A new generation of genetically modified crops, designed to resist the old-line herbicide 2,4-D, is fast nearing government approval, despite wide criticism from experts and an exasperated public . . .
Another undercover investigation exposing cruelty toward animals bound for slaughter has surfaced, resulting in calls to close a loophole in the law to better protect veal calves.
The USDA allows livestock to be fed controversial growth enhancers that are banned in the European Union. This year Russia joined the countries that won’t accept meat that was raised with beta agonists, forcing US authorities to come up with some quick answers if they want to recover this large export market. A collateral effect could be that Americans get meat that’s free of growth hormones, or not.
The European Union votes to give honey bees a reprieve from a class of pesticides known as neonicotinoids, long suspected of triggering massive bee deaths that threaten agriculture worldwide. The pesticides are still be allowed in the United States.
The Monsanto “rider” is a noxious attachment to the Continuing Resolution budget bill pending in Congress, and not just because it would accelerate the adoption of controversial GE foods. Lawmakers and groups opposed to the rider say it’s an affront to due process.
The looming ‘sequester’ budget cuts would affect virtually all government spending — except Social Security recipients — including Medicare and defense, energy, medical, education, nutrition and agriculture programs. It would even trim money for air traffic controllers. But that’s not the only scary cut on the table…
A student in Omaha, Neb., has identified a problem with school lunches — as well as a solution that could help solve an entrenched food waste issue in school cafeterias across the country.
In order to get the best price for a school lunch, kids are required to take one serving of a fruit or a vegetable to create a full meal. If they don’t, they can end up paying higher ala carte prices.
We don’t really need the federal government to tell us to appreciate Farmer’s Markets. It’s pretty obvious how these markets can help us — bringing the freshest produce to town, supporting local farmers and food artisans, increasing our “food security” and expanding our universe of healthy options.
By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now
Corn-based ethanol, once a star on the alternative energy scene, has fallen from favor in the past year, battered by reports that raising corn for fuel raids the world’s pantry and that corn ethanol has a heavier carbon footprint than originally thought.
Many now argue over whether the US should continue to grow corn for fuel or make the switch to grasses that can be grown on less desirable land, with fewer pesticides and fertilizers, or use plant waste to make fuel.
Now a new debate looms: Should the US allow genetically altered corn to be grown for use as biofuel?
The Union of Concerned Scientists wants to stop that genie before it leaves the bottle, because it believes that genetically modified corn will inevitably mix with and contaminate corn grown for food products.