Wanted: Young people with novel ideas for food research. Offering: big-money prize

Originally posted on Grist:

Earlier this year, a report was circulating from desk to desk in the White House. This document [PDF], from the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, suggested that the United States was not prepared for the agricultural problems of the future: climate change, new pests, environmental degradation, and poor nutrition.

Our Nation’s agricultural research enterprise is not prepared to meet the challenges that U.S. agriculture faces in the 21st century for two major reasons. First, PCAST finds that the proportion of Federal funding for agricultural research allocated through competitive mechanisms is far below the proportion in other agencies, which fails to adequately encourage innovation. Second, PCAST finds that the current agricultural research portfolio is not optimally balanced; it overlaps with private sector activities in several significant areas, while underfunding other important areas that are not addressed through private efforts.

In other words, we should be investing more money…

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Portland’s First Non-Profit Grocery Store

Originally posted on Give Our Time:

“Goodness is the only investment that never fails.”

– Henry David Thoreau

Doing good means breaking new ground.

Ed. Co-founder, community-minded, and passionate

Village Market is breaking new ground in the New Columbia neighborhood of north Portland. They’re trying and succeeding to bring fresh produce, low prices, and healthy foods into a neighborhood in which a third of it’s residents depend on public transportation. All the while doing it as a non-profit.

Ed, our tour guide and co-founder of Village Market, is as impassioned about this grocery store as he is about his tomatoes. He took the time to explain to our Teamworks volunteer team the history of the store, the goals, the business model, and the people it serves.

They are building a full grocery store and deli from scratch, housing it in a cramped space the size of a 7-11, and giving the neighbors of this revitalized neighborhood something to…

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Bees + Seeds Festival

This Saturday, October 12th, come help celebrate World Food Day and Non-GMO month at the Bees + Seeds Festival  in Holladay Park, Portland Oregon.   Learn about the importance of seed diversity, pollinators, and our local food system through classes, kids’ activities, speakers, and music.  See you there!

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Awareness Raising

Originally posted on Portland Farmers Market Blog:

From Deborah Pleva at Weinstein PR

Thanks to a $68,650 grant from the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) and other sponsors, Portland Farmers Market is spearheading the launch of an $110,000 advertising campaign to increase consumer awareness and patronage of farmers markets in the Willamette Valley region.

Last spring, the Portland Farmers Market team applied for the funds through the ODA’s Specialty Crop Block Grant Program, which is funded by USDA. (The USDA defines specialty crops as fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture, and nursery crops.) Portland Farmers Market staff has been working on the campaign since the fall of 2012, when the grant was Banner300x2502b_zpsfa06e81b-1awarded.

While farmers markets are a primary direct sales outlet for many farmers of edible crops, only a small part of the population buys vegetables, fruit, nuts and herbs at farmers markets. Beginning this week, advertisements on radio, billboards and online will…

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peeking into molly’s organic farm by carol l. malnor and trina l. hunner

Originally posted on Jama's Alphabet Soup:

Miao! Who’s that peeking through the cauliflower leaves?

Meet Molly, a homeless orange tabby who wanders into a small community farm one Spring day and instantly captures everyone’s hearts.

Based on a true story, Molly’s Organic Farm (Dawn Publications, 2012), introduces young readers to the seasonal workings of an organic farm through Molly’s eyes. Curious and mischievous, she explores this wondrous world of giant cornstalks and row upon row of leafy vegetables, watching, hunting, and playing among the busy birds, bugs and critters who live there, some beneficial to the plants, others harmful.

The basic principles of organic farming and the marvelous interplay of nature are seamlessly interwoven with Molly’s activities, all gorgeously brought to life with Trina Hunner’s stunning illustrations. We learn about composting, companion planting, crop rotation, beneficial bugs and animal helpers, the importance of buying locally and the wonderful sense of community that’s established among those who…

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After the march–now what?

P1030530It was a fabulous march here in Portland, Oregon, well attended by about 6,ooo people.  Millions more marched all over the country and world raising awareness of the greed and destruction that Monsanto is forcing upon the world.  It was encouraging to see how many of us are truly concerned and ready to act.

But now after the march, what can we do?  Here are two things that can make a huge impact on taking back our food system:

1) avoid buying processed food.  70% of food in grocery stores contain GMOs.  Buy sustainably grown local food if possible.  Buy organic.  Or grow your own.  If none of those are possible, avoid food that is processed by buying more single ingredient foods like fresh fruits and vegetables and beans and rice, etc.

2) share your knowledge with everyone you know…and don’t know!  Knowledge is power, and the tide will turn as more and more people demand real food.  Just recently, the fast food restaurant, Chipotle, has offered up its ingredient list and is trying to swap out GMO ingredients like soy oil with non-GMO ingredients.     

If we let the food industry know that we won’t buy genetically modified food, they will be forced to change.  And if there is no market for GMOs, Monsanto’s grip will be broken.

Let’s act now to reclaim our food system.  We can do it!

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March Against Monsanto, May 25th; find a march near you

Do you know that most conventionally grown processed food we buy in the grocery store contains genetically modified ingredients?

If you don’t know, it’s because the biotech giant, Monsanto, isn’t required to label their GMOs.  And not only are they not required to label their GMOs, but they are apparently above the law when it comes to being able to sell their products with no testing and absolutely no oversight in the US.  In Europe and many other countries, GMOs are banned or limited.

Do you know that genetically modified organisms have not been tested for side effects?  We are the guinea pigs in this huge experiment that only enriches the company that produced Agent Orange, the herbicide Round Up, DDTs, PCBs, as well as GMOs.  Many studies show possible human and environmental side effects from genetically modified organisms.

If you don’t know, it’s because the FDA is protecting Monsanto, not the American people so there is no testing required before or after Monsanto rolls out their products.

Do you know that Monsanto is able to dictate its own laws to cement its monopoly of the food supply? Monsanto Rider Bill, GMO Labeling Bill Voted Down in Senate

If you don’t know, it’s because scores of our elected officials are former Monsanto employees including officials in the FDA and the Supreme Court.

Monsanto is taking over our food supply and poisoning our world purely for their own profit.  Let’s let our voices be heard!  The March Against Monsanto is being held across the country and across the world.  Find a march near you.  Let’s make sure our children and all the generations to come have access to untainted and diverse food.

Join me here to march in Portland, Oregon.  See you there!

Posted at Small Footprint Fridays

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