Despite Urban Stereotype, Food Stamp Rates are Soaring in Rural Areas

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Jonathan Lewis, a writer who lives with his wife and daughter in the isolated town of Alamosa, Colorado, has received Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), benefits, AKA “food stamps,” since February of this year. Before he and his wife had a child, they were able to afford the food they needed. But after becoming a parent, he says, “I never quite made enough to pay all the bills and make sure all three of us were fed.” So Lewis turned to SNAP “to bridge that gap.” Read More

In The Hunt For GMO-Free Products, Which Labels Stand Up to The Test?

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It’s easy for the average consumer to assume that food labeled “natural” is healthy, wholesome, and free of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). After all, the dictionary definition of the word natural is “existing in, or formed by, nature as opposed to artificial.

But, more often than not, according to a Consumer Reports study released today, processed foods with a “natural” label actually contain significant amounts of GMOs. Read More

Uncovering America’s Food Waste Fiasco

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Every year, Americans throw away $165 billion dollars worth of food—that’s more than we spend on the food stamp program (SNAP), national parks, public libraries, and health care for veterans combined. Around 40 percent of our entire food supply gets tossed in trashcans, dumpsters, and landfills, and we’re not even a well-fed nation.

Fifty million Americans, or one in seven, are food insecure and 17 million children, or one in five, go without food on a regular basis. The majority of you reading this likely don’t experience hunger or food insecurity, but the truth is we are a very hungry nation. Read More

Recipes to Swear By: ‘Thug Kitchen’ Founders Want You to Eat Your Goddamn Veggies

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“In cooking you’ve got to have a what-the-hell attitude.” The opening quote of the Thug Kitchen Cookbook: Eat Like You Give a F*ck may sound like it was pulled straight from the blog’s expletive-laden homepage. But it’s actually a quote from Julia Child, originator of kitchen irreverence and inspiration to whimsical cooks worldwide. Child was one of the first cooks to encourage her audience to truly start from scratch in the kitchen, encouraging those with few skills to step up to the stove. The co-founders of the popular website Thug Kitchen (TK) use a millennial approach to this same philosophy–taken to the extreme. Read More

All the News That’s Fit to Eat: GMO Labeling, Chinese Chicken, and California’s New Food Laws

California Governor Jerry Brown signed hundreds of bills this week, including legislation on farm labor and GMO salmon. Courtesy of Steve Rhodes, Flickr.

Here is this week’s roundup of food news stories.

1. GMO Labeling Won’t Raises Prices for Consumers (RT News)

As voters in Oregon gear up to head to the polls in November, a new study may help them make a decision on Ballot Measure 92, also known as the state’s GMO labeling bill. The report from ECONorthwest aggregates findings from numerous studies that have looked at the prospective effect of GMO labeling on consumer prices. According to the findings, a measure like the one in Oregon would likely raise prices by $2.30 per person per year in total–less than the price of a gallon of milk. Meanwhile, in Colorado, where a similar measure will be on the ballot, Monsanto has pumped nearly $5 million into a campaign to convince consumers that GMO labeling will cause prices to skyrocket.

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‘The Homemade Flour Cookbook’ Takes DIY Baking to a New Level

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If you meander down the DIY road long enough, you will end up doing things that are far from easy or convenient. You stop thinking about the time it takes to complete a project and begin focusing on the value to the end result, liker the integrity in knowing that your entire dinner can be traced back to your own property. Part of the DIY thrill is that the steps encourage you to keep digging deeper. What starts one year as a nice gift to your neighbors of dried, home grown herbs might result in the decision to add salt crystals you harvested from local seawater to the next batch.

When it comes to baking, the next DIY frontier is grinding whole grains into flour. Read More

Little Eaters Grow in the Garden, Seeding the Future of the Food Movement

Photos by Shawn Linehan.

Ten students frolic along a path, passing flowering cilantro and Swiss chard leaves the size of elephant ears. One pauses to point out a ladybug, which leads to an impromptu lesson from gardener Suzanne Stone about aphids. Another student marvels at periwinkle-blue borage blooms, an opportunity to teach companion planting and culinary herbs.

This is a garden class at New Day School in Portland, Oregon, a preschool for two-and-a-half to five-year-old children that enrolls between 80 to 100 students throughout the year. Read More

Preserving Farms on the Urban Edge: Case Study Brentwood, California

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The founders of First Generation Farmers in Brentwood, California have spent the morning squatting and stooping uncomfortably as they hand-harvest row after row of asparagus. “This is the hardest work we’ve ever done in our lives,” says Larry Gaines, hauling a bin of asparagus to his car. His business partner, Christian Olesen, announces that he feels like puking from the effort. Read More