Michael Sykuta, associate professor at the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources at the University of Missouri at Columbia, wrote an opinion piece for the Modesto Bee asking Why are Feds Launching Ag Antitrust Probe? and it's not a rhetorical question:
Why, one may wonder, is the Department of Justice launching an antitrust investigation against some of U.S. food system’s major players at a time when Americans are enjoying a widening array of food choices and spending less and less of their disposable income to do so?Read more
Twelve days till Christmas! While not too many folks celebrate a week and a half of gift-giving these days, the "first day of Christmas" is a good reminder that if you don't want to Fedex your twelve lords aleaping, you better get shopping. Today. Post-haste.
Why do people buy organic food? I don't mean "what reasons do they have?" - there are plenty of articles covering the whys and wherefores of buying organic. I'm talking psychology. Sociology. Why do people make the decision to start buying food that is sometimes hard to track down and is usually more expensive than its conventional counterpart? How did it start as a trend?Read more
Trader Joe's opened in my neck of the woods.
There was no fanfare or hoopla, yet from Day One, it was bustling with well-dressed shoppers who knew their way around the aisles. And those aisles are bursting with Certified Organic goodies from all over the world. At very good prices. (For shoppers.)
Whether the prices or anything about Trader Joe's is good for farmers, I don't know.
I saw Earthbound Farms broccoli, Michigan apples, Fayge yogurt. According to Trader Joe's website, they try to source locally, and early this morning, a New French Bakery truck from nearby Minneapolis was unloading bread.
But Honeycrisp apples from Washington state? Minnesota is the home of Honeycrisp.
O.N.C.E. upon a midnight dreary,
the morning of the 30th, tired and bleary,
En Locallers prepare the heads, tongues, livers, and more.
While we cook, saute, and frappe,
suddenly there comes a tapping,
like some tongue gently slapping,
slapping on the saucepan floor.Read more
An "exhaustive" French study of organic and conventional foods came to "wildly different conclusions" than a recent UK study from their Food Standards Agency (FSA) released last month, determining that,
"[O]rganic plant products contain more dry matter and minerals – such as iron and magnesium – and more antioxidant polyphenols like phenols and salicylic acid. Data on carbohydrate, protein and vitamin levels are insufficiently documented, [the study's author Denis Lairon of the University of Aix-Marseille] said.Read more
Back in June, I was hanging out, prowling the Twitterscape, and chanced across Rob Smart talking about something called Pro Food. It caught my attention because it wasn't the typical organic foodie approach. Rob seemed willing to entertain a variety of movements and strategies with the expressed purpose of getting people to cook more and eat better.
I liked "Pro Food," if for no other reason because I was tired of typing organic/sustainable/biodynamic/GMO-free/etcetcetc. "Pro Food" seemed a nifty way to describe what many, many farmers and foodies are talking about -- better food for land and people -- in a short, succinct phrase (an important trait for anything coming out of Twitter).Read more
There's a crappy editorial at the LA Times this morning, in which writer Charlotte Allen clucks her tongue at the growing argument against cheap goods, in this case, argued by Ellen Ruppel Shell in her book Cheap. It's garbage, because Allen fails to take down Cheap's base argument, that cheap means someone upstream had to pay the real cost for cheapness.Read more