Michelle Obama hearts community gardens

"I'm a big believer in community gardens ... both because of their beauty and for providing access to fresh fruits and vegetables to so many communities across the nation and the world." -- Michelle Obama, speaking at USDA headquarters


A former USDA worker claims that small farm numbers may be overstated

Are there more small farms or not? Everyone from Reuters to the NYT has documented what appears to be an increase in the number of small farms in the U.S. But blogging ag economist and former USDA Economic Research Service …


For a quick fix to school-lunch woes, pack an appealing salad and dip

On a recent morning, I heard a report on Morning Edition that jolted my attention from an extremely delicious cup of shade-grown fair-trade organic ultra-correct joe. (Public radio and fancy coffee: see Stuff White People Like.) The radio piece, by …


NYC's Scott Stringer releases a plan for remaking the urban food system

For those of us wondering what it would take to "localize" urban food systems, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer has some answers. In a just-released study called "Food in the Public Interest," Stringer's office analyzes the New York City "foodshed" …


Farmers take the hit as the CAFO model comes under pressure

In Meat Wagon, we round up the latest outrages from the meat and livestock industries. ----- The industrial meat giants have entered a crisis phase. As I've reported before, the world's biggest chicken packer, Pilgrim's Pride, is languishing in bankruptcy, …


UN unveils ambitious ‘green’ food programme

NAIROBI — The UN Environment Programme has unveiled an ambitious seven-point plan to feed the world without polluting it further by making better use of resources and cutting down on massive waste. A survey of the current state of food …


Thomas Friedman enthuses over 'eco-friendly alternatives to fertilizers'

It was a Thomas Friedman column like so many others: the pundit careens through the roads of India, breathlessly marveling at the innovation he sees. Ain't globalization ... awesome? But this is Thomas Friedman 2.0, green version; this time, he's …

Climate & Energy

Doomsday seed vault’s stores are growing

CHICAGO — The stores of seeds in a “doomsday” vault in the Norwegian Arctic are growing as researchers rush to preserve 100,000 crop varieties from potential extinction. The imperiled seeds are going to be critical for protecting the global food …


E.U. foiled in bid to force France, Greece to allow GM crop

BRUSSELS — The European Commission was foiled Monday in its bid to force France and Greece to allow genetically modified maize from U.S. biotech giant Monsanto to be grown in their fields. Food chain experts from the E.U. member states, …