Thursday, August 15, 2013

Genevieve's Farm and Food News Roundup

GenevievePaul Quinn College in the heart of Dallas, Texas has turned their football field into an urban farm, growing and providing fresh fruits and vegetables for the community. The "We Over Me" farm is an effort to encourage organic growth by offering students urban farm classes as well.

Ron Finley, L.A. resident and self-proclaimed "gangster gardener," drew quite the attention back in 2010 when he began growing vegetables outside his home, made free for anyone who walked by. Now, Finley has drawn attention yet again, in his recent TED Talk where he encourages city dwellers to "get outside and plant." His "gangster gardener" persona has earned him 1.3 million views, and has sparked a green-thumb phenomenon in L.A. Watch his 10-minute TED Talk here:

Chipotle Mexican Grill had fans worried when word spread that they were considering serving beef that had been treated with antibiotics due to the recent beef shortage. Chipotle has made clear that they have not changed their policy of serving only "responsibly raised" beef, but they may consider beef from animals that have been treated with antibiotics due to a specific illness. As for now, their ban on meat from animals treated with antibiotics for non-therapeutic use still stands.

Two years ago, a farm in Colorado supplied cantaloupes with listeria bacteria that led to one of the most harmful foodborne outbreaks this country has ever seen. To this day, the farmers of Rocky Ford, CO, are taking a huge hit. Even after making radical changes to equipment and cleaning practices, cantaloupe growers are planting and selling less and less of their crop, finding it hard to bounce back, let alone sell outside of the state.

Following in the footsteps of their Maine neighbors, members of the New Hampshire House subcommittee began work this week on a GMO labeling bill. The bill would require all products that have been in any way genetically modified to be labeled so, with the exception of meat, dairy, and eggs. If successful, it will take effect next July.

Sue and Ray Short of Tarrant County, Texas, prove that you can farm at any age. In their 70’s and well past retirement age, the Shorts stay busy maintaining their apple and peach trees, harvesting eggplant and okra, and mowing 11 acres of the land they have lived on for 30 years now.

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