Tobacco Culture, the Arctic Food Chain and More: What You Need to Know in Food This Week

What we are reading this week.

The Times reports on how losing the Arctic as a food source for animals will have dire consequences:
“While global warming has affected the whole planet in recent decades, nowhere has been hit harder than the Arctic. This month, temperatures in the high Arctic have been as much as 36 degrees above average, according to records kept by the Danish Meteorological Institute.”

Environment 360 looks at how China must now step up in the fight against climate change:
“With Donald Trump threatening to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, China is ready to assume leadership of the world’s climate efforts.

For China, it is a matter of self-interest – reducing the choking pollution in its cities and seizing the economic opportunities of a low-carbon future.”

The Southern Foodways Alliance podcast, Gravy, on tobacco farming culture and its future:
“For generations, farmers in western North Carolina have relied on tobacco as a core crop, their lifeblood. It was more than just income, though: tobacco supplied these families with a cultural backbone, a way of ordering their year—and their meals. So: what’s happening to that culture as the tobacco industry has changed?”

NPR on what food banks do with unhealthy donations:
“Earlier this year the Capital Area Food Bank announced it would ‘dramatically’ cut back on junk food it receives and distributes. This means saying ‘no’ to donations such as sheet cakes, holiday candy, sugary sodas and other processed, bakery items.”

FERN on a “restoration economy” in Arizona that strives to protect pollinators and create jobs:
“The floodplain supports the riparian forest that, in turn, creates habitat for wildlife. More than 275 avian species have been recorded along this stretch of river, as have hundreds of species of pollinators. Its ecological wealth is also a result of its location—on the northwestern corner of the Madrean Archipelago, a roughly 180,000-square-kilometer sea of sweeping desert and grassland with isolated mountain ranges known as sky islands. This patchwork of private and public lands, which straddles the international border, harbors the highest diversity of native bees, birds and mammals anywhere in the contiguous U.S.”

Civil Eats writes about chefs feeding the water protectors at Standing Rock, which ended up feeding 2,500 people on Thanksgiving.
“Thanksgiving—with its reductionist tales of harmony and shared food—isn’t always a straightforward cause for celebration for Native Americans. So when Judy Wicks thought about bringing a Thanksgiving meal to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, she asked her friend Tom Goldtooth, the Director of the Indigenous Environmental Network, what he thought about the idea.”

Yes! Magazine on Lancaster Food Company, which searches for applicants most don’t hire:
“After his release from prison in 2007, Miles struggled to find stability—both mentally and financially. During this time he lived in his mother’s house, and she helped him raise his daughter. When his mom passed away two years later, Miles says he became more determined than ever to create a healthy environment for his family.”

Edible Capital District on Maple Hill Creamery, a company that’s going big without going bad:
“Maple Hill is inverting that notion, and in the process, creating a more economically just, ecologically responsible and sustainable method of small-scale farming for New York State as a whole. In their spare time, the founders are raising and feeding five energetic, engaged kids on a menu of complex ideals and a lot of grass-fed dairy.”

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