Allow Residents To Grow Greens!

How Do You Green Orlando?  Allow Residents To Grow Green!

Olympians Raise Own Food Fearing Conventional Meat

Olympians Raise Own Food Fearing Conventional Meat

by Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist on February 25, 2012

in Fitness,Green living

Marathoners for China’s Olympic team set to compete this summer in London have gone to drastic measures to avoid banned steroids which could result in disqualification from the 2012 Summer Games.

They are raising their own chickens for food.


In addition to home raised poultry, they are eating yak meat from local herdsman in order to avoid eating restaurant and store bought meats which can contain the residue of banned chemicals such as clenbuterol, an anabolic steroid.

Clenbuterol is indeed a problem in the conventional meat industry where it is illegally used in animal feed to increase the leanness and protein content of meat.  People who consume meat from animals fed this steroid can experience headaches, dizziness, heart palpitations and gastic irritation.  Some people need to be hospitalized after exposure.

Clenbuterol has caused grief for top athletes before.  Alberto Contador blamed a steak dinner for his positive test during the 2010 Tour de France.   This case is currently under appeal.

Olympic gold medalist weightlifter Tong Wen cited her love affair with pork chops as the reason when she tested positive for the same agent and was banned from the sport for two years.  Clenbuterol is frequently added to steroid laced pig feed in China.

An official for the Chinese marathon team said:

“Since we don’t have a canteen to provide safe food, we have to cook meals ourselves because it is risky to eat at a street restaurant.” (Read more)

Atlanta Grows Lettuce Near Runway as Urban Farms Bloom – Bloomberg

Atlanta Grows Lettuce Near Runway as Urban Farms Bloom – Bloomberg.

Atlanta Grows Lettuce Near Runway as Urban Farms Bloom

Wed Aug 17 19:33:54 GMT 2011

Urban Farms

Chris Rank/Bloomberg

PodPonics CEO Matt Liotta

PodPonics CEO Matt Liotta

Chris Rank/Bloomberg

Matt Liotta, chief executive officer of PodPonics Inc., stands for a photograph in front                                                   of a pod farm container in Atlanta on Aug. 12, 2011.

  Urban Farms

Urban Farms

Chris Rank/Bloomberg

PodPonics Inc. employees harvest lettuce inside of a pod farm container in Atlanta on                                          Aug. 12, 2011.

  Urban Farms

Urban Farms

Chris Rank/Bloomberg

A PodPonics Inc. employee displays lettuce for a photograph in Atlanta on Aug. 12, 2011.

Urban Farms

Urban Farms

Chris Rank/Bloomberg

Seedlings grow inside a repurposed PodPonics Inc. container in Atlanta on Aug. 12, 2011.

(Corrects Inc. to LLC in eighth paragraph of story published Aug. 16.)

Designer lettuce will soon bud under the flight path of the world’s busiest airport in Atlanta. An orchard is taking the place of a parking lot in Davenport, Iowa. And homeowners near downtown Denver are turning lawns over to farmers like Sundari Kraft, who plant, weed, water and harvest crops from their yards in return for a share of the bounty.

“People are sick and tired of mowing and fertilizing,” said Kraft, author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Urban Homesteading,” in an interview at her Denver home. “We have a stack of applications, enough to double what we do now.”

From New York to Seattle, cities — which the U.S. Conference of Mayors says account for 90 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product — are attempting to create jobs, foster economic development, feed impoverished neighborhoods and fill long-vacant lots by returning to their agrarian roots.

Kraft, 34, and a team of apprentices nurture tomato forests, white eggplants, rainbow chard and other genetically pure vegetables for 11 homeowners who live minutes from downtown. Kraft sells the crop at farmers’ markets and to 30 families, who fork over $450 for a 20-week supply.

The demand for locally grown produce hit a high point this year, fed by urbanites looking to save money as well as documentaries such as “Food Inc.” and books including Michael Pollan’s “The Omnivore’s Dilemma,” which explore industrial food production(Read more)

Charges NOT Dropped For Growing Garden | Health Freedom Alliance

Charges NOT Dropped For Growing Garden | Health Freedom Alliance. Future of Food, Organic

Charges NOT Dropped For Growing Garden

Submitted by Lois Rain on July 15, 2011 – 4:18 pm

Julie BassWhile it only appears that the City of Oak Park, MI dropped charges toward Julie Bass for planting a vegetable garden in her front yard, she wants to clarify that charges have not been dropped. She may not be spending 93 days in the slammer for growing veggies, but she faces similar punishment – for her dogs! But the garden fiasco is not over, more on that below.

Did the canines have run-ins with the police and attack pedestrians? No, they were simply unlicensed at the time she was ticketed for the garden. So the Bass family immediately got licenses after being cited for them, showed proof to the prosecutor and then it seemed that the issue was cleared. That is, until the case was recently reinstated. Even though her pets are current and licensed, she faces two misdemeanors and possibly over 93 days in jail. Political posturing at its finest.

Be sure to watch the news clip. Their attorney is going to subpoena all other city citations regarding these ordinances to find out just how selectively enforced they really are.

Listen to Oak Park Prosecutor Eugene Lumberg digress and ask the news anchor if she would like to have her neighbors plant corn stalks next door (or have a chicken coop!). Kudos to the interviewer for setting him straight and directing the conversation back to the point.

Another reason the garden charges are not necessarily dropped is because they were strangely “[not dropped but] dismissed by some judge we have never heard of or seen. we hope this person is a real judge, and had the real authority to dismiss our case, but we are going to double-check on that today.” Also, a “dismissal without prejudice means that the prosecutor can come back at any time and reinstate the garden charge” as witnessed with the reinstatement of the dog case. Julie says, “there has been no final disposition of the case, so we can’t take a deep breath and relax.” She continues, “the prosecutor wants more time to review the ordinance. not that he has given up on the garden charge. to the contrary, he wants more time to look things over.”


So, it is still mysteriously unclear whether the vegetable garden charges have actually gone into complete remission.   Julie shares more on her blog (READ FULL ARTICLE)

Five little-known vegetables that could help end hunger –

Five little-known vegetables that could help end hunger –


The Christian Science Monitor –

Change Agent

Five little-known vegetables that could help end hunger

Native vegetables such as guar, Dogon shallot, and celosia could play an important role in feeding Africa.

      Girl with a cart of fresh produce in Kenya. Less well-known vegetables could play an important role in feeding the planet.
    (Keith Levit / Design Pics/Newscom/File)

By Nourishing the Planet
posted July 11, 2011 at 10:11 am EDT

No single food can put an end to hunger. But worldwide there are many different fruits and vegetables that are helping to improve nutrition and diets, while increasing incomes and improving livelihoods.

Today, Nourishing the Planet introduces a new series featuring the four vegetables – and one fruit that acts like a vegetable – that you have likely never heard of that are helping to alleviate hunger and poverty: (Learn more)

World Population Day: Agriculture Offers Huge Opportunities for a Planet of 7 Billion

World Population Day: Agriculture Offers Huge Opportunities for a Planet of 7 Billion.

As the global population increases, so does the number of mouths to feed. The good news is that in addition to providing food, innovations in sustainable agriculture can provide a solution to many of the challenges that a growing population presents.

As our global population continues to grow, agricultural innovations could provide solutions to some of our most pressing problems.(Photo credit: Bernard Pollack)

“Agriculture is emerging as a solution to mitigating climate change, reducing public health problems and costs, making cities more livable, and creating jobs in a stagnant global economy,” said Danielle Nierenberg, Director of Worldwatch Institute’s Nourishing the Planet project.

This year, the world’s population will hit 7 billion, according to the United Nations. Reaching this unprecedented level of population density has prompted the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) to launch a “7 Billion Actions” campaign to promote individuals and organizations that are using successful new techniques for tackling global development challenges. By sharing these innovations in an open forum, the campaign aims to foster communication and collaboration as our world becomes more populated and increasingly interdependent.

Read the rest of this entry

7 Billion Actions, agroecology, Agroforestry, Bayer Crop Science, Central Kitchen Project, Danielle Nierenberg, DISC, Environmental Protection Agency, Farmscape Gardens, International Potato Center, Kenya, Kibera, Lufa Farms, Nourishing the Planet, Revision Urban Farm, Slow Food Internationa, UN FAO, UN Population Fund, UNFPA, urban agriculture, Victory Programs, World Population Day, Worldwatch Institute

Corporate Control? Not in These Communities by Allen D. Kanner

Corporate Control? Not in These Communities by Allen D. Kanner.

Corporate Control? Not in These Communities

Can local laws have a real effect on the power of giant corporations?
Mount Shasta, Photo by Jill Clardy

Citizens of Mt. Shasta, California have developed an ordinance to keep corporations from extracting their water.

Photo by Jill Clardy.

Mt. Shasta, a small northern California town of 3,500 residents nestled in the foothills of magnificent Mount Shasta, is taking on corporate power through an unusual process—democracy.

The citizens of Mt. Shasta have developed an extraordinary ordinance, set to be voted on in the next special or general election, that would prohibit corporations such as Nestle and Coca-Cola from extracting water from the local aquifer. But this is only the beginning. The ordinance would also ban energy giant PG&E, and any other corporation, from regional cloud seeding, a process that disrupts weather patterns through the use of toxic chemicals such as silver iodide. More generally, it would refuse to recognize corporate personhood, explicitly place the rights of community and local government above the economic interests of multinational corporations, and recognize the rights of nature to exist, flourish, and evolve.

Mt. Shasta is not alone. Rather, it is part of a (so far) quiet municipal movement making its way across the United States in which communities are directly defying corporate rule and affirming the sovereignty of local government.

Since 1998, more than 125 municipalities have passed ordinances that explicitly put their citizens’ rights ahead of corporate interests, despite the existence of state and federal laws to the contrary. These communities have banned corporations from dumping toxic sludge, building factory farms, mining, and extracting water for bottling. Many have explicitly refused to recognize corporate personhood. Over a dozen townships in Pennsylvania, Maine, and New Hampshire have recognized the right of nature to exist and flourish (as Ecuador just did in its new national constitution). Four municipalities, including Halifax in Virginia, and Mahoney, Shrewsbury, and Packer in Pennsylvania, have passed laws imposing penalties on corporations for chemical trespass, the involuntary introduction of toxic chemicals into the human body.  (READ FULL ARTICLE)

Turning the Farm Bill into the Food Bill


Garden As If Your Life Depended On It, Because It Does | Food | AlterNet

Garden As If Your Life Depended On It, Because It Does | Food | AlterNet.


Garden As If Your Life Depended On It, Because It Does

There are at least five reasons why more of us should take up the spade, make some compost, and start gardening with a vengeance.

Photo Credit: di the huntress
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Spring has sprung — at least south of the northern tier of states where snow still has a ban on it — and the grass has ‘riz. And so has the price of most foods, which is particularly devastating just now when so many Americans are unemployed, underemployed, retired or retiring, on declining or fixed incomes and are having to choose between paying their mortgages, credit card bills, car payments, and medical and utility bills and eating enough and healthily. Many are eating more fast food, prepared foods, junk food — all of which are also becoming more expensive — or less food.   (Read more)

Preserving Biodiversity, Promoting Local Foods: An Interview with Slow Food USA’s Gordon Jenkins

Preserving Biodiversity, Promoting Local Foods: An Interview with Slow Food USA’s Gordon Jenkins.

By Janeen Madan

Gordon Jenkins is the Network Engagement Manager with Slow Food USA.  Gordon joined Slow Food in 2009 to help organize the Time for Lunch campaign. He grew up in Berkeley, CA, eating McDonald’s Happy Meals and boneless skinless chicken breasts. In college, he worked as a student farmer at the Yale Farm, where he began to see food activism as a very local, personal solution to the world’s many crises. He has worked in Alice Waters’ Office at Chez Panisse and as Content Coordinator for Slow Food Nation, which took place over Labor Day 2008 in San Francisco.

Why is it important to preserve America’s food traditions and safeguard food biodiversity? How does Slow Food-USA work to achieve this goal through its network of local chapters?


The Slow Food chapter in Memphis started a farmer’s market in a neighborhood without many healthy food options. (Photo credit: Slow Food Memphis)

We live in an era where a single pest can wipe out an entire region’s harvest, because that region is only growing one or two types of crops. Our food traditions are not only a big part of our identity,  they also provide the diversity that is integral to healthy, resilient ecosystems. They’re the foods we enjoy the most, and they’re also the environmental solutions that are going to shape the future.

I love that in my community I can buy hand-made tortillas, heirloom apples and heritage pork–these foods are all more delicious than the standardized processed foods I can find in any supermarket. And when I buy those foods, I help farmers build healthier ecosystems. As an organization, Slow Food works to preserve biodiversity by helping people find local foods in their region. Across the country, Slow Food chapters organize food meet-ups and workshops and help producers get access to new seeds and ingredients.

(Read Full Article)