the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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on decay: dental, moral, and otherwise

dental-31726_1280

In delightfully unsurprising news for conspiracy theorists, a recent paper published in PLOS Medicine Journal reveals a rather crooked historical alliance between the National Institute of Dental Research and the cane and beet sugar industry.

The distillation of the story is alarmingly familiar: federal health organization caves to pressure from big ag and industry groups, turning a blind eye to risk to Americans’ health.

Thousands of internal industry documents analyzed by the paper’s authors reveal that the Sugar Industry knew as early as 1950 that sugar was a key player in dental decay. In order to prevent dentists from doing what dentists arguably do best (handing out apples on Halloween?), trade organizations attempted to deflect attention from the sugar question towards research on enzymes that reduce dental plaque and a dubious vaccine against cavities.

The study notes that a whopping “78% of a report submitted to the NIDR by the sugar industry was directly incorporated into the NIDR’s first request for research proposals” for its National Caries Program (NCP), whose purported goal was to eliminate tooth decay in America. Meanwhile, the NIDR neglected to call for research that would potentially damage sugar industry interests, and, when the agency launched the NCP, it omitted this kind of research from its priorities.

The Sugar Industry responded to the paper by calling its tactics “‘a textbook’ play from the activist agenda.”

To which we say, “Carie on!”


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gmo right to know and april 28 rally in new york

Big money is trying to kill the effort to label GMOs in the state of New York, but GMO Right to Know bills are moving forward. If you’re a New Yorker, please attend the GMO Labeling Rally & Lobby Day at the NY State Capitol in Albany on Tuesday, April 28, 2015. Reserve your seat on a bus today!

Logo with green state of New York shape and "GMO Free NY" text on top of the imageUpdate on GMO Labeling Bills in New York
The GMO labeling bill numbers you need to know are NY State Assembly bill A.617 and NY State Senate bill S.485. Bill A.617 was successfully voted out of the NY Assembly Consumer Affairs and Protection committee in early March and is now awaiting a vote in the Codes committee. The companion bill in the Senate, S.485, has not yet seen any action; it’s in the Consumer Protection committee and will hopefully be voted on soon.

Vote With Your Voices and Feet
Assembly members need to be told to push Bill A.617  forward because people should be able to know if it’s GMO. Go to www.gmofreeny.net to learn how to contact your Assembly member and Senator and what you should say when you call. Even better if you can stop by one of their offices in Albany in person!

Rally for Your Right to Know on April 28
On Tuesday, April 28th, 2015, the NY GMO Labeling Rally & Lobby Day will take place at the State Capitol in Albany, from 11:30 am – 3 pm. The rally will have food, great speakers, and like-minded people. Bus transportation is available from Manhattan, Westchester, Hudson Valley, Long Island, Rochester, Syracuse, Ithaca, and Binghamton and student scholarships are available.

No matter how you get there, just get there and make some NOISE in Albany! See this flyer for more information: April28Rally


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sisters’ camelot free fresh organic produce

Since 1997, we have distributed millions of dollars worth of free fresh organic produce and whole foods through our Food Share program. Maybe you’ve seen us around Minneapolis and St. Paul, out in our brightly painted former Metro Transit bus, distributing the kinds of foods you could buy at the Seward Co-op or the Wedge. We make weekly rounds to distributors – Co-op Partners, Albert’s Organics, and other organic food distribution centers.  On any given day, we may pick up and then distribute fresh ripe organic produce, prepackaged whole foods, bulk goods, and other items that may be overstock or approaching their expiration dates. The food share coordinator and volunteers make random stops where we share food unannounced at a busy intersection or neighborhood park in low-income neighborhoods around the Twin Cities metro area. We meet people, discuss good nutrition, and share food. After sharing, cardboard boxes are recycled and overripe produce is composted at local community gardens, with minimal waste going into the waste stream.

Food Share happens twice a week in the winter and three times a week during the growing season, when we add a Farmers’ Market pick-up to our schedule.  Every week we distribute thousands of pounds of fresh, organic produce.

Foodshare can be reached at foodsharebus@sisterscamelot.org. Volunteers are always welcome, and we’d love to have your help. Click here to get involved


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malnutrition mapping project

Screen Shot 2015-04-02 at 9.04.05 AMThe map includes a number of indicators describing “the double/multiple burden of malnutrition” — the co-existence of malnutrition and rising overweight and obesity — at the population level. The map brings together data from many different sources such as the Global Nutrition Report 2014, the World Health Organization, The International Diabetes Federation, and others. The map is not static or fixed; it will be evolving over time.
One of the exciting aspects of this tool is that it has the potential to include diverse data, across multiple sectors. This allows for the potential of cross-sector data integration and analysis. Understanding the complex interactions between nutrition and other sectors like climate change, agriculture or seasonality, among others, can help program implementers improve the delivery of nutrition interventions and result in more joined-up policy making. In the future, we will seek to include data on status of policies for undernutrition or obesity. To view this map, click HERE!!


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an act to amend maine’s gmo food products labeling law

right to know gmo ME
MOFGA Press Release Regarding LD 991: An Act To Amend Maine’s Genetically Modified Food Products Labeling Law.

Genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, are a hot topic in Maine and across the nation. A new bill could speed implementation of Maine’s historic GMO food labeling law. For decades the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA) has been leading the fight in Maine for good food, good farming and demanding transparency in labeling food made from GMO crops. Of course, several hundred Maine family farmers are growing MOFGA-certified organic crops that are free of GMOs because genetic engineering is a prohibited practice in organic farming.

In 2013, the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA) organized Maine’s Right to Know – GMO coalition, which gained legislative and gubernatorial approval of mandatory labeling of foods derived from genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The law is the result of decades of organizing, research, citizen lobbying and all-around collaboration among citizens from all walks of Maine life. This year Maine legislators will have an opportunity to learn even more about GMOs in food and agriculture, and consider options for a speedier implementation of Maine’s landmark GMO labeling law.

LD 991 – An Act To Amend Maine’s Genetically Modified Food Products Labeling Law – seeks to eliminate a requirement in established law that five contiguous states, including Maine, adopt legislation similar to Maine’s. Connecticut and Vermont already have adopted GMO labeling laws. A bill in the Massachusetts Legislature has broad bi-partisan support. A legislative committee in New Hampshire has been studying the issue. Continue reading


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french organic winegrower fined for refusing to spray grapes with pesticides!

A French organic winegrower who refused to spray his Burgundy vineyard with pesticide was ordered on Monday to pay a €500 fine for flouting official regulations.

The winegrower, Emmanuel Giboulot, had faced a possible six month jail sentence and €30,000 fine for refusing to spray his chardonnay and pinot noir grapes against an insect blamed for spreading a lethal disease known as flavescence dorée. It is attacking the vineyards of the Côte-d’Or region, where Giboulot produces côte de beaune and haute-côte de nuits wines.

Scores of Giboulot’s supporters, including Green MEP Sandrine Bélier, had gathered outside the court in Dijon to hear the verdict. The judge ruled in line with the prosecution’s demand that he should receive a fine of €1,000, with €500 suspended. Giboulot, 51, announced that he would appeal, and said after the hearing: “I still don’t feel guilty. It’s intolerable today to be forced to hide and to be frightened for taking a stand.” To read more, click HERE


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remind yourself about the m.s.t.

Brazil’s Landless Workers Movement, Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra (MST) in Portuguese, is a mass social movement, formed by rural workers and by all those who want to fight for land reform and against injustice and social inequality in rural areas.

Learn more about them on the website:
Friends of the MST (English) 
MST website (Portugese)

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