October is the month for a multitude of national awareness campaigns. We have begun to expect crowds running and walking in swarms of pink and orange and to see our favorite sports team accent their shoes or gloves with a special color for a respected cause. However, in spite of this monthly participation, do we recognize and acquire the awareness we are expected to have regarding each plight? Each campaign is connected to an organization or person who holds a story connected to a disease, personal loss, or social and labor injustices.
It is easy to find the very clear, yet invisible, line drawn between consumers’ stance on the recent General Mill’s $82 million Annie’s Homegrown acquisition. A simple stroll through the web will all at once land you in a pile of consumer outcry and applause. You can find simple words of thanks and praise for hopes of affordability and great availability down to petitions of protest and disgust surrounding Annie’s “sell out” betrayal.
Recent polls indicated more than 90% of Americans support mandatory labeling of GMO foods. Oregon’s Measure 92 hoped to demonstrate this support through the election polls on November 4 (the proposition was voted down with a 51% against) . The measure would have required GMO foods to be labeled beginning January 2016. As a result, any manufacturers and/or retailers who violate the regulation can be sued. Of course this has sparked controversy among manufacturers. Measure 92 attracted a record amount of financial support and opposition from large companies on both sides of the labeling campaign.
If you’ve been hanging around Northeast Minneapolis in the last week or so, you may have had the following conversation:
“Wait a minute, is that a giant, pink and green Ferris wheel?! When did they build that, AND HOW SOON CAN I RIDE IT?”
After being overcome by a fit of childlike glee, you probably pulled out your smartphone to Google the latest developments in the construction of the soon-to-be restaurant extravaganza, Betty Danger’s Country Club. Leslie Bock, the owner of Minnesota’s favorite tiki bar, is at it again; she has re-purchased the former Psycho Suzi’s building and is planning another themed restaurant.
Living on the Eastside of St. Paul, my attention has been brought to Payne Avenue and the rising of restaurants and little shops along the route. Following an East Sider residents’s Facebook group, the new restaurant Cook St. Paul has been getting quite the hype on lots of posts. Cook St. Paul is owned by two cooks, Eddie Wu and Charles Cook. Their restaurant sits where Serlin’s Cafe grew to popularity for multiple decades until the owners closed down for their retirement. I decided to check it out this new place, and interview owner Eddie Wu.
Walking into Glam Doll Donuts on a dreary weekday morning creates quite a contrast between the gray weather outside and the vibrancy inside. The shop shines with bright colors and vintage decor. With its bright pinks, blues and greens, vintage furniture and pin up art (with a doughnut twist, of course), Glam Doll Donuts is nothing short of funky.
Food waste is a fact of life. Often the best thing we can do is try to compost what we don’t use. As a home-brewer, I’m well aware of how much organic material doesn’t make it to the final product; I’ve even tried using it in a variety of ways: breads, birdseed, etc. However, scientists in Spain may have developed the most innovative product yet from the biproduct: bone regenerating biomaterials.
From the viral “We Are Hungry” video to Michelle Obama’s political backlash of the Republican efforts to reverse the current school lunch dietary requirements, the debate regarding school lunch standards is a hot-button issue to say the least. While students choreographed a clever pun on the “We Are Young” hit by the American Fun Band, the nutrition and health of our young American students is no laughing matter. It is clear there is a division between Congress, school administrators, parents, and students. This has moved me to question if we are so far past realizing the significant change that is needed in our food consumption practices.