From Defining Organic to Trump’s Impact, Here’s What You Need to Know in Food This Week

Plus, you can stream the two-day FoodTank conference if you missed the Chicago event.

There are signs Trump won’t be able to undo the work of the green movement, Moyers & Company writes:
“And yes, Trump often airs unfounded concerns about wind and solar energy related to bird safety and outdated notions of how long it takes for investments in renewable power to pay off.

But even if the fossil-fuel fanatics on Team Trump rev up coal mining, gas fracking and oil drilling in national parks, greenlight the Keystone XL pipeline and tell automakers to forget about stringent new mileage standards, many experts doubt the 45th president can stop the fossil-free economy’s evolution.”

The Intercept looks at how to quell confusion about science:
“One reason the public is so confused, suggested Tracey Brown, the group’s director, in a recent Guardian op-ed, is that the media feeds alarmism by focusing on who sponsors scientific studies, rather than asking more important questions about whether the research is sound.”

The New York Times tackles the age-old question of what defines organic:
“At issue is whether produce that relies solely on irrigation to deliver nutrients to plants—through what is known as hydroponic and aquaponic systems—can be certified organic. And the National Organic Standards Board, an advisory group that makes recommendations to the federal secretary of agriculture, will get an earful on the topic at its meeting in St. Louis this week.”

And The Salt explores the issue, as well:
“But some organic farmers and advocates are saying no—the organic label should be rooted in soil. The decision at stake for the $40 billion-a-year industry will have impacts that reach from small farms to global corporations.”

The FERN gathers the Obama administration’s thoughts on future food policy:
“If there was one message that the panelists returned to repeatedly, it was that the Obama administration had contributed to what was already going on in the marketplace.”

The Times on how the new presidential administration could affect school lunches:
“Children grumbling about healthier school meal rules championed by first lady Michelle Obama may have reason to cheer Trump’s election as the billionaire businessman is a proud patron of Kentucky Fried Chicken and McDonald’s while promising to curb federal regulations.”

Civil Eats reports on North Carolina’s local fish economy:
“To fill the void created by the export of its catch, North Carolina—like most states—ships in seafood from abroad. Today, around 90 percent of the seafood Americans eat has been imported from places like China, Thailand, Canada, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Ecuador, and the average fish travels more than 5,400 miles between the landing dock and point of sale.”

FoodTank Summit Takes Chicago
“I was hoping to hop a plane to Chicago for the latest FoodTank summit this week. FoodTank is the consummate food movement convener. Their access to farmers, food researchers, ag journalists, agribusiness and every rung of the food chain means they have their finger on the pulse. Also, I did not get to Chicago. But I did get to stream big chunks of it, hearing everyone from James Beard Foundation’s Mitchell Davis to New York’s own Kara Washington, as well as a Food Tank’s Danielle Nierenberg, ClifBar’s Kevin Cleary, Cargill chairman David MacLennanBruce Friedrich of the plant-based food industry trade group, Sarah Vered of reFED, Fred Kirschenmann of Iowa State University, and plenty of farmers and food makers, concerned eaters and many more. FoodTank told me there were over 300 people in the room, but 10,000s streaming live, as well as trending across social media. You can now watch entire two day conference here.” —Brian Halweil, Editor-in-Chief

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Alicia Kennedy is a Long Island–born, Brooklyn-based food writer and recipe developer.