With just one week left until Washington state voters decide on I-522, the ballot initiative to label genetically modified organisms (GMOs), money for the opposition continues to pour in. According to the state’s Public Disclosure Commission, the No on 522 campaign received an influx of $4.2 million last week from just two sources: The Grocery Manufacturer’s Association (GMA) and Dupont Pioneer, the seed and agri-chemical company.
This brings the current “No on 522” campaign war chest total to $21.9 million, the most well-endowed single-issue campaign in state history. Read More
Whole Foods Market (WFM) is again at the forefront of the movement for greater transparency in food production and processing. The supermarket chain recently announced a comprehensive ratings system for fresh produce and flowers, which parallels the color-coded animal welfare standards for meat and the sustainability standards for seafood that Whole Foods earlier pioneered. Read More
Most Americans think of Canadians as their nice northern neighbors, prone to superfluous apologies. Sorry (yes) to burst that bubble, but we also have a deep self-congratulatory streak. Among ourselves we can be smug, extoling the virtues of our kinder, gentler social safety net. These hard-won achievements are worthy of a few pats on the back, sure, even though as in most other nations in the industrialized world, that net is growing taut and frayed. Read More
The DIY renaissance began with home cooks preserving and pickling. Fermented foods such as kimchi and sauerkraut quickly followed. Naturally, bottled home brews found a fast following too. Emma Christensen caught the DIY bug when friends gave her and her husband a gift certificate to a local home brewing store as a wedding gift. That kicked off Christensen’s passion for brewing beer at home. And in her first book, True Brews: How to Craft Fermented Cider, Beer, Wine, Sake, Soda, Mead, Kefir, and Kombucha at Home, the recipe editor for the popular cooking website The Kitchn shares her ongoing obsession with crafting all kinds of fermented beverages. Read More
Cutting Food Stamps? No GMO labeling? More ethanol subsidies? Last Farm Bill five years ago? Congress can’t get their act together, but young people can. Real food policies must start from the ground up and today on Food Day, students are making that happen. Read More
In 2011, I collaborated with a small, ardent group of Portland State University (PSU) students to found Food Action Collective (FAC), a student-led organization centered on promoting justice within the PSU and community food system. Now, today on Food Day, I find myself ruminating over how the organization came to be and how it has evolved. Read More
If you want to improve the treatment of millions of animals in our food supply chain, chickens are the low hanging fruit. With 99 percent of the 291 million egg-laying chickens in the U.S. living in cramped cages, there is a lot of room for progress in the industry. Read More
On October 16, Congress ended the government shutdown, bringing to a close a two-week distraction from critical issues facing the country. During this period of partisan politicking, some may have forgotten about the House Republicans’ plan to gut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), often referred to as food stamps, by $39 billion over the next 10 years. Read More
On April 29, 2008, the Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production (PCIFAP) released the findings of a two-and-a half-year examination of the food animal industry to the nation. Their conclusion: The current system of raising animals posed unacceptable risks to public health and the environment. Five years later, an in-depth analysis by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future (CLF) determined that instead of getting better, the problem has actually gotten worse since the commission released its seminal report, Putting Meat on the Table: Industrial Farm Animal Production in America. Read More
Trails of wispy fog cling to the switchback slopes along Highway 1 from Mill Valley to Muir Beach, past a hand-carved wooden sign leading to the Green Gulch Farm Zen Center.
From the road above, the tall eucalyptus trees form an arch over the gentle curve of the fertile valley below, which empties out into the Pacific Ocean. Drive a bit farther in and you’ll catch glimpses of iridescent crops laid out in neat ribbons, forming the heart of Green Gulch Farm: six acres of certified organic vegetable fields, fruit trees and flower gardens. Read More