Monday, November 17, 2014

I-wish-I'd-writtten-that department

Here's some straightforward writing about feeding 9 billion from Mark Bittman.

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/12/opinion/dont-ask-how-to-feed-the-9-billion.html?emc=edit_tnt_20141111&nlid=6760955&tntemail0=y&_r=1

It's not a production challenge, it's a challenge to address and end poverty.

There's a video of the talk Bittman mentions in the article here:
http://www.nytfoodfortomorrow.com/videos/opening-keynote-how-to-change-the-food-system-and-feed-the-nine-billion.aspx
I would have been happy to embed it - but it's on You Tube in bits and pieces - too tricky for me.
Besides, you can watch videos with other luminaries like Fred Kirschenmann and Michael Pollan on the conference site. The link above will take you there.


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

I find this to be somewhere between creepy and immoral:

http://www.harvardagriculture.org/article.html?aid=129

I wouldn't be attending a seminar about investing in anything anyway, since my wealth is mighty small, but I'm sure this is not supportive of a just agricultural system.  How can they call it Harvard Alumni for Agriculture? Perhaps the assumption is that if you are for something, you corner the market on it.  Sigh.

So - after gasping some more I read on, exploring the web site.  There is a nod to sustainability on this web site, but it may be more about economic sustainability than environmental sustainability.
There's also an annual student contest on food system innovation. It's sponsored by the Law School and the School of Public Health.  Hmmm.

And so - should I join this group to find out more about what they are up to?  Or would it annoy me more than I need to be annoyed.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Food System Scorecard

Fun and informative:

http://foodpolicyaction.org/

See how your senators and representative voted, or have fun entering names of legislators in the news.  When it comes to food security and agricultural sustainability, is it any surprise that it's Pelosi 100 vs Boehner 0?

Monday, October 13, 2014

Debunking "superweeds"

This report brief got my attention:

http://wssa.net/wp-content/uploads/WSSA-Fact-Sheet-on-Superweeds_16-Sep-2014.pdf

Weed scientists report that the problem of herbicide resistance in weeds is primarily due to an evolved resistance due to repeated application of one class of herbicide. Using an approach integrating a variety of methods of weed control - many physical, not just chemical - could lessen this effect.

While genes from genetically engineered canola, wheat and sunflower can enter wild relatives, and do sometimes, GM corn, soy and cotton don't have any wild relatives in the US and Canada, so gene flow is negligible.

 

Monday, September 29, 2014

I can hardly wait!

Most of us gardeners know that all the brassicas we grow are at least kissing cousins.  Now two of them, with a little human assist, have been doing more than kissing.  And if you haven't had enough kale, you are going to be really excited with the result - it's Kalette, a conventional hybrid of kale and brussels sprouts.  It grows like the sprouts, but looks like little colorful kale.

Johnny's will be the source of seeds for home gardeners in the U.S.  Read their press release here:
http://www.johnnyseeds.com/t-press-release-kalettes.aspx

Oh - and of course the Kalettes have their own Facebook page - just search for that name.

But I still think "the Kalettes" sounds like a barbershop quartet of nutritionists.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

color coded eating

Goodness.  I've had a two month vacation!

Bountiful Gardens on Facebook alerted me to the Huffington Post article with the link to this infographic you can print out and post on your fridge.

http://www.precisionnutrition.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Phytonutrient_checklist_r2.pdf

I'm going to - though for the next few weeks I will be eating and processing the bounty without a lot of thought about what colors things are.  Red (tomatoes), white (apples), yellow and orange (squash) , green (the last of the green beans).  I wonder if figs count as purple?  Oh well, cocoa and wine do! Who knew?

Friday, July 25, 2014

MESA

An alert from CropMobster just called my attention to this organization:
Multinational Exchange for Sustainable Agriculture or MESA
http://www.mesaprogram.org/
They are engaged in crowd funding for some new initiatives in food justice including farmer-to-farmer exchanges and developing an on-line curriculum in global agro-ecology and local food systems.
I'm often suspicious of crowd funding campaigns, but when I saw that Ecology Action and Bountiful Gardens are supporting this one, it was a no brainer.