Interested in a nice dose of asthma medication with your next fast food burger or serving of bacon? If you’re eating conventional meat raised in a CAFO then chances are that’s just what you’re getting.Ractopamine is a type of beta-agonist. Beta-agonists are drugs initially used as intervention for asthma sufferers. As an inhalant they stimulate dilation of the smooth muscle of the lungs and allow for ease in breathing. When injected into the body rather than inhaled beta-agonists decrease smooth muscle activity in the body.

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The Problem of Packaging - Try this simple packaging test. Go to your local farmers market, buy some vegetables then watch the trader pop them into a brown paper bag. There’s something reassuring about seeing it flipped over to seal the pack with a twist.

Next stroll into your nearest supermarket and try to buy anything, really anything, that isn’t pre-wrapped in plastic. Even the bags provided for the limited selection of un-pre-packed veg will be a form of plastic.

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Tangy, sweet, sour, crunchy, and smooth; the first bite of a home pickled Vidalia onion is a flavor adventure. 

So there’s a couple things going on with the conversation on Vidalia Onions. First of all, the Vidalia onion is one of a very small handful of foods that are the equivelent of a protected status. Vidalia onions are a specific variety of onion grown in particular counties in the state of Georgia (U.S.).  They are relatively new to the onion world, being an accidental hybrid that occurred in the depression era and then, according to historical data, began to make a name for itself, until finally it has now become the Georgia state vegetable and its name is legally protected and references only a 20 county region in the south. What's the big deal about vidalia onions? 

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Food fight turns its attention to the Agri-Chem and seed giant Monsanto once again. It’s not another passage in the continuing controversy over their top seller glyphosate this time; although California has ordered that to be labelled carcinogenic.

No, it’s another powerful herbicide produced by Monsanto and a couple of other companies like German leviathan BASF that’s been branded a villain this time. It’s called dicamba. This month two US states, Missouri and Arkansas, have banned dicamba after a mass of complaints about a problem called drift. Nice word drift, it conjures up visions of floating down a river on a dinghy or drifts of wild flowers in a mountain meadow.
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Buttery, creamy, with a hint of earthy nuttiness, Ossau Iraty is a traditional Basque cheese. It's an AOC protected status. Protected status is a practice that is critical to small communities, regions, and traditional means of producing food. 

I stumbled across a wedge of Ossau Iraty quite by accident and am completely smitten. It is delicious! I must confess, sheep’s cheese is beginning to hedge to the top of my favorites list. This particular cheese originates in the Pyrenees and is the only cheese from the Pyrenees with a controlled designation of origin, the AOC. The AOC, is a French designation recognizing that legally any cheese using the name Ossau Iraty must comply with the designated criteria and come from the designated area.

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Bohemian Mojo’s FoodFight column occasionally points the finger at biotech agri-giant Monsanto but today, pardon the pun, we’re DuPonting the finger at DuPont.

The DuPont corporation is the largest seed producing company in the world and by many accounts it’s as slippery as one of its other major, manufactured, products Teflon.

Like its rival Monsanto (more of their ‘rivalry’ later) it spends huge tranches of cash to push its agenda and that’s to exercise corporate control over the food we eat.

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