How to Grow Shiitake Mushrooms

By Laura Sorkin Shiitake mushrooms require faith in the unseen. The fungi flourish under the cover of bark for nine to twelve months preceding the first harvest, during which eternity you can do little more than cross your fingers. Once established, though, the crop will produce fruit for approximately seven years. Plus, these umami bombs fetch as much as $20 per pound at farmers markets. Up for the challenge? You’ll want to get started now, harvesting the logs that will serve as your growing medium before trees bud out and

Resolve to Become a Food Waste Warrior in 2018

When that ball drops, we all start thinking, how can I be a little better this year? Many of us go straight to food resolutions: eating healthier, joining a gym, dropping a few pounds. How about a food resolution that will protect the planet and your wallet? Why not put your

Stinkhorns, Truffles, Smuts: The Amazing Diversity—and Possible Decline—of Mushrooms and Other Fungi

By Alexander Weir “Whatever dressing one gives to mushrooms … they are not really good but to be sent back to the dungheap where they are born.” French philosopher Denis Diderot thus dismissed mushrooms in 1751 in his ” Encyclopedie .” Today his words would be dismissed in France, where cooks tuck mushrooms into crepes, puff pastry and boeuf Bourguignon (beef Burgundy), to name just a few dishes. The French aren’t alone. Mushrooms and their biological relatives feature in global cuisines from Asia to sub-Saharan Africa. Here in North America, they are part

Fishing Limits Set Too High Again by Council of the EU

As their annual end-to-the-year meeting closed on Dec. 13, the 28 fisheries ministers who sit on the Council of the European Union again set some fishing limits for Atlantic Ocean and North Sea stocks higher than scientists had advised and higher than the European Commission had proposed. Council deliberations went through the night and officials have not yet made all the details available on how 2018

Mexico Revokes Monsanto’s Permit to Market GMO Soy in Seven States

Monsanto has lost its permit to commercialize genetically modified (GMO) soy in seven Mexican states, Reuters reported. Mexico’s agriculture sanitation authority SENASICA revoked the permit—a decision that the St. Louis-based seed giant called unjustified. Citing a SENASICA document, Mexican newspaper Reforma reported that the permit was revoked after authorities detected Monsanto’s GMO soy in unauthorized areas. But Monsanto rejected that argument. According to a statement seen by Reuters, the company

Will the Appetite for Hydroponics Profits Uproot the Future of Organics?

Whether food production entails acres of mono-crops, livestock shuttled through assembly lines; or orderly tracks of plastic pipelines in factory scale hydroponics spaces, streamlined production techniques tempt food producers to improve on nature, without necessarily assessing the long-term health or environmental costs. And even an apparently benign innovation, like hydroponics, may convey unexpected downsides. Despite each new agricultural novelty, 17 years after the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) established the Organic Standards—earth-based farming remains the oldest and most proven method for cultivating organic food. A coalition of farmers, sustainability advocates and foodies

Five Claims About Coconut Oil Debunked

By Rosemary Stanton , Nutritionist & Visiting Fellow, UNSW Coconuts have been a valued food in tropical areas for thousands of years, traditionally enjoyed as coconut water from the centre of the coconut, coconut flesh or coconut “milk” (made by steeping the flesh in hot water). Solid white coconut oil (I’ll use this popular term, although technically it’s a fat not an oil) is now the darling of celebrities and bloggers , paleo enthusiasts and sellers of so-called superfoods . Claims for its supposed

How Marine Algae Could Help Feed the World

By William Moomaw and Asaf Tzachor Our planet faces a growing food crisis . According to the United Nations, more than 800 million people are regularly undernourished. By 2050, an additional 2 to 3 billion new guests will join the planetary dinner table. Meeting this challenge involves not only providing sufficient calories for every person

Big Food Is Worried About Millennials Avoiding Animal Products

By Nathan Runkle Hundreds of leaders from fast-food chains, marketing agencies and poultry production companies recently gathered in North Carolina for the 2017 Chicken Marketing Summit to play golf and figure out how to make you eat more animals. One session focused on marketing chicken to millennials. Richard Kottmeyer, a senior managing partner at Fork to Farm Advisory Services, explained to the crowd that millennials are “lost” and need to be “inspired and coached.

How to Start a Regenerative Agriculture Movement in Your Community

By Regeneration International The most important, although as of yet little known, new paradigm shift and set of practices in the world today is regenerative agriculture , or rather regenerative food , farming and land use. Regeneration practices , scaled up globally on billions of acres of farmland, pasture, and forest, have the potential to not only mitigate, but actually reverse global warming and, at the same time, provide solutions to other burning issues such as poverty, deteriorating public health, environmental degradation, and global conflict. The world-changing promise of regeneration lies in the fact

75% of World’s Honey Laced With Pesticides

By Jessica Corbett Raising further concerns about the global food production system, a new study found that bees worldwide are being widely exposed to dangerous agricultural chemicals, with 75 percent of honey samples from six continents testing positive for pesticides known to harm pollinators. “What this shows is the magnitude of the contamination,” the study’s lead author, Edward Mitchell, a biology professor at the University of Neuchatel in Switzerland, told the Denver Post. He said there were “relatively few places where we did not find any” contaminated samples. For the study , published

What Netflix’s Okja Gets Right About Big Food

By Samantha Henry Netflix’s recent, original feature film Okja has triggered a bit of disruption amongst both those in the film industry and enthusiasts in the food movement. The movie targets several issues concerning the current state of our food system, and could be a great watch for those curious about where our food system could soon be headed. Okja follows the fictional Mirando Corporation, a chemical weapons company looking to rebrand itself with the presentation of an exciting new discovery: the miraculous “superpig.” Mirando presents the animal as an ideal way to efficiently end world hunger. Along

9 Super Healthy Gluten-Free Grains

Sorghum is typically cultivated as both a cereal grain and animal feed. It is also used to produce sorghum syrup, a type of sweetener, as well as some alcoholic beverages. This gluten-free grain contains beneficial plant compounds that act as antioxidants to reduce oxidative stress and lower the risk of chronic disease ( 4 ). A 2010 test-tube and animal study found that sorghum possesses significant anti-inflammatory

Dr. Mark Hyman: Are You Still Consuming Dairy?

In this week’s House Call, a reader asked, “If one is lactose intolerant, but has no other intolerance to dairy , (e.g. casein and whey) is it ok to consume dairy products while having Hashimoto’s?” By now, most of my readers probably know how I feel about dairy—it’s nature’s perfect food—but only if you’re a calf. We have no biological requirement for this food, and yet, we’ve been told over and over again that dairy is a great source of calcium, milk makes healthy bones

Trump’s Top Trade Nominees Have Strong Links to U.S. Beef and Growth Hormone Lobbies

By Lawrence Carter Donald Trump’s nominee to be the U.S. chief agricultural trade negotiator previously called for the U.S. to walk away from trade talks with the EU if it refused to drop its ban on beef reared with antibiotics and growth supplements, Energydesk can reveal. The news could have implications for the UK’s attempts to strike a post-Brexit trade deal with the U.S., with reports suggesting the U.S. agricultural sector wants to weaken UK food standards—including the ban on growth hormones—to help boost its meat exports. Last week, International Trade Secretary Liam Fox refused to rule out reversing a ban on the import of chlorine-washed chicken during

7 Best Vegan Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Chia seeds are known for their many health benefits , bringing a hefty dose of fiber and protein with each serving. They’re also a great plant-based source of ALA omega-3 fatty acids. Thanks to their omega-3, fiber and protein, studies have found chia seeds could decrease the risk of chronic disease when consumed as part of a healthy diet. One study found that consuming a diet with chia seeds, nopal, soy protein and oats decreased blood triglycerides, glucose intolerance and inflammatory markers ( 7 ). A 2007 animal study also found that eating chia seeds decreased blood triglycerides and increased both “good” HDL cholesterol and omega-3 levels in the blood ( 8 )

9 Health Benefits of Cod Liver Oil

Most cod liver oil is extracted from the liver of Atlantic cod. Cod liver oil has been used for centuries to relieve joint pain and treat rickets, a disease that causes fragile bones in children ( 3 ). Although cod liver oil is a fish oil supplement, it’s quite different than regular fish oil . Regular fish oil is extracted from the tissue of oily fish like tuna, herring, anchovies and mackerel, while cod liver

5 Links Between the Food on Your Plate and Climate Change

By Brian Barth “Certified organic ” does not necessarily equate to “climate friendly.” While there is some evidence that organic techniques produce as much as 40 percent fewer GHGs on average than conventional productions systems, other studies have found more or less a wash between the two. While scientists continue to debate the matter, it’s important to realize that the organic standards were never intended to minimize GHGs—they’re focused almost exclusively on eliminating synthetic chemicals from the food supply. There are many other factors that determine the

12 Ways Trump Has Declared War on Food Safety

By Scott Faber President Trump is waging a full-scale campaign to roll back decades of progress toward making America’s food safer, healthier and more clearly labeled. If successful, the Trump administration would do more to increase hunger, obesity and food-borne illness than any other administration in American history. Since taking office Trump has: 1. Proposed to cut food safety funding for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by $117 million. 2. Proposed to cut funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP ,

7 Reasons Why You Should Eat Cucumbers

By Rachael Link Though commonly thought to be a vegetable, cucumber is actually a fruit. It’s high in beneficial nutrients, as well as certain plant compounds and antioxidants that may help treat and even prevent some conditions. Also, cucumbers are low in calories and contain a good amount of water and soluble fiber, making them ideal for promoting hydration and aiding in weight loss . This article takes a closer look at some of the top health benefits of eating cucumber. 1. It’s High in Nutrients Cucumbers are low in calories but high

Don’t Eat Eggs? Try These 13 Alternatives

By Kayla McDonell Eggs are incredibly healthy and versatile, making them a popular food for many. They’re especially common in baking, where nearly every recipe calls for them. But for various reasons, some people avoid eggs. Fortunately, there are plenty of replacements you can use instead. This article explores the various ingredients that can

Many Insects Resistant To Genetic Manipulation Via CRISPR Editing Tool, Research Finds

Arguments for and against the use of genetic modification techniques in the agricultural and healthcare/disease-prevention sectors typically focus on potential impacts to human health, and/or to wider ecosystems and natural services (a much more important area to watch, in my opinion than human health). My issue with genetic modification and the use of genetically modified […] Many Insects Resistant To Genetic

Can Eating Nuts Help You Lose Weight?

By Dr. Mary Jane Brown Nuts are extremely healthy, as they’re packed full of nutrients and antioxidants ( 1 ). In fact, they have been linked to a wide range of health benefits , including protection against heart disease and diabetes ( 2 ). However, they’re also high in fat and calories, causing many people to avoid nuts out of fear that they are fattening. This article looks at the evidence to determine whether nuts are weight loss friendly or fattening. Nuts Are High in