Why I volunteer at the food pantry by Roberta Parillo

I had heard about food pantries but never knew what went on at a food pantry, who worked or volunteered at food pantries, or who received food from food pantries.  One of my neighbors mentioned that her church announced that a food pantry was looking for additional volunteers.  I could say “the rest is history” because I have volunteered at food pantries and food banks … Continue reading Why I volunteer at the food pantry by Roberta Parillo

In defense of food pantries

“Equality if the mother of justice . . . Justice is the offspring of equality.” –Philo of Alexandria Rebecca de Souza criticized food pantries and the volunteers who inhabit them in Feeding the Other. Today’s blog is a direct response to those criticisms.  She studied two very different food pantries in Duluth, Minnesota. The book relates what she learned. I volunteered at a monthly food … Continue reading In defense of food pantries

Feeding the Other: Whiteness Privilege and Neoliberal Stigma in Food Pantries

Rebecca de Souza is a middle-class Indian immigrant living in Duluth, Minnesota. She writes a harsh critique of food pantries and the volunteers who work in them. Feeding the Other characterizes the ubiquitous pantries that dot the American landscape. It concludes that these pantries are  part of the hunger problem rather than part of its solution. The author advocates radical change in the American food … Continue reading Feeding the Other: Whiteness Privilege and Neoliberal Stigma in Food Pantries

Blueberries, onions and other crops

So many crops, so little time. Blueberries, onions, snap beans, peppers, rockmelons, broccoli, bananas and apples. Then there was bread and wine and rice and baby food. Why couldn’t I ever focus on only a few foods? My thirty years of research at the University of Georgia were great. Almost half of those years were in Griffin. Athens occupied the rest of my career. Those … Continue reading Blueberries, onions and other crops

What I learned about peaches during my research career

Another crop our Postharvest Systems Team studied was peaches. Georgia is the Peach State. They still represent a major fruit crop in the state, but we no longer hold the distinction of the top producer. South Carolina claims that title. California produces prettier peaches than those on the East Coast. Our peaches have much better flavor. We attribute our predominance to the freestone varieties. California … Continue reading What I learned about peaches during my research career

What I learned about tomatoes during my research career

Readers of this blog know me as a defender of processed foods. That does not mean that I avoid fresh, whole foods. My life as a researcher in food science focused on fresh fruits and vegetables. My foremost subject was tomatoes. Eighteen of my 103 published scientific articles featured fresh tomatoes. I benefitted from the knowledge of my students, my colleagues, and my reading. Note … Continue reading What I learned about tomatoes during my research career

Tomatoland: From Harvest of Shame to Harvest of Hope

The third edition of Tomatoland by Barry Estabrook called out to me for many reasons. My research involved tomatoes more than any other food. I live 50 miles from Immokalee (pronounced like broccoli). I listened to an impassioned speech by a Coalition of Immokalee Workers at a local meeting. The planets aligned inside my mind as I read this book. Farmworker inequity does not enter … Continue reading Tomatoland: From Harvest of Shame to Harvest of Hope

Ingredients revisited: Ultra-processed food, Random Chance, and a possible mechanism

Ontario must be a strange place. Aquarians are 23% more likely to experience chest pain than all other signs of the Zodiac. Their hospitals admit 13% more people with the sign of Pisces for heart failure. Librans suffer from 37% more fractures of the pelvis than other patients. Or so we learn from a publication (1) described in Ingredients by George Zaidan. No, our Zodiac signs don’t condemn … Continue reading Ingredients revisited: Ultra-processed food, Random Chance, and a possible mechanism

NOVA as seen by a cook and a food scientist

Linn Steward, a trained chef and RDN, wrote a post on this blog in March. Since then we have engaged in a running discussion on various food topics. I value her comments and consider her my muse. The most contentious topic we have discussed is on the NOVA classification of foods. She finds the classification useful as a guide when she cooks. I find the … Continue reading NOVA as seen by a cook and a food scientist

How much does homemade mayo differ from store-bought mayo? By Julie Jones

Data whole-heartedly substantiate Dr. Carlos Monteiro’s statement that the obese are at greater risk of contracting COVID-19 and that it increases the risk for more severe illness. Obesity is a factor in other chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, which also increase COVID risk.  All of these underlying conditions create a state of chronic inflammation. Thus, an already overtaxed immune system … Continue reading How much does homemade mayo differ from store-bought mayo? By Julie Jones