End of Year Yarn: Food Democracy

Washington ApplesThe older I get, the more I regard the seasons as a practice period for everlasting change. The dark turns into night and the Great Spirit reveals itself in its perpetual resurrection of spring into summer and now autumn into winter.  I am no longer young and lithe … but I am alive! I’m also hungry for change. I am elucidated and emancipated and educated enough to know what matters. Food matters! Continue reading

Seven Reasons to Make this an Organic Holiday

Food HolidayThe tilt of our magnificent globe has brought us round leaning towards the darkness. Thus we seek out colored lights, baubles, tinsel and song. This whirl of the winter solstice means the light will once again be born, and so we celebrate. You may give gifts, or chortle choruses of carols. The glow of the menorah may light up your latkes. Or perhaps you are one who with great humbuggery rejects the entire pageant and so you go on a tropical vacation. However you celebrate this winter holy darkness, be you Christian, Jewish or Pagan, you can add an organic twist to your holiday jig. Continue reading

An Organic Tribute on the Farr Side

Sam FarrI spent my early years in Santa Cruz county digging into the organic food movement through hard work and elbow grease at Community Foods. I had my head down stocking local Swanton berries, Betty’s bodacious Bings, the Russel’s brilliant leaf lettuce and Mark Lipson’s outrageous dry farm tomatoes. I had no time or sensibility for politics or policy, I just knew the trucks had to be unloaded by hand and the customers satisfied with fresh organic produce by the hour. It was to be much later that I realized there was an unflagging champion in my very own district working hard on the state and national level to further organic. His name is Sam Farr. Continue reading

Holy Mackerel! There’s a New Fish in Town

SalmonThis new fish is a genetically modified salmon designed by scientists to grow faster and larger in about half the time it takes for a natural salmon to reach full size. It’s been a long time coming. The company Aqua Bounty first approached the FDA for approval over twenty years ago.  The recent decision by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to approve this rather “strange fish” for human consumption marks a portentous and historic precedent for GMO foods. For the first time ever a genetically modified animal can be served up and eaten by consumers in the U.S. and without any notification or labeling. But not first without a good fish fight, consumers are up in arms. Continue reading

Help the FDA Define “Natural” on Food Labels

How should natural be defined (if at all) on food labels? This is a question that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, has posed to the general public—they want to hear from you and me! Now’s our chance to provide feedback on the future of food labeling. What are you going to say?shutterstock_283678712 Continue reading