The Cornucopia Institute

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.

Keeping Bees Safe: It’s A Ruff Job, But This Doggy Detective Gets It Done

April 29th, 2016

The Salt – NPR
by Jodi Helmer

Source: USDA

The newest apiary inspector at the Maryland Department of Agriculture has four legs, golden fur and a powerful sniffer.

Mack, a 2-year-old yellow Lab, joined the team last fall to help his mom, chief apiary inspector Cybil Preston, inspect beehives for American foulbrood — AFB — a highly contagious bacterial disease that infects honeybee brood and, eventually, kills the colony.

“Maryland has a thriving beekeeping industry, and most of our beekeepers have thousands of hives that travel from state to state for pollination,” explains Preston. “It’s our job to make sure that infected hives don’t cross state lines.”

The Maryland Department of Agriculture has had a “bee dog” on staff since 1982 and is believed to be the only state agency in the nation using a dog to detect AFB. Read Full Article »

7 of the Best Farm Camps for Kids

April 29th, 2016

Modern Farmer
by Jennifer Kelly Geddes

Source: Elliott McCrory

Nothing against archery, canoeing, or lanyard crafts, but agrarian experiences are where it’s at right now. And these summer camps afford children ages 4 to 16 the opportunity to milk Holsteins and harvest carrots. The seven options below, which range from half-day sessions to week-long sleepaway adventures, represent the best of the farm set.

Riverton, Utah

Day campers care for rabbits and goats, grow vegetables from seed, even take tractor tours of the 10-acre fifth-generation Petersen Family Farm. Bonus: Attendees can return in fall to harvest pumpkins they planted in summer. (Ages 5–12; from $200 a week.

Webberville, Michigan

Northfork Farm & Outback’s sleepaway sessions school the junior horsey set in riding, grooming, stall-mucking, and calf-roping. Off-saddle camp fun: a re-created Old West town and Native American village, plus two swimming holes. (Ages 8–15; from $700 a week. Read Full Article »

Groups Sue to Force FDA to Act on Chemical in Food Packaging

April 28th, 2016

Center for Food Safety

Perchlorate is highly flammable and
used in rocket fuel
Source: Steve Jurvetson

The Natural Resources Defense Council and Center for Food Safety, on behalf of themselves and four other public health and environmental organizations, sued the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today to force it to act on a petition to ban perchlorate in food packaging. The groups filed the petition in December 2014.  The agency missed a June 2015 deadline to respond to the petition.

Co-petitioners include Breast Cancer Fund, Center for Environmental Health, Center for Science in the Public Interest and the Environmental Working Group.

Perchlorate impairs hormone production critical to brain development and poses a health threat, particularly to fetuses, infants and children. FDA has approved it for certain specific uses, including as an anti-static agent in plastic packaging for dry foods such as beans, rice and flour. Read Full Article »

Talking Organic Standards with Mark Kastel

April 28th, 2016

Living Maxwell – Facebook

MarkLivingMaxwellMax Goldberg of interviewed Cornucopia Codirector Mark Kastel in Washington, D.C. during this week’s National Organic Standards Board meetings. Mark shared his thoughts on developments there.

To watch this interview you will need to “like” the livingmaxwell Facebook page.

Click on the image to watch.



Read Full Article »

Follow the National Organic Standards Board Meeting in Washington, DC #NOSB

April 25th, 2016

NOSB_DC_TwitterAprilLast Updated: 4-27-16, 5:00 p.m. ET

Join The Cornucopia Institute as we live tweet from the National Organic Standards Board meeting in Washington, D.C. We will be sharing the play by play with our Twitter followers under #NOSB or simply follow our stream.

If you’re not already following us on Twitter, please do so here.

Read The Cornucopia Institute’s written comments to the NOSB here.

You can also stay updated throughout the meeting right here:

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The NOSB meeting has adjourned.

3:59 p.m. ET: The Crops Subcommittee presented a discussion document to consider an annotation change for EPA List 4 Inerts to prohibit substances from the group known as nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs). This annotation change would be presented as an additional recommendation prior to the implementation of the October 2015 NOSB recommendation for a new annotation for inerts that references FIFRA 25(b) inerts list and EPA’s Safer Chemical Ingredients Lists.

Cornucopia supports the prohibition of NPEs, but wants the NOSB to continue to review inerts individually under OFPA criteria. You can read more in Cornucopia’s written comments here.

3:43 p.m. ET: The petition for soy wax – as production aids for use in log grown mushroom production, was sent back by the NOSB to Crops subcommittee. This was based on whether or not the annotation “must be made from non-GMO soybeans” should be an annotation on the listing, given the fact the GMOs are already an excluded method.

NOSB Deliberations

Read Full Article »

The Cornucopia Institute
P.O. Box 126 Cornucopia, Wisconsin 54827
Ph: 608-625-2000