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Defenders of raw milk focusing on liberty more than health

Edairy News | Posted on February 21, 2019

The Tennessee Senate Commerce and Labor Committee has yet to schedule a hearing on the Briggs bill, but what lawmakers are hearing is that Senate Bill (SB) 15 pits community health against civil liberties.Briggs, is a Republican, a cardiac surgeon and a retired U.S. Army Colonel. He represents Knoxville in the Tennessee Senate, told Ohio television station WTOL Channel 11 that the controversy his bill has caused is like “kicking a hornet’s nest.” Raw milk dairy farmers are fighting for their loophole, saying civil liberties are at stake for both producers and consumers of raw milk. They are calling opposition to the Briggs bill “a liberty issue.” Briggs decided to take on the cow-share loophole after an E. coli outbreak this past summer in Knox County sickened 10 children, some severely. Raw milk produced by French Broad Farm was the likely cause of the outbreak, according to investigators. The dairy ended its cow-share program in response to the event.


Examining Food Loss and Food Waste in the United States

Choices Magazine | Posted on February 21, 2019

Food that is lost before it reaches the consumer, and food that is wasted by consumers, has been estimated to account for as much as 40% of the total food produced in the United States (Buzby, Wells, and Hyman, 2014; Hall et al., 2009). This represents losses of important resources—including water, chemical inputs, and labor—as well as unused nutrients for consumers. Stakeholders along the supply chain are increasingly interested in developing improved approaches to measuring food waste, understanding its determinants, and devising strategies to ultimately reduce it. To date, a majority of food waste studies have focused on household-level waste; fewer studies have examined waste in food distribution and retail settings, and very little work has been conducted to understand the economic causes and consequences of food loss at the farm level. This Choices theme presents a collection of articles that explore food loss and food waste in the context of the U.S. food supply chain. The behavior and incentives of a variety of food system stakeholders including producers, market intermediaries (including retailers), and consumers are considered. The articles are organized along the supply chain, beginning with upstream issues of food loss proceeding through downstream topics such as household decisions concerning when to discard food. Taken together, this collection offers intriguing insights into current frontiers of the myriad private and public efforts to better characterize, quantify, and reduce food waste.


Neanderthals' main food source was definitely meat

Science Daily | Posted on February 21, 2019

Researchers describe two late Neanderthals with exceptionally high nitrogen isotope ratios, which would traditionally be interpreted as the signature of freshwater fish consumption. By studying the isotope ratios of single amino acids, they however demonstrated that instead of fish, the adult Neanderthal had a diet relying on large herbivore mammals and that the other Neanderthal was a breastfeeding baby whose mother was also a carnivore.


That New Organic Study Doesn't Really Show Lower Pesticide Levels

Forbes | Posted on February 21, 2019

A new study claims an organic diet can significantly reduce pesticide levels, but the research doesn’t hold up.Published February 12 in the journal Environmental Research, the authors of the study tested pesticide levels in the urine of 16 study participants, before and after switching to an organic diet, and found pesticide levels decreased after the switch. But there’s more to the story. The study primarily tested for the kinds of pesticides allowed in conventional agriculture, and not the pesticides allowed on organic farms. So what the study actually shows is fairly obvious: people won’t flush out what they aren’t eating.The study also doesn’t say anything about whether there’s ahealth risk associated with conventional pesticide residues, since the mere presence of a chemical in urine isn’t necessarily an unhealthy or dangerous sign.


Cultured lab meat may make climate change worse

BBC | Posted on February 20, 2019

Researchers are looking for alternatives to traditional meat because farming animals is helping to drive up global temperatures. However, meat grown in the lab may make matters worse in some circumstances. Researchers say it depends on how the energy to make the lab meat is produced.This is because the emissions from the lab are related to the production of energy which is almost entirely made up of carbon dioxide, which persists in the atmosphere for hundreds of years.This is because the emissions from the lab are related to the production of energy which is almost entirely made up of carbon dioxide, which persists in the atmosphere for hundreds of years."Artificial meat may result in the presence of organic or chemical molecule residues in water, because the process would need to produce huge amounts of chemical and organic molecules, such as hormones, growth factors, to add to the culture medium to grow the meat" said Prof Jean-Francois Hocquette, at the French National Institute for Agricultural Research.


Bacteria in raw milk endangers people in 19 states

Smart Brief | Posted on February 19, 2019

Brucella bacteria in raw milk from Miller's Biodiversity Farm in Quarryville, Pa., has affected an "unknown number" of people in 19 states, according to the CDC. RB51, the strain of brucella found in the milk, is resistant to the antibiotic rifampin.


Hospital Wastes A Third Less Food After This One Change

Forbes | Posted on February 19, 2019

When it comes to wasting food, hospitals are one of the most egregious culprits, with two to three times more waste than other food service sectors. UC San Francisco Medical Center, however, has found that one change cut the amount of food it wastes by 30%. It now serves food on-demand.Most hospitals produce food in bulk and serve it at predetermined meal times, which may or may not be in sync with a patient’s appetite or the timing of health care services being performed. With on-demand, a patient orders food just like hotel room service—when they’re ready.“I don’t send you a meal unless you ask for it. In the old way, we sent you a tray and gave you food whether you liked it or not,” says Dan Henroid, Director of Nutrition and Food Services for UCSF Health.  Given that patient trays have been found to generate over half of hospital food waste, it makes sense that serving food only when desired could make a big difference.


Authorities develop new DNA tool to detect food fraud and expose misleading labelling

Farm Ireland | Posted on February 19, 2019

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) has a new DNA scanning tool to identify the entire DNA content of a food.The new analytical tool can proactively identify all the ingredients and their biological sources in a food, which will aid regulators in protecting consumers in relation to potential food fraud and/or misleading labelling.The FSAI worked with a commercial laboratory (Identigen) over the past two years in adapting a relatively new DNA sequencing technology known as “next generation sequencing”, so that it could be used as a DNA scanning tool in food.The idea is to compare the actual ingredients in a food, identified by their DNA profile, with those declared on the label. Up to this, DNA testing of food required analysts to know what they wanted to look for specifically and then test for it – such target information is no longer a pre-requisite.


Lawmakers hope to create farm-to-school produce pipeline

West Central Tribune | Posted on February 18, 2019

Minnesota House File 811 would put aside $2 million each year to reimburse schools or childcare providers that feed kids local fruits and vegetables through farm-to-school initiatives and would help farmers sell their produce to schools.


A Beyonce endorsement of GMOs would probably help farmers a lot more than science

Financial Post | Posted on February 14, 2019

For a world that has largely forsaken religion in favour of science to base its attitudes towards food on nothing more than belief and feeling is something that should make us uncomfortable and embarrassed. This is what seems to be happening. It’s alarming. It changes things for me as a writer. No longer is a column about food and agriculture about demonstrating truth — perhaps it never was. Instead, it’s now about staging an attractive argument, like a house that you can picture yourself living in.

 


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