Lesley Lammers is a freelance journalist focused on the intersection between the environment, food, justice, health and social entrepreneurship. Lammers has written for the New York Times, the Green Chamber of Commerce, Good Life Report, Common Ground Magazine, and EDFish. You can follow her at: @LesleyLammers

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Farmer Direct Brings Fair Trade Close to Home

When it comes to the subject of fair trade, folks might conjure up images of products like chocolate from Ghana, coffee from Guatemala, quinoa from Bolivia or tea from India.  Farmer Direct Cooperative (FDC) is trying to bring that kind of association of fair trade to North America, promoting what they call ‘domestic’ fair trade.  … Continued

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Organic Learning Farm Gives Indonesian Street Kids Chance at Brighter Future

While statistics on street children are difficult to verify, according to this UNICEF report, there are an estimated 230,000 in Indonesia alone.  This is mostly the result of lack of free public education for children, so families living below the poverty line cannot afford to send their kids to school and have little choice but … Continued

Official White House Photo by Samantha Appleton

Walmart’s Healthy Food Plan Raises Healthy Skepticism

As mentioned by Leslie Back last week,  Walmart announced a five year plan aimed at reducing the price of healthier foods and providing a wider selection of healthy produce and packaged food items.  A recap of the major goals are as follows: Collaborate with food processors to decrease salt by 10 percent, sugar by 25 … Continued

Eden Foods Switches Tomato Products to Amber Glass Jars to Address BPA Exposure

Eden Foods recently announced that new amber glass jars will be used for all of the company’s organic tomatoes and tomato sauces.  The slight coloration of the glass helps to keep flavor and nutrients from light damage or photo-oxidation.  They claim that theirs will be the only tomatoes in the U.S. to be packaged in such jars … Continued

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“Invasivore” Diet Making Headway as Next Locavore Movement

In a recent New York Times article “A Diet for an Invaded Planet,” James Gorman postulates whether folks who eat invasive species – or as he aptly names them, “invasivores” – will be the next leading food diet trend that aims at being easy on the planet.  So why are environmentally-conscious foodies concerned about invasive … Continued

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Sustainability Named One of ‘Jargoniest Jargon’ Words of 2010 by Ad Age

Advertising Age named sustainability one of the “jargoniest jargon” words of 2010 that they “wish you would stop saying,” right up there with monetize, choiceful, and the new normal, among others.  They explain their decision by describing sustainability as “a good concept gone bad by mis- and overuse. It’s come to be a squishy, feel-good … Continued

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The Economist Speculates on the Future of Vertical Farming

A recent Economist article asks the question of vertical farming, “Does it really stack up?”  In theory, it’s a win-win-win concept for the environment, feeding growing urban populations locally, and increasing space for agriculture without more land use.  But the reality is that vertical farming is costly energy-wise due to the need for artificial lighting … Continued

Sunflower Farmers Market to Expand in California

Sunflower Farmers Market was launched in 2002 with the slogan “Serious Food…Silly Prices!” having grown from one to 32 stores within six years and now covering six southwest markets in Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, Texas and New Mexico.  The successful chain’s current plan is to expand into California at the beginning of 2011, the first … Continued

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Fishy Farm Creates Polyculture System for Home Use

Fishy Farm out of Hillsboro, Oregon has created both an indoor and outdoor aquaponic-horticulture-vermiculture system that can grow food and raise fish all within the comfort of your humble abode or backyard.  While non profits like Growing Power and businesses like Sweet Water Organics have brought aquaponics into the limelight on a larger, more industrial … Continued

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EDF & McDonald’s Celebrate 20 Year Partnership

20 years ago McDonald’s Corp. and Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) created a partnership unique for a corporation and an environmental organization at the time.  As Gwen Ruta, Vice President of EDF’s Corporate Partnerships Program explained in a recent Huffington Post article, “The alliance was very risky. Both sides stood to lose big if results failed … Continued

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Walmart’s Progress on Sustainable Seafood Efforts

Five years ago, Walmart declared they would take on ambitious sustainability objectives: creating zero waste, being supplied by 100% renewable energy, and selling products that sustain people and the environment.  However, only four out of their 39 public sustainability goals deal directly with food.   Beth Keck, Senior Director of Sustainability at Walmart, admits in a … Continued

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New Zealand Wine Becomes First to Wear Carbon Reduction Label

Mobius Marlborough Carbon Reduction Label The New Zealand Wine Company (NZWC) declared that starting in 2011, each bottle of Mobius Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc will wear the Carbon Reduction Label, the first label of its kind in the wine industry.  The wine can sport this label because it received certification by the UK’s Carbon Trust, which aims to put … Continued

David R. & Patricia Atkinson (Courtesy of Jason Koski/University Photography)

Cornell Receives $80 Million Boost for Sustainability Research

Cornell University announced October 28th that David R. Atkinson and wife Patricia Atkinson have donated $80 million to expand upon the already accomplished Cornell Center for a Sustainable Future (CCSF), now renamed the David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future (ACSF).   Through joint efforts between college departments, businesses, NGOs, foundations and other external partners, this … Continued

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VeloVeggies Pedals Fresh Produce to Twin Cities Doorsteps

Add VeloVeggies of Minneapolis, Minnesota to the growing list of innovative bicycle-powered food businesses such as Freewheelin Farm in Santa Cruz, Metro Pedal Power in Boston and One Revolution in Burlington. Founder Randall Dietel came up with the idea for his zero-emissions business while, not surprisingly, riding his bike one summer day in Minnesota.  As he … Continued

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Honest Tea Announces 100% Fair Trade Commitment by 2011

With October being Fair Trade Month, it only seems fitting that Honest Tea, the titan of bottled organic tea, has announced its commitment to making its complete line of products Fair Trade Certified. The company’s transition to Fair Trade began in 2003, with the introduction of Peach Oo-la-long and over the past three years, the … Continued