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Category Archives: Food and Nutrition

Food, the UK and the EU: Brexit or Bremain?

Note – The Brexit vote took place on June 23, 2016 and the referendum decision to leave the EU was won by majority vote. This paper, written before the vote,  addresses the details of the referendum and the potential impact of a decision, on food policy – a dynamic and significant issue within the UK and the EU – with farming comprising 40% of the current EU budget. The food market and agriculture, food security, trade, food and nutrition, diet, food supply chains, laws and regulations are all subjects addressed by the authors of this paper.

Tim Lang of City University London and Victoria Schoen of the Food Research Collaboration“This Briefing Paper explores the food terrain exposed by the wider Brexit versus Bremain Referendum question to be decided by the voting UK public on June 23. It is written to raise issues; to invite academics and civil society working on food matters to consider how their work fits this momentous issue; and to aid informed decisions. The Paper follows from debates and concerns expressed at the 6th City Food Symposium on UK food and Brexit held on December 14, 2015. This Briefing Paper is in two parts. Readers who are already conversant with UK and EU food policy history and the reasons for the UK Referendum on June 23 might wish to skip or skim Part 1 where these issues are covered. This first section explains how the UK is where it is on this debate. Part 2 goes into some key issues at stake in the June 23 vote. This section is where we summarise some of the implications of leaving the EU, the so-called Brexit option. We also explain why we are in, and what voting to stay entails, the Bremain option…”

Whole Genome Sequencing: Cracking the Genetic Code for Foodborne Illness

“A person commits a crime, and the detective uses DNA evidence collected from the crime scene to track the criminal down. An outbreak of foodborne illness makes people sick, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses DNA evidence to track down the bacteria that caused it. Sound far-fetched? It’s not. The FDA has… Continue Reading

GAO Reports – Defense Inventory, Littoral Combat Ship, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, DOD Small Business Contracting

Defense Inventory: Further Analysis and Enhanced Metrics Could Improve Service Supply and Depot Operations, GAO-16-450: Published: Jun 9, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 9, 2016. Littoral Combat Ship: Need to Address Fundamental Weaknesses in LCS and Frigate Acquisition Strategies, GAO-16-356: Published: Jun 9, 2016. Publicly Released: Jun 9, 2016. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: Enhanced Detection Tools… Continue Reading

Origins and Destinations of the World’s Migrants, from 1990-2015

Pew – “The figures in this interactive feature refer to the total number (or cumulative “stocks”) of migrants living around the world as of 1990, 2000, 2010 or 2015 rather than to the annual rate of migration (or current “flows”) in a given year. Since migrants have both an origin and a destination, international migrants… Continue Reading

Toxic Crops and Zoonotic Disease: UNEP Identifies the Emerging Environmental Issues of Our Time

Via United Nations Environment Programme – “From the worrying rise in zoonotic diseases around the world to an examination of how climate change is increasing the toxicity of crops, a UNEP report out today seeks to highlight a number of the world’s key emerging environmental issues. UNEP’s Frontiers report identifies, highlights and offers solutions to… Continue Reading

Google Food Trends 2016 US Report

“In our Google Food Trends Report 2016, we are excited to bring forth the power of data into the hands of the marketers, product developers, restaurateurs, chefs, and foodies. The goal of this report is to share useful data for planning purposes accompanied by curated styles of what we believe can make for impactful trends.… Continue Reading

GAO Reports – Disaster Recovery, DoD Financial Management, Human Trafficking, Immigration Detention, Imported Food Safety, Rail Grant Oversight

Disaster Recovery: FEMA Needs to Assess Its Effectiveness in Implementing the National Disaster Recovery Framework, GAO-16-476: Published: May 26, 2016. Publicly Released: May 26, 2016. DOD Financial Management: Greater Visibility Needed to Better Assess Audit Readiness for Property, Plant, and Equipment, GAO-16-383: Published: May 26, 2016. Publicly Released: May 26, 2016. Human Trafficking: Actions Taken… Continue Reading

FDA modernizes Nutrition Facts label for packaged foods

[May 20, 2016], “the U.S. Food and Drug Administration took a major step in making sure consumers have updated nutritional information for most packaged foods sold in the United States, that will help people make informed decisions about the foods they eat and feed their families. Key Updates The new Nutrition Facts label will include… Continue Reading

Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects 2016

The National Academies Press – Genetically Engineered Crops: Experiences and Prospects (2016) “Genetically engineered (GE) crops were first introduced commercially in the 1990s. After two decades of production, some groups and individuals remain critical of the technology based on their concerns about possible adverse effects on human health, the environment, and ethical considerations. At the same… Continue Reading

CDC – Multistate Outbreak of Listeriosis Linked to Frozen Vegetables

“Read the Recall & Advice to Consumers, Restaurants, and Retailers Since March 2016, CDC has been collaborating with public health officials in several states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate a multistate outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes infections (listeriosis). Listeria can cause a serious, life-threatening illness. Eight people infected with the outbreak… Continue Reading

USDA Organic Survey 2014

“The 2014 Organic Survey is a Census Special Study conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) in conjunction with USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA). This is the third organic production and practices survey NASS has conducted on the national level; the previous data collection efforts were the 2011 Certified… Continue Reading

Research on the science of exercise vs diet

Via Vox: Why you shouldn’t exercise to lose weight, explained with 60+ studies by Julia Belluz and Javier Zarracina on April 28, 2016 – Exercise is excellent and critical for maintaining good health, but eating less is the key to maintaining a weight ideal for you. It is not one or the other – an… Continue Reading