Friday, April 29, 2011

“GMO” foods? What's the big deal, anyway?

RePosted courtesy of the Sentinel Source, Keene, NH
by Rebecca Montrone  Submitted by Rebecca Montrone,

I am as sick as you are of all of the “health scares” out there!  I wish I could just ignore it all and go on my merry way, don’t you?  It seems everyday, however, our environment closes in a bit more, leaving even those of us among the most vigilant with fewer choices for promoting truly optimal health.  As a health practitioner, I am confronted too often with the sobering reality that we simply can’t just ignore it all.
The most recent big scare has been nuclear radiation fallout in Japan and its potential threat to health due to radiotoxicity and around the globe to the safety of the food supply.  I’m actually having difficulty locating sources for one of the supplements I have regularly recommended to my clients for years, a combination of iodine and potassium iodide!  I’ll be talking about all of this soon, but first…
An unsettling concern that has been in the nutritional headlines for a longer period of time is that of “genetically modified organisms,” commonly referred to GMOs or GM foods.  Vaguely, we all get the idea that they aren’t good for us for one reason or another, but when it comes time to buy groceries, we tend to simply rely on our usual purchasing habits and hope for the best.
Genetically modified foods are foods that have been changed in their genetic structure for the sole purpose of making them more capable of tolerating higher doses of pesticides.  The big name in all of this is Monsanto, the company that makes the pesticide RoundUp.  With crops able to live and thrive in spite of gross contamination with pesticide application, Monsanto is able to enjoy financial gain not only through the sale of RoundUp but through the sale of its genetically modified seed.
Unfortunately, Monsanto hasn’t figured out a way to make genetically modified people yet!  We – who consume their GM foods – have not been altered in our genetic structure to be able to withstand the heavy pesticide contamination of RoundUp!
THE “ROOT” OF THE PROBLEMThe active ingredient in RoundUp is isopropylamine salt of glyphosate.  This ingredient contains dioxane, which is carcinogenic and known to damage the liver, kidneys, brain, and lungs.  Dioxane is an estrogen “mimic” known as a xenobiotic.  It is the agent all the fuss is about when we talk about shampoo and sodium laurel sulfate and cancer, etc.  Herbicides and pesticides are a significant source of hormonal disruption, with all of the health issues that come with it, including the increase of hormonally-driven cancers.
Eating foods that are xenobiotic rich contributes to the growing problem of widespread obesity we observe in our country, affecting insulin resistance and blood sugar regulation.  Synthetic estrogens abundant in our entire food supply are being attributed to many health problems, from precocious puberty, to polycystic ovarian disease, fibroids and fibrocystic breasts, infertility in both men and women, and cancers of many kinds, including colon cancer and the more predictable hormonal cancers of the prostate, ovaries, and breasts.
Compounding the problem and multiplying our consumption of GMO foods is the fact that most of the nations poultry, meat, and dairy supply is from animals raised on GMO foods.
HOW CAN I PROTECT MYSELF AND FAMILY?• Purchase as “clean” as you can, choosing organic produce and “clean” meat, dairy, fish, and poultry products.  Of course, by now the ground water of our agricultural regions are polluted from years and years of toxic pesticides, it isn’t a perfect world.  But, we can at least try for as pure a food supply as possible.
• Avoid the most heavily GMO-influenced crops:  corn, soy, and sugar beets (unless organic, of course).
• Wash produce well.  There are a number of suggestions for helping better get rid of the toxins; one is to soak in a 50/50 percent vinegar/water solution for ten minutes then rinse.
• Avoid packaged, processed foods entirely.  This will be a boon to your health for many more reasons than simply avoiding GMOs; you will also be avoiding hidden sweeteners, modern soy additives that impede thyroid function, inflammatory polyunsaturated oils, “excitotoxic” food additives (hidden sources of MSG), and more.
• Boost your glutathione levels.  Glutathione is a peptide made by all of our cells and found to be low in virtually every disease process.  Glutathione detoxifies the body of mercury and other heavy metals, but it also detoxifies PCBs and other hormonally-based contaminants such as dioxane.  Further, once our cells are glutathione rich, they resist further intoxication.
Until quite recently our only significant resources for raising glutathione levels were N-acetyl-cysteine as a precursor to glutathione, or IV or nebulized glutathione.  N-acetyl-cysteine as a precursor has problems of its own and doesn’t sustain higher glutathione levels for long.
Simply taking a glutathione capsule is worthless as it is destroyed by the acid in the stomach and never makes it into the cells.  Milk thistle contains Silymarin and is known for its liver-health promoting properties.  It works by modestly raising glutathione levels.  One of the primary functions of lipoic acid is to boost glutathione.  Methylating nutrients, such as vitamins B6, B12, folic acid; MSM (methylsulfonylmethane); trimethylglycine (betaine), and SaME also help boost glutathione levels.  Whey protein also helps with this.
I know of nothing more powerful, however, than the recently “invented” acetyl form of glutathione known as acetyl-glutathione.  This is taken in capsule form and passes through the stomach acid just fine, is easily taken up by the cells throughout the body, and has a very long half-life of action.  I have used high-dose acetyl-glutathione in serious disease and witnessed a sharp reduction in inflammatory markers and improved health.  Glutathione is the master anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxifier.  I take 200 mg daily myself as part of my own wellness program.
HOW CAN I MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THE “BIG PICTURE?”Sign up for the Organic Consumers Association newsletter (  Get involved with their grassroots effort to oppose Monsanto and others of their ilk; a very powerful force.  The big push from Monsanto right now is to protect food suppliers from having to indicate that their foods are genetically modified and/or that their foods were fed genetically modified foods on their labels.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Carts one of dirtiest places in grocery store

Professor Charles Gerba, the lead researcher, swabbed the handles of 85 carts in four states for bacterial contamination.

Gerba says 72% of the carts had a positive marker for fecal bacteria. When they examined some of the samples, they found Escherichia coli, also known as E. coli, on half of them.

Researchers say they actually found more fecal bacteria on grocery cart handles than you would typically find in a bathroom, mainly because bathrooms are disinfected more often than shopping carts.

Since most stores do not routinely wash and disinfect their carts, it's up to you to do it.

Scientists say this study helps explain why earlier investigations found kids who touch the handles, are more likely than others, to get infected with bacteria like salmonella.

Gerba also says you should pay attention to what you put in reusable shopping bags. Make sure your meats and veggies are wrapped because bags that are not washed on a regular basis can become a what he called a "bacterial swamp."


Dastardly Dandelion Facts


Demonizing dandelions gets our attention 
How about that dandelion-slashing graphic! And the "gulp!" at the very thought of doing anything to encourage such a dasdardly plant!  And here's another good one:  "We’re sick of dandelions and their weed masquerading as a flower."  Yeah, those treacherous plants are producing flowers just to trick us into - what, liking them?

Well indeed lots of people do, increasingly, as any gardenblogger who follows the subject of eco-gardening knows.  Cooks are concocting recipes for them, Paul Tukey at SafeLawns is one of their  biggest fans, and there's even a Facebook group Stop Killing the Dandelions. They're Pretty, which I just Liked for the hell of it.

What the campaign is selling
But this just gets weirder because the campaign isn't aimed at selling herbicides at all; its goal is to sell soil tests. And the connection (supposedly) is that only with a soil test will we choose fertilizers that feed our lawn but not the dandelions.  But how they do that I still haven't figured out.
However, the most popular fertilizers are super high in nitrogen, and while they’re formulated to green-up your lawn right away when the soil is still cool, they also yellow up lawns weeks later when the soil warms up. And they fertilize EVERYTHING, which includes weed seeds that exist in every yard.
If this doesn't make sense yet, here's more from their fertilizer facts page:
Dandelions thrive off of soils high in, you guessed it, Nitrogen, and have the ability to attack areas of your lawn that are weak or bare (e.g. insufficient root systems).
If proper nutrients are applied every six to eight weeks (which can only be understood properly through a thorough soil test analysis) then turf grass will become very healthy.
About that soil test
So, what does their $20 soil test test for?  Again the answer isn't easy to find but their "sample results" show amounts for organic matter, phosphate, potassium, % K: % Mg (whatever), calcium, pH, and sodium.
Which raises a couple of big questions.  First, the result shows a phosphate reading of 62, with the "acceptable level" shown as 16-35, which you'd think would alert the customer to stop adding phosphates, that dasdardly nutrient that's ruining our waterways.  But instead, here's what the results advise: "Phosphate level is High: Phosphate levels indicated will not hamper the effects of good turf growth."  No problem!
And the recommended product (which is the whole point of the soil test, right, that it directs users to the right fertilizers?) is "CIL Golfgreen Fall", either synthetic or organic (take your pick; they sure don't care) and after some searching I finally found out that its nutrient content is 28-3-6!
So here's my suggestion about soil tests:  use a university lab, like the one at U.Mass. that I used.  It costs $15 and gives far more information than the Stop Dandelions test.

A coalition of the selling
As a fan of coalitions, I was curious about this new one and here's what the website tells us about it:  "The Coalition to Stop Dandelions is dedicated to educating people caring for lawns and gardens about how to make a healthy lawn grow, and how to get the right soil test information that golf courses and farms have counted on for decades." And about WHO they might be we're told: "The Coalition to Stop Dandelions is a project of A Growing Necessity," whose About Us page doesn't actually tell us.

Too bad, coz it looks like an improvement
I finally got tired of following links that don't work or when they do, don't answer the questions they're supposed to answer, but my tentative conclusion is that this product MAY lead to an improvement over what some golf courses use - fertilizers that encourage top growth and weeds, plus lots of pesticides.  "This personalized nutritional management process reduced the need for reactive based products (such as pesticides) to less than 6%....amazing reduction!"  See, that much sounds good.

More bad marketing to gardenbloggers
The Stop Dandelions campaign is a nonsensical mess that's off-putting to the very people it's targeting, but it didn't need to be.  I'll bet that a random GardenRant reader could come up with a better approach than this one, created by - no surprise here - a marketing firm with no particular expertise in this area.

Rebloged from:

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Only Way to Feed 9 Billion Poeple

I've written about it once already, but I want to return to The Economist's recent special series about how industrial agriculture is the true and only way to feed the 9 billion people who will inhabit the world by 2050. The framing, I think, is extremely interesting.

 The widely revered magazine identifies two strains of thought on the food system's future: one serious and one frivolous.

The serious one -- made up of "food companies, plant breeders, and international development agencies" -- is "concerned mainly with feeding the world's growing population," which it plans to do "through the spread of modern farming, plant research and food processing in poor countries."

The frivolous one -- "influential among non-governmental organizations and some consumers" -- "concentrates more on the food problems of richer countries, such as concerns about animal welfare and obesity," The Economist writes. This group fixates on the question of "what should we have for dinner," but has little to say about feeding the globe's growing population.

And since The Economist's special report "concentrates on the problems of feeding the 9 billion," not the trivial omnivorous dilemmas of wealthy Berkeleyites, the magazine throws its lot in with the companies, plant breeders, and international development agencies -- the Serious People Looking for Real Solutions for Feeding the World.

Given these conflicting aims, it is not surprising that the food crisis has produced contradictory accounts of the main problem and radically different proposals for solving it. One group is concerned mainly about feeding the world’s growing population. It argues that high and volatile prices will make the job harder and that more needs to be done to boost supplies through the spread of modern farming, plant research and food processing in poor countries. For those in this group—food companies, plant breeders and international development agencies—the Green Revolution was a stunning success and needs to be followed by a second one now.

The alternative view is skeptical of, or even downright hostile to, the modern food business. This group, influential among non-governmental organizations and some consumers, concentrates more on the food problems of richer countries, such as concerns about animal welfare and obesity. It argues that modern agriculture produces food that is tasteless, nutritionally inadequate and environmentally disastrous.

It thinks the Green Revolution has been a failure, or at least that it has done more environmental damage and brought fewer benefits than anyone expected.  My son-in-law let me borrow a book espousing this view, Michael Pollan’s “The Omnivore’s Dilemma" which opened my mind  It starts by asking: “What should we have for dinner?” By contrast, those worried about food supplies wonder: “Will there be anything for dinner?”


Monday, April 18, 2011

My Blog Is Coming Out Of The Closet!

Why is it that the best ideas come to some of us in the night? It is almost always relative to my Etsy shop or this blog.  I will wake up and jot down my latest epiphany and go back to sleep.  You know what the morning there is a lengthy scribble with little resemblance words. 

When opened my shop I knew I had to market it online, there are a ton of ways to go. I had to learn FaceBook, Twitter, SEO, keeping up with the Etsy interface, following threads and basically cramming my head more tech stuff than I could handle.  So, I did a little of all of them.  Not good.  Shotgunning your marketplace is ineffective. 

So, I started a blog to promote my shop.  After a while it evolved away from a marketing tool to a place where I wanted to say stuff. Eco-oriented topics, for the most part. That feels good........I like it.  As a result of all this indecision about what to blog about has resulted in an indecisive blog.  People don’t like that.  Makes us feel uneasy.

But every day I felt that I must put up a tutorial or some-such when I didn’t want to!  You have no idea how validated I felt when I read this  post on the Handmadeology blog written by John W. Golden “The Breakdown - 8,000 Etsy Sales  & Answering Your Questions” 2/2311.  One of the tips John gives us is that the better marketing tools are probably Facebook and Twitter.  Blogs, he says, maybe not so dependable. You really do have to have great content on a consistent basis to generate any kind of following. 

Then I read something about blogging without guilt.  That does it!  From now on, I am going to keep a weblog about what I am passionate about.  The blog roll and links will begin to change too. There will be an evolution here. Come along for the ride, if you like.

Note: Since I published this post, I have closed my Etsy Shop indefinitely.  This will be a green, food and whatever blog. 

Sunday, April 17, 2011

An Eco Link For Just About Anyone....

Friday, April 15, 2011

51 Fantastic Uses for Baking Soda

51 Fantastic Uses for Baking Soda

I don’t mean to sound seditious here, but I have a rebellious plan to combat the ills that many corporations are perpetrating in the name of fighting grime and germs. My main gripe is about the environmental pollutants from cleaning and personal care products that we wash down our drains and into our water systems, resulting in situations like the chemical triclosan (a pesticide added to many products as an antibacterial agent) being found in dolphins.
So the simple plan is to encourage everyone to use baking soda in any of these 51 applications. Besides showing kindness to aquatic life, we can also protect ourselves from the array of toxins in household cleaning products. Conventional cleansers can expose us to multiple chemicals linked to asthma, cancer, and other documented health problems.
Baking soda also makes a perfect stand-in for many personal care products, which are adding their own twist to the toxic tangle of pollutants and personal health (mainly in the form of synthetic fragrance (and it’s almost all synthetic), sodium laurel sulfate, and parabens).
So exactly how does baking soda fit into my scheme to make the world a better place? Baking soda, aka sodium bicarbonate,  helps regulate pH—keeping a substance neither too acidic nor too alkaline. When baking soda comes in contact with either an acidic or an alkaline substance, it’s natural effect is to neutralize that pH. Beyond that, baking soda has the ability to retard further changes in the pH balance, known as buffering. This dual capability of neutralizing and buffering allows baking soda to do things such as neutralize acidic odors (like in the refrigerator) as well as maintain neutral pH (like in your laundry water, which helps boost your detergent’s power). It’s a simple reaction, but one that has far-reaching effects for a number of cleaning and deodorizing tasks. And so without further ado, I’ll remove my scientist cap, put on my rebellious housekeeper’s cap, and get this folk-wisdom revolution rolling…

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Greening our spring cleaning -

O, light of spring! You blindingly beautiful thing. How I've missed you! How I love you! But could you turn it down a bit? You're glaring on all the dirt that winter so kindly covered up. Ohhh, you're gone already.
Yep, it's spring in Michigan, that fickle thing, and already it's gray and cold. But on those few glorious mid-60s days last week, I felt the spring cleaning bug bite.
It'll be back again, along with the sun. And again the dust on the blinds, grease smears on the stove, grime on the outlets and the spots on the windows will be glaringly obvious.
In the meantime, I'm ready. I got all my green cleaning ingredients from "Clean House, Clean Planet " by Karen Logan. It's our all-season bible of how to get everything spic and span without hurting ourselves or the earth with harmful chemicals.
Karen's advice basically boils down to all-baking-soda-all-the-time (which makes you wonder: what the heck is baking soda?). Oh, and there's salt, liquid soap, water, elbow grease, the ubiquitous vinegar — and essential oils to cover up the vinegar smell. Lavender-scented kitchen floor, anyone?
The baking soda and salt are the abrasives that don't injure surfaces and do a great job with the grime and soap films. For special problems like mold and stains that need disinfectant, she recommends tea tree oil. Another eco-mom suggests grapefruit seed extract.
All this stuff is readily available across the street at the People's Food Co-op and at other "natural food stores" in our eco-thinking town.

Another great feature of your own green cleaning kit? Less packaging. Reuse your old containers. Mix your clean-green concoctions and fill 'em up. Way, way less waste.
Stuff you find looking up other stuff

  • Another Green Cleaning Kit
  • Treehugger's advice
  • Clorox's "Green Works" cleaners are 99 percent green. Ironically, two of the three ingredients that aren't green are the dyes that turn the "Green Works" liquid the color green.
Linda Lombardini lives as happily green and clean as she can be. You can contact her at

Friday, April 8, 2011

Disinfecting The Green Way

Store bought disinfectants used in cleaning can contain all sorts of nasty chemicals, some of which should really only be used in controlled settings such as hospitals.

The reason for this is when used around the home inappropriately, these substances can actually help bacteria become resistant to the chemical, creating "superbugs".  Or, diseases resistant to antiboitics.

The heavy duty disinfectant artillery should be left to health professionals as a last line of defense. As has been noted in the case of staph, the excessive and inappropriate use of antibiotics has created super-strains which are now resistant to practically *all* antibiotics.

Some of the chemicals used in commercial preparations can also have a negative effect on aquatic life as water treatment facilities can't filter them out.

A chemical of particular concern is triclosan. Used in everything from bar soaps to toothpaste, it can also be found in some commercial disinfectants. According to Beyond Pesticides, researchers who added triclosan to river water and shined ultra violet light on the water found that between one and twelve percent of the triclosan was converted to dioxins. Dioxins are incredibly toxic to aquatic organisms, animals and humans and as these substances are bioaccumulative, they work their way up the food chain.

In a U.S. Geological Survey study of 95 different organic wastewater contaminants in U.S. streams, triclosan was one of the most frequently detected compounds.

This is a serious environmental issue that we can all play a role in helping to address - for starters, taking more care in the types of disinfectant we choose and use.

Greener disinfecting alternatives

It's important to bear in mind that disinfecting something means killing something else; that the nature of the process is destructive - however, the goal is to minimize "collateral damage".

While there are quite a few environmentally friendly (or should I say, friendlier) products on the market, making your own environmentally friendly disinfectant is very cheap and extremely quick to do using just eucalyptus oil and water.

Simply mix 1.6 oz (around 50 ml) of eucalyptus oil with a quart (litre) of water. That's all there is to it - not everything that is effective needs to be complex.

Be sure to shake well before use and use as you would a store bought disinfectant. Also keep the mixture out of direct sunlight in a opaque container.

Not only will you have a greener disinfectant, but by making your own, you're more likely to use the same container, therefore cutting down your plastic consumption.

Eucalyptus oil is amazing stuff and you'll see it mentioned regularly throughout this site. I've read that European doctors used to use eucalyptus oil to disinfect and sterilize their equipment. Do be careful when handling eucalyptus oil as it's quite potent and can cause skin irritation in its undiluted form.

Here's another disinfectant recipe if you're not particularly fond of the smell of eucalyptus:

Grapefruit Seed Extract Disinfectant Spray


1 gallon warm water
20 drops grapefruit seed extract
Mix and pour in a spray bottle

Courtesy of:
Green Living Tips.comGreen Living Tips is an online resource powered by renewable energy offering a wide variety of earth friendly tips, green guides, advice and environment related news to help consumers and business reduce costs, consumption and environmental impact .

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Great Pacific Garbage Patch

We all know about this....but sometimes the magnitude of something on the order of what we have going on here is just too much to wrap our minds around.

Also known as the Trash Vortex and a variety of other names, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch exists in the North Pacific Gyre, a clockwise swirl of currents that's home to little except phytoplankton - and trash. Lots of trash. So much trash that for every pound of plankton, it's estimated there's 6 pounds of plastic garbage.

A Glimpse of the Tragedy from Midway on Vimeo.

Occasionally, ocean currents will change and release some of cache of garbage, which winds washing up on the beaches around the outskirts of the gyre in huge amounts. Ocean researcher Charles Moore reported the amount of plastics in areas of the gyre to be somewhere around 3.3 million pieces per square kilometer!
It is estimated that over 20 billion pounds of plastic ends up in the ocean - each year. Plastics are particularly nasty in an aquatic environment; aside from being toxic, they don't biodegrade, but just break into increasingly smaller pieces that are dispersed widely. These particles can clog the gills of fish and filter feeders.
Also, aquatic birds tend to be attracted to the plastic and ingest quantities that can block their digestive tract - they literally starve to death. Turtles are particularly prone to eating plastic bags and fishing line, especially those species that dine on jellyfish.
The ocean is big; our planet is big - but it just goes to show, it's not big enough to cope with our modern garbage. We really need to avoid plastics wherever we can - and recycle what we can't seem to avoid; there's simply no safe place to dump these items.

Monday, April 4, 2011

A Letter From Japan

Here is a letter from a friend of a friend, an older woman who has been living in Japan and teaching English for the past 10 years.

Hello My Lovely Family and Friends,

First I want to thank you so very much for your concern for me. I am very touched. I also wish to apologize for a generic message to you all. But it seems the best way at the moment to get my message to you.

Things here in Sendai have been rather surreal. But I am very blessed to have wonderful friends who are helping me a lot. Since my shack is even more worthy of that name, I am now staying at a friend's home. We share supplies like water, food and a kerosene heater. We sleep
lined up in one room, eat by candlelight, share stories. It is warm, friendly, and beautiful.

During the day we help each other clean up the mess in our homes. People sit in their cars, looking at news on their navigation screens, or line up to get drinking water when a source is open. If someone has water running in their home, they put out a sign so people can come to fill up their jugs and buckets.

Utterly amazingly that where I am there has been no looting, no pushing in lines. People leave their front door open, as it is safer when an earthquake strikes. People keep saying, "Oh, this is how it used to be in the old days when everyone helped one another."

Quakes keep coming. Last night they struck about every 15 minutes. Sirens are constant and helicopters pass overhead often. We got water for a few hours in our homes last night, and now it is for half a day. Electricity came on this afternoon. Gas has not yet come on. But all of this is by area. Some people have these things, others do not.

No one has washed for many days. We feel grubby, but there are much more important concerns than that for us now. I love this peeling away of non-essentials. Living fully on the level of instinct, of intuition, of caring, of what is needed for survival, not just for me, but of the entire group.

There are strange parallel universes happening. Houses a mess in some places, yet then a house with futons or laundry out drying in the sun. People lining up for water and food, and yet a few people out walking their dogs. All happening at the same time.

Other unexpected touches of beauty are first, the silence at night. No cars. No one out on the streets. And the heavens at night are scattered with stars. I usually can see about two, but now the whole sky is filled. The mountains of Sendai are solid and with the crisp air, we can see them silhouetted against the sky magnificently.

And the Japanese themselves are so wonderful. I come back to my shack to check on it each day, now to send this e-mail since the electricity is on, and I find food and water left in my entranceway. I have no idea from whom, but it is there. Old men in green hats go from door to door checking to see if everyone is OK. People talk to complete strangers asking if they need help. I see no signs of fear. Resignation, yes, but fear or panic, no.

They tell us we can expect aftershocks, and even other major quakes, for another month or more. And we are getting constant tremors, rolls, shaking, rumbling. I am blessed in that I live in a part of Sendai that is a bit elevated, a bit more solid than other parts. So, so far this area is better off than others. Last night my friend's husband came in from the country, bringing food and water. Blessed again.

Somehow at this time I realize from direct experience that there is indeed an enormous Cosmic evolutionary step that is occurring all over the world right at this moment. And somehow as I experience the events happening now in Japan, I can feel my heart opening very wide.
My brother asked me if I felt very small because of all that is happening. I don't. Rather, I feel a part of something happening that's much larger than myself. This wave of birthing (worldwide) is
hard, and yet magnificent.

Thank you again for your care and Love of me,

With Love in return, to you all,


Rev. Katherine Q. Revoir

Friday, April 1, 2011

"Who" Is Slow Food?

What you put into your mouth goes into your body.  Everywhere in you body.  I am not being sarcastic but pointing out the obvious that we should all think about when we peel off that plastic wrapper imprinted with unpronounceable words and shove it into our mouths without looking at it.

"Slow food" is a direct counter balance to the fast-food culture. Instead of eating fries while driving one-handed through traffic, it means taking the time to enjoy good food raised in clean, safe conditions and sold at a fair profit for the farmer. It means taking the time to know the food you eat is healthy - for you, for the people who produce it, and for the land. According to USA Today, SlowFood "claims to be everything that fast food is not."

SlowFood is an idea, a way of living and a way of eating. It is a global, grassroots movement with thousands of members around the world that links the pleasure of food with a commitment to community and the environment.

Just 30 plants feed 95 percent of the world's 6.5 billion people, according to Slow Food, which is encouraging a global effort to broaden that diversity.

Many foods we love (specific grains, vegetables, fruits, animal breeds) are disappearing due to the overwhelming amount of convenience food and industrial agriculture. What's grown by industrial agribusiness is based on what's hardy, easiest to grow, and easiest to ship across the continent - not necessarily taking taste, health and variety into account.  Like the proposed square banana or genetically engineered or modified food. 
Some people are tired of the degraded flavor of our foods and of health issues raised by an industrialized food supply, so they find the "slow food" message appealing. Preserving our resources, tradition and culture ensures that food is produced for taste and variety. This is ultimately what makes food enjoyable.

The Daily Green embraces the Slow Food manifesto that promotes taking the time to teach and share the rewards of raising and eating food that is good, clean and fair.

To read the first chapter of Michael Pollan's book, "The Omnivore's Dilemma," which explains where food comes from, check out:

In researching this post, I found the following links to be excellent reads: