News for November 2, 2010
Monsanto and the big fat lie of food safety
Michael Taylor, the Monsanto executive who gave this country rBGH, deregulated GMOs, and kept GMOs all unlabeled, thanks to Obama, is "The Food Safety Czar" at the FDA.
That Czar, "[t]he person who may be responsible for more food-related illness and death than anyone in history," has been using "food safety" as a weapon against small local farms and local food co-ops.
[ READ MORE (Op Ed News) ]
New study says raw milk not panacea for the lactose intolerant
For many years, raw-milk advocates have claimed that unpasteurized milk counters lactose intolerance -- the upset stomach many people feel after consuming dairy products. There have been loads of anecdotal claims, and an unpublished study of raw milk drinkers in Michigan in 2007 showed that more than 80 percent of 155 individuals who said they had been diagnosed with lactose intolerance could handle raw milk without problems.
But opponents of raw milk, prime among them the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, have always been adamant that there's no difference between raw and pasteurized milk for individuals who are lactose intolerant.
[ READ MORE (Grist) ]
Foodies and others mourn the Estrella Family Creamery shutdown
The Estrella Family Creamery cheese counter has become a familiar sight at the weekly University District Farmers Market. Anthony Estrella watches over two or three of his children as they discuss varieties with customers, offer samples, and cut and wrap wedges for buyers. For a decade the family has been crafting award-winning handmade cheeses from the raw milk of organically raised, grass-fed cows and goats at their dairy farm in Montesano, Grays Harbor County.
But on Saturday (Oct. 30), the Estrella vendor space was occupied by a table of experts on planting winter gardens. One week earlier, family members did show up but had nothing to offer except flyers telling about a federal seizure of all their products. Over the past two months, state and federal regulators had found listeria monocytogenes in some of Estrella’s cheeses and production areas. With no income and many animals to feed, the Estrellas told their customers, the dairy might have to close forever.
[ READ MORE (Crosscut) ]
The Raw Milk Debate
The debate over raw milk versus pasteurized milk is making headlines as consumers want the freedom to rebel against the industrialized by drinking locally grown, natural products but are being prevented from doing so by laws that prohibit the sale of raw milk.
Raw milk devotees don’t mind paying a premium price for the unpasteurized beverage because they believe it is a more healthful option because it contains more nutrients and has a creamier and richer taste. They also say cheese, yogurt, butter, ice cream and sour cream made from raw milk tastes better than store-bought goods.
[ READ MORE (Food Product Design) ]
Japan Looks to Ancient Village Wisdom to Save Biodiversity
Four decades ago the oriental white stork became extinct in Japan, the victim of rapid industrialisation and modern farm practices and heavy pesticide use that destroyed its habitat.
As Japan hosts a UN conference on biodiversity this week, the high-tech nation is pushing the initiative to promote some of its ancient village wisdom as a way to heal battered environments worldwide.
[ READ MORE (Common Dreams) ]