HandPicked 8–Stuff That Matters

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There’s always a lot going on in the space we call ‘real food’, but not every story generates a whole post on its own.

That’s why we’ve created the HandPicked 8–to give you a quick idea of some of the things happening in the wide world of food.

June is here. What are you looking forward to at your farmers’ market? What’s got you excited about real food these days?

Here are some good things to check out–this week’s HandPicked 8.

1. WTF, FDA? A story up on offthegridnews.com reports that proposed new rules would (among other things) so severely restrict the use of compost it would amount to an outright ban. How is this possible? Judith McGeary, executive director of the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance is interviewed in this article and paints a pretty bleak picture. We have to watch this story.

2. Our friend,  was part of Edible Institute’s recent gathering. She has put up an afterthought entitled “What I Wish I’d Said at Edible Institute: Thoughts on Serious (Food) Media in the Digital Age”. Among other things, Ms. Langholtz sees a ‘parallel between the changes in the food environment and the changes in the media environment’. This is, for sure, worth a read.

3. CivilEats.com has compiled a rather impressive list of the top 24 food and agriculture reporters (who happen to be women) that ‘you should know about’. Naomi Starkman writes that ‘Women are the backbone of today’s food media. And yet, the women reporting on this issue area don’t always get the attention they deserve.’ We agree. So, which of your faves went missing from this list?

4. Here it is: Obama Failed the Foodies. That’s what NewRepublic is saying straight out in an article by Jason Zengerle. How Barack Obama Sold Out the Kale Crowd is a clear-eyed appraisal of the weak support ‘good food’ has gotten from this president. Here’s a pretty telling quote: “He (the President) has overpromised reforms, underestimated the strength of his opposition, and then flinched from real fights.” Damn.

5. Stress eating is something we all do on occasion. Coping with stress with a trip to the fridge can actually be a help because some foods may help you feel better, according to Epicurious.com. Red bell peppers, yogurt with nuts, peppermint and vanilla tea, popcorn and raw carrots make their list. Check it out.

6. Here’s something we hope you never encounter. What Happens When CSAs Go Belly Up is up right now on modernfarmer.com. Meaghan Agnew writes that bankruptcy at a Groton, Massachusetts farm has raised many questions about the legal ramifications when a CSA goes dark. Not a good story.

7. We have always loved the vitality, the verve, and the humor at cuesa.org (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) in San Francisco. The organization has launched a clever poster campaign on the city’s MUNI public transportation system touting the iconic stature of the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. Good stuff.

8. If they haven’t already shown up at your farmers’ market, they soon will–garlic scapes. Every season we hear someone ask,‘what the heck is a garlic scape’? And the answer: they’re the plant’s flowerless green stalks. The scapes are usually lopped off to allow the garlic plant the lion’s share of the soil’s nutrients. Foodandwine.com has put up a helpful Everything You Need to Know About Garlic Scapes to answer the questions that arise when these flavorful squiggles make their appearance.

And that’s some of the good stuff on our plates, June 4, 2014!

Have an idea for a story? Send it to us, we’ll try and use it.

Photo credit: Staci Strauss