- Author: Pam Devine
What got me started on this contribution is a book I recently read, called Hungry Planet by Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio. It photo-chronicles what an average family from different regions around the world eats in a week. Fascinating reading, but not the topic of this blog, just the inspiration.
I’m writing about food waste, specifically fresh fruits and vegetables. First let’s look at the facts. In a 2011 report commissioned by the Food and Agriculture Organization, it was found that “Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tons — gets lost or wasted.”
The report does distinguish between loss and waste,...
- Author: Jim Coats
"Some hae meat, and canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it . . ."
The words are old and a little hard to understand, but they tell a story that's as true today as when the poet Robert Burns spoke them back in the 1790s. They were old words even then. Always, it seems, there are those of us who are fortunate enough to eat well and those of us who go hungry, even in a country as rich as ours.
One morning last May, I got to meet some folks who help ease that hunger in the community where I live. That morning I drove with my wife to an industrial area on the northeast side of Woodland, California, where the Food Bank of Yolo County...
- Author: Brenda Dawson
Welcome to August. Are you tired of summer squash yet?
If your dinners have been overflowing with zucchini recently (like mine have), now might be a great time to try new varieties of otherwise familiar vegetables.
One of the farm advisors I work with has long touted some varieties of "Asian vegetables" as more flavorful than their traditionally "American" cousins. Here in the U.S., vegetable varieties like these are more likely to be grown by farmers — and sold to customers — who have close ties to Asian immigrant communities. Richard...
- Author: Cynthia Kintigh
A few weeks ago, I attended the California Childhood Obesity Conference, where I heard Bryan Reese, Chief Marketing Officer, of Bolthouse Farms speak about the brilliant marketing campaign launched by "A bunch of carrot farmers."
Baby carrots were "invented" in the 1990s and became an instant hit. Not only did it transform the industry, but American consumers doubled their consumption of carrots in the ensuing decade. Then, a couple of years ago, after this remarkable growth, consumption began to fall.
Reese credits the decline to a number of factors, the economy being a primary one. Consumers were trying to save money, so they were buying regular carrots. Since those carrots need peeling, washing and cutting at home, a...
- Author: Diane Nelson
Here we are, a month into summer, and one of my favorite fruits is starting to emerge: Luscious tomatoes, fresh off the vine.
I know, most of us treat tomatoes like a vegetable in the kitchen, slicing and dicing them into dishes that are savory rather than sweet. Botanically speaking, tomato is a fruit because it’s developed from the ovary in the base of the flowers and contains the seeds of the plant (though cultivated forms may be seedless.)
No matter, the tomato is a nutritional powerhouse any way you cut it, loaded with vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium and lycopene, an antioxidant credited with preventing both cancer and heart disease.
The UC Davis...