food safety

The Danger of Monocrops: Lessons from the Irish Potato Famine

While each immigrant story carries its own unique lessons for modern life, in the case of the Irish Diaspora, one of the most useful takeaways lies in the tragic role that unsustainable agricultural practices played in leading to the mass starvation and exodus of the Irish people.

Farmed and Dangerous: Episode 4, Ends Meat

Spoiler alert! Here it is, our recap of the final episode of Farmed and Dangerous, the explosive series on the conflicting messages - and messengers - about the food we eat. We're almost sorry to see Buck Marshall go!

What We Can Learn from the European Horse Meat Scandal

The scandal has led to a discussion about flaws in the European meat industry, which is largely self-regulated. While the horse meat didn't reach our shores, there are similar battles raging on US soil over labeling and inspection regulations - and when it comes to our food, we have to stand up for our right to know what we're consuming.

Will the Sequester Hit the Snooze On Food Safety?

Welcome to sequestration! Here's your quick guide on how those immediate, deep, across-the-board federal budget cuts will greatly impact food, water and energy programs (among many others). If you love meat, you'd best read on.

Blood, Guts, E. coli and Accessibility: Slaughterhouse Rules

Small slaughterhouses once existed throughout the US. Unfortunately, the transition to factory farming spawned the creation of huge, highly mechanized, corporate-controlled mega-slaughterhouses, which ultimately put most small, independent slaughterhouses out of business.

''Agent Orange'' Corn: Biotech Only Winner in Chemical Arms

The USDA is currently deciding whether or not to approve an application by Dow Chemical for its controversial genetically engineered (GE) corn variety that is resistant to the highly toxic herbicide 2,4-D, one of the main ingredients in Agent Orange.

All Eyes on California: A Roundup on GMOs and Proposition 37

In just a few days California will vote on Proposition 37, which would require the labeling of genetically modified foods. Controversy surrounding the measure extends far beyond California, as GMOs remain a contentious topic around the globe, and a yes vote could impact policy across the nation.

What Not to Eat: Arsenic!

According to Consumer Reports' "Arsenic in Your Food," an analysis of 65 rice products revealed measurable levels of total arsenic - including organic and inorganic forms - in almost every product.

Dispatch from Maryland: This Drought is Making Me Crabby

If you're from Maryland or ever lived in Maryland you've probably been to a crab feast (or crab "pick" in Virginia) and you know that Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs are the best in the world. I was lucky enough to indulge in this summer rite of passage recently and as we picked our bushel of crabs we talked about the health of the Bay and the impact of one of the worst droughts in decades.

Real Food Right Now and How to Cook It: Hot Dogs

There is an old saying with many variations, the gist of which is, "Making laws and making sausages are both disgusting processes." The quote is often attributed to Otto Von Bismark but according to Yale's Fred Shapiro, it was actually lawyer-poet John Godfrey Saxe who said "Laws, like sausages, cease to inspire respect in proportion as we know how they are made." In any case, jokes about the nastiness of hot dog production date back to the 1800s.

The Value of Whistleblowers: Why Ag Gag & Co. Are a Public Health Threat

For over a century, whistleblowers have shown consumers that industrial food production is a far cry from the traditional family farm image invoked by food marketers. But increasingly, those who expose truths that threaten the profits of big business are becoming targets for legal action.

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