The proposed $4.7 billion sale of Smithfield Foods, America’s largest pork producer, to China’s biggest meat processing company comes amid significant trade friction between the two countries over meat and livestock. China bans ractopamine, a controversial growth-promoting drug that is widely used by U.S. livestock producers. Russia also bans the feed additive and both countries [...]
The proposed sale of Smithfield to a Chinese company comes amid friction over ractopamine, a livestock drug that our reporter, Helena Bottemiller reported on in January 2012. Read our follow up reporting here.
Our latest report by Barry Estabrook looks at the growing issue of antibiotic resistance due to the routine use of antibiotics in livestock production. Read the full investigation here.
Everyone agrees that the only way to fix the Gulf of Mexico dead zone —the largest off the United States— is to fix the Mississippi, but not everyone agrees how.
To get an idea of how American coastal waters might look just before they succumb to all the degradations they have suffered these past five centuries, it would be worth taking a July trip to Mobile Bay, an Alabama inlet that feeds into the Gulf of Mexico. If the air is still and hot, an [...]
Antibiotics in Your Food: What’s Causing the Rise in Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria in Our Food Supply and Why You Should Buy Antibiotic-Free Food
As the use of antibiotics in farming and raising livestock has increased, new antibiotic resistant bacteria, or "superbugs" are emerging. Here's what you need to know about antibiotics in your food and eating antibiotic-free food.
Last fall I flew halfway across the country to go grocery shopping with Everly Macario. We set out from her second-story apartment in Hyde Park near the University of Chicago and walked to the supermarket to buy a couple of rib steaks that Macario planned to serve to her husband and two children, ages 7 and 13. Macario, [...]
Eight tiny Pacific island nations banded together to fight pirates and change the rules of the sea.
In the ice-cold cargo hold of a pirate tuna vessel in the Pacific, I have somehow lost my shoe. Frozen tuna fins slice my unshod foot as I fumble around on all fours, reaching into the gigantic, frigid pile. I had boarded the pirate ship Heng Xing 1 with the crew of a Greenpeace vessel, theEsperanza, which [...]
The San Francisco Bay is a frenzy of rapturous seagulls, cormorants so gorged they can barely take flight, sea lions bellowing and porpoises spinning. The herring have returned to spawn. Humans are getting in on the action, too. A herring festival last weekend in Sausalito offered tastings of various preparations, and chefs all around the Bay Area [...]
In early January, scientists released jaw-dropping data showing that bluefin tuna in the North Pacific will soon be “functionally extinct.” A favorite of Japanese sushi lovers, Pacific bluefin is now so overfished, they said, that only 4 percent of its population remains. Earlier this month, a single bluefin sold for $1.7 million at Tokyo’s Tsukiji [...]
In the midst of the domestic energy boom, livestock on farms near oil-and-gas drilling operations nationwide have been quietly falling sick and dying. While scientists have yet to isolate cause and effect, many suspect chemicals used in drilling and hydrofracking (or “fracking”) operations are poisoning animals through the air, water, or soil. Earlier this year, [...]
In a Brooklyn winery on a sultry July evening, an elegant crowd sips rosé and nibbles trout plucked from the gin-clear streams of upstate New York. The diners are here, with their checkbooks, to support a group called Chefs for the Marcellus, which works to protect the foodshed upon which hundreds of regional farm-to-fork restaurants [...]
In March 2010, Michelle Obama stood on a stage in Washington and leveled a challenge at the food industry’s biggest players. “We need you all to step it up,” she told a meeting of the Grocery Manufacturers Association. Just a month earlier, she’d launched the Let’s Move campaign, the Obama administration’s flagship anti-obesity program, which [...]
One summer day two years ago, Danny and Laura Jenkins’ black Labrador retriever Casey returned from a swim in Ohio’s Grand Lake St. Marys carpeted in thick green slime and reeking. Danny washed the dog off and, at some point, got some of the gunk in his left eye. A few weeks later, Danny [...]
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