Health

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The Organic Debate

May 18, 2010

Supermarkets are carrying more organic products than ever before, and many more are farming organically as well. But critics say organic has no more nutritional value, and that we need to think beyond organic to really address the global food crisis. We’ll hear from both sides of the debate.

Guests

It's been a lot of fun around NHPR as we prepped for "Eating In," our weeklong food series. People talk about food with a kind of excitement you don't always hear when discussing things like public policy. Yes, we all know the narrative: food brings us together. It puts us all at the table. It serves up a metaphor of nurturance. Its smells and flavors and rituals trigger memories and provide continuity in our lives.

Berlin Reed spent most of his life avoiding meat. He became a vegetarian at age 12, and a vegan at 20.

At first he was just trying to irk his mom. Over time, Reed’s reasons deepened to indictments of animal cruelty and environmental destruction by the meat industry. Then, out of desperation, Reed took a job at a meat counter in Brooklyn. Within weeks of starting the job, Reed was not only up to his elbows cutting carcasses, but dining on them too.

Shelley & Dave via Flickr/CreativeCommons

As the days grow longer, gardeners are thinking about what to plant and how much of it, with an eye to frost advisories and heavy rains. According to a National Gardening Association Survey, 41 million Americans grew fruits and vegetables last year - about 13 percent more than the year before. Increasingly, those gardens are not just at home, but at the office. From the uber techies at Google to more traditional outfits like Pepsico and Toyota, corporate-sponsored organic vegetable gardens are sprouting up like garlic shoots.

rogersmj via Flickr/CreativeCommons

The Granite State is known for its crisp apples, plump blueberries and abundant maple syrup. Here’s another local ambrosia to add to your table, a bottle of New Hampshire-harvested, fermented and bottled wine.

Wine was first officially produced here in the late 1960s. Today there are 24 wineries in the Granite State. Many vineyards export their bottles out of state, but all promote the movement to drink locally.

As part of our weeklong series on food, “Eating In”, the news team cooked dinner at reporter Josh Rogers’ house.

We then tracked how some of the main ingredients made their way to our dinner table.

Producer Avishay Artsy started with the pasta, served in a sauce of caramelized onions, garlic, anchovies, crushed red pepper and parsley.

Can We Harvest Enough Grain?

May 17, 2010

Grain is a key ingredient in the American diet.
Many of us are familiar with the US Department of Agriculture’s food pyramid with bread, cereal, and pasta forming the large base at the bottom.
Local food reliance has a certain appeal, but producing all of the wheat, barley and rye needed to feed the region might be our biggest challenge.
As part of New Hampshire Public Radio’s series on food, “Eating In”, Amy Quinton has this look at the prospects for home grown grain.

In this weeklong series we look at food and food culture in New Hampshire and beyond. We examine and explain food trends, talk to food producers from around the state, do some cooking, find out how to eat healthy on a budget, and even discover a new source of artillery: the cupcake.

 

Series Stories:

The Ethical Butcher

Weeding the Company Garden

The humble chicken, that bowling ball with a bad case of feathers, has returned to America's backyard.

Pam Miller in Campton says the urge for chickens is connected to a deeper cultural movement:

We've tried to take care of our energy use with our solar panels and our hybrid car. And the next big thing is the food.

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