- Meat and Poultry
- Fish and Shellfish
- Cream and Cream Products
- Eggs and Egg Whites
- Ice Cream
- Dairy Spreads
- Fruit, Fruit Products
- Sauces, Dressing, and Dips
- Condiments, Herbs & Spices, Spreads
- Ingredients for Cooking
- Prepared Foods
- Bakery Goods and Sweets
- Grains, Pasta, and Cereal
- FAQs on Bacteria
- What are bacteria?
- How can I avoid getting sick from a bacterial illness?
- How dangerous is a staph infection?
- Can I assume that if food smells bad its unsafe to eat and if it smells ok that it is safe to eat?
- How dangerous is botulism?
- How dangerous is listeria?
- How many types of bacteria are there?
- What foods are likely to be contaminated by listeria?
- What foods can give a person a staph infection?
- What foods can give a person botulism?
- Why do some bacteria make people sick?
- Why does refrigeration keep bacteria from multiplying?
- Can I avoid all contact with bacteria if I’m careful?
- How Many Bacteria Does It Take to Cause Illness?
- FAQs on Cookware
- Are Ceramic and Enamel Cookware Safe and Practical?
- Are Nonstick Coatings on Cookware a Health Risk?
- Do Cast Iron, Glass, Copper, and Titanium Cookware Have Any Disadvantages?
- Does Using Aluminum Cookware Increase the Chances of Developing Alzheimer’s Disease?
- Is Stainless Steel Cookware a Good Choice?
- Is the New Silicone Rubberized Cookware Safe?
- Nonstick Cookware: Is it Dangerous?
- What Brands of Cookware are Recommended by Experts?
- What Features Should I Look for When Selecting Cookware?
- What Should I Know about Selecting and Using Aluminum Cookware?
- FAQs about Definitions
- Exactly what is meant by the phrase perishable food?
- Defining Some Current Language about Food
- What Does the Word “Foodie” Mean? It Depends Who(m) You Ask
- What do “sell by,” “best by/before,” “use by” and “expiration” mean?
- What does the term shelf life mean?
- What's in Our Food? Maybe Processing Aids, Maybe not
- “Fresh,” “Natural,” “Processed”—What Do These Words Mean?
- FAQs on Dropped Food
- FAQs on Farmers' Markets
- Exactly what defines a farmers’ market?
- Farmers' Markets: Why They're So Popular; How to Find One Near Your Home
- How should I handle produce at home?
- What foods are sold with restrictions at a farmers’ market?
- What should I bring to the farmers’ market?
- What shouldn’t I do or eat at a farmers’ market?
- What signs indicate a sanitary farmers’ market?
- What time of day is it best to go to a farmers’ market?
- FAQs on Food-borne Illness and Mishandling of Food
- About how many cases of food-borne illness occur in the U.S. each year?
- Answer Key to “How Much Do You Know about Safe Handling of Food?”
- How Much Do You Know about Safe Handling of Food?
- I Left It Out Too Long! Can I Still Eat It?
- Should Your Grocery Card Track Food-Borne Illnesses?
- Sudden, Awful Intestinal Distress--Is it the Flu or a Foodborne Illness--or Both?
- What YOU Can Do to Avoid Food-borne Illness
- What does the phrase food-borne illness refer to?
- FAQs on Food Product Dating
- Are stores required, by law, to remove outdated items from their shelves?
- Do most consumers actually pay attention to the dating on foods?
- Does the “use by” date matter once the product is frozen?
- Is information on food longevity and safety available by phone?
- What are expiration dates?
- What do the terms closed dating and open dating mean?
- What should consumers know about food product dating?
- When Did You Buy It? When Did You Open It?
- When to Throw Food Out? Not on the Use-By Date
- Who establishes these product dates?
- Who requires and regulates dating on foods?
- Why do “best by” and “use by” dates sometimes seem conservative?
- FAQs on Food Safety
- "Is It Safe To….?" FAQs Answered by our Advisory Board
- FAQs about Ground Beef, Seasonings, Olive Oil, Lemon Wedges, and Fish
- FAQs about Mushrooms: Are they Very Dirty or Very Clean?
- FAQs about Soft Cheeses--What's Safe, What Isn't
- FAQs on BPA: the attacks continue, but are they justified?
- FAQs on Food Safety and Nutrition
- FAQs on Raw Fruits and Veggies—the Answers Can Protect Your Wallet and Your Health
- FAQs: Cutting Boards and Kitchen Counters--Selection and Care
- Food Bars/Buffets in Supermarkets--Is the food safe? How can you tell?
- Food/Meat Thermometers—What You Need to Know
- How Long Should Cheese Be Aged? Will the Rules Be Changed?
- How Long Will They REALLY Last? Part I: Non-perishables
- How Long Will They REALLY last? Part II: Perishables
- Imported Foods—What’s Safe, What’s Risky?
- Is It Safe? Is It Nutritious? More Survey Answers from Scientists
- Is It Time to Switch to Pasteurized Eggs?
- Is the Food Safety Modernization Act Making Our Food Supply Safer?
- More FAQs about Minimum Safe Cooking Temperatures: Pork and Other Perishables
- Sushi: Why Such a Short Shelf Life?
- Winter Food Storage—Can I leave It in the Car or in the Garage?
- Would You—Should You—Do You--Eat Irradiated Food?
- FAQs on Food Wrapping
- Are any plastic wraps or containers really “microwave safe”?
- Are some plastic wraps more effective than others?
- Can I refrigerate meat and poultry in its store wrapping?
- Can I use plastic freezer bags to store produce in the fridge?
- Can chemicals leach unto food from plastic wrap or containers?
- Do coated plastic bags really help produce last longer?
- Does aluminum foil give foods a metallic taste?
- Does exposure to aluminum cause Alzheimer’s disease?
- Everything You Need to Know about Wrapping Food Right
- How should fruits be wrapped before refrigeration?
- Is it safe to use aluminum foil in a microwave oven?
- Should I wrap raw vegetables loosely or tightly before refrigerating?
- What are some advantages and disadvantages of aluminum foil?
- What produce needs to be wrapped before refrigerating?
- What’s better for wrapping food—plastic or aluminum foil?
- Why does foil sometimes darken, discolor, and leave black specks on food?
- Will a foil cover help keep foods on the table hot or cold?
- FAQs on Freezing Food
- FAQs on Leftovers
- FAQs on Mold
- What is mold?
- Does mold ever grow on nonperishable food?
- Can I remove a moldy part from food and eat the rest?
- About how many different kinds of molds are there?
- How can I avoid getting mold on my refrigerated food?
- Is mold always visible?
- Are any molds harmless?
- What food groups are most susceptible to mold?
- What kinds of illnesses can result from eating moldy food?
- What kind of packaging protects foods from mold?
- What other safety tips will help prevent mold from growing?
- Why are some molds dangerous?
- FAQs on Organic Food
- What Is Organic Food?
- Are Organic Methods More Humane to Animals?
- Does Conventional Food Have a Longer Shelf Life Than Organic?
- Does Organic Food Taste Better than Conventional Food?
- Is Organic Food More Nutritious Than Conventional Food?
- Is Organically Grown Food Better for the Environment?
- What Do the Various Organic Labels Mean?
- What Important Contributions Has the Organic Movement Made?
- Which Are Safer: Organic or Conventional Food Products?
- Will Organic Baby Food Make Baby Healthier?
- FAQs on Oxidation: How It Affects Foods
- FAQs about Plastic Products Used with Food
- Pyrex® Glassware: Is it safe to use?
- Are plastic bags safe to use in the microwave?
- Are some plastic wraps safer and/or more effective than others?
- Are there any health risks from reusing plastic water bottles by refilling them with tap water?
- Are we eating chemicals from plastics along with our food?
- Can I microwave food in my plastic containers?
- Does the plastic used in water bottles pose a health risk?
- If I heat food in an open can, will that cause the plastic lining to leach chemicals into the food?
- Is it safe to heat frozen entrées in their plastic containers and with their plastic wrap?
- Is it safe to use plastic wrap as a covering when microwaving food?
- Is it safe to wash and dry plastic plates, cups, containers, and utensils in the dishwasher?
- Is there good evidence that BPA is harmful to human health?
- What is BPA?
- Why is so much of today’s food packaged in plastic?
- FAQs on Preservatives
- What are Preservatives?
- All things considered, is our food supply safer or less safe because of preservatives?
- Are the preservatives in hot dogs and similar products health risks?
- What preservatives are known to cause allergic reactions?
- What are some common preservatives used in food?
- What food groups commonly have preservatives in them?
- Why are preservatives added to food?
- Will the label on the product tell me if it contains a preservative?
- FAQs on Washing Produce: Why and How
- Other FAQs
- Can chicken soup really cure a cold?
- Is Chocolate Good For You?
- Can Science and Technology Help You Save Food Dollars?
- FAQs Answered By Our Board Scientists: on Chickens, Bananas, Old Salad Dressing, and More
- FAQs about Food Price Increases
- FAQs about Products We Use with Food
- FAQs about Shelf Life: Tortillas, Pancakes, Wine, and More
- Food Fraud: Are you paying for scallops and getting shark meat?
- Is Cheese Addictive? Only If You Eat It
- Missing Chickens: Where Have All the Small Ones Gone?
- Nine FAQs about Food Labels
- Quiz Yourself! Check Your Knowledge about Food Temperatures
- Scientists Answer Two FAQs about Egg Safety
- Should Sour Cream and Cottage Cheese Be Stored Upside Down?
- Some Shelf Life Info, General and Specific (Spirits, Defrosted Veggies, Green Tea, and More)
- Syrup from a Tree or from a Lab--Which Should You Pour on Your Pancakes?
- Ten FAQs about the Prickly Pineapple
- What's New in Food? IFT Expo Offers Tasty Innovations
- What's on the Menu in Cuba?
- What’s in My Water? Answers to FAQs
- What will you be dining on this year? Here are predictions from folks in the know
- FAQs on Bacteria
- Books: Food for Thought
- Food Safety
- It Says "Use By Tomorrow," But You Don't Have To
- Ten Tips for Consumer Food Safety
- Food Allergies: Recognizing and Controlling Them
- “Is It Spoiled?” When in Doubt, Check It Out
- How To Keep Your Cooler Cool
- Recent Recalls: Salmonella Threatens 100s of Products
- STOP! Don’t Rinse That Raw Chicken!
- Sous Vide—A Better Way to Cook?
- Why You Need a Safe Cooking Temperature Chart and How to Get One Right Now
- “Myth-information” about Food Safety: You’d Better Not Believe It
- After The Storm: What You Can Save and What You Must Throw Out
- How to Protect Your Food During a Power Outage
- Meet Your Beef--Via Bar Code Info
- Raw chicken, Leftovers, Deli Meats, and More-- What Surveyed Scientists Said
- Tips About 4 Popular Beverages: Wine, Coffee, Water, and Soda
- Tips on Reheating for Safe, Yummy Leftovers
- Tips on Water Safety During and After a Storm
- Introducing our Advisory Board Scientists
- Produce: Handling Tips
- Seasonal Tips
- A Novel Method for Cooking a Turkey
- Crock Pot Cooking Tips for that Ideal Winter Dinner
- Cucumbers: for Cool--and "Cool"--Summer Treats
- Going Away for All or Part of the Winter? Prepare Your Kitchen for your Absence
- How To Grill Safely During the Summer
- How do summer squash and winter squash differ?
- New Year’s Resolutions For a Safer Kitchen
- Preserve the Taste of Summer by Canning—But Do It Safely
- Summer Food Fests Offer Much More than Calories
- Tailgating: How to Do It Right
- Tips on Keeping Your Summer Fruits Flavorful and Healthy
- Shelf Life Tips
- A Food App You're Apt to Like; A Brand-New Invention for Getting Shelf-Life Information
- Battling the Ripening of Bananas
- Food Preservation--Low-tech Past, High-Tech Present and Future
- From Purchase to Storage, Tips on Extending Shelf Life
- Pesto: Ingredients, Uses, Shelf Life, Contamination, and More
- Shelf Life of Foods: What You Need to Know
- Shellfish and Shelf Life Aid from the Canadian Maritime Provinces
- Tips for Carry-along Lunches for Work and School
- Tips for Freezing Food and Freezer Care
- Cooking Frozen Foods
- Freezers And Food Safety
- Freezers And Freezer Burn
- Freezers And Nutrient Retention
- How Often Should You Defrost And Clean Your Freezer?
- How To Defrost And Clean Your Freezer
- How To Defrost Frozen Foods
- How To Freeze Foods: The Quicker The Better
- How To Wrap Foods For The Freezer
- Refreezing Frozen Foods
- What You Can Freeze And What You Can't--Or Shouldn't
- Tips About Genetically Engineered Foods
- Tips for Grocery Shopping
- Tips for Holidays
- Answers to Questions about Thanksgiving Dinner
- Chocolate Is Even More Healthful Than You Thought
- Enjoy St. Patrick’s Day Without Cabbage Stink
- Everything You Need to Know about Cranberry Sauce
- Food-Related Gifts Recommended by Experts (2014)
- Halloween Treats Even Parents Will Love
- Kitchen Gifts that Really Please
- Kitchen Gifts that Really Work
- Our 2016 List of Gifts To Please Every Cook
- Spring Celebrations: What’s on Your Menu?
- Suggestions for Handling Your Child’s “Trick or Treat” Treasures
- Tips for Winter Holiday Meals
- What NOT to Do With Thanksgiving Dinner
- Yikes! The Turkey Is Done, But the Guests Are Delayed! How Do I Keep My Thanksgiving Dinner Warm?
- Tips on Kitchen Equipment
- Tips for Refrigerating Food and Refrigerator Care
- Food Safety Facts
- How To Clean The Refrigerator
- How To Wrap Foods For Refrigeration
- How long can a pie be left unrefrigerated?
- Power Outage? Here’s What to Do with All That Food in the Fridge
- Proper Handling Of Produce In The Crisper(s)
- Proper Refrigeration Placement Of Raw Meat, Chicken, And Fish
- Six Tips for Extending the Shelf Life of Foods
- What Can and Can't Go In The Fridge Door
- Other Tips
- Microwave Cooking
- The 10 Most Dangerous Foods To Consume While Driving
- Are Your Kids Home Alone after School? Educate Them about Snacking
- Clever Inventions That Can Change Eating Habits
- Coffee, Juice, and Food in Central America
- Eggies™ to the Rescue?
- Ever Eaten “Glued” Food?
- Food Definitions: Umami, Locavore, Fruit, Heirloom, and Artisan
- Hot Dogs: What You Should Know about Them
- If You Don't Know Beans about Beans...
- In Defense of Processed Food
- Kids and Cooking: A Good Combo
- New Uses for Old Food: Try 'Em Out!
- Organic Farming and Organic Food: What Are the Benefits?
- Our Board Scientists Talk about 2015 Food Trends
- Portabella Mushrooms and Their Relatives: How to Handle Them
- Ten Exotic Fruits: Novel Treats to Drink and Eat
- Tips on Fishing and on Selecting Healthful Fish
- Tips on Making Food Appealing, Food Safety and BPA (again)
- Tofu: Water Regularly, Consume Promptly
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- In the News
Defining Some Current Language about Food
Do you understand everything the news media toss at you? Keeping your vocabulary current is a challenge since new concepts continuously lead to the creation of new language. Vocabulary related to food may involve words totally new to you. Often, they're from the language and cuisine of other countries. But sometimes we hear familiar words used in new ways and common words combined into phrases that are confusing. Context may give us a vague idea of the meaning but not a precise one. Below is some clarification of the following: "health halo effect", "functional food," "food desert," "food insecurity," "traceability" and "sustainable/renewable resources."
Health Halo Effect
Definition: the perception of an edible item as healthful based upon one or more its attributes (from the Rutgers University Dining Team).
The halo effect may result from a mistake in the individual's thinking or an excuse to cheat on a diet. "The box says these are low-fat cookies," you tell yourself, "so they must be lower in calories and healthier than ordinary cookies." Or this rationalization: "I'm eating a salad; I'm having a healthy, low-calorie lunch." But you've dumped a high-calorie, fat-laden salad dressing on it and are eating the bread and butter that came with the salad.
A recent study from Cornell University (summarized in the University of California, Berkeley Wellness Letter) revealed that the word "organic" has a health halo effect. Participants in the study assumed that the foods labeled "organic" were lower in calories and higher in fiber. Chips labeled organic were also considered more nutritious and yogurt labeled organic more flavorful. What the participants didn't know was that all the foods in the study (whether labeled organic or not) were actually organic. The article points out that organic refers only to the agricultural method used to grow the food ingredients, not nutrition. Organic foods may contain just as much (or even more) sugar, fat, and salt as conventional foods.
It's not only your own mind and cravings that trick you. Manufacturers deliberately highlight one healthful aspect of the food and downplay unhealthful contents. The soup that's labeled "low-fat" may contain more salt than the regular can of the same type of soup. Don't be fooled by the words highlighted on food packages and menus. Check sugar, salt, and fat content. The numbers don't lie, but the big letters on the container may deceive.
To read more on this topic and find a link to an entire book on the subject, click on "The Health Halo Effect."
Definition: According to food scientist Dr. Joe Regenstein, a functional food is one that is believed to have special benefits in the human diet.
The Wikipedia definition tells us a little more about when the phrase is used: "A functional food is a food given an additional function (often related to health-promotion or disease prevention) by adding new ingredients or more of existing ingredients." Functional food can be solid foods, beverages, and supplements.
Here's what Wikipedia says is NOT generally considered in the functional food category: foods that have been fortified because of government regulations, such as the addition of iodine to table salt or Vitamin D to milk. On the other hand, foods that contain live cultures are considered functional because they have probiotic benefits.
There is currently no legal definition for functional foods, says the Mayo Clinic. However, many countries, including the U.S. oversee and regulate the types of claims that are allowed on food packages.
According to Wikipedia, the term "functional food" was invented by the Japanese in the 1980s. In Japan, there's a government-approval process for functional foods; it's called "Foods for Specified Health Use (FOSHU." Wikipedia calls functional foods "an emerging field in food science." It's popular with health-conscious consumers and with businesses that want to stimulate interest in new or altered products.
The growth of the functional food industry:
According to an April, 2012 article in the IFT (Institute of Food Technologists) journal, interest in and the purchase of functional foods and beverages is on the rise. Here is some of the evidence the article presents:
- Estimate of 2010 sales of functional foods: $38 billion.
- Eight out of 10 Americans are making some or even a great effort to eat healthful foods.
- 30% of consumers say they always or usually purchase products with labels that claim to improve specific health conditions (such as heart or digestive); 36% say they sometimes do this.
- The two products most often purchased for specific health benefits: oatmeal and yogurt.
- Beverages most often purchased for nutritional benefits: orange juice and cranberry juice.
- The most consumed tea in the U.S. is green tea, known to be antioxidant-rich.
- 88% of consumers believe that it's better to get vitamins and minerals from food than from supplements.
- 28% of consumers look for products that are naturally rich in antioxidants.
Definitions: Streetwise (a magazine sold on the streets of Chicago by people who are either homeless or at risk of becoming homeless) defines food insecure people as those who don't know where their next meal is coming from. But that is not everyone's definition. The Texas Food Bank Network (TFBN) quotes this USDA definition: "Consistent access to adequate food is limited by a lack of money and other resources at times during the year." The TFBN definition disagrees with the Streetwise definition because, it says, food insecurity is "episodic and often cyclical."
Wikepedia gets at the meaning by defining its opposite: "a household is considered food-secure when its occupants do not live in hunger or fear of starvation."
What causes and doesn't cause food insecurity?
It is not related to living in a food desert or not having time to shop, says TFBN; it is the result of a lack of "financial and other material" resources. Feeding America.org says this: "Although related, food insecurity and poverty are not the same. Unemployment rather than poverty is a stronger predictor of food insecurity."
What are the statistics on food insecurity?
The website of Feeding America.org contained this information (2012 statistics):
- 49 million Americans lived in food insecure households, 33.1 million adults and 15.9 million children.
- 10 states had significantly higher household food insecurity rates than the national average (about 14.7%). These states were Mississippi, Arkansas, Texas, Alabama, North Carolina, Georgia, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, and California.
- Households with food insecurity that was higher than the national average included those with children, especially those headed by a single woman; black non-Hispanic households; and Hispanic households.
- Food insecurity among seniors (those over age 60) was 4.8 million (4% or all seniors).
Feeding America provides emergency food assistance to about 37 million low-income people every year. Members of this organization include food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters.
There are also 3 government programs that help to meet the needs of those who are food insecure: the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly the Food Stamp Program), the National School Lunch Program, and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children.
In its October2-8 issue, the editor-in--chief of Streetwise Chicago expressed concern about possible cuts in government funding to programs that assist those who are food-insecure.
Definition: Because there is no standard, official definition of this term, it has been defined in many ways. Here's the basic idea as expressed by the CDC: "Food deserts are areas that lack access to affordable fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat milk, and other foods that make up a full and healthy diet." Lack of access is usually because people live too far from a large grocery store or supermarket to walk to one, don't own a car, and lack the means of getting to a big store on public transportation. If a consumer has nowhere to buy his/her groceries except a convenience store, that person's diet is likely to consist mostly of frozen processed foods, chips, and soda.
Food deserts have sometimes been defined by how close a person's residence is to a decent-sized store. A recent Chicago Tribune article listed these criteria for an area to be called a food desert: a good store is more than 1/2 mile away from home and the store nearby is less than 2,500 square feet. However, in Chicago in 2011, a new method of determining which areas should be classified as food deserts was developed. It looked at what products were in the stores selling food in each block. The conclusion was that about 383,000 Chicagoans were living in food deserts.
Who's likely to live in a food desert? Rural, minority, and low-income areas are often the sites of food deserts.
The assumption is that people living in food deserts would eat a healthier diet if they could obtain healthy foods conveniently. According to the CDC, many studies have suggested this connection, but more research is needed to determine how access actually affects what foods people buy and eat.
Solutions to the problem are 1) to encourage supermarkets to open stores in underserved areas, perhaps by offering the stores financial incentives such as tax breaks; 2) to encourage residents of food deserts to plant community gardens and grow their own fruits and vegetables; 3) to improve public transportation so that consumers living in food deserts don't find traveling to supermarkets a hardship.
Definition: Dr. Regenstein defines this term as follows: "the ability to know where something came from. Most food manufacturers and processors work with one step back and one forward, i.e., they know where they got the materials they are using and to whom their products are being sent."
Who cares? These days, a lot of consumers do. Many consumers want to buy only locally grown or locally processed foods. Also, many want to buy only organic food. Some consumers have ethical concerns: they want the meat, poultry, and eggs they purchase to come only from animals that had been treated humanely. Others may want to avoid genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Finally, there's growing public interest in knowing the country of origin of produce and other foods. Thus, there is an effort to make traceability more transparent so that everyone in the food chain, possibly even the consumer, can follow the movements of food products and their ingredients.
Traceability becomes especially important when there's a foodborne illness outbreak. "Once the source of the problem ascertained, the whereabouts of the food causing contamination can be more quickly discovered," Dr. Regenstein explains.j
Sustainable and Renewable Resources
Two of the Shelf Life Advice Advisory Board food scientists supplied brief definitions of "sustainable":
"The impact on the planet is minimal and, hopefully, such that future generations will also have access to these resources."
Dr. Catherine Cutter:
"If a resource is sustainable, it's not deleted or permanently damaged; it can be used over and over again."
Another Shelf Life Advice Advisory Board member took on the task of explaining the difference between "sustainable" and "renewable" in the context of the planet:
Food process engineer Dr. Timothy Bowser:
"Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic and other requirements of present and future generations." (EPA definition; http://www.epa.gov/sustainability/basicinfo.htm)
"Renewable (business dictionary.com): "A resource that is practically inexhaustible."
"The difference? I think that “sustainability” refers to the conditions that make something renewable. And “renewable” refers to something that is perpetually available for use. [Dr. Regenstein points this out: "The growth of plants takes nutrients out of the soil, so one must always replenish. The question is this: how can this be accomplished? Can we set up a big enough recycling system so that these nutrients are returned to the soil?]
"It is probably impossible to reach perfect sustainability or renewability, but, for all practical purposes, some systems are both sustainable and renewable. For instance, water is a renewable resource. Unfortunately there are distribution and pollution issues, but as a resource, it is both sustainable and renewable. Water is not disappearing from the earth, and humans can manage it. The composition of air seems to be a sustainable and renewable resource too. Sunlight is a resource that is practically inexhaustible. [Dr. Regenstein adds this: "Solar energy, the only resource that enters our planet from outside, is the only endlessly renewable input the Earth gets."]
"As far as livestock and animals are concerned, there is plenty of evidence that livestock have been around almost as long as humans, and wild animals even longer. The evidence (in general) suggests that livestock and animals are (or can be) renewable and sustainable where the climate and conditions are favorable.
"Many want to know how long can we keep up with the current growth of agricultural needs for our society. I think this is where “sustainability” comes into play. What can mankind do to sustain the population growth, and how will the ecosystem respond to increased demands? Industry and academia are working on answers. Are some ecosystems currently unsustainable because of localized or global resource depletion (e.g. water, fertilizer, fuel)? I believe they are. Technology and economics will play an important role in the outcome."
ruhdt.wordpress.com "Health Halo Effect"
wikipedia.org "Functional Food"
ift.org "Top 10 Functional Food Trends"
feedingamerica.org "Hunger & Poverty Statistics"
Streetwise Chicago "Local advocates decry House food stamp vote," October 2-8, 2013.
cdc.gov "A Look Inside Food Deserts"
cdc.gov "Food Desert"
Chicago Tribune "Emanuel's food desert promises fall short," August 28, 2013.
Timothy J. Bowser, Ph.D., Oklahoma State University, Dept. of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering
Catherine N. Cutter, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, Dept. of Food Science
Joe Regenstein, Ph.D., Cornell University, Dept. of Food Science