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Thanks, Jevons paradox! On why I won’t be replacing my spare fridge

A few weeks ago, my spare side-by-side fridge/freezer up and died. I was (and remain) pissed about this. It's a fancy-pants Samsung, about four years old, and the Sears repair guy said the compressor would cost $800 to fix -- 75% of what the fridge was new. "Samsung's great for TVs, crap for fridges," he...

Olney Friends School in Ohio grows food to grow enrollment

The farm-to-school movement has been gaining ground lately as advocates encourage administrators to bring more local food into school cafeterias. But at Olney Friends School in Barnesville, Ohio, eating locally goes beyond farm-to-school: for this small college-prep boarding school, it's farm-AT-school all...

Meet Roll International, the biggest dastardly agribiz mega-corps you’ve never heard of

Pom not-so-wonderful at all: John Gibler's epic, top-notch feature on Roll International – "or, as their website proclaims: 'the largest privately held company you’ve never heard of,' owner of Paramount Farming, the largest grower and processor of almonds and pistachios in the world; Paramount Citrus; Fiji...

Q&A with Michele Simon — activist, attorney, badass

It's always fun to talk with someone who has such a sense of purpose that she doesn't feel the need to make nice. Michele Simon is one of those people. Let me be clear: Simon, a public health attorney for the Marin Institute, and author of Appetite for Profit: How the Food Industry Undermines Our Health and...

Chicago drugstores begin selling fresh food

Rx for health: Chicago-area Walgreens have begun selling "an expanded selection of food, including fresh fruits and vegetables, at 10 locations selected because they were in food deserts." Turns out that drugstores are one of the few chain businesses operating in the low-income areas that lack access to...

Life as a give-a-shit-atarian: On loving peas, beets, and Tom Robbins

Self-identification is one of those never-ending challenges that occupy humans. Even highly self-aware people seem to spend a lot of time defending and refining their self-definition. Last week, someone proposed that people who care about climate change be known as "climate hawks." There are the endless...

An artisanal plea from a fed-up foodie

When you find me behind bars, locked up for a fit of lexical rage, please know that it was granola that pushed me over the edge. Not just any granola: "artisan granola." Presumably its makers meant artisanal granola, made in limited quantities using traditional methods, rather than crunchy-buttery-nutty...

I am woman, hear me store: Review of “The Complete Root Cellar Book”

Now that the farming season is winding down along with my energy levels, I find that I’m really grateful that the food preservation method I lean on most for the produce harvested at this time of year is the simple task of root cellaring. Not that I have a root cellar: I keep my living space temperatures on...

Bean there, done that: A tour of Hodo Soy

Farmers markets are far more than a source of good food from small farmers and a place to build connections among the community. They can also serve as incubators for food businesses, places where new entrepreneurs can try selling prepared foods on a small scale or where experienced market participants can...

One sick chicken

With a few exceptions, the animals on my farm are not pets. My sheep and chickens have jobs to do -- eating grass and bugs, making eggs and meat and babies. If they don't do their job, they don't stay on my farm. That isn't to say that I don't treat them well or care what happens to them. In stark contrast...

Farmers caught lying about produce origins and pesticide-free-ness

Rotten tomatoes: It had to happen. With demand for SOLE food surging, and farmers able to charge a premium for it, it's no surprise that some unscrupulous characters would see an opportunity to make a quick buck without getting their hands dirty. An NBCLA undercover investigation caught farmers at markets...

Notes from a new farmer: Q&A with Michael Gallagher, Square Roots Farm

In every school, there is a legendary former student -- the one whose academic prowess knew no bounds. "Brilliant," people marvel about this student, even decades later. "That kid was brilliant." (Or, here in New England, you might hear: "Wicked smaaaaaht.") At my daughter's school, that individual is...

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