When Laurie David sets her eye on a project, there’s no doubt she will make it happen. She’s the Oscar-winning film producer who convinced Al Gore to turn his climate change slide show into a documentary. Gore was skeptical, but David persisted and wore him down. Without her determination, An Inconvenient Truth would almost surely never have been made and millions of people would have missed his urgent call to action. Read more
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The other day, on my way to pick up some grasshoppers for dinner, I was reminded of how difficult it once was to find ingredients that are now utterly commonplace—such as a block of tofu.
It made me wonder: Are insects the next tofu? In 20 years, will they become as commonplace in our grocery aisles and farmers’ markets as other foods than once seemed exotic? Read more
If you don’t recognize all the high-tech ingredients available in food and drinks these days, you’re not alone. Some of these new additions—such as glucosamine hydrochloride, gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA), or soy isoflavone extract—might show up in product marketing, while others, such as milk protein concentrate, will not. But whether new food additives are being promoted or not, a report released this week by the Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC) says their novelty isn’t the only reason we should be paying attention. Read more
When Katie Francis of Oklahoma broke a record recently for selling 18,107 boxes of Girl Scout cookies in seven weeks, the world took notice. All eyes were on this ambitious young woman with a creative approach and an impressive work ethic. But what Katie might not be aware of is just how different the cookies she’s selling are from ones she might bake herself. Read more
Could the U.S. dairy processors’ new slogan, “milk life,” make it big in Asia? If dairy multinationals like Nestlé and Danone have their way, the answer might be yes.
As the market for dairy products in industrialized countries nears saturation, the U.S. dairy industry, along with its counterparts in Australia, New Zealand, and Europe, have begun to look for new consumers in China, Vietnam, Indonesia, and other Asian countries. Read more
First it was produce. Then the local food movement expanded to take on meat. Now it’s all about grains.
Nothing proves this point more than the packed room I found myself in last Sunday morning. At the point in the week when most people are unfurling their copy of the New York Times, or making their second leisurely café au lait, I filed in to the back of the dining area at Oliveto, a high-end Italian restaurant in Oakland, to join around 100 people gathered to discuss local grains. Read more
Since it was published in 2010, Tartine Bread has become the bible for DIY bakers. Written by Chad Robertson, owner of the acclaimed San Francisco bakery Tartine, it is a hefty yet appealingly light-hearted ode to old-fashioned, country-style loaves. Now, Robertson has taken the craft of bread making to another level with Tartine Book No. 3: Modern, Ancient, Classic, Whole. Read more
Most young people consider diabetes a “grandfather’s disease,” inherited at birth. They don’t always know that there are two very different forms of the disease, and that type 2 diabetes is preventable. This lack of awareness has staggering implications—between 2000 and 2008, rates of diabetes and prediabetes among Americans ages 12 to 19 shot from 9 percent to 23 percent.
That’s where the The Bigger Picture comes in. Youth Speaks, a San Francisco based arts nonprofit that empowers teenagers through poetry, teamed up with the University of San Francisco’s Center for Vulnerable Populations in 2010 to launch a project that encourages young people to “raise their voice and change the conversation around type 2 diabetes.” Read more
Two months ago, Seattle-area 4th grader Michael Kenny came home from school with a burning desire to make vegetarian chili. His mom Liz nearly fell out of her seat. She knew her son was not fond of peppers—and he’d never shown much interest in cooking before. “They sent all the students home with a recipe, and when he came home he wanted to make it right away,” Liz says. “And most of the ingredients were vegetables!” Read more
What if your national dietary guidelines advised you to cook and enjoy fresh, whole foods, and serve them with friends and family while thinking critically about advertising? Hard to imagine, isn’t it?
Well, that’s exactly what Brazil’s Ministry of Health is recommending with the “food based” dietary guidelines it issued recently. Read more