Archive for June, 2009


Photo: Organic Islands Festival and Sustainability Expo

It’s that time again! The 2009 Organic Islands Festival and Sustainability Expo on Vancouver Island is about to begin! Gates open at Glendale Gardens and Woodland in Victoria, BC next weekend, July 4 & 5.

Here’s more from The Epoch Times June 25–July 1, 2009 issue (Andrea Hayley, staff writer):

“Organic Islands is more than just the name of the largest and greenest outdoor festival in Canada–it represents a vision of the future where people work together to create sustainable lifestyles….The event was conceived five years ago with the idea of a ‘place that lingers in our collective imagination where the air is clean, the water clear, and the food sublime….It’s about bringing the community together,’ ” says festival creator Deb Morse.

[For more about the Festival and Sustainability Expo, see Organic Islands.]

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Food Inc.

Photo:   Magnolia Pictures illustration for National Post film review.

“From the ethics of organics to the issues surrounding industrialized food production, Food Inc. bites of a hefty chunk of culinary politics — but no more than its filmmakers can chew. “

So begins a “three stars” film review by Chris Knight in the National Post about “Food, Inc.: Plenty to Swallow”  Here’s an excerpt from the article:

“The film, in a nutshell (and a corn husk, and a cowhide), is an examination of the current state of food production in North America, “from seed to the supermarket,” as one of its catchy phrases puts it. It features disturbing images of meat-packing factories and chicken farms (really more like chicken factories), but relies on logic more than shock value to get its points across. Oddly, one of the more squeam-inducing moments for this critic was watching organic farmer Joel Salatin kill his free-range chickens – and he’s one of the good guys!”

“The film makes a persuasive case that our food system is broken, and it does so by cleverly letting its arguments follow the same fallacious furrows. At the outset, big agro sounds like a good idea, even a modern miracle. Corn yields, for instance, are 10 times what they were a century ago. Hooray! But wait. Now we feed all that cheap, plentiful corn to cows, which were engineered to eat grass. This causes new strains of antibacterial-resistant E. coli to grow in their guts, getting into not just our hamburger patties but (through runoff) into the lettuce and tomatoes with which we garnish them.”

“Putting a human face on this tragedy is Barbara Kowalcyk, now a food safety advocate, who describes how her two-year-old died 12 days after eating a tainted burger. The batch of meat in question wasn’t tested until he was already in hospital, and the recall notice went out two weeks after he died.”“What to do?” [To find out, see “Food, Inc.: Plenty to swallow.”]

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 Photo: Alice Waters feature on CBS “60 Minutes”

Alice Waters’ slogan could well be (according to her recent CBS “60 Minutes interview): “stewardship of the land and nourishment of the nation.” Now Michelle Obama and the Queen of England are following Water’s example. There are vegetable gardens at White House and Buckingham Pallace.  Alice Waters has been dubbed “a  revolutionary,” for starting us all back down the path to good, wholesome, ORGANIC, “slow food.”

Waters shares that vision with her ORGANIC restaurant in San Francisco, her cookbooks, teaching AND with the Slow Food Festival.  That Slow Food Festival in 2008  was attended by 80,000 people!

CBS “60 Minutes” featured an interview with Alice Waters again this month  (a repeat of earlier feature in March on same program). Waters was introduced by Leslie Stahl as woman who has done “more to change our eating habits than anyone in the US.”  ORGANIC, LOCAL, IN SEASON–are ALL Waters’ recommendations. She is also responsible for “Edible Schoolyards,” which teaches children how to grow and harvest organic food.  

Can anyone say “organic revolution”? Alice Waters is the revolutionary. That vision is hers, and now ours.

 [VIDEO LINKS: 1–Alice Waters on 60 Minutes (video); 2–On CBS (video); 3– Obama Vegetable Garden;  Queen Elizabeth’s Allotment Garden (video).]

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Photo: Ann Millerd of Saltspring Island SeaChange Salmon products

The launch of Space Shuttle Endeavour might have been delayed, but when that space shuttle  did go up fish products made by Saltspring Island firm went with it!

The Space Shuttle “mission has 11 major objectives, from crew rotation to scientific experiments, from deploying a satellite to performing several spacewalking tasks. The final listed objective is to “resupply food, water, oxygen.”Among the provisions are some tasty morsels of Oncorhynchus nerka , which tastes better than it sounds.”

This news is from the Toronto Globe and Mail in an article called “B.C. company’s salmon headed to orbit” by Tom Hawthorne. Here’s more:

“The delay in delivering provisions will not be a problem for the smoked fish. “It’s very stable. Doesn’t have moist ingredients. Keeps really well,” says Anne Millerd, co-owner with Nicki Cameron of SeaChange Savouries on Saltspring. “It’s a great product for people to take when they’re off on adventures, because it keeps.”

[To read FULL ARTICLE, see “Salmon in Orbit”.]

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the delanys

Photo: Jennifer and Robin Delany, owners of Delany’s Coffee Houses

Good news for ORGANIC COFFEE lovers! Starting this month ALL Delany’s Coffee Houses will begin serving ONLY organic coffee. JJ Bean, Delany’s local blend and brew supplier, is now roasting ONLY organic. [See JJBean’s NEW DIRECTION for more information.]

Delany’s signage will have to “play catch up” with this change from only some ORGANIC to ALL ORGANIC.  But, rest assured, all the brews and blends “on tap” are ORGANIC–even the expressos!

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