin to arrive next month to families… If Canadians can do it, so can the US…
  • Bigger Food Stamp Benefits Wouldn’t Be Wasted on Junk Food, Study Says (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/238ROwz                Benefits won’t be getting more generous anytime soon, however.
  • Policy Brief: Boosting SNAP Benefits Would Improve Diets of Low-Income Households (Center on budget and Policy Priorities) http://bit.ly/1YqkosD
  • Study: The Relationships Among SNAP Benefits, Grocery Spending, Diet Quality, and the Adequacy of Low-Income Families’ Resources s (Center on budget and Policy Priorities) http://bit.ly/1UbFpaY

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • This Startup Is Turning Leftover Beer Into Delicious Snacks (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1sHZFVg                                                          And more crafty ways people are fighting food waste.
  • This Machine Turns Your Food Waste Into Gas For Cooking (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1Ppycwr                                              Create clean renewable energy in your own backyard.
  • Oh, the Places Your Plastic Waste Will Go (takepart) http://bit.ly/24Y0l4S                                                                                                    … where ocean plastic comes from ad where most of it ends up.

 

Healthy/Safe Food

  • Eating Less Meat Could Save up to $31 Trillion (and Many Lives) (Civil Eats) http://bit.ly/1Re4NJN
    • Study: Analysis and valuation of the health and climate change cobenefits of dietary change (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA) http://bit.ly/28JS6YO
  • Kids Are Eating Far More Sugar at Breakfast Than Nutrition Labels Suggest (takepart) http://bit.ly/1ttNlIn
    • In Kid’s Cereal, Mini Servings Hide Mountains of Sugar (Environmental Working Group) http://bit.ly/21ptPHY
  • Is Sriracha Under Siege? (National Geographic) http://on.natgeo.com/1UfF0yS                                                                            The hipster hot sauce is being kicked off some menus and banded from grocery shelves over health concerns that seem a bit overheated.
  • Why Whole Wheat Is Better Than White (The Atlantic) http://theatln.tc/1rmvqSs                                                                            Switching pastas and breads is a small decision that could save lives.
  • Whole Foods Nailed For Unsanitary Conditions In Food Prep Plant (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1WO90HN                                    The details will make your skin crawl.

 

Children & School Food

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • The Fight For 15 Movement Clinches A Victory In The Nation’s Capital (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/1Xd9HdJ
  • The Conservative Backlash Against Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave Victories Sweeping The Nation (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/1tyV6xr
  • How Prison Labor is the New American Slavery and Most of Us Unknowingly Support it (Return to Now) http://bit.ly/1tuhWpm
  • 20,000 Domestic Workers Are About to Get Fair Wages. How’d They Do That? (Yes!) http://bit.ly/1rtRJWA                                              Left out by traditional unions, women-led domestic workers are winning fights for minimum wage and overtime across the country.
  • Got Milk with Dignity? Vermont’s Migrant Justice putting finishing touches on breakthrough dairy program… (CIW) http://bit.ly/28LnVj1
  • Sweden, an Experiment Turns Shorter Workdays Into Bigger Gains (NYT) http://nyti.ms/1Or5m41                                                    Sweden has long been a laboratory for initiatives to strike a better work-life balance, part of a collective ideal that treating workers well is good for the bottom line.
  • American Seafood Has Its Own Forced Labor Problem (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/260fF71                                                                                  A new report sheds light on the abused immigrants shucking your shellfish.
  • Report: Raising the Floor for Supply Chain Workers: Perspective from US Seafood Supply Chains (Asia Floor Wage Alliance) http://bit.ly/1Ubg23w
  • PepsiCo supplier Indofood accused of child labour, violations (Eco-Business) http://bit.ly/24UF2RR                                                  PepsiCo’s Indonesian snack manufacturing partner Indofood has been accused of running plantations rife with child labour, worker intimidation, and health and safety violations.
  • “This Program should be everywhere…” (CIW) http://bit.ly/1UDMXh0                                                                                          CIW Worker-to-Worker Education Team takes human right on the road… 
  • Rolling Strike By Teamsters at US Food Aims to Protect Union Jobs (In These Times) http://bit.ly/23iCVrP

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Pennsylvania Community Defeats Nestlé’s Attempt to Privatize Its Water (truthout) http://bit.ly/28IoPno
  • Where Walmart Can Find The Money To Pay Its Workers At Least $15 An Hour (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/1Uwy4Ne                          It would also save taxpayers over $900,000 per Walmart store in social safety net aid programs…
  • Tom Philpott: “Smell Is a Hard Thing to Quantify”: One Alabama Town’s Battle Against an Open Pit of Rotting Chicken Guts (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1OsCd8D                                                            In my decade coving industrial agriculture, I’ve never heard of anything like this.
  • Nestlé teams with food truck chefs for Hot Pockets innovation (Food Business News) http://bit.ly/21rqMyZ
  • Martha Stewart, Marley Spoon Team Up on Meal Kit Delivery Service (Eater) http://bit.ly/28FH9NS
    • Home Cooking Delivery Service Marley Spoon Snags Another $17 Million From Investors (Eater) http://bit.ly/1W08nd8
  • ADM’s offshore links to Wilmar, world’s worst environmental offender (GRAIN) http://bit.ly/1Q9j7F7                                                          … By running their operations through tax havens they can conceal transfer pricing schemes, lower their tax bills and even avoid responsibility for damages caused by companies they are invested or supplied by.
  • Who Gets Paid When Fine Dining Comes for Appalachia’s Stinkiest Fare? (takepart) http://bit.ly/1URuIY2                                    Chefs pay high prices for foraged foods – but there aren’t always benefits for the people who pick them and the wild places they come from.

 

Protests

  • Sakuma (WA) Brothers Farms Raises Wages After Farmworkers Walk Off the Job (The Stranger) http://bit.ly/1tupTuH
    • A double victory at Evergreen (Socialist Worker) http://bit.ly/1PB4a9h                                                                              Evergreen State College (WA) is known for it socially conscious student body – but it may require further efforts to get the Evergreen administration to honor the mandates for BDS and farmworkers’ justice…
  • Oregon oil train explosion fuels growing opposition movement (High Country News) http://bit.ly/1UBD3wk                                        Some activists see the Pacific Northwest as a major new front in the climate fight.
  • Several San Luis Obispo County restaurants yank Justin wines after tree removals (SLO Tribune) http://bit.ly/1tvA2ai                    Justin Vineyards’ bulldozing of hundreds of oak tress has uncorked some disapproval among San Luis Obispo County restaurateurs and wine fans, who are making their feelings know with their wallets…
  • Resnicks’ (San Luis Obispo County) deforestation ignites battle (Cal Coast News) http://bit.ly/1ZYDVzo                                                     “This is the third property they have deforested. It is thousands of trees not hundreds….”
  • The Killing Fields: Extrajudicial Killings in the Philippines (truthout) http://bit.ly/1UIAWXD                                                              Salaries are low, with Aquino administration turning its back on the farmers calling for higher wages…

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • The media may have stopped talking about it, but the Flint water crisis is far from over (Salon) http://bit.ly/1sNyubI                              While press coverage has dwindled, one woman is working to make sure the city of Flint does not fall into obscurity
  • In US drinking water, many chemicals are regulated – but many aren’t (The Washington Post) http://wapo.st/1UW52cN
  • How rural New Mexico shares water during drought (High Country News) http://bit.ly/1Oxom0C                                              Centuries-old traditions offer guidance for water managers seeking resilience in an uncertain future.
  • Raid Frees Whale Sharks Illegally Bound for Aquatic Parks (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1PwTzvS                                                                      The raid, which revealed a scheme to illegally catch whale sharks and export them to Chinese aquatic amusement parks, saved tow gentle ocean giants from a lifetime in captivity.
  • The Gulf of Mexico Is About to Experience a “Dead Zone” the Size of Connecticut (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1WUhjC2      Midwestern farm fertilizer runoff is expected to create a massive algae bloom and a biological desert to follow it.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • European Parliament speaks out against agricultural colonialism in Africa (EurActiv Network) http://bit.ly/28KGi8q                                For a large majority of MEPs, the G7’s decision to base its program for food security in Africa on intensive agriculture is a mistake…
  • Exposed: Pesticide Industry Deployed Aggressive Lobby Effort to Quash Bee Protections (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1YvyCZm                                                                                        Bayer, Monsanto, and Syngenta are effectively “shaping new pollinator ‘protection’ plans nationwide that do little to protect bees, but a lot to protect industry profits.”
  • Monsanto Donations to Federal Candidates, 2016 cycle (Open Secrets) http://bit.ly/1UqxRxY                                                                 Names, states and donation amounts…
  • Iowa Senator Wants to Make Sure the US Military Runs on Meat (takepart) http://bit.ly/24Y3xNX                                                                    Iraq vet Joni Ernst wants to block the armed forces from adopting Meatless Mondays.
  • Farmers’ market program for low-income California residents awaits new funding (East Bay Times) http://bit.ly/1ZWXFmV
  • Philadelphia Becomes 1st Major American City With Soda Tax (abc news) http://abcn.ws/1YuPuQb
    • As Philadelphia Passes a Soda Tax, Supporters See a Growing Movement (takepart) http://bit.ly/1URsmIt                                      More cities will vote for municipal taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages in the fall.

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • In 17 Days Vermont’s Historic GMO Labeling law Goes Into Effect: Is Big Good Ready? (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1Pwsysn
  • Monsanto Issued Two GMO Permits Despite Objection From 5 Million Nigerians (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1PzVIXD
  • Brazil Won’t Buy US GMO Corn, Highlights Worldwide Divide Over GMOs (Buzz Flash) http://bit.ly/1Pq4yah
  • Is this the biggest threat to the Bay Area wine industry? (San Francisco Business Times) http://bit.ly/1tuo4hc

 

Poisons

  • Scientists Urge EPA To Recall Roundup Due to Unreasonable Risks (About Law Suits) http://bit.ly/1tBUeYV
  • Exposure to glyphosate herbicides with sun exposure increase risk of skin cancer – study (GM Watch) http://bit.ly/1V1ol1m
    • Study: Occupational Exposure to Pesticides With Occupational Sun Exposure Increases the Risk for Cutaneous Melanoma. (PubMed) http://1.usa.gov/1rtoh2S
  • Toxic Chemicals Found in Residents Living Near Oil and Gas Operation in Pavillion, Wyoming (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1UfNtC9
    • Interactive Map Shows Where Toxic Air Pollution From Oil and Gas Industry is Threatening 12.4 (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/28Njvz8
  • Our Bodies Have So Many More Cancer-Causing Chemicals Than We Thought (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1Up62Gc
    • Research: The Pollution in People: Cancer-Causing Chemicals in Americans’ Bodies (Environmental Working Group) http://bit.ly/28N7pWK                                                                        Exposure comes from a variety of sources: industrial applications, consumer products and food, water and air…

 

Pollinators

  • Get Friendly with Helpful, Not Hurtful, Ground Bees (modern farmer) http://bit.ly/1XtEGSH                                                                          Each spring many people across the US become alarmed when ground bees emerge from small holes in lawns and gardens in late spring and early summer.

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update June 13, 2016

 

  • Ad of the Day: A Foul-Mouthed Seed Bashes Agrichemical Firms in This Hilarious Film (Ad Week) http://bit.ly/1TUlnMu              Appeal for organic over pesticide giants that control the market
  • “Hummus might well be worth fretting over” (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/1toU46U                                                                Twenty voices weigh in on the decade since The Omnivore’s Dilemma
  • As the local-food movement matures, farmers’ market face more competition (The Inquirer) http://bit.ly/28orxOP
  • Activist Helen Chávez, Widow of César Chávez, Dies at 88 (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1UDQnmo                                            She played a vital role in helping César Chávez launch and sustain the United Farm Workers of America.
  • Small holder farmers are crucial to ensure food security and nutrition: Javier Sanchez at CFS (La Via Campensina) http://bit.ly/1Un3rhn
  • Why matching fish farming with crop irrigation is a win for parched Southwest (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1rhmgqv    Farmers in the Southwest are turning a harsh, dry climate to their advantage by raising fish
  • Report: Shifting Diet for a Sustainable Food Future, Installment 1 – 11 (World Resources Institute) http://bit.ly/1rbRhMs
  • A Midwestern Baker is Reviving a Bread That the Heartlands Haven’t Made in 100 Years (Saveur) http://bit.ly/1UDYT1I
  • An historic seed bank, running out of time (The New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/1Uc6yHu                                                                      The Roughwood Seed Collection is fighting to keep the storied varieties in its private archive alive – by sharing them with the public
  • Race and Corporate Power in the US Food System: Examining the Farm Bill (Food First) http://bit.ly/1U6SNtN                                                 In nearly every aspect – socially, economically, politically, and environmentally – the US food system is characterized by widespread inequity.
  • Why Did Media Outlets Try to Convince Us That Vegetarianism Causes Cancer? Here’s the Diet That Can (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1RWB03V                                                                                  Several publications misconstrued a new study that found different genes require different diets.
  • Study: Positive selection on a regulatory insertion-deletion polymorphism in FADS2 influences apparent endogenous synthesis of arachidonic acid (Molecular Biology and Evolution) http://bit.ly/1PFjUNG
  • Billionaire Prima Donna: Bill Gates Urges the World’s Poor to Be Chicken Farmers – While Funding Silicon Valley to Make Eggs Obsolete (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Uq4clN
  • These Aren’t Clouds, They’re 300 Football Fields Worth of Flames – Caused by Our Snacks (One Green Planet) http://bit.ly/215UHfZ
  • Eddie Huang Doesn’t Care About the New Shit in Your City (East Bay Express) http://bit.ly/1PhwKfC                                                                  The outspoken chef and TV personality dishes on his new memoir, gentrification, and the importance of real neighborhood restaurants
  • Butter science: Buttervikings on creating restaurant quality butter (Dairy Reporter) http://bit.ly/1tdDy9f
  • Restaurant Terms Explained: Decode your Menu (OpenTable) http://bit.ly/1OiDy1D                                                                                      Culinary terms can be confusing… Ballotine or Galantine?
  • Paso Robles vineyard that cut down oaks is told again to halt work (SLO Tribune) http://bit.ly/25VGK7H                                        Owners are Stewart and Lynda Resnick, owners of Fiji Water, Pom Wonderful, Wonderful Almonds, Suterra pest control, Teleflora floral delivery and a host of other businesses…
  • San Louis Obispo County orders halt to removal of hundreds of oaks at Paso Robles vineyard (SLO Tribune) http://bit.ly/1PUSqni

 

Hunger, Food Access & Insecurity, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • Stop Trying To Solve Hunger With Corporate Food Waste (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1VMvt6N                                               The issue is poverty, lack of access. It all comes down to policy…
  • Study Reveals That Eating ‘In Moderation’ Is A Fool’s Errand (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1Yk4CQm                                                     It sounds like wise, low-key advices, but it’s actually total BS

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • Freeganism: food waste’s first wave (The New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/24IuJjF                                                                                      Dumpster divers spurred interest in food waste a decade ago. Their message went mainstream, but what’s been lost in translation?
  • I remember dumpster diving back in the 1980’s with punk rockers, anarchists, and squatters in San Francisco, New York and across Europe. Not just food, but clothing and other needed household goods too…
  • Australia’s 7.5m tonnes of food waste: can ‘ugly food’ campaigns solve the problem? (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1ra5dqi
  • Tracking System Could Cut Billion Of Dollars In Food Waste (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1YcXNjl                                                      The goal is to channel more food to the roughly 800 million people who are undernourished globally.

 

Healthy/Safe Food

  • Do You Really Have To Refrigerate Your Eggs? Here’s The Answer. (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1Y6rzpF                                  Yes you do, it has to do how we wash them…
  • The American diet is an exercise in extremes. How can we find the middle ground? (grist) http://bit.ly/1tsK9xn
  • Food-safety regulation thwarts start-up’s dream to bring you home-cooked meals (grist) http://bit.ly/1U4vdeN                                      I was wondering how long this model would last…

 

Children, School & School Food

  • App Shows Kids How Their Dinner Affects the Planet (takepart) http://bit.ly/1PJkN84                                                                              Connecting kid favorites like burgers and bacon with their carbon emissions is a real-world lesson in the realities of climate change.
  • Nation’s first urban farming school teaches kids to grow and cook their Own Food (inhabitat) http://bit.ly/1rc6jBP                                    The planned new campus for San Francisco’s Gold Bridges School will include an orchard, edible garden and outdoor learning spaces.
  • Celebrating Food and Culinary Connections: Schools Serve up California-grown Food on “California Thursdays” (USDA) http://1.usa.gov/1tizeFH

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • How Can We Make Restaurant Jobs Into Good Jobs? (In These Times) http://bit.ly/1YdtLMt                                                                                    In the late 1970’s many restaurant jobs were living wage jobs, I graduated from culinary school and made $8.50 per hour in 1980, I could live off of that in San Francisco back then, with over time, about $20,000 per year. No benefits, but we had good free clinics in SF back then. That all changed in the late 1980’s when the unions were being busted (I worked several union hotel restaurants in NYC where they were busting the union,) wages dropped and we all started having trouble making ends meet by 1990…
  • New Study Reveals Just How Brutal Meat and Poultry Work Is for Workers (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Um1t0I                                          “The pain never really went away. It just went up my arms and elbows.”
  • Workplace Safety and Health: Additional Data Needed to Address Continued Hazards in the Meat and Poultry Industry (US Government Accountability Office) http://1.usa.gov/1tnFTzf
  • Hundreds of Dominican Workers at Frito-Lay Win a Union (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1U0gMbI                                                                      This is the culmination of a process that began in April.
  • Long-Term Organizing Bears Fruit for Grocery Local (Labor Notes) http://bit.ly/1UbadoX                                                                  Corporate grocery chains are continuing their offensive, with Kroger the latest example…

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Monsanto Turns Back Bayer Again (WSJ) http://on.wsj.com/1PnlkqJ                                                                            German company is aiming to seal a deal that would form the world’s largest supplier of crop seeds and chemicals
  • Pepperidge Farm Releases New Goldfish Made with Organic Wheat (Business Wire, Berkshire Hathaway) http://bit.ly/1TXEr1S
  • We ‘Slayed the Dragon’ Community Wins as Nestle Drops Water Extraction Plans (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/22Z51Z0      Victory for Monroe County, Pennsylvania Community comes on heels of another loss of bottled water giant in Oregon.
  • General Mills Releases Tiny Toast, Its First New Cereal In 15 Years (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1TRZu0x
  • The Startup Turning Locals Into Entrepreneurs in Cincinnati’s Gentrifying Economy (Yes!) http://bit.ly/1RWFaca                            When neighborhoods develop, longtime residents are often left out of the boom. This incubator helps local entrepreneurs turn big ideas into businesses.
  • Seafood Is a Dirtier Business Than You Think (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1Ucb7Sh                                                                                            The global seafood industry is exploitative at each step of the supply chain, from Thailand to the Louisiana Gulf.
  • Behind The Brands http://bit.ly/1XJCC9T                                                    After 18 months of detective work, Oxfam can reveal how the biggest food companies do business.
  • The Journey to Sustainable Food: A Three-year update on the Behind the Brands campaign (Oxfam International) http://bit.ly/1YdlZSt
  • Companies Are Doing A Terrible Job On Sustainable Cotton (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/25NUB3j                                                      A new report ranks popular companies based on their promotion of cotton sustainability – and the results are pretty dismal.
  • This Is How Much Celebrities Get Paid To Endorse Soda And Unhealthy Food (NPR) http://n.pr/1U9syCO
  • In Louisiana Shrimping Communities, Globalization’s Effects Imperil US Fishers (truthout) http://bit.ly/1XhMXsP
  • Leaving the EU could Welsh farmers exposed to policies that would decimate agriculture, FUW president warns (Wales Online) http://bit.ly/1UM8ExT

 

Protests

  • Farmworkers March across New York State for the Right to Organize (Labor Notes) http://bit.ly/1UIAs3r                                               … When the National Labor Relations Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act were enacted in the 1930s, farmworkers and domestic workers explicitly excluded…
  • Forget Hunger Strikes. What Prisons Fear Most Is Labor Strikes (Yes!) http://bit.ly/1UDW041                                                                  Prisoners throughout Alabama and Texas reclaim their humanity – and power – by shutting down the economic infrastructure of their prisons.
  • In Powerful Action, Anti-Pipeline Activists Sow Sacred ‘Seeds of Resistance’ (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1XCwpwr                          “… sacred Ponca corn was returned to the tribe’s ancestral homeland in Nebraska for the first time in 137 years – since the tribe was forcibly removed from Nebraska… “

 

Funny/Food Fraud/Scandal

  • 1,000 Sheep Run Amok Through (Spanish) City When Shepherd Falls Asleep (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/230Jjnf
  • Hialeah restaurant owner discovers he can’t grease the system with cash (Miami Herald) http://hrld.us/25KL1OX                        Hialeah restaurant owner accused of delivering envelope stuffed with cash to (Florida) county commissioner’s office…

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • Canada’s First Nations face systemic water crisis (AlJazeera) http://bit.ly/215U7ig                                                                                        Report says that water in Canada’s First Nations communities is contaminated and hard to access, rights group says.
  • Report: Make it Safe: Canada’s Obligation to End the First Nations Water Crisis (Human Rights Watch) http://bit.ly/1svkF1B
  • Columbia Gorge oil-train fire out, but sheen on water and worries remain (The Seattle Times) http://bit.ly/1Y9kogs
  • Dry Taps and Lagoons of Sewage: What America’s Water Crisis Looks Like (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1OiQEMp                                          A new report finds that safe water and sanitation are increasingly unaffordable for millions of Americans.
  • Forget it, Jake: It’s Cadiz (KCET) http://bit.ly/1U0lV95                          … suburban water company in Orange County is the rightful municipal steward for a privately run ground water mining operation 200 miles away in the Mojave… they are going to sell desert water, that qualifies as ‘conservation’
  • El Niño has run its course. But did it end California’s drought? (Christian Science Monitor) http://bit.ly/25SgQoY                                  The El Niño offered unusual rainfall to drought-parched California and elsewhere in the US, just not in the amounts – and places – expected.
  • The Drought Solution Under Our Feet (News Deeply) http://bit.ly/24wXYFV                                                                                        When California searches for relief from the drought, and explores different solutions, from conserving water to desalination, one avenue that often get overlooked is what’s under our feet – soil.
  • Saving water save a lot of power, too (The San Diego Union-Tribune) http://bit.ly/25HTxuv                                                                            UC Davis study calculated electricity saved during mandated water cuts                                                                                                                                   The state government of California uses approximately 50% of the state governments energy use pumping water around the state…
  • 21-Year-Old’s Miracle Ocean-Cleaning Tech Ready To Get Its Feet Wet (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1reQiv7                                  It could eventually remove more than 150 million pounds of trash from the Pacific Ocean.
  • Native Americans Harvested Oysters Responsibly. Why Can’t We? (National Geographic) http://on.natgeo.com/1S1DY77      Prehistoric Native Americans didn’t have dredgers. That’s probably why Chesapeake Bay oysters lasted as long as they did.

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • Groups urge US Congress to reject TPP over environmental concerns (Reuters) http://reut.rs/1OaEpRT
    • The Trans-Pacific Partnership Will Hurt Farmers and Make Seed Companies Richer (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1YksIua        Here’s why experts say the trade deal is a “big win” for the biotech seed industry.
  • Is The FDA Ready To Take On The Powerful Food Industry? (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/1XCJt56
    • FDA: Draft Guidance for Industry: Voluntary Sodium Reduction Goals: Target Mean and Upper Bound Concentrations for Sodium in Commercially Processed, Packaged, and Prepared Food http://1.usa.gov/1t7IAnN
  • It’s Taking Way Too Long For The FDA To Recall Tainted Food (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1ZGXThV                                                  It’s completely unacceptable.
  • New Labor Board Ruling Restricts Bosses’ Ability To Hire Permanent Replacements for Striking Workers (In These Times) http://bit.ly/1ZFwL2F
  • Federal Report Appears to Undercut EPA Assurances on Water Safety In Pennsylvania (ProPublica) http://bit.ly/1YisJ1I            Dimock, one of many places where gas drilling boomed in Pennsylvania, gets a sobering take on quality of its drinking water.
  • HHS Report: Health Consultation: Dimock Groundwater Site (HHS Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry) http://1.usa.gov/1rhc4hL
  • The Cost to you and Me of Proposed Offshore Drilling? $179.2 Billion (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1thTebu                                    ‘Not accounting for the social cost of carbon in federal leasing decisions is a negligent disregard for the public safety.’
  • Obama’s Proposed Drilling Expansion May Cost Us More Than The Oil Is Worth (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1UIC8ww
  • Miami-Dade County Bans Styrofoam From Parks, Beaches (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1tltBat                                                            A state bill, however, prevented lawmakers from passing more comprehensive legislation.

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Indigenous peoples of Guatemala Reject Nagoya Protocol (Food First) http://bit.ly/24Illwh                                                                              Claiming that it would endanger traditional seeds, the Ancestral Council of Indigenous Peoples of Guatemala rejected the “Nagoya Protocol” that would legalize GMOs…
  • World’s First ‘Spotty Dog’ and Cow-Like Sheep Created Using Gene Editing (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1XMPgFc
  • Scientists attempting to harvest human organs in pigs create human-pig embryo (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1t2h1Mw        Researchers in California have been trying to grow human organs inside pigs in attempt to tackle donor shortage
  • Can Lab-Grown Meat Save Our Broken Food System – and Prevent Killing of Billions of Animals (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Pgnc4m                                                                                            New advances in stem cell research could upend conventional wisdom about the environmental, animal welfare and health effect of meat eating

 

Poisons

  • 6 Questions Judges Will Consider in Monsanto Trial for Crimes Against Human Health and the Environment (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1VL2Bfd                                                                                              Until now for the most part, Monsanto has been able to poison with impunity.
  • This Popular Weed Killer Wreaks Havoc on Animals and Is Probably Huring Us, Too (Mother Jones) http://bit.ly/1Zy9Shu    The EPA releases a damning report about atrazine – and kicks the can to the next administration.

 

Animals

  • Earth has lost half of its wildlife in the past 40 years, says WWF (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1sxvQH5                                                      Species across land, rivers and seas decimated as humans kill for unsustainable numbers and destroy habitats
  • The Eerie Parallels Between Big Ag and Wall Street (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/25Ov6z6                                                                                                  In the US, governmental regulation of animal welfare is similar to another failed attempt at reform: financial regulation.
  • Egg Farers Say They’ll Stop Grinding Up millions Of Chicks Alive (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/24GRy7p                                                  Since baby males aren’t useful to the industry, they usually meet a horrific death
  • Horrific Treatment of Hens at New England’s Largest Egg Producer Revealed by Undercover Investigation (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1OcgGAI                                                                                            The Maine facility is a massive complex of 70 warehouses that together confine some four million laying hens packed to tightly that they can’t even spread their wings.
  • Report: Undercover at New England’s largest egg factory: Inhumane treatment exposed at Maine producer supplying eggs to New England states (The Humane Society of the US) http://bit.ly/1TXPtEe
  • Can we reduce meat’s climate impact by eating more animal parts? (grist) http://bit.ly/25TpF1U                                                                      I grew up eating tongue, liver, sweet breads and all the other offal, my Mama grew up on a farm that raised cattle for market, that is what she was raised on…
  • Vermont Bull Owner Faces Manslaughter Charges In Motorist’s Death (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/25NVEjO

 

Events

 

Education

 

Jenny’s Food & Ag Update June 6, 2016

 

  • More (Central) Valley farmers opting to go organic (The Business Journal) http://bit.ly/1U2vsKP                                                                Organics are the single-fastest growing segment in the food industry today – and more Central Valley farmers are taking notice.
  • ‘Overwhelming’ Evidence Shows Path is Clear: It’s Time to Ditch Industrial Agriculture for Good (CommonDreams) http://bit.ly/25FisCd                                                                                              New report looks at why, given negative outputs, a massive shift to agroecological approaches hasn’t yet taken hold
  • Report: From Uniformity to Diversity (International Panel of Experts on sustainable Food Systems) http://bit.ly/1sTVAgC
  • Farmers Are the New Climate Warrior (The American Prospect) http://bit.ly/28bBRtu                                                                                          Meet the Environmental Defense Fund’s Robert Parkhurst, the man working to create a market for farm-based carbon sequestration.
  • Biodiversity Continuum Chart Download: How to Conserve Biodiversity on the Farm: Actions to Take on a Continuum from Simple to Complex (Wild Farm Alliance) http://bit.ly/1XZrHan
  • Can fine dining make climate change palatable? (New Food Economy) http://bit.ly/1t9k5XX                                                                            This restaurateur couple is betting San Francisco diners will warm up to The Perennial
  • Let’s GROW! (Talin’ Trash with UHN) http://bit.ly/22DXizl                   I am thrilled and delighted to introduce our first wheelchair accessible garden at Toronto Rehab, Bickle Center!
  • Urban Garden Aims To Bridge Gap Between ‘Old’ And ‘New’ Harlem (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1UC8Orm                    “Anyone who cares about this community wants to make sure the identity there remains strong.”
  • Let them eat dirt! Our obsession with hygiene is jeopardizing our children’s health (The Telegraph) http://bit.ly/1Uhq02z
  • Andrew Coppolino’s top 10 reasons for shopping at farmers’ markets (Canadian Broadcasting Co) http://bit.ly/1st5qpK              From nutrition to convenience, economics to social engagement, Andrew’s list is food for thought
  • All Aboard: Floating Food Forest Prepares for Debut Voyage in New York (takepart) http://bit.ly/25DDph7                                            Food produced on Swale will be free to the public.
  • Your Next Hamburger May Come With a Side of Endangered Wolf (takepart) http://bit.ly/1X1BYDS                                                              A group argues for adding wildlife conservation facts to nutrition labels.
  • Beans Could Be the Low-Tech Solution to Food’s Biggest Problems (takepart) http://bit.ly/1VAgRYi                                                      As the world gets hotter and drier, pulses may be key to feeding us.
  • New Jerseyans Chew Over What To Call Their Favorite Pork Products (NPR) http://n.pr/1Y5s0AW
  •  
    • Doctors’ ‘Drug of Last Resort’ Is Falling Prey to Antibiotic Resistance (takepart) http://bit.ly/1Pp2epp                                      Coli bacteria that is resistant to colistin has now been documented in both a woman and pig living in the United States.
  • With re-creation of 1500s garden, a reminder of when herb knowledge was a survival tool (The Washington Post) http://wapo.st/1sZNkMb

 

Hunger, Food Access & Insecurity, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • Crisis Narratives and the Ongoing Drought in Ethiopia (truthout) http://bit.ly/1Wxxh4L                                                                                     Ethiopia is currently the grip of its worst drought in half a century. More than 10 million people – over 10% of the population – are affected by drought related food insecurity…
  • Food Deserts aren’t The Problem (Slate) http://slate.me/1sq5eaL  Getting fresh fruits and vegetables into low-income neighborhoods doesn’t make poor people healthier… poverty itself is making people ill…

 

Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste

  • Is it Really Worth the Convenience? 6 Ways Plastic is Harming Animals, the Planet and Us (One Green Planet) http://bit.ly/1PcpHog                                                                                Remember, single use plastics were not ubiquitous until after 1982

 

Healthy/Safe Food

  • General Mills Recalls Flour Over Possible Link To E. coli Outbreak (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1P2BSUM                                               Kashi Co also announced a recall of one variety each of its granola and granola bars.

 

Children & School Food

 

Labor/Unions/Coops

  • Efficiency up, turnover down: Sweden experiments with six-hour working day (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1VG2JNh
    • Sweden introduces six-hour work day (Independent) http://ind.pn/1X5zW5F                                                                        Employers across the country including retirement homes, hospitals and care centers, are implementing the change
  • Even After Minimum Wage Hikes, Workers Could Still Be Getting Robbed (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1VsQ5Rn                                              The new wage laws will increase minimum wages, but won’t strengthen the wage-enforcement system.
  • These 7 Household Names Make a Killing Off of the prison-industrial (labor) Complex (US Uncut) http://bit.ly/1WB7R6h          4 of the seven are food corporations…
  • Aging in the Fields: No Alternative But to Keep Working (Capitol & Main) http://bit.ly/1PutDWZ                                                                    After working for 40 years harvesting vegetables in California, Consuelo Mendez tried retirement, but soon was forced to get another job. Now She makes $11.79 an hour.
  • The Hidden Cost Of Cheap Pizza (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1U3uMVw                                                                                  Sorry to say it, but America’s favorite comfort food is anti-worker.
  • This Lawsuit Against Domino’s Could Be Huge for Workers (The Nation) http://bit.ly/1RJktAj                                                                                The New York attorney general’s wage-theft suit could pave the way for unionizing workplaces across different owner-operators.
  • Pictures Show the Mysterious Disease That’s Killing Field Workers (National Geographic) http://bit.ly/22G1miy        Photographer Ed Kashi documents how chronic kidney disease is affecting rural India.

 

Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Four National Obesity Forum members resign over controversial report publication (Food Navigator) http://bit.ly/1O8UgjP
  • Immigrant Moms Were Told They Can’t Have Jobs – So They Started Their Own Tamale Co-op (Yes!) http://bit.ly/25DLm5I        Employment options for undocumented immigrants are often extremely limited. These single moms have found a solution.
  • Seeds of Change: Corporate Power, Grassroots Resistance, and the Battle Over the Food System (Dollars & Sense) http://bit.ly/1RU0Aq7
  • Almost Everything America Calls a Breakfast Staple Is Corporate Myth (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1Y8poCl                                                    From cereal to orange juice.
  • Why the Breakfast Most Americans Will Eat Today Is a Corporate Scam (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1ssY1Xt                                                        Wake up and smell the McCafe: Cold cereal, donuts, and orange juice are breakfast staples because somebody somewhere wanted money.
  • Shareholders Confront McDonald’s ‘McTeacher’s Nights’ Inside Their Annual Meeting (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/20VYs7E        McTeacher’s Nights remain a point of controversy.
  • Brooklyn’s fancy artisanal-food businesses are getting chewed up (Crain’s) http://bit.ly/281StDJ                                                              Companies that launched the gourmet-food-production scene in 2008 fed New York City’s manufacturing revival. Now entrepreneurs are finding their dreams wiped out by rents and regulations
  • Dow-DuPont Merger Will Cripple Farmers and Food Sovereignty, Groups Warn (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1P2RY0A
    • Walmart, Gap, H&M Called Out for Global Worker Exploitation and Abuse (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1XNXye3
  • Why a $15 Minimum Wage Can’t Fix America’s Affordable Rent Crisis (takepart) http://bit.ly/22BbSYo                                                      People living in San Francisco need to earn $44.02 to be able to pay for the average tow-bedroom apartment.

 

Protests

  • Call to ‘Save Oceans, Protect Workers’ Goes Airborne as Greenpeace Targets Walmart (CommonDreams) http://bit.ly/1ss57LS                                                                                    ‘Walmart can no longer hide the very real threat of labor abuse and ocean destruction with its insufficient policy statements and greenwashing’
  • My View: McDonald’s can easily afford to give us a raise (rrstar) http://bit.ly/1O81tRg                                                                                            Fight for $15 Chicago

 

Food Fraud/Scandals

 

Water & Our Oceans

  • In Alabama, 100,000 people told not to drink water due to contamination (Reuters) http://reut.rs/1RTojqF
    • At least 33 US cities used water testing ‘cheats’ over lead concerns (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1RRBIPX                      Guardian investigation reveals testing regimes similar to that of Flint were in place in major cities including Chicago, Boston and Philadelphia
  • First Flint – Now Philly? (The American Prospect) http://bit.ly/1UoN1k6
  • Congress Weights Help To Pay Escalating Household Water Bills (circle of blue) http://bit.ly/1r68OWd                                            We will further publicly fund privatized public water utilities…
  • Portland (CT) joins three Connecticut towns in banning fracking waste (Middletown Press) http://bit.ly/1TSTNoh
  • Company Apologizes for Oil Train Disaster it Acknowledges Was Inevitable (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/25Gr08F                    “We’re playing Russian roulette. I think the industry is perfectly willing to put a gun to our heads and risk our lives for the sake of making money. It is abundantly clear this enterprise is unsafe, unsustainable and they don’t know how to manage it.”
  • Oregon oil-train crash damaged town’s water and sewer systems (The Guardian) http://bit.ly/1Y1zHYF                                                          Area surrounding derailment site remains evacuated days after Friday crash with officials from small town Moiers say vital services are not working.
  • Ground-Breaking Agreement Marks First Voluntarily Limits to Industrial Fishing in Arctic (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1TTfLaO
  • Fish & Chips: How Seattle’s Drugged-Up Effluent Is Affecting Puget Sound (Seattle Weekly) http://bit.ly/1UlTkFh                            Hint – it involves what goes down our toilets.
  • More Than A Third Of The Coral Is Dead In Parts Of The Great Barrier Reef (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1sIO5Js                   Huge portions of the structure have been damaged by the area’s biggest bleaching even ever
  • More Dredging Near Florida’s Endangered Corals Could Spell Disaster (takepart) http://bit.ly/1TYFoE1                                Conservation groups are demanding federal officials reevaluate a plan to expand a shipping port near threatened coral reef species.
  • Fish Prefer Eating Dangerous Plastic Pollution (takepart) http://bit.ly/1Pp8vkV                                                                                          When European perch were exposed to polystyrene miroplastics, their survival rate dropped, a new study shows.
  • Study: Environmentally relevant concentrations of microplastic particles influence larval fish ecology (Science) http://bit.ly/1TYKrUR
  • Now Is the Time to Protect Our Ocean’s Treasures (takepart) http://bit.ly/2872vU5                                                                                              We have the largest expanse of ocean of any country in the world, and it’s our responsibility to protect it…

 

Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • EU Commission Backs Down on Long-Term Glyphosate Approval, Seeks Last Minute Extension (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1sQEKiA
  • Passing Ban, Scottish Parliament Declares: ‘No Ifs, No Buts, No Fracking’ (Common Dreams) http://bit.ly/1Uj23rO                              Non-binding fracking ban signals ‘growing consensus that stopping climate change means we have to say no to new fossil fuels like fracked gas.’
  • (Colombian) Families of Death Squad Victims Allowed to Sue Chiquita Executives (CommonDreams) http://bit.ly/1TTjq8C          US judge permits federal lawsuit against corporate executives for funding far-right paramilitary group in Colombia
  • Swiss Reject Plan To Give Themselves A Guaranteed Basic Income (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/24tDq1f
    • Switzerland to vote on universal basic income (Independent) http://ind.pn/1XXJzCs
    • A Monthly Income Just for Being Human, and Other Sensible Ideas (Yes!) http://bit.ly/1U3TbKO                                              Economist Guy Standing explains why Switzerland’s just the first of many places looking for a solution to rising inequality.
  • The Economic Idea Embraced by Milton Friedman and George McGovern Makes a Comeback (Capital & Main) http://bit.ly/24p4WwE
  • Summer Break for Polluters: Congress Bows to the Chemical Lobby on Toxics Regulation (GreenPeace) http://bit.ly/1sqZRIk
  • Federal (EPA) Report Show Dimok (PA) Water Unsafe (DeSmog) http://bit.ly/1XXmuQx                                                                                          Back in 2012 the EPA made a starling announcement, shaking up the battle over fracking in one of the nation’s highest-profile cases where drillers were suspected to have caused water contamination.
  • EPA Finds Widely-Used Weed Killer Could Threaten Animals (Think Progress) http://bit.ly/1U3L4O8                                                            It should come as no surprise that atrazine is a threat to is a threat to humans, animals and our watersheds…
  • EPA: Refined Ecological Risk Assessment for Atrazine http://1.usa.gov/1PaZxSQ
  • Widely Used Hormone Disrupting Pesticide Putting Million at Risk, Including Infants and Children (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/23tgyyk                                                                                                  EPA tests repeatedly found atrazine – the second most used herbicide in the US – in drinking water sources that exceed levels of concern for infants and children.
  • USDA Sec. Vilsack advocates for mandatory, national GMO Labeling at OTA Policy Conference (Food Navigator) http://bit.ly/1Ut5hf0

 

GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • More Big Retailers Say ‘No’ to GMO Salmon (EcoWatch) http://bit.ly/1VCf9FV                                                                                          After the Canadian approval of GMO salmon nearly 80 major food retailers have committed to not selling GMO salmon…
  • Organic Farmers Are Not Anti-Science but Genetic Engineers Often Are (Independent Science News) http://bit.ly/280Ow27
  • Genetically modified Golden Rice falls short on lifesaving promises (Washington University St. Louis) http://bit.ly/20Xo2JJ
  • Bt Corn Raises Questions (The Progressive Farmer) http://bit.ly/1O7Kmit                                                                                        Refuge-in-a-Bag Corn May Speed Up Bt Resistance
  • EPA Under Fire on Bt (The Progressive Farmer) http://bit.ly/1Zk58MC                                                                                Inspector General Demands Better Control of Bt Resistance by EPA

Pollinators

  • Finally, Some Good News About The Future Of Bees (Huffington Post) http://huff.to/1WztnZ4                                                                            The solution for declining bee populations may be in the wild.
  • Honey Bees Are in Decline, but There’s Another, Unsung Bee Who Could Save the Plant’s Food Supply (AlterNet) http://bit.ly/1RS1qns                                                                                          Gentle, good-natured and hardworking, mason bees are more efficient pollinators than honey bees – and can help orchard growers and everyday gardeners get more from their plants.
  • How to raise and manage orchard mason bees for the home garden (University of North Carolina) http://bit.ly/24lrONx
  • Can Planting More Milkweed Save Monarch Butterflies? It’s Complicated (NPR) http://n.pr/1sQC3h9
  • What you can do in your garden to help bees and butterflies (Toronto Globe and Mail) http://bit.ly/25xOZXw

 

Animals

  • Solved: The Mystery Of The Bearded Chickens (NPR) http://n.pr/1Y5rAdN
    • Study: A Complex Structural Variation on Chromosome 27 Leads to the Ectopic Expression of HOXB* and the Muffs and Beard Phenotype in Chickens (PLOS) http://bit.ly/1r4yzq4
  • Moose Are Invading Farm Fields (takepart) http://bit.ly/1UkiDaL   In southern Canada, the unusual visitors have created new problems for drivers and growers.
  • Immune Booster (The Progressive Farmer) http://bit.ly/25EU1ou  As the cattle industry responds to consumer demand for less antibiotic use, a new tool for control of bovine respiratory disease (BRD) in young cattle is making its mark.

Farmers in Training: A Visit from Maria Montessori Education Centre

 

This spring the grade 7 ErdKinder class at Maria Montessori Education Centre partnered with Grow Calgary. Together we grew seedlings for the farm and learned about growing food in our own homes and backyards. Those of us at Grow Calgary are elated to see so many young farmers in training taking an interest in growing food! Our food system will be in good hands with these students at the helm!

Below are some of the students’ reflections on working with Grow Calgary.

Describe Your Experience of the Farm, Weather, Sowing the Seeds and Transplanting Plants

————————————————————————————-

Despite the lousy weather, we all had a notable afternoon at the Grow Calgary Farm. My experience for the weather was completely different than I expected. I knew that the weather was supposed to be cold, but I didn’t think that it would be as cold as it was. Even though I was dressed nice and warm, my hands were almost numb from the cold. For sowing the seeds, I expected it to go a little differently than how it went. For watering the plants, I thought that you would just use a regular watering can and be done in about 5 minutes. But we actually used yogurt containers with little holes drilled on the lid so the water comes out like a watering can. Also for the actual taking care of the plants, we had to water the seedlings every morning and since plants grow towards the sun, we had to turn the trays around every so often. After the seeds were big enough, we all went to the Grow Calgary Farm to transplant them. My experience for transplanting the seedlings was harder than I thought it would be. It was hard because you had to find the roots of each little seedling and put it into another little box / container filled with more soil. Some were more difficult than others because many plants were intertwined with each other. In conclusion, Grow Calgary Farm experience, so far, has been memorable.

N.F. MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 Student

 

On April 14th the Grade 7s from the  ErdKinder class at Maria Montessori Education Centre went to Grow Calgary to transplant seedlings. We had grown them in our class for almost 2 months and they were coming along great. It definitely went quicker than I thought it would, and they started to get too big for them to grow in our small plastic greenhouses. While at the farm, since it was very cold, we used the greenhouses at their farm for warmth and trust me, it was definitely warm in there. It was a pretty good Urban Farm but there were some parts that could’ve been taken care of a bit better though like how there was a rake that could’ve hit you in the head if you stepped on it. The best part about Grow Calgary is that it supports 14 charities including the Calgary Interfaith Food Bank. ‘Join The Farmy!’

M.U. MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 Student

How Were You Feeling After the Farm Work and Planting Seeds?

————————————————————————————-

Around February the 23rd Grow Calgary came to us and gave us the knowledge, help and supplies we needed to begin our germination. We had 16 plant trays planted with tomatoes, zucchini, scaloppini, corn and garlic. It was a lot of hard but fun work and learning. After the germination until April 7 we watered and turned the seeds until  April 7. On  April 7 we visited the farm for a few hours to transplant our plants. It was a lot of fun even if it was the coldest day of the week. We stayed warm in the greenhouse thanks to the greenhouse effect. All in all, the work at the farm was fun and satisfying to see our plants 1 stage further in its life.     

S.P. MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 student

 

The trip over to Grow Calgary was amazing! On the morning of our departure, we left for the Grow Calgary farm on a city bus, we took three actually; and after one more long, bump-filled bus ride, we arrived at Grow Calgary, though it was slightly chilly,  and looking past the frigid temperature, being at the farm was very exciting. The next two hours of our day flew by, and before I knew it, it was already time to leave. I was exhilarated as we walked over to our bus stop. The experience of transplanting our seedlings was great, even more so that we did it at the farm. My feelings were all over the place after the day was done, going from elated to slightly fatigued from all the planting and non-stop standing, but it was worth it to see the seedlings finally transplanted after months of attention, watering and growing in our small classroom greenhouses. Though the classroom felt empty the next day without the plants in the greenhouses, it was nice to know that the seedlings were planted and growing in the greenhouses back at the Grow Calgary farm. I hope to go back to Grow Calgary soon as I really did enjoy the experience I had at the farm

Anonymous, MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 Student

What Do You Expect from our Next Visit, from Grow Calgary, for Future Excitements, and for Working On The Harvest ?

————————————————————————————-

For our next visit in Grow Calgary there are many possible options to do. Last time we transplanted our plants into pots. We had Zucchini, Tomatoes, and Corn. We are going to transplant our plants again into the ground, and harvest the plants that we grew. I am sure that it will be a fun experience. This year we will learn about structures, such as greenhouses. At Grow Calgary they had a shelter in which there were some plants growing, it was really cool to see how they do it. Volunteering at Grow Calgary was exciting and was a lot of work. “Join the Farmy!”

William, MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 student.

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 11.27.58 AM

How Did Your Expectations of the Germination, the Farm and People Differ from Your Experiences?

————————————————————————————-

On February 23, 2016, Paul Hughes from Grow Calgary came to our school to plant some seedlings. He came wearing plaid, which is what I imagined a farmer or someone like him to wear. Planting the seeds was easier than I expected and we fit a lot of seeds in each of the trays! It took longer than I expected for the seedlings to sprout, but as soon as they sprouted, they grew very fast.

Once the seedlings were big enough, we took the city bus to Grow Calgary. I’ve been to C.O.P many times, but I’ve never noticed that there was a farm just west of it. When we first got to the farm, I was a little bit taken back. Everything had been repurposed or handmade. We checked out the greenhouses, which were also smaller than I expected but they definitely worked! Transplanting into bigger pots was surprisingly easy and more fun than I expected as well. It was a great experience to have and I look forward to harvesting the plants in the fall!

K.U. MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 student

Screen Shot 2016-06-02 at 5.27.47 PM

~Expectation VS Experience~

————————————————————————————-

 

I definitely had different expectations for from how long it would take to what the farm looked like. For starters, I thought it would take a lot longer for the seeds we planted to start growing. It was really engaging to see the seedlings go from smaller than my pinky to bigger than my hand. I also thought the Grow Calgary Farm would look way more rustic, but it was more like where my grandma took me to plant her potatoes and tomatoes, which brought back good memories. The weather was also colder than I expected, so I spent most of my time inside huddling around the heater and planting in their untill I regained my heat. Soon enough the sun came out and I enjoyed helping out in the very slight warmth. All in all the experience was really enjoyable and I’m looking forward to going back later this spring and in the fall (or during harvest season).

A.B. MMEC ErdKinder, Grade 7 student

————————————————————————————-

 

Thank you to everyone at Maria Montessori Education Centre for their enthusiasm and participation!