Food Dialogues℠: New York

Food Dialogues New York

Join the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) on Thursday, Nov. 15 for The Food Dialogues: New York. Farmers, ranchers, industry experts, pundits and media will meet for in-depth conversations on today’s most provocative topics concerning food and its production – antibiotics, biotechnology, and media, marketing and healthy food choices.

To RSVP for this event or sign-up to receive more information, please click here.

Panelists – As of October 4, 2012:

The Media, Marketing and Healthy Choices panel will examine how the media’s coverage of food and its health benefits has impacted consumer choice. This discussion also will address what more can be done to answer Americans’ questions about how their food is grown and raised. Expert panelists include:

  • Tracie McMillan, author, The American Way of Eating
  • Debbi Beauvais, RD, SNS, New York School Nutrition President and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics spokesperson
  • Blake Hurst, President, Missouri Farm Bureau
  • Craig McNamara, California organic farmer
  • Richard Ball, New York vegetable farmer
  • Carolyn O’Neil, MS, WebMD, RD

For the Your Toughest Questions Answered on Antibiotics and Your Food panel, experts will discuss antibiotics and its use and application in animal agriculture. USFRA has secured:

  • Barb Determan, Pork Producer (Iowa), Heartland Marketing Group
  • Dr. Christine Hoang, DVM, MPH, CPH, Assistant Director of the Division of Scientific Activities of the American Veterinary Medical Association
  • Jean Halloran, Director of Food Policy Initiatives, Consumers Union
  • Keith Ayoob, pediatric nutritionist, Albert Einstein School of Medicine
  • Dr. Karen Jordan, Brush Creek Swiss Farms, North Carolina – dairy farmer and veterinarian

Your Toughest Questions Answered on Biotechnology (GMOs) and Your Food panel will include experts who are well-versed in the use of biotech seeds, including the benefits and concerns related to long-term health and food labeling including:

  • Dr. Bob Goldberg, plant molecular biologist currently using genomics to identify all of the genes required to “make a seed”, UCLA
  • Jerry Slocum, Mississippi soybean farmer
  • Dr. Julie Howard, Chief Scientist, Food Security, USAID
  • Gregory Jaffe, Director of Biotechnology, CSPI
  • Fred Kirschenmann, president of the board of directors, Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture and distinguished fellow, Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University
  • Cheryl Rogowski, New York organic farmer

In addition to the panel discussions, USFRA has plans to announce farmers and ranchers who are finalists for its Faces of Farming and Ranching program.

There is no charge to attend The Food Dialogues: New York. To RSVP for this event or sign-up to receive more information, please click here.

Post-Hurricane Sandy Volunteer & Donation Opportunities

Hurricane Sandy Volunteer and Donation Opportunities

Neighbors Together

If you are looking for a way to contribute directly to those in need post-Hurricane Sandy, Neighbors Together could use your financial support as they repair the damage to their industrial freezer and refrigerator and recover from food loss at their soup kitchen. Help them be able to resume feeding meals to their members. Neighbors Together is committed to ending hunger and poverty in the Ocean Hill, Brownsville, and Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhoods of Brooklyn, one of the lowest-income areas in New York City. Donate here. Thank you for your generosity!

Masbia

Masbia needs help feeding 600+ relocated seniors at the Park Slope Armory. For only $6 they can serve one person a freshly cooked nutritious hot dinner. Donate here. Masbia soup kitchen network is where the rubber meets the road in the fight against hunger. They feed hot, nutritious meals to hungry men, women and children. No statistics. No bureaucracy. No middleman. They deposit food in empty stomachs.

Jimmy’s No. 43

Jimmy’s No. 43 has been a long-time friend and supporter of Food Systems Network NYC and other like-minded good food organizations. Last year, Jimmy’s raised thousands of dollars for relief when Hurricane Irene came through and hurt local farmers. Now, Jimmy’s, located in the East Village, needs help getting power restored to their restaurant and bar. Help them out by buying a gift certificate to the restaurant or ticket to one (or more) of their amazing fall events. Jimmy is committed to making these events happen. They’re down, but not out! To purchase a gift certificate and see a list of available ticketed events, visit the Jimmy’s No. 43 website.

City Meals on Wheels

Leading up to Hurricane Sandy and in the aftermath, Citymeals-on-Wheels has been taking emergency measures to ensure New York’s homebound elderly have access to food. Given the impact on transportation and power, many of the senior centers they work with are understaffed. If you are able to volunteer for meal deliveries, they will need extra help throughout the week. Please see more information here. In addition to volunteers, they need to raise funds to replenish the depleted supplies in their warehouse. Please make a gift today to help them respond to this crisis and prepare for the coming winter months.

City Harvest

Now serving New York City for more than 30 years, City Harvest is the world’s first and the city’s only food rescue organization. Whether you’re part of a group or just one person, there are plenty of ways for you to help in our fight against hunger. If interested in learning more about our volunteer opportunities please contact volunteerservices@cityharvest.org. Or, donate to help feed children, the elderly, and all hungry New Yorkers.

Food Bank NYC

Since before day one of Sandy’s assault on our city, Food Bank For New York City has continued to serve their network of charities and needy families. Sandy’s impact is so much more than damage to buildings and trees. As new supplies of water and other supplies requiring no electricity roll into their warehouse, they know that they will be able to continue to meet the needs of hunger and poverty for those who have experienced it in the past and those meeting it for the first time as a result of this disaster. To join them in the fight, please: Donate Now, Volunteer, and Donate Food.

Youth Farm at the High School for Public Service Storm Clean-Up

  • Location: 600 Kingston Ave, between Rutland and Winthrop Ave
  • Date: Saturday, November 3, 2012 – 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
  • What: Join the Youth Farm at the High School for Public Service this Saturday. They will be spending the day cleaning up the farm from the storm, and putting everything to bed for the winter. Stay for a free workshop on GARLIC.

FOOD MYTHBUSTERS: COMING TO A CITY NEAR YOU ON FOOD DAY, OCTOBER 24TH

The myth of industrial agriculture’s importance to the international food market is exposed by the Food Mythbusters. In this great article, Anna Lappé explains the importance of non-GMO foods and also promotes the new movie Food Mythbusters! coming to a theater near you!

It’s a tired old refrain you’ve probably heard before: “Industrial agriculture is the only way to feed the world.” Even if you shop at your weekly farmers market, and love your local kale and carrots, maybe you also secretly worry: Are you cursing people to more hunger around the world for your organic proclivities?

Well, folks, the research is in. Study after study is showing the opposite is true: we can only ensure a well-fed world if we start shifting away from an agricultural system dependent on fossil fuels, mined minerals, and lots of water—all of which will only get more costly as they run out. Some of the most esteemed global institutions have documented that the best way to fight hunger—and grow food abundantly—is to go for organic and ecological production methods and get people eating whole, real food again.

So if we have scientific consensus, why don’t we have more public consciousness? You can find the answer in the marketing budgets of Big Ag. Thanks to well-funded, multi-decade communications campaigns by the very corporations profiting from chemical agriculture, many of us are still in the dark about the true costs of industrial agriculture and the true potential of sustainable agriculture.

Thanks to these efforts, we are inundated with messaging that we need their products—chemicals, fertilizer, genetically engineered seeds—to ensure the world is fed. We hear it all the time.

Read the rest of the article here.

Americans Eat Their Weight in Genetically Engineered Food

Renee Sharp has a great article on genetically modified food and the dangers of eating modified food.

Americans are eating their weight and more in genetically engineered food every year, a new Environmental Working Group analysis shows. On average, people eat an estimated 193 pounds of genetically engineered food in a 12-month period. The typical American adult weighs 179 pounds.

These figures raise a question: If you were planning on eating your body weight of anything in a year, wouldn’t you want tomake sure it was safe to eat?

Shockingly, virtually no long-term health studies have been done on consumption of genetically engineered food.

Check out the full article at the Environmental Working Group.

Let others know why you buy non-GMO!


When the US government ignored repeated warnings by its own scientists and allowed untested genetically modified (GM) crops into our environment and food supply, it was a gamble of unprecedented proportions. The health of all living things and all future generations were put at risk by an infant technology.

After two decades, physicians and scientists have uncovered a grave trend. The same serious health problems found in lab animals, livestock, and pets that have been fed GM foods are now on the rise in the US population. And when people and animals stop eating genetically modified organisms (GMOs), their health improves.

This seminal documentary provides compelling evidence to help explain the deteriorating health of Americans, especially among children, and offers a recipe for protecting our future and ourselves.

We’re looking to assemble a huge Non-GMO Click and Send Revolutionary Army. If you enlist, your job is simple. Several times a week until the election we will send you an email/post. Immediately pass it on, post it, tweet it, watch the clip, download the podcast, keep the message circulating in all the social media ways you know how. Sign up for the Social Army. Let others know why you buy non-GMO!

Vote Yes on Prop 37!

In the past several months, the Yes on 37 campaign to label genetically engineered foods has seen excitement around this David vs Goliath grassroots effort take off. Already giant chemical and pesticide companies have amassed a $27 million war chest to defeat your Right to Know what’s in your food. Monsanto has donated $4.2 million and DuPont is in for $4 million…

But we’re fighting back!

This week, Yes on 37 launches a series of 60 second ads that will air across Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Francisco and San Diego media markets, to coincide with meal times.

As you know, every day many Californians eat genetically engineered foods but they don’t realize it.

Today, a growing body of research linking GMOs to health problems, and intensifying debate amongst scientists as to their safety and these ads make a simple yet powerful point — Californians have the right to know what’s in the food they are eating every day, and the right to choose whether to feed it to their families.  Proposition 37 gives us that right by requiring GMOs to be clearly labeled.

The Truth About the Opposition

Our ad launch follows the Yes on 37’s first TV ad, which chronicled the long pattern of false consumer health claims made by the leading backers of the No On 37 campaign — which have included vouching for the safety of DDT, Agent Orange, and cigarettes.

Californians are already skepticalabout the wild and inaccurate claims by the opposition and as more people learn about this initiative and the dubious credibility of the pesticide and junk food companies spending $27 million to keep them in the dark, the momentum behind our historic grassroots campaign for common sense food transparency continues to grow.

Why We’ll Win – Truth and Momentum

The most recent polling in the race, released this week by Pepperdine University shows Yes on 37 Campaign at 67% support – up 41 points over its opposition.

Joined most recently by national grocery retailer Whole Foods, the City Councils of Berkeley and Pacifica, the North County Times and the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors, more than 2,000 groups have now joined the Yes on 37, the California Right to Know Campaign — a diverse coalition that includes media outlets, elected officials, food manufacturers and retailers, and leading consumer,  environmental, farming, health, women’s, faith-based, political and labor organizations.

The Power of Action, Your Vote Counts!

The freedom to vote is the hallmark of our democracy. It is both a privilege and a civic duty. Yet, in the 2008 elections, only 64 percent of voting-age citizens voted.

Con Edison’s 2012 Get Out the Vote Poster Design Content was designed to encourage civic engagement and voter participation.

We asked teens from New York City and Westchester County to design posters illustrating the importance and privilege of voting. We received more than 60 eye-popping entries, inspired by everything from iconic elephants and donkeys to rock music and traffic signals.

Three winners will be selected, but all of the posters are on exhibit at Federal Hall in Lower Manhattan from October 25 through November 7, 2012.

Check out the Get Out the Vote Poster Contest sponsored by ConEdison

Tell the FDA, We Have the Right To Know. JUST LABEL IT


Most Americans, including moms, haven’t been told about some of the ingredients that are in the food they eat. So it’s no wonder that 92% of Americans want the FDA to label genetically engineered foods. If more of us speak out about why we care about the food we put in our own bodies and in our children’s bodies, then we can convince the FDA to change its policy. Watch this video from Food, Inc. filmmaker Robert Kenner to hear why we have the right to know what’s in our food and then ask the FDA to require labeling.

What are Genetically Engineered Foods / GMOs?

Plants or animals that have had their genetic makeup altered to exhibit traits that are not naturally theirs. -From the glossary on the Monsanto website.

Organisms in which the genetic material (DNA) has been altered in a way that does not occur naturally.

-World Health Organization

“Genetically Engineered Foods”, “Genetically modified organisms,” or GMOs, are organisms that have been created through application of transgenic, gene-splicing techniques that are part of biotechnology. These transgenic methods for moving genes around are also called “genetic engineering,” or GE.

This relatively new science allows DNA (genetic material) from one species to be transferred into another species, creating transgenic organisms with combinations of genes from plants, animals, bacteria, and even viral gene pools. The mixing of genes from different species that have never shared genes in the past is what makes GMOs and GE crops so unique. It is impossible to create such transgenic organisms through traditional crossbreeding methods. Take Action, sign the petition.

STARTING A COMMUNITY GARDEN: You can do it, get a team together

STARTING A COMMUNITY GARDEN

There are many ways to start a community garden. Whether you’re working with friends, neighbors, or a local organization, there are many things you’ll want to consider before you ever dig the first hole. This fact sheet is designed to give many different groups the basic information they need to get their gardening project off the ground. These lists are in no way meant to be complete. Each main idea will probably trigger more questions, so an assortment of ways to carry out that idea are presented; pick and choose those that seem to apply to your own situation. Also check out their LINKS, TOOLS, RESOURCES and STORE pages to find more helpful articles and resources. Also visit the RebelTomato website for tools for planning a community garden and enjoying the harvests. Click here to download a PDF version of the publication.

  • Form a Planning Committee
  • Choose a Site
  • Prepare and Develop the Site
  • Organize the Garden
  • Insurance
  • Setting up a New Gardening Organization
  • Organizational Considerations | Bylaws
  • How to Manage Your Community Garden
  • Sample Guidelines and Rules | Application Form
  • Troubleshooting
  • Children’s Plots | People Problems and Solutions
  • Resources
  • Horticultural information | Seeds | Bedding plants

http://communitygarden.org/learn/starting-a-community-garden.php

Working together to ensure the sustained availability of non-GMO food & products

Helping you make informed shopping decisions

The retailers who started the Non-GMO Project were motivated by a simple idea. They believed that consumers in North America should have access to clearly-labeled non-GMO food and products, now and in the future. That conviction continues to guide the Non-GMO Project, as North America’s only independent verification for products made according to best practices for GMO avoidance.

What does “Non-GMO Project Verified seal” mean?

The verification seal indicates that the product bearing the seal has gone through our verification process. Our verification is an assurance that a product has been produced according to consensus-based best practices for GMO avoidance:

 

We require ongoing testing of all at-risk ingredients—any ingredient being grown commercially in GMO form must be tested prior to use in a verified product.

We use an Action Threshold of 0.9%. This is in alignment with laws in the European Union, where any product containing more than 0.9% GMO must be labeled. Absence of all GMOs is the target for all Non-GMO Project Standard compliant products. Continuous improvement practices toward achieving this goal must be part of the Participant’s quality management systems.

After the test, we require rigorous traceability and segregation practices to be followed in order to ensure ingredient integrity through to the finished product.

For low-risk ingredients, we conduct a thorough review of ingredient specification sheets to determine absence of GMO risk.

Verification is maintained through an annual audit, along with onsite inspections for high-risk products.

Join Yoko Ono, Paul McCartney, Sean Lennon, Lady Gaga supporting Artists Against Fracking

Fracking Hell: The Untold Story: As told on Link TV


Watch more Earth Focus at http://www.linktv.org/earthfocus

An original investigative report by Earth Focus and UK’s Ecologist Film Unit looks at the risks of natural gas development in the Marcellus Shale. From toxic chemicals in drinking water to unregulated interstate dumping of potentially radioactive waste that experts fear can contaminate water supplies in major population centers including New York City, are the health consequences worth the economic gains?

Marcellus Shale contains enough natural gas to supply all US gas needs for 14 years. But as gas drilling takes place, using a process called hydraulic fracturing or “fracking,” toxic chemicals and methane gas seep into drinking water. Now experts fear that unacceptable levels of radioactive Radium 226 in gas development waste.

Fracking chemicals are linked to bone, liver and breast cancers, gastrointestinal, circulatory, respiratory, developmental as well as brain and nervous system disorders. Such chemicals are present in frack waste and may find their way into drinking water and air.

Waste from Pennsylvania gas wells — waste that may also contain unacceptable levels of radium — is routinely dumped across state lines into landfills in New York, Ohio and West Virginia. New York does not require testing waste for radioactivity prior to dumping or treatment. So drill cuttings from Pennsylvania have been dumped in New York’s Chemung and other counties and liquid waste is shipped to treatment plants in Auburn and Watertown New York. How radioactive is this waste? Experts are calling are for testing to find out.

New York State may have been the first state in the nation to put a temporary hold on fracking pending a safety review, but it allows other states to dump toxic frack waste within its boundaries.

With a gas production boom underway in the Marcellus Shale and plans for some 400,000 wells in the coming decades, the cumulative impact of dumping potential lethal waste without adequate oversight is a catastrophe waiting to happen. And now U.S. companies are exporting fracking to Europe.

SignOn.org: Re-Inventing People-Powered Politics

SignOn.orgis an online campaign platform from MoveOn.org—the folks who helped invent Internet organizing and have been on the cutting edge of online, people-powered politics since we were founded in 1998.

SignOn.org blends your ideas and passions with MoveOn’s years of expertise running online campaigns. Our cutting-edge tools and in-depth trainings help individuals and organizations start campaigns on any issue that’s important to them. We provide tools to create petitions, strategies to build those petitions into powerful, winning campaigns, and the ability to keep the momentum building over time.

How it works

We encourage and empower regular folks to become leaders. You shouldn’t need a Super PAC to have the power to change your community. We provide individuals with the tools and training they need to become effective advocates for their causes.

We believe in progressive political change. Many of our biggest petitions are about finding ways to fix our broken system: passing progressive laws, checking the power of corporate lobbyists, and holding politicians accountable. From city councils to state legislatures to Congress, SignOn.org petition creators are helping build a society that works for everyone.

We connect MoveOn members directly with the hottest SignOn.org campaigns. With more than 7 million members, MoveOn provides start-up campaigns on SignOn.org with a critical boost of grassroots support and the means to organize long-term via email.

SignOn.org: Re-Inventing People-Powered Politics 

We connect SignOn.org petition signers directly to their elected officials. We’ve developed smart and responsive methods of electronic delivery to ensure that people’s voices get through in the corridors of power. In our first year of operation, hundreds of elected officials responded directly to their constituents via SignOn.org.

We’re nonprofit, and we can’t be bought. SignOn.org is entirely funded by small donations from our members. And unlike other petition sites, we never promote petitions because someone paid us to—we only promote the petitions that MoveOn members support. Our system works because we have a tiny staff and incredibly low overhead.

We respect privacy. Period. We’ll never, ever sell your email address to anyone. Ever.

Who’s using SignOn.org?

Since our launch in early 2011, tens of thousands of petitions have been started on SignOn.org, garnering millions of signatures for campaigns. Most petition creators are regular people who want to make their voices heard. Also, progressive state legislators and organizations such as Planned Parenthood, the AFL-CIO, and the Sierra Club have used SignOn.org to give their campaigns a major grassroots boost. Click here to read about SignOn.org success stories.

Terms of Service

SignOn.org is the non-profit petition site that will never sell your personal information and will never promote a petition because we were paid to. MoveOn.org Civic Action sponsors SignOn.org but does not endorse the contents of petitions on the site. For more information on MoveOn, visit MoveOn.org.

National Family Farm Coalition

The National Family Farm Coalition represents family farm and rural groups whose members face the challenge of the deepening economic recession in rural communities. The NFFC was founded in 1986.

The combination of our member groups’ grassroots strength and NFFC’s experience working on the national level enables us to play a unique role in securing a sustainable, economically just, healthy, safe and secure food and farm system. Additional power comes from collaborative work with a carefully built network of domestic and international organizations that share similar goals.

NFFC chooses its projects based on the potential to empower family farmers by reducing the corporate control of agriculture and promoting a more socially just farm and food policy. NFFC.net

Farm Together Now recently teamed up with the National Family Farm Coalition to make a video about Via Campesina’s seven principles of food sovereignty. The video features members of the NFFC from across the country:

  • Margot McMillen, Missouri Rural Crisis Center
  • Bob St. Peter, Food for Maine’s Future
  • Daniel Teague, Mississippi Association of Cooperatives/Federation of Southern Cooperatives
  • John Peck, Family Farm Defenders, Wisconsin
  • Dena Hoff, Northern Plains Resource Council, Montana
  • John Kinsman, Family Farm Defenders, Wisconsin
  • Ben Burkett, Mississippi Association of Cooperatives/Federation of Southern Cooperatives