Jenny’s Food & Ag Update April 8, 2017


Jenny’s Food & Ag Update for April 8, 2017


  • Seed Librarians Are Fighting to Protect the US’s Resilient and Diverse Food System (Pacific Standard)    How seed libraries are fighting against agricultural giants to increase genetic diversity in our crops.
  • Why Fiddlehead Ferns Are the New Superfood You Have to Try This Spring (AlterNet)                      Fiddleheads were all the rage in the restaurant industry in the early 1980s…
  • Our Current Food System Is Broken and Unjust – We Need a Paradigm Shift That Values Nutrition as a Human Right (AlterNet)
  • There’s a big part of rural America that everyone’s ignoring (The Washington Post)
  • Ground-breaking truffle harvest portends something big in California (SF Chronicle)
  • California’s vineyards are coming back from the brink of disaster thanks to the winter rains (LA Times)


Farmers, Farming, Ranching, Herding & Production

  • California Dreaming: Will Scott Sharecropper’s Son (Capitol & Main)                                                                              Will Scott is president of the African-American Farmers of California.
  • California Dreaming: Chukou Thao, Hmong Farmer (Capitol & Main)                                                                    Chukou Thao is president of the National Hmong American Farmers
  • California Dreaming: Stephanie Honig, In The Vineyard of Change (Capitol & Main)                                   … The family’s winery is know for both for the quality of its produce and for its sustainable methods.
  • Marion Nestle: Letters to a Young Farmers (Food Politics)                                                                                              On Food, Farming, and Our Future
  • Why Some of America’s Small-Scale Organic Farms Like Mine Are in Jeopardy (AlterNet)
  • Farmer forgoes millions to preserve agricultural gift for Edmonton (Edmonton Journal)
  • What We Need Are Farms That Support Farmers, Consumers and the Environment (ensia)                Agroecology can help fix the food, water and energy challenges that conventional agriculture has created.
  • Study Shows Wildlife Habitat Is Disappearing In Favor Of Crops For Biofuel (Earth Justice)
  • This area in Detroit is now America’s first 100% organic, self-sustainable neighborhood (The Hearty Soul)


Food and Culture

  • For Centuries, These Asian Recipes Have Helped New Moms Recover From Childbirth (NPR)
  • Meet the Palestinian-American Chef Fighting Cultural Appropriation in Food (Teen Vogue)
  • Leaving the Resistance: Reem’s Brings Traditional Arab Bakery to Oakland’s Fruitvale (East Bay Express)


Hunger, Food Access & Security, Obesity & Malnutrition

  • This Man Learned a Neighbor Needed Vegetables. What He Did Next Is Beautiful. (Global Citizen)
  • Trump budget threatens nutrition services for poor women and children (The Guardian)
  • Immigrants Are Going Hungry Because They’re Worried About Being Deported (Mother Jones)


Gleaning, Reuse, Recycling, Composting & Waste


Healthy/Safe Food

  • Super Sizing Urban America (Pacific Standard)                                                                                          How Inner Cities Got Fast Food With Government Help
  • Pizza chains are making a desperate push to avoid posting calories on menus (Food & Environment Reporting Network)
  • Are Bad Diets Causing a Bowel Cancer Crisis Among Millennials? (AlterNet)
    • Study finds colorectal cancer rates have risen dramatically in Gen X and millennials (EurekAlert!)
  • Burger King Has Made A Froot Loops Shake – Because Cereal Is Everything (Huffington Post)


Children & School Food

  • Free schools meals pledge is truly Labour (UK) and will help pupils in mind and body (Labour List)
  • How Greener School Lunches Can Help Fight Climate Change (Green School National Network)



  • Crete Culinary Sanctuaries Educational Programs Celebrating Our Cultural and Natural Heritage
  • Certificate in Applied Agroecology Program: Farm Locally, Connect Globally. (Farm Centered learning Network)



  • Why Flip Burgers When You Can Sling Weed? Denver’s Pot Boom Puts the Hurt on Local Restaurant Hiring (AlterNet)
  • Why Are People Dying to Bring You Dinner? The Shocking Facts About Our Food System (AlterNet)                    We hear from the sweatshops behind our computers, sneakers and other attire—yet the exploitation of farmworkers has become normalized.
  • Oregon farmers scrambling as labor collides with Trump immigration crackdown (Oregon Live)
  • America’s Growing Labor Shortage (The Wall Street Journal)                                                                              Lack of workers in ag and construction is hurting the economy.
  • Trapped by heroin: Lobster industry struggles with its deadly secret (Portland Press Herald)



  • Workers, Black Lives Activists Join Forces to Continue Dr. King’s Poor People’s Campaign (Facing South)
  • Louisiana’s Bayou Bridge pipeline is one permit closer to reality as groups plan continued resistance (Nation of Change)                                                                                                “It’s no surprise to us that the LDNR is issuing the permit, rubber stamping is business as usual in Louisiana.”


Business, Social Enterprise & Our Economy

  • Restaurants Cook Up A New Way To Pay Kitchen Staff More: A Cut Of Sales (NPR)
  • Down to zero: How this Ottawa entrepreneur plans to change the way you buy food (CBC News)
  • Score One for the Little Guys as W Hotel Drops Its Minimum Wage Surcharge in Seattle (The Daily Beast)                                                                                          The chain escapes a potential PR nightmare after getting called out for listing a surcharge to cover the cost of a higher minimum wage, but not one for the $4.1 million CEO.
  • Blue Apron buys Bill Niman’s BN Ranch as meal-kit business grows (SF Chronicle)
    • Meal Kits Make Money on Razor – Thin Margins. So This Shocked Us. (Mother Jones)
  • McDonald’s Will Use Fresh Beef On Some Hamburgers, And Wendy’s Isn’t Having It (Huffington Post)
  • What US Poultry Producers Do Not Want You to Know About Bird Flu (AlterNet)                                                        A bird flue outbreak exposes the unethical and deceptive practices of poultry producers.
  • How Burger King’s Palm Oil Addiction Is Devastating Local Communities – and Plante Earth (AlterNet)
  • Hopsopoly (Dollars & Sense)                       Global beer mergers reach a new level.
  • The Restaurant Industry Depends on Immigrants. What Happens If We Lose Them? (Indy Weekly)
  • Behind a Corporate Monster: How Monsanto Pushes Agricultural Domination (green left weekly)
  • Charge the ‘rich’ to feed the poor: Madrid’s Robin Hood homeless café (The Guardian)
  • A More Equitable Economy Exists Right Next Door (AlterNet)                                                                                                  In Quebec, co-ops and non-profit businesses account for 8-10 percent of GDP.
  • Capital’s Hunger in Abundance (Jacobin)      As long as food is produced for profit and not need, people will go hungry.



  • Man Creates Gardens For Unwanted Bees, Grows Free Food in 30 (NOLA) Abandoned Lots (Good News Network)
  • Bees Are Slowing Going Extinct. These Prisoners Are Trying To Stop That (Huffington Post)



  • Going Undercover at a Slaughterhouse – Humanity Is Capable of Atrocities It Simply Can’t Confront (AlterNet)
  • Dairy is scary. The public are waking up to the darkest part of farming (The Guardian)
  • Bird Flue Is a Big Deal. Of Course Trump Wants to Defund the Best Way to Contain It. (Mother Jones)    The virus has now hit Georgia, the No. 1 poultry-producing state – and Trump plans to cut surveillance funds.
  • Japan Returns With 333 Minke Whale Carcasses After ‘Scientific Expedition’ (Huffington Post)                  Japan has been conducting this ‘research’ since the international moratorium on whaling in 1986…
  • Selling Dog and Cat Meat Is Still Legal in Most of US – but a Federal Ban Could Soon Be in Place (AlterNet)                                                                                          Forty-four states have no law standing between the family dog and the dinner plate.
  • Catastrophic antibiotic threat from food (Nation of Change)


Food Fraud/Scandals/Weird

  • San Francisco PD Cites Senior Citizen For Eating Pizza At Mid-Market Bus Shelter (hoodline)


Water & Our Oceans

  • This Invention Lets Rural Hondurans Clean Their Water – And Own the Treatment Plant (Yes!)
  • There’s another story to tell about climate change. And it starts with water (The Guardian)
  • Flint Victory Is Replicable, Residents Say: Other Cities Should Ditch Their Lead Pipes (truthout)
  • Oil spill in creek originally underestimated, making it one of the largest in North Dakota history (Bismarck Tribune)
    • December North Dakota Oil Spill More Than 3 Times Larger Than Initial Estimate (Huffington Post)
  • Brazil is handing over the Amazon rainforest to mining companies and big agriculture (Vice)
  • Love Canned Tuna? More Grocers Want To Make Sure It Was Caught Responsibly (NPR)


Government/Regulation/Policy/Farm Bill

  • Europe poised for total ban on bee-harming pesticides (The Guardian)                                                                Draft regulations seen by the Guardian reveal the European commission want to prohibit the insecticides that cause ‘acute risks to bees’
  • Ganges and Yamuna rivers granted same legal rights as human beings (The Guardian)
    • Himalayan glaciers (lakes and forests) granted status of ‘living entities’ for protection purposes (9 News AU)
  • El Salvador makes history as first nation to impose blanket ban on metal mining (The Guardian)
  • Trump’s Budget Would Set Food Systems Progress Back Generations (Civil Eats)                                        A “mean-spirited” budget proposal would cut key programs supporting farmworkers, ag communities, fresh food access for low income Americans, and pesticide safety.
  • Donald Drumpf and GOP-Controlled Congress Strip Workers of Rights and Protections (and No One Is Talking About It) (Lambda Legal)
  • ICE arrests New York farmworkers, alarming industry and advocates (Crain’s NY Business)
  • EPA to Investigate Civil Rights Abuses Over Pesticide Use in Hawaii (Beyond Pesticides)
  • Senator Demands More Info About EPA Chief’s Refusal To Ban Brain-Damaging Pesticide (Huffington Post)
    • Will Trump’s EPA Greenlights a Pesticide Known to Damage Kids’ Brains? (Mother Jones)
    • EPA Chief, Rejecting Agency’s Science Chooses Not to Ban Insecticide (NYT)
    • Common Pesticide “Disturbs” the Brains of Children (Scientific American)
    • EPA Chief’s Refusal To Ban Brain Damaging Pesticide Shows Profit Trumps Public Safety (Huffington Post)
  • The Military Believes in Climate Change – The EPA, Sadly, Does Not (AlterNet)                                              Defense Secretary Mattis sees climate change as a threat to national security.
  • Congress Will Put Public Health at Risk If It Passes This Dangerous Food Safety Bill (AlterNet)            The so-called Regulatory Accountability Act jeopardizes critical food safety rules.
  • Red state legislatures are taking away workers’ raises and paid leave (ThinkProgress)                                                  A rising wave of preemption laws blocking cities from increasing their wages and benefits is sweeping the country.
  • Heartless In The Heartland (Huffington Post)                                                                                          It’s the first time that a state (Iowa) has nullified local minimum wage ordinances that have already taken effect
  • In Major Victory for Environment, Maryland Legislature Votes to Ban Fracking (AlterNet)                                        The vote enshrines the three-year ban, enacted in 2014, as a permanent major environmental victory.
  • California EPA becomes first US agency to declare that Roundup causes cancer (GM Watch)
    • Glyphosate to be listed under (California) Proposition 65 as Know to the to Cause Cancer (California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment)
  • (CA Assembly) Bill would force employers to ensure ICE agents have warrants (SF Chronicle)
  • Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection Sues Town for Trying to Protect Their Environment (In These Times)


GMOs/Cloning/Food Technology/Synthetic Biology/Nanotechnology

  • Oregon Bill Would Create Trespass Cause of Action for Landowners Against GMO Patent Owners (Lexology)
  • Inside the Network Funding GMO Propaganda and PR to Cover Up Toxic Chemical Risks (AlterNet)



  • Researchers find glyphosate in pregnant women, worry about impact on infants (Food & Environment Reporting Network)
  • Popular Farm Pesticide Found in Drinking Water (EcoWatch)
    • Study: Occurrence of Neonicotinoid Insecticides in Finished Drinking Water and Fate during Drinking Water Treatment (Environmental Science & Technology)



  • Healthy Hives, Healthy Lives, Healthy Land

Ecological and Organic Strategies for Regeneration

The 35th National Pesticide Forum, April 28 – 29, 2017

University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

Humphrey School of Public Affairs