EJToday: Top Headlines
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"CLARION, Iowa — The scrambled eggs, as always, were hissing in a skillet on a recent morning at a coffee shop here, in an egg-producing county that has suddenly found itself at the center of the nation's egg recall over salmonella. But the conversation at the weekly gathering of local ladies turned uncharacteristically tense.
"Genetically modified crops are commonplace in fields across the United States, but a new study suggests that some plants have spread into the wild."
"Global wheat crops are taking it on the chin, thanks to a drought and fires in Russia, too much rain in Canada, and locusts in Australia. Prices are at levels not seen in almost two years." Climate-driven harvest failures in other parts of the world may be good news for US grain dealers -- and may alter the balance of UN climate talks.
"On Tuesday, the Center for Biological Diversity and the American Bird Conservancy plan to file a petition with the Environmental Protection Agency seeking a comprehensive nationwide ban on lead-based sporting ammunition and fishing tackle."
"In one of the first human studies of its kind, researchers have found that urinary concentrations of the controversial chemical Bisphenol A, or BPA, may be related to decreased sperm quality and sperm concentration."
A Penn State anthropologist puts forth a new hypothesis: that the nearly universal human tendency to bond altruistically with animals is a unique trait that has evolved because it gives us many advantages.
"Before a fillet of grouper, fresh oyster or piece of shrimp from the Gulf of Mexico lands in the grocery seafood aisle, state and federal agencies have weighed in on its safety. ... However, no one is testing seafood to tell whether it has absorbed the toxic compounds found in the nearly 1.8 million gallons of dispersants BP has poured into the water to break up the oil."
Methylnaphthalene, one of the hydrocarbons behind the Kellogg Company's June recall of some 28 million boxes of cereal, has yet to be evaluated for carcinogenicity
"The use of roxarsone and other arsenic-based additives in poultry and swine feed is at the center of a national controversy."
Small-scale farmers who want to grow and sell meat locally have been hampered by federal regulation of slaughterhouses. Now mobile slaughterhouses are helping those farmers get back in the game.
"Organic food from China, like tea and frozen broccoli, has increasingly found its way onto American store shelves, typically emblazoned with the green 'U.S.D.A. organic' seal also found on food grown in this country. ... Now serious questions about certification in China have been raised by the United States Agriculture Department."
"The Agriculture Department will approve for broad use [Tuesday] a genetically modified soybean engineered to contain healthier oils, the opening salvo in a biotech oil fight between DuPont Co. and its rival, Monsanto Co."
"If you're eating non-organic celery today, you may be ingesting 67 pesticides with it, according to a new report from the Environmental Working Group."
Recent outbreaks of foodborned diseases like E. coli have pressured USDA to tighten food safety rules. The sources of outbreaks are often large industrial operation -- but small farmers who can't afford to comply may be forced out of business.