|newspaper | photo: mconnors|
Methyl iodide off the market (for now) - I've been following this topic since I first found out about it at the end of 2010. I was highly dismayed when California approved it for use in agriculture and began phasing it in. Upset enough that our family has not eaten any strawberries coming out of California (even organic) since it was approved. I'm happy to say that the decision to use it has been reversed. Apparently the company made a decision to stop using it "based on it's viability in the U.S. marketplace." That means people made enough noise that BigAg listened. However I still have some concerns. the words 'U.S. marketplace' worry me because now I wonder where else they plan to peddle their poison. I also intend to keep an eye on this to see if the company plans to try to reintroduce methyl iodide down the road after they figure the noise has died down. Unfortunately we consumers sometimes tend to have a very short memory span. We need to make sure that we remember this chemical and always demand that it not be used on our food.
GMO Labeling Law Wins Backing In Connecticut - Another positive moment in the press. Some legislators in Connecticut agree that consumers have the right to know what's in their food. Nay sayers claim that it will be more expensive for manufacturers to create two sets of packaging, one for Connecticut and one for everyone else. My response? Just label the stuff. With almost half the states in the nation considering similar legislation it is not going to be long before other states follow suit. At which point everything might as well be labeled. Given the recent press about GMO crops being responsible for the decline in Monarch butterfly populations I believe more people are going to join the anti-GMO cause. The eventual aim, as far as I am concerned, is not just to label (although I believe that is very important) but to stop using this technology. In some cases considerable damage has already been done but it is never to late to stop.
This Land Is Your Land - This Time Magazine article about Joel Salatin is a great read. He has a point of view that challenges the system but, I feel, in a good way. He wants people to take responsibility for their food. To stop seeing conveniently shrink wrapped packages at the food store without thinking about how they got there. To understand the cycle of agriculture; to think about the food chain and how we consume. We need to care, really care, about our food, where it comes from, how it gets to us, and how it's treated along the way.
Must Have Gadgets For The Kitchen - this article made me laugh because I often find myself drooling over gadgets that are one-purpose only or next to unusable for my actual kitchen needs. Over the years I have gotten better and pared down quite a bit. Just recently I went from three spring form pans to one (seriously, I'm not sure why I had three, I have never in my life made three cheesecakes [or anything else that required a springform pan] at the same time). I've decided this is the foodie version of people who drool when they walk into a well-stocked hardware store. You just envision all sorts of possibilities when confronted with all those shiny new gadgets. I do have some kitchen tools that I will never part with but they tend to be the mainstays rather than the oddities. My favorites? My top electric appliances include: KitchenAid Mixer, Cuisinart Food Processor, Immersion Blender, and my Crockpot. My less-than-stellar purchases? Sadly I've made a few of those in my life because I got excited about the possibility of something and then never kept up with it. There was the krumkake maker which is fun but I just don't use it enough, the yogurt maker which went by the wayside when I discovered that I didn't really need it, and the seed sprouter -- same deal -- I didn't really need it. What are some of your kitchen must can/can't live withouts?
How to Save Seeds - this is something that helps plant diversity and supports backyard agriculture. I confess to not being consistent with this, I need to work at it a bit more.
Hungry For Change - this is the new movie made by the same folks that brought you Food Matters. For a limited time only (until March 31, 2012) you can watch a free online preview. Definitely worth watching. This movie talks about why so many foods are so addictive and how this is causing us to be overfed and undernourished.