Today’s quick hits, Nov. 4, 2019

Food crisis in southern Africa (RCI): A record 45 million people throughout southern Africa face severe food shortages in coming months, with 11 million of them already enduring drought-induced “crisis” or “emergency” levels of food insecurity, according to three UN agencies.

Less burping with seaweed (Bangor Daily News): Researchers in Maine and Vermont will team up over the next few years to figure out which varieties of seaweed result in less belching — and less production of the greenhouse gas methane — by cattle as they eat and digest their feed.

European oligarchs of farm subsidies (New York Times): In central and eastern Europe, “a connected and powerful few” collect mountains of EU agricultural subsidies, in part because their governments have wide latitude in distributing the subsidies.

Fungi for faux meat (New Food Economy): While many producers of plant-based proteins try to match the taste and texture of ground meat, a Colorado startup, Meati Foods, is using fungi in a quest to replicate muscle cuts, “geared more toward the steakhouse than the drive-thru.”