Wednesday: Darren Craddock
Springfield, Colo., farmer Ryan Loflin on Monday planted the nation’s first industrial hemp crop in almost 60 years.
Loflin’s plans to grow hemp already have been chronicled, and Monday’s planting attracted the attention of more media in southeastern Colorado and a documentary film crew.
Hemp is genetically related to marijuana but contains little or no THC, the psychoactive substance in marijuana. Hemp has dozens of uses in food, cosmetics, clothing and industrial materials.
Read more: First major hemp crop in 60 years is planted in southeast Colorado – The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_23232417/first-major-hemp-crop-60-years-is-planted#ixzz2TEAdX95z
Fish is supposed to be one of the healthiest foods you can eat. It is generally lean, nutrient rich, and contains valuable omega-3 fatty acids, which are known to have numerous health benefits. Unfortunately our seafood often contains many things that are less desirable. We are importing an increasingly large amount of our fish and other seafood and, unbeknownst to many Americans, much of this seafood is contaminated with antibiotics and toxic chemicals. The harm of these substances far outweighs the potential benefits of eating fish. Our tax dollars are supposed to give us a government that ensures our safety, but our current system is failing us.
Americans currently import more than 90 percent of the seafood they consume, but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspects less than 2 percent of the fish, shrimp, and other seafood products that enter our country from overseas. There is no way for American consumers to detect when contaminated seafood finds its way to our dinner table at home or onto our plate at a restaurant. This means that we must rely on the fact that the supply chain for the food we eat is safe, and the evidence shows that it is far from it.
I’d like to tell you about a little utopian community nestled in some faraway mountains where caffeine is heavily regulated. Everyone is 20 percent prettier than average and owns a modest home outright. There is no divorce or attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder. But such a place does not exist to serve as either a model or cautionary tale. A few European countries have moved toward regulation — in Sweden, for example, many grocery stores do not sell energy drinks to people under 15. The United States is not likely to lead the charge into federal regulation tomorrow or next year, but when Michael Taylor, deputy commissioner for foods and veterinary medicine at the Food and Drug Administration, was asked last week, “Is it possible that FDA would set age restrictions for purchase?” he responded:
We have to be practical; enforcing age restrictions would be challenging. For me, the more fundamental questions are whether it is appropriate to use foods that may be inherently attractive and accessible to children as the vehicles to deliver the stimulant caffeine, and whether we should place limits on the amount of caffeine in certain products.
Taylor’s comment came in the context of the FDA’s announcement that, as the organization put it, “in response to a trend in which caffeine is being added to a growing number of products, the agency will investigate the safety of caffeine in food products, particularly its effects on children and adolescents.” It’s a kind of nonchalant way to say that the organization in charge of making sure everything we eat and drink is safe for us is, decades into the mass marketing and sale of heavily caffeinated products without regulation to all U.S. markets, going to look into their safety.
“Big business loves big government” soda shop owner doesn’t carry coke or pepsi. Also explains how dumb it is to use corn syrup instead of sugar.
John Nese is the proprietor of Galcos Soda Pop Stop in LA. His father ran it as a grocery store, and when the time came for John to take charge, he decided to convert it into the ultimate soda-lovers destination. About 500 pops line the shelves, sourced lovingly by John from around the world. John has made it his mission to keep small soda-makers afloat and help them find their consumers. Galcos also acts as a distributor for restaurants and bars along the West Coast, spreading the gospel of soda made with cane sugar (no high-fructose corn syrup if John can avoid it)
Monday: Darren Craddock
A glowing plant that could provide a sustainable light source has caught the imagination of backers on the crowdfunding website Kickstarter.
With a month still to go, the project has raised $243,000 (£157,000). Its initial goal was $65,000.
Backers are promised seeds for glowing plants, although delivery will not be until next May at the earliest.
The “biohacking” team behind the project said that in future trees could act as street lights.
The researchers are keen that their mix of DIY synthetic biology and sustainable lighting remains open-source.
“Inspired by fireflies… our team of Stanford-trained PhDs are using off-the-shelf methods to create real glowing plants in a do-it-yourself bio lab in California,” said project leader Antony Evans.
“All of the output from this project will be released open-source, the DNA constructs, the plants etc,” it said on its website.
There isn’t much local Chef Pedro Miguel Schiaffino won’t eat. His highly accliamed Amaz restaurant is devoted to finding and using Amazonian food native to the country, like a 600-pound freshwater fish or a little-known fruit nicknamed “cannonball” that tastes like a cross between a guava, coconut, and melon.
But a year ago Mr. Schiaffino stopped eating supermarket tomatoes.
Even though Peru is the birthplace of the crop, it’s difficult to find anything other than hard, pale Roma tomatoes in supermarkets, and Schiaffino says that worried him.
“They’re a big monoculture, which is why people usually end up using [genetically modified organisms] GMOs. Because when you have monocultures, the crops end up getting diseases, and you have to look for these extreme ways to fix them,” he says.
Peru was the cradle of the Inca Empire, and today it’s home to many crops indigenous to the Americas. It has 400 varieties of potato alone, and a geography that allows farmers to grow almost anything.
It’s also the only country in the Americas to put a 10-year ban on genetically modified food, with a law that was first introduced in 2011, and went into effect at the end of last year. Its basic intention, say Schiaffino and others, is to protect Peru’s biodiversity, as well as the practices that have kept it intact for so long.