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Archive | Food and Nutrition

Holiday Spirits: Notes from the Bourbon Trail

Good fortune recently provided me a brief, pre-holiday detour on Kentucky’s Bourbon Trail with my dad and brothers. The amber of the value-added agricultural products and the informative tours included a few interesting bits of farm policy and history – starting with the fact that our visit (unintentionally) coincided with the 82nd anniversary of the […]

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Whose Loss is it Anyway? Incentives to Reduce Grain Losses in Southern Brazil

Global food security and environmental sustainability should not be conflicting goals, but too often they seem to be. Tackling food security purely by increasing production requires additional use of land, water, pesticides, and fertilizers. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations reports that one-third of all food is lost or wasted worldwide. Decreasing […]

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Does Food Cost More in Food Deserts?

Recent research has found that in the United States, limited access to healthy food is associated with a lower consumption of fruits and vegetables, and a higher probability of obesity and other dietary related health problems. Areas with limited food access and low average incomes are often referred to as food deserts. Several federal, state, […]

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Small Farmer Fertilizer Subsidies and Child Health — Evidence from Malawi

In a previous post I wrote about the potential significance of new “smart subsidies” for agricultural inputs in Sub-Saharan Africa. Zambia, Tanzania, and Malawi have initiated such programs to help populations of small farmers acquire mineral fertilizer and hybrid seed at a lower cost. One key objective is to increase staple cereal yields from these […]

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“You Quit??” – Small Farmer Contracting and the Importance of Dropout

Over the past 20 years, international trade liberalization and various reforms have dismantled many government controls on agricultural markets in the developing world, opening new commercial spheres for farm products and new marketing choices for farmers in the Global South[1]. One class of these opportunities is linked to the modernization and expansion of agricultural value […]

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The Changing Landscape of the Organic Food Industry

The Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 authorized the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish national standards for the marketing of organically produced products. In response to this, the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) developed the National Organic Program, which was issued in 2000. According to the USDA-AMS website, an organic label “indicates […]

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Crushing on Cash

Cash is the new international development darling — lauded by researchers and practitioners as the new standard for foreign aid. Delivering cash to individuals rather than aid in-kind (such as cows, building materials, training), has gained increasing prominence in the past 15 years. It shows promise as a means to increase the efficiency and effectiveness […]

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The Potentially Negative Consequences Associated with the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act

The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a core component of the social safety net for low-income children in the United States. The proposals implemented through the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 have the potential to reduce the effectiveness of the NSLP in improving the well-being of low-income children. The NSLP operates in over […]

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FDA Proposes New Nutrition Facts Label

In March 2014, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed a “refreshed” nutrition facts label – the standard label seen on the back of most pre-packaged foods and beverages. The need for an updated label stems from new dietary recommendations as well as changes in the average portion sizes consumed by Americans. Source: FDA Consumer […]

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