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.
Cornucopia’s Take: The USDA offers local food directories to find nearby farmers markets, on-farm markets, CSAs, and food hubs. The directories are managed and operated by the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). Although not exhaustive lists, these are an excellent starting point. If you are a farmer not yet listed here, you might consider adding your listing.
Local Food Directories: National Farmers Market Directory USDA – AMS
The Farmers Market Directory lists markets that feature two or more farm vendors selling agricultural products directly to customers at a common, recurrent physical location. Maintained by the Agricultural Marketing Service, the Directory is designed to provide customers with convenient access to information about farmers market listings to include: market locations, directions, operating times, product offerings, accepted forms of payment, and more.
Cornucopia’s Take: Dietary supplements are often billed as sources of crucial vitamins and minerals and have become a lucrative industry. Unfortunately, there is little regulation of supplements, and consumers frequently cannot be certain what they are ingesting. Cornucopia recommends people get as much of their nutrients as they can from a wide variety of the healthiest organic, whole foods.
You don’t need pricey pills to unlock optimal health.
There’s a lot of good research backing the health benefits of some supplements.
The problem: While the pills used in scientific studies are carefully tested for quality and dosage accuracy, most consumer OTC supplements are largely unregulated, says Mark Moyad, M.D., director of preventive and alternative medicine at the University of Michigan. (Ever get prescribed a drug off-label? Here’s what that means.)
Dr. Moyad explains that few people are checking to make sure your OTC pills are free of heavy metals and other harmful contaminants. There’s even less oversight when it comes to ensuring the pills you’re taking contain the types and amounts of nutrients listed on the label. Read Full Article »
Cornucopia’s Take: As some of the most experienced certified organic growers begin to retire, taking years of knowledge with them, young farmers are needed to care for the land. However, the biggest barrier for young farmers is access to the capital needed to buy the high-value, certified organic land. Creative solutions to this problem are needed.
Bolinas’ Star Route Farms, the oldest continuously certified organic grower in California, has been sold for $10.4 million to the University of San Francisco, which plans to use the property for research, field learning and community education.
“Our first and foremost commitment is to have this operating as an organic farm,” said Donald Heller, provost and vice president of academic affairs at USF. “We are very respectful to the fact that it is the oldest continuously operating organic farm in the state and we don’t want to do anything to jeopardize that. Everything else would become secondary to that.”
Warren Weber, who started the farm operation in 1974, declined a request for comment but issued a statement that he and his wife, Amy, “are very pleased and honored that the University of San Francisco will continue the Star Route Farms legacy. Read Full Article »
Cornucopia’s Take: Kern County fined Sun Pacific and Grapeman Farms in California for illegal pesticide application. Alarmingly, the pesticides that made 37 farmworkers ill can legally be sprayed on the company’s Cuties mandarins and clementines. It is only the spraying method, which caused the toxic pestides to drift, that was against pesticide rules. Cornucopia recommends eating only certified organic produce that do not involve the use of these dangerous pesticides.
Produce Company Behind Popular ‘Cuties’ Fined Over Pesticide Drift KQED News
by Ted Goldberg
Kern County agricultural officials announced Tuesday that they are issuing more than $50,000 in fines against two companies for violating pesticide rules in connection with an incident that sickened 37 farmworkers in May.
The firms facing penalties are Sun Pacific, the produce company behind the popular Cuties mandarins and clementines, and Grapeman Farms. Both companies have operations throughout the Central Valley and Southern California.
News of the penalties comes as agricultural commissioners in three California counties investigate several other chemical drift incidents that sickened some three dozen agricultural workers over the summer. Read Full Article »
Cornucopia’s Take: While antibiotic resistant bacteria kill an increasing number of humans, the FDA continues to allow antibiotics to be needlessly used in industrial livestock agriculture. Their uses range from growth promotion to prophylactic applications. Cornucopia recommends only certified organic meat for omnivores. Antibiotics are allowed in organic agriculture only when an animal is ill, and the treated animal, along with any dairy or eggs from the treated animal, can then not be sold as organic.
How industrial farming techniques can breed superbugs PBS Newshour
As high-density, industrial-scale livestock farms have become fertile breeding grounds for disease, they’ve also become a major source of drug-resistant superbugs. Science correspondent Miles O’Brien and economics correspondent Paul Solman team up to report on how scientists are studying how superbugs can get into the food supply.Read Full Article »