I don’t know if you aware of it but hemp seeds in food are a pretty modern thing. I know that doesn’t fit the title of this post. But, yes they are! Only recently machinery was developed – the first sometime in the ’90s in Europe – that allows the non-laborious dehulling of hemp seeds. Hemp seeds have a very tough hull – not nice to eat (for a very nice overview of hemp economics and biology look at this recent book). This may be one of the reasons – besides that hemp was primarily for producing cloth, i.e. was harvested when the seeds weren’t ripe yet – that hemp used to be food for the poor. Thus, all traditional hemp recipes out there are really down-to-earth recipes. Don’t get me wrong. They ARE amazing!!! Despite being Medieval, they are even for modern standards pretty healthy… very healthy… Now here is the thing, you hardly find Medieval hemp soup recipes – besides Siemieniotka – on the English web. Thanks God, I speak German as well …
This article by Mike Archer explains why in Australia (non-industrial) meat production is (at least partially) more environmentally friendly than the large-scale growth of certain vegetables. Do you guys agree or disagree?
I recognized all on this pic… Can you?
An important factor in the food market are retail stores; the guys around the corner that actually have all the food available so that you do not have to go to the field yourself. The market is huge. And, therefore, it is watched by specialized companies, i.e. consultancy companies. One of them is called “planet retail” – here you can learn everything about the big trends in food retail: http://www.planetretail.net/NewsAndInsight/Category/Foodservice The articles cost, but the blogs are for free. For example: http://www1.planetretail.net/news-and-events/boris-planer/blogs/city-sensations-hidden-theatre-wrc2014 Quite cool infotainment for all food addicts!
Have you heard about brazzein? It is a sweetener – but a very special one. It’s not a sugar but a protein which sensed sweet by humans. In fact, it has been found to be 2,000x sweeter than sucrose. So, why is this super-sweetener not on the market yet? Cause it was found in a pretty rare and complicated exotic plant: Pentadiplandra brazzeana (see picture). Their fruits are incredibly sweet and called “Oubli” by locals who traditionally consume them. Brazzein is not the only sweetening factor found in Oublis. Another sweet protein called pentadin can be found in them as well. Now, a French company is out to industrially mass-produce recombinat Brazzein. For this they enlisted the German Biotech company Brain. Currently, the project to start an economic biotech production of brazzein is still ongoing. However, the first steps have been climbed: Brazzein can already by recombinantly expressed in yeasts. Let’s see when it is introduced to the market.
The idea is actually easy to explain: One of the negative effects of current trends in industrialized agriculture is, that the number of races and bloodlines hold as lifestock is decreasing. To prevent the decrease in genetic diversity and to prevent imbreeding (with all its potential physical consequences for the animals), old livestock races should be preserved. The only question remaining is: “can you built a business on this ground?” Yes, you can! In fact, a Swiss, Michael Dieterle, is already doing it (http://www.natur-pflege.ch/wsb/pages/willkommen/impressum.php). And, its is pretty straightforward: Old livestock races tend to be better in eating wild plants than industrial livestock races. As efficiency in meat production was the primary goal for the breeding of modern industrial livestock races, they are often accustomized to eating processed food. In contrary, old races will eat everything they can find on a meadow, heath etc. Thus, they are ideal when it comes to mowing the lane. In fact, they are even better than machines (when it comes to environmental friendliness). The irregularity with which they do their job, …
The picture was downloaded from here. On the same site, you can listen to a very informative panel discussion about food security, labelling & marketing and many more interesting aspects of the “politics of food”.