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News for November 19, 2010

Tester amendment protecting local food production now attached to food-safety bill

It's nail-biting time for locavores and small farmers -- or "family-scale farmers," as the new terms seems to be. The Senate is in recess before voting on the Food Safety Modernization Act (S. 510) in just a few hours, and it is still up in the air whether the Tester-Hagan amendment, which would adjust how the FDA treats certain small farms and processors, will be included in the Manager's amendment package or will face a vote on its own. This just in: The amendment will be included in the Manager's amendment, the package of amendments agreed to by both sides in advance. This is great news.

Last night, consumer groups crossed the aisle to join forces with the sustainable agriculture camp, agreeing to some compromises in the language of the Tester amendment.

READ MORE (Grist) ]

Farmageddon Filmmaker, Kristin Canty – the Beginnings of Her Real Food Movement

Last year when I met Kristin Canty at the Weston A. Price conference, she totally impressed me as a get-it-done person. If I were a farmer, I’d LOVE having Kristin on my side in the fight to save Morningland Dairy farm, Estrella Family Creamery, and others like them, and to stop FDA tyranny against dairy farms. She’s an absolute sweetheart and I enjoyed getting to know her more at this year’s Wise Traditions conference, too. I can’t wait for her movie, Farmageddon, to come out! Today Kristin was sweet enough to share her story with us, including how she originally got into the Real Food movement…

Sniffing, coughing, wheezing and crying all night screaming “Mom, I can’t breathe!” This was a normal night for my son Charlie when he was three and four years old. Doctors told me he was allergic to “the world”, which meant grass, dust, trees, flowers, bees and animals. Hard to stay away from all of that. He had deep circles under his eyes, a red nose, didn’t eat much, and had a moderate middle ear hearing impairment due to fluid in his ears.

READ MORE (Kelly the Kitchen Kop) ]

Wanted a Crop Mob of 50,000 to Save Artisan Dairy Farming

The Carrot Mob, which started in San Francisco, has spawned a movement of do- good social activism. This is how it works. A group of local activists promise a business to patronize their store in a mob on a designated day. Then, for example, they ask the business to spend a percentage of the proceeds on making environmentally friendly upgrades to their facility.

From the Carrot Mob concept came the Crop Mob. Once again, local sustainable food activists team up and offer to help a farmer for a day, plant crops, build birdhouse, plant trees, paint the barn. In doing so, city slickers get first-hand experience on a farm for the day, and the farmer gets a much needed shot in the arm, and perhaps new customers for his CSA or farmstand.

READ MORE (Hartke) ]

US Senate debate on S.510 Food Safety bill could extend into the weekend

At 10:30 today, the U.S. Senate picks up its debate on the issue of S.510, the "Food Safety and Modernization Act" which is really a wolf in sheep's clothing. It would grant the FDA new, tyrannical powers that could be used to criminalize backyard gardening, outlaw saving seeds, imprison people who sell raw milk and oppress food freedom throughout the country.

The US Senate will recess today from 12:30 - 3:00pm, after which debate on the bill will resume. During that two-and-a-half hour recess, Senators will no doubt be checking in with their offices to hear what their constituents think about this bill. This is your opportunity to be heard by calling your U.S. Senator this morning, before 12:30 Eastern time (or as soon as you can manage it, as every call helps), and voicing your strong opposition to S.510, the Food Safety and Modernization Act.

READ MORE (Natural News) ]

Raw milk regulations vary by state

To sell retail raw milk in Washington, a producer must obtain both a milk producer license and a milk processing plant license.

The state requires documentation of water testing, animal health and processing. State inspectors perform raw milk testing approximately once per month.

READ MORE (Capital Press) ]

Some drink it raw

To dairyman Jeff Brown, raw milk is the most natural food in the world.

"It's what I grew up drinking, and what a lot of people grew up drinking," he said. Demand for the product at his Dungeness Valley Creamery has never been greater.

READ MORE (Capital Press) ]

Small farms would be exempt from food safety regs

Some small farms would be exempt from government efforts to prevent foodborne illness under a Senate agreement on food safety legislation announced Thursday.

The food safety bill now pending in the Senate would give the Food and Drug Administration more authority to recall tainted products, increase inspections of food processors and require producers to follow stricter standards for keeping food safe. Operators of smaller farms and advocates for locally produced food have worried that the bill's requirements could force small farms out of business.





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