king corn

Understanding the Farm Bill: Digging Into the Commodity Programs

Now that we’ve discussed nutrition and conservation programs in the Farm Bill, the time has come to direct our attention to the elephant in the room: agricultural subsidies. The commodity programs represent 15% of Farm Bill spending, which is $42 billion, the second largest Farm Bill allocation (you’ll recall that nutrition spending is the largest). And it’s a controversial topic that requires some careful consideration.

Since the commodity support programs are such an important topic, we’ll spend a few weeks on them. This time, we’ll try to understand how the commodity programs came to be and how they work, and next time we’ll talk more about their implications. 

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School Lunch Contest: Help Us Pick the Winner

Wow, wow, wow! What terrific photos you sent! What great stories you told! The school lunch challenge that began just over a month ago with an open letter to our children apologizing for the current state of school lunch ends right here, right now. Many of you have done the hard part: you've eaten lunch with your kids, taken photos, and sent them to us (so have we, by the way). You've done this in the name of research, in the name of love, and in the hopes of winning valuable prizes from great companies.

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Writers Wanted: Join the SGT Team!

Are you a talented writer with a passion for local food? Spend your time hanging out with local food chefs, organic food organizations, fair trade coffee makers, co-ops, and/or farmers markets? Read books by Michael Pollan and Mark Bittman in your spare time? Anxiously await the next film from the folks who brought us "King Corn" and "Big River"? Have you been admiring this site from afar?

If so, we've got an opportunity for you!

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Talking With Curt Ellis from "King Corn" About His New Film "Big River," Part 2

Today’s post is the final half of a two-part interview with Curt Ellis (the first part of our "Big River" article is here), who will be in Minneapolis this week showing “Big River,” a companion to his 2006 documentary “King Corn.” Both films will be screened at the Riverview Theater on Wednesday, November 18 at 7:00, with a panel discussion afterwards. Admission is $10.

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Talking With Curt Ellis from "King Corn" About His New Film "Big River," Part 1

I recently had a chance to catch up with Curt Ellis, whose “Big River” documentary picks up where his film 2006 “King Corn” left off - in the banks of the Mississippi River.

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Local Food Roundup: Linden Hills Moving, Cheese CSAs, Big River at the Riverview

Shepherd's WayShepherd's WayThe cold weather hasn't slowed down the Twin Cities' passion for local food or the momentum we've got going here. Here's a quick roundup of some important news and activities:

Linden Hills Co-op to relocate and expand

Super great news from their member letter:

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My Local Food All Star Team

As a kid, I spent countless hours, days, weeks, months - heck, even years - thinking of nothing but baseball. With 2 brothers and 3 step-brothers in my family hanging around each summer, it was easy to get a game going any time, and each night was spent in front of the TV, watching our beloved Yankees (I'm from New York) attempt to destroy the competition. My brothers and I developed special cheers for Don Mattingly, Ricky Henderson, Dave Righetti, and the rest of the team. When I moved to Minnesota, I helped my family adjust to the idea by telling them that Dave Winfield was born in St. Paul.

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Fixing a Broken Food Distribution System

wired-foodSeems like every few days I'm approached by someone with a local food focused business idea. Distribution is broken! We need a year round farmers market! CSAs are not the answer! Here's what I say: Yes. I've seen King Corn, FRESH, The Future of Food, and others.

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Fast Food Makes You Stupid

Great recent post by Jill Richardson in La Vida Locavore entitled Fast Food Makes You Stupid (Yet We Serve It In Our Schools). Here's an excerpt:

[A recent study found that] children scored between 58 and 181 points in the reading tests, gaining an average score of 141.5. But after taking other factors into account, pupils who ate fast food between four and six times a week scored almost seven points below average. Children snacking once a day fell 16 points, while pupils indulging three times a day dropped by 19 points. Similar trends were noted in maths. In total, children scored between 47 and 151 points in the test, with average results of 115. But those pupils eating fast food dropped by between 6.5 and 18.5 points.

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