Archive for November, 2011

Photo: Satellite view of organic and fertilizer-free crops worldwide

Big Brother is watching! But, that’s  good news for organics! Space-age technology is now being used to certify ORGANIC crops!

“Eye-the-Sky” satellites were used for a year-long project by Ecocert, (a leading organic certification agency), and the European Space Agency, “to prove that crops were fertilizer-free. Instead of just detailed overhead photos, infra-red and thermal images and other data were collected and deciphered to gain a “spectral signature” of the crops and soil. From that Ecocert say they can determine if a plant is organically-grown or not.”

“The trials proved over 80% successful, according to Dr Pierre Ott of Ecocert ,and compared to physically going to fields to collect, test and certify them, much more time effective.”

The technology for organic certification via satellite still needs improvement. Only corn and wheat grown in large fields can be detected now. But, according to Ecocert, “satellites are already sweeping huge swathes of the world’s arable land.”

[To read FULL ARTICLE, see EcoSolutions “Food from space: Satellites show future of eco-endeavors.”]

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Photo:  Stonyfield, Organic Valley online promotion

Organic food producers Stonyfield and Organic Valley are joining forces for an organic awareness online campaign. This campaign will benefit:

1) Wholesome Wave based in Bridgeport, Connecticut. This nonprofit features “programs that make nutritious, locally grown food available and affordable to underserved urban and rural communities,” and

2) You! You can enter online for a chance to win a YEAR of free Stonyfield or Organic Valley products, simply by visiting  Celebrate with OrganicThat’s just for starters!

You ALSO have a chance for a “grand prize of one year’s worth of products and a $1,000 gift certificate to Cooking.com, an online kitchenware retailer. For each contest entry, both companies will donate 10 cents each to Wholesome Wave (for a total of 20 cents per entry). The minimum donation will be $30,000, and with enough consumer votes, a total of $50,000 could be donated.” [Source: Media Post News]

[For  more information, see “Stonyfield, Organic Valley Team For Online Campaign” in Media Post News.]

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Photo:  They Draw and Cook book cover

They Draw and Cook is running another contest! You can win $500 for your best, most artistically drawn, “eat pretty” recipe. The contest is sponsored by YouBeauty, “a website founded by Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen to help us achieve our full beauty potential, arming you with proven tools to measure and improve your inner and outer beauty.” [Source: They Cook and Draw]

That means food! ORGANIC of course! Set yourself apart from the competition with an organic recipe! If your recipe wins, you’ll receive $500 US. Or, if you’re one of five “runner-up” winners, you’ll receive either a free TDAC Book (pictured above), or a TDAC 2012 Calendar.

Thirty favorite recipes will be selected by YouBeauty and featured on their site (and uploaded to TDAC). [For contest requirements, see “2011 Eat Pretty Contest.”] If you are as handy with a sketchbook as a spatula, you will love  They Draw and CookThis website is as visually “delicious” as culinarily delightful!

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Video: “Tree frog in Costco organic salad”

This video is a humorous “head’s up” (courtesy of YouTube and The Huffington Post’s Kathleen Miles)  about potential “organic treats” in pre-washed organic salads from Costco (in California at least).

According to Miles, “A special education teacher in Pasadena, California, was in for a big surprise (in a small body) when she bought a box of organic salad from the Alhambra Costco on Monday. As she told the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, when she picked up the plastic container, she “saw two little eyes looking at me. I screamed and I dropped it.” [Source: Huffington Post]

Personally, I’d much rather see “eyes” than half a worm, after a bite into an organic apple! [To read FULL ARTICLE, see “Costco Frog Salad: Does Organic Food Come With Live Treats?”]

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Photo:  US Agricultural Secretary Tom Vilsack “Darling of the Biotech Industry”?

Ah, the politics of food! Farmers AND consumers seem to be losing just now, at least with the latest USDA approval of genetically engineering alfalfa. Montasano and other biotech giants (with politicians in their pockets) seem to be winning. According to Natural News’ Mike Adams:

“This is the USDA’s surrender to Monsanto, and it signifies the beginning of a new era of widespread genetic pollution of North America’s crops and ranch animals (which eat those crops). Even though the USDA recently admitted in its Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) that GE alfalfa may pose a risk to both organic farmers and conventional farmers (Center for Food Safety), the agency suddenly and without scientific justification decided to remove all restrictions and allow Monsanto to regulate itself!”

This USDA decision makes for tough decisions (with minimal choices) for multi-national food producers that champion ORGANICS, such as Whole Foods, Stonyfield Farms and  Organic Valley Foods.

“Whole Foods has made it very clear that they do not support the USDA’s choice to allow for the introduction for Genetically Engineered alfalfa. However, they were forced to make a decision between the 2 options, or else sacrifice their seat at the table and have no voice at all. (The options presented by the USDA were essentially to either allow Monsanto full control to do as they want completely unregulated, or to allow Monsanto to do what they want, but implement some regulation and attempt to control genetically engineered alfalfa so it can co-exist with non-GMO varieties.)” [Source: Fitness Goop “The GMO Battle”].

Let’s hope the fight is NOT over!

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