Nathanael Johnson

Nathanael Johnson

Thought for food

Nathanael Johnson (@savortooth on Twitter) is Grist's food writer and the author of All Natural: A Skeptic's Quest to Discover If the Natural Approach to Diet, Childbirth, Healing, and the Environment Really Keeps Us Healthier and Happier.


How can we stop the world from having too many babies? Feed more people

If we aim to slow the rocketing population graph, all the evidence points in the same direction: prosperity cuts the birth rate, which will spare the planet.


Dear Blue Apron, you’re just making it worse

Pre-measured ingredients for cook-at-home meals could be a fantastic idea. But if you want to recycle all that packaging, you might need an advanced degree.

Quorn shucked

This meat substitute is all-natural and GMO-free — and might be making people sick

A nonprofit group says Quorn, the mushroom-based fake meat, is causing real illnesses and asks the FDA to regulate it.


Why Vandana Shiva is so right and yet so wrong

The environmental crusader has a beautiful vision of the world we'd like to have. Too bad she has such a loose way with the factual details.


Is producing more food to feed the world beside the point?

Which should be tackled first: hunger or inequality? Food production or distribution? These chicken-and-egg questions tangle every "feeding the planet" debate.


When it comes to roads and rail, we force government to lie to us

California's high-speed rail is only the latest public megaproject to be stuck in the overpromise-overspend cycle -- because we make it hard for officials to be honest.


Soy vey! Monsanto just lost its GM permit in the Yucatán

A judge in Mexico has ruled that genetically modified soy presents a danger to bees -- and also to the honey industry.


Weed could be resistant to GMO labeling in Colorado

Colorado is gearing up for a ballot fight on labeling genetically engineered food products. It looks like the initiative doesn't give cannabis a pass.

Opening the Gates

Teaching a humongous foundation to listen to small farmers

Sam Dryden led the Gates Foundation's farm program for five years, guided less by his background in Big Ag than his upbringing on a hardscrabble Appalachian farm.