Challenges to cooking while living through a home renovation and two food stories in the news this month

It was not something we really wanted to put ourselves through, but our kitchen was small and cramped. There were two drawers missing doors. Besides, the carpeting in the living room and bedrooms was looking seedy and the white tiles in the kitchen and halls were off color. We were being told by friends and relatives that we really should do some renovation. Little did … Continue reading Challenges to cooking while living through a home renovation and two food stories in the news this month

More Pressure Cooker: Food distribution to low-income families

Too many families in America do not get enough to eat. There are many ways to help reduce food insecurity, but these efforts, while beneficial, tend to be inadequate. Two weeks ago, I reviewed Pressure Cooker: Why Home Cooking Won’t Solve Our Problems and What We Can Do About It by Sarah Bowen, Joslyn Brenton and Sinikka Elliott. In that review I described the challenges … Continue reading More Pressure Cooker: Food distribution to low-income families

“Just Trust the Supermarket”: Processed Food from Home, and the Immigrants Who Look for Them by Jonathan Katz

Growing up, we always had avkat marak in the house. Avkat marak is powdered soup: you pour some of it into hot water, and boom! You have stock. In Israel, where my mother grew up, avkat marak is a pantry staple: it is not just used for stock or soups, but as a seasoning for pashtidot (egg-based casseroles), stews, and sauces. It is a very … Continue reading “Just Trust the Supermarket”: Processed Food from Home, and the Immigrants Who Look for Them by Jonathan Katz

Pressure Cooker: Why Home Cooking Won’t Solve Our Problems and What We Can Do About It

The campaign against ultra-processed food is mostly about home cooking (healthy) and products containing food additives (unhealthy). It is a nice concept, but it is grossly over-simplistic. Designation of ultra-processed is more about avoiding negative components (sugar, fat and salt as well as additives) rather than consuming essential nutrients (vitamins, minerals and protein). Highly restrictive diets are pushed to limits rather than ones that seek … Continue reading Pressure Cooker: Why Home Cooking Won’t Solve Our Problems and What We Can Do About It

Dollar stores—friend or enemy to providing food access in low-income areas?

Dollar stores are the trendy topic for those of us interested in reclaiming food deserts by providing greater access to fresh meats, fruits and vegetables. It has been pointed out that convenience stores selling food of questionable nutritional value far outnumber those selling whole foods, but that is not the critical question I am addressing this month. The total amount of food available and volume of … Continue reading Dollar stores—friend or enemy to providing food access in low-income areas?

Challenges in handling perishable foods in small stores that sell food on the side

Imagine living in a community, either here or abroad, without easy access to fresh food. It could be in a city with no ready transportation to a market within a mile, or it could be in the country where the nearest grocery store is a 20-30 minute drive away. Welcome to a food desert. Millions of Americans share this fate. Is there anything we can … Continue reading Challenges in handling perishable foods in small stores that sell food on the side

Food Access and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by Bailey Houghtaling

Have you heard of SNAP? Or the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)? The SNAP used to be called food stamps and, in the U.S., this federal nutrition assistance program provides low-income Americans with supplemental income for household food and beverage purchases. We know that a lack of access to safe and nutritious foods causes a host of issues for populations, especially … Continue reading Food Access and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by Bailey Houghtaling

Food deserts, food swamps, food apartheid, grocery gaps and other names for food maldistribution

I learned recently that I need to be careful what I share with my pastor. I was particularly pleased with the Jonathan Katz post on processed food, disability and autonomy, and I recommended that he read the article.  My pastor liked it and suggested that I pursue the issue of food deserts, a topic I had not planned to write about on the blog. Two … Continue reading Food deserts, food swamps, food apartheid, grocery gaps and other names for food maldistribution

Food in the news–July 2019

What are anti-vaxxers turning their attention to as a possible cause of autism? Why are opponents of meat substitutes engaged in vegan shaming? How do the 2020 Presidential candidates shake out on the Green New Deal and related issues? Are natural flavors superior to artificial flavors? Are expiration dates useful or useless? These are just some of the questions being asked about food in the … Continue reading Food in the news–July 2019

Reducing Food Waste: A Systems-Level Approach By: Susan Chen & Lily Yang

Imagine feeding a world with 9 billion people in a climate that is rapidly warming (Godfrey, 2010). Vital agricultural resources (e.g. land, water, nutrients) are quickly becoming increasingly more difficult to obtain. As food prices have soared, so too has food insecurity. Simultaneously, food is being discarded due to its increasing unaffordability as discarding unbought food has become cheaper than distributing it to those in … Continue reading Reducing Food Waste: A Systems-Level Approach By: Susan Chen & Lily Yang