The Cornucopia Institute, through research and investigations on agricultural and food issues, provides needed information to family farmers, consumers and other stakeholders in the good food movement and to the media. We support economic justice for the family-scale farming community – partnered with consumers – backing ecologically produced local, organic and authentic food.
October 20th, 2014
by Elizabeth Grossman
It’s almost impossible to imagine life without flexible, transparent and water-resistant food packaging, without plastic sandwich bags, cling film or shelves filled with plastic jars, tubs and tubes, and durable bags and boxes.
While storing food in containers dates back thousands of years, and food has been sold in bottles since the 1700s and cans since the 1800s, what might be considered the modern age of food packaging began in the 1890s when crackers were first sold in sealed waxed paper bags inside a paperboard box. Plastics and other synthetics began to appear in the 1920s and ’30s, shortly after chemical companies started experimenting with petroleum-based compounds and pioneering new materials that could be used for household as well as industrial applications.
Fast forward to 2014: Upwards of 6,000 different manufactured substances are now listed by various government agencies as approved for use in food contact materials in the U.S. and Europe — materials that can legally go into consumer food packaging, household and commercial food containers, food processing equipment, and other products. Read Full Article »
October 20th, 2014
Carrot is designed with you in mind. It’s a seamless experience, meticulously crafted, from beginning to end. It’s not just a vegetable, it’s what a vegetable should be.
Visit http://www.introducingcarrot.com/ for more information. Read Full Article »
October 17th, 2014
by Tim Molloy
Any urinary tract infection is bad, but some are getting worse. Along with the burning, piercing pain that typically accompanies a UTI, these infections pose another challenge: They’re getting much harder to treat.
For the past 20 years, doctors have been tracking a troubling rise in antibiotic-resistant UTIs, which primarily affect women. There are an estimated 8 million UTIs in the United States each year, and though most of these infections are still treatable with more powerful antibiotics, some otherwise healthy patients find themselves in need of IV treatment — and in some cases can develop deadly bloodstream infections.
“You don’t have a normally healthy 30-year-old woman come in, who’s never been in a hospital, with a resistant urinary tract infection that’s moved to her blood,” Elizabeth DuPreez, an infectious disease pharmacist who helped treat cases in Flagstaff, Ariz., explained FRONTLINE. “Where did she get that organism from?” Read Full Article »
October 17th, 2014
Bees and other wildlife are being ‘quietly poisoned’ by chemicals which are 5000 times more toxic than DDT, according to Professor Dave Goulson of the University of Sussex.
The Social Association’s annual conference established the case for continuing the ban on neonicotinoids, with Professor Goulson discussing saying the toxicity ‘takes your breath away.’
Goulson noted that studies on neonicotinoids have overwhelmingly found negative effects on bumblebee colonies and behaviour – and the very same chemicals which are killing bees are still readily available in any garden centre.
More research into the impacts and wider effects of neonicotinoids is necessary to prevent further damage to our on waterways and soils. Equally, the time has come for policy makers to take note of the chilling evidence that face our pollinators and the wildlife that inhabits the British countryside.
The Soil Association is keen for all farmers to work together to look at different ways of managing pests. The public have an important role to play too in protecting our bees, birds and soils – steps could include reducing the amount of common sprays used on back gardens to kill insects and buying insecticide-free organic food. Read Full Article »
October 16th, 2014
By Will Fantle
Miles McEvoy (center) at a recent NOSB meeting.
The USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) held the first of what they described as a series of listening sessions on the afternoon of Thursday, October 16. Following introductory remarks from Deputy Administrator Miles McEvoy, who oversees NOP operations, the teleconference session was turned over to participants on the call who were given three minutes to provide feedback to the NOP.
Ten people chimed in and, despite repeated requests for more participation, the call – scheduled to last two hours – was adjourned after approximately 45 minutes. Of those callers who did share perspectives with the NOP, most were harshly critical of the recent controversial changes imposed by the USDA to the National Organic Standards Board’s authority and governance.
In particular, callers zeroed in on the USDA’s changes to “sunset” and the higher threshold now required for removal of synthetic and non-organic materials from what had been presumed to be their temporary use in organics. Following is a short synopsis of what callers said: Read Full Article »