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.
By conventional wisdom it is excellent news. Researchers from Iowa have shown that organic farming methods can yield almost as highly as pesticide-intensive methods. Other researchers, from Berkeley, California, have reached a similar conclusion. Indeed, both findings met with a very enthusiastic reception. The enthusiasm is appropriate, but only if one misses a deep and fundamental point: that even to participate in such a conversation is to fall into a carefully laid trap.
The strategic centrepiece of Monsanto’s PR, and also that of just about every major commercial participant in the industrialised food system, is to focus on the promotion of one single overarching idea. The big idea that industrial producers in the food system want you to believe is that only they can produce enough for the future population (Peekhaus 2010). Thus non-industrial systems of farming, such as all those which use agroecological methods, or SRI, or are localised and family-oriented, or which use organic methods, or non-GMO seeds, cannot feed the world.
To be sure, agribusiness has other PR strategies. Agribusiness is “pro-science”, its opponents are “anti-science”, and so on. But the main plank has for decades been to create a cast-iron moral framing around the need to produce more food (Stone and Glover 2011). Read Full Article »
A recent study by researchers from Boston University and Abraxis LLC found significant amounts of glyphosates in a food that you wouldn’t necessarily expect: honey.
Five categories of food items were tested from Philadelphia grocery stores: honey, corn and pancake syrup, soy milk, tofu, and soy sauce. Sixty-two percent of the conventional honeys and 45% of the organic honeys sampled had levels of glyphosates above the minimum established limits. Read Full Article »
Stereotypically, organic leafy greens washed down with a recycled jar of kombucha might be considered a typical meal for those hippie Californians. But those earthy West Coasters aren’t the only ones interested in eating organic anymore.
Owning chickens may seem like a fun trend, but you need to keep a few things in mind before you jump on board.
Based on the proliferation of websites selling everything from rooftop chicken coops to chicken tents to, yes, chicken diapers (keep reading), one would think that chickens have replaced dogs as America’s favorite pet. While you might not be looking to replace Fido with an egg-laying friend, a sociable hen might make a good companion for him—and ease your grocery budget at the same time. Raising chickens is easy, they are fun to watch, and the eggs are absolutely delicious. Plus, raising chickens is a great way to reduce the impact of your diet on the environment and recycle your leftovers into some high-quality protein for your table—talk about local!
But before you run out and buy a crate of chickens, there are a few things you should think about:Read Full Article »