Archives - July 2008

Carcinogen Worries Stick to Food Packaging

The next time you make some microwave popcorn or cook a frozen pizza, consider this: The packaging of many of these products contains a chemical that the Environmental Protection Agency considers potentially carcinogenic and wants businesses to voluntarily stop using by 2015. Studies show that this chemical -- perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA -- is present in 98% of Americans' blood and 100% of newborns. It doesn't break down and thus accumulates in the system over time. (Full Article) Posted: 7-31-08

From Farm to School: Improving Small Farm Viability and School Meals

Improving the nutritional value of school meals is a growing priority among school systems across the United States. In an effort to provide a solution for school administrators, the USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service (CSREES) funded a coalition of school districts and farmers from four states to participate in a new program called "From Farm to School: Improving Small Farm Viability and School Meals." (Full Article) Posted: 7-31-08

Sonoma Farm to Table

Two years ago, while accidentally locked in a bathroom at a Paris hotel, Jil Hales of Healdsburg's Barndiva got a cell phone call from a tomato farmer back home. Alone with her thoughts, Hales hatched an innovative idea: a network that would help Sonoma County chefs and farmers work together and connect more easily. (Full Article) Posted: 7-31-08

California Bars Restaurant Use of Trans Fats

California, a national trendsetter in all matters edible, became the first state to ban trans fats in restaurants when Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill Friday to phase out their use.

Under the new law, trans fats, long linked to health problems, must be excised from restaurant products beginning in 2010, and from all retail baked goods by 2011. Packaged foods will be exempt. (Full Article) Posted: 7-26-08

Sunflower Farmers Markets Selects NCR POS With Two-Sided Receipt Printing

Boulder, Colo.-based Sunflower Farmers Markets, one of the fastest growing natural food grocers in the western United States, is deploying a new point-of-sale (POS) solution featuring two-sided receipt printing from NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR) to support its sustainability initiatives. Patented NCR Two-Sided Thermal Receipt Printing allows simultaneous printing on both sides of a thermal paper receipt, reducing paper consumption by up to 40 percent. This can result in less energy being consumed by paper production and distribution, as well as less waste disposal, air emissions and wastewater. (Full Article) Posted: 7-25-08

More College Cafeterias Dump Food Trays

Something familiar will be missing when students buy meals at many college dining halls this fall: trays. In a bid to discourage food waste and decrease energy use at all-you-can-eat campus cafeterias, dozens of college dining services -- from New York University to University of Minnesota -- are giving trays the heave. (Full Article) Posted: 7-25-08

The Cost of Being Cool: Refrigeration Energy in the Food System

A report from the Center for Sustainable Systems (CSS) at the University of Michigan (ref. 1 below) provides a breakdown of the energy used in the U.S. food system across seven sectors, with a total consumption of 1.02�1016 Btu per year (10.6 exajoules per year). (Full Article) Posted: 7-25-08

Draught Beer Beats Bottled in Life Cycle Assessment

Here's a job we all want - carrying out a life cycle assessment of beer. One would have to really do some serious investigation to get realistic statistics on the "use phase". But seriously, the cover story on the March issue of the International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment is the LCA of an Italian Lager Beer (see the full article citation at the end of this post). (Full Article) Posted: 7-25-08

Report Looks at Green Efforts in Quick Service Restaurants

In the new report "Going Green is Red Hot," Fast Casual magazine and website backs up the assertion of the title by detailing sustainability best practices already in place in restaurants. (Full Article) Posted: 7-2-08

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