Year in Review 2010: The Year in Food Stories

Ten food stories you should read this year (or next year).

Recommended year-end readings about food. Goes well with Instapaper.

“Stung from Behind” by Nathanael Johnson in Conservation Magazine
Beside pesticides, cell-phone radiation, and colony collapse disorder, there’s another problem lurking in the produce aisle. It’s called the pollinator crisis.

“Secret of AA” by Brendan I. Koerner in Wired
The enigmatic success of Alcoholic Anonymous and its 200-word instruction set is especially impressive since no one is quite sure how the decentralized network actually works.

“Food Movement Rising” by Michael Pollan in The New York Review of Books
Food is no longer an invisible issue and the food movement’s guru-in-chief rounds up the latest books. And issues a call to arms, of sorts.

“Consider the Oyster” by Christopher Cox in Slate
Since oyster farms don’t have inflict much collateral damage and since it’s extremely improbable the briny little bivalves feel pain, even vegans should consider eating them.

“Fire in the Belly” by Suketu Mehta in Saveur
A naga jolokia-laden batch of chili proves life-affirming to the Indian author in more ways than one.

“How French Laundry's Chefs Reach for the Stars” by Sophie Brickman in the San Francisco Chronicle
Behind the kitchen door of one of the nation’s four-star kitchens, restaurants are Googling customers who make a reservation and cooks are careful not to waste fresh-picked baby zucchinis.

“Slowed Food Revolution” by Heather Rogers in Prospect
Farmers endure hardships, but organic growers face higher production costs when it comes to everything from laborers to land. And without meaningful support from Obama, they might not survive.

“Mystery Travelers” by James Prosek in National Geographic
Fish got their due this year in Four Fish, but the world’s eels—and consequently, kabayaki—are also in peril. Scientists know they migrate from freshwater to open ocean, but no one has figured out where or how they spawn.

“Glacial Terroir” by Nicola Twilley in Edible Geography
Scientists who study ice cores sometimes drink melted ice cores and climate researcher Paul Mayewski explains the unique geographic time and place he can taste in an effervescent sample of 2,000-year old water.

“Eat No Evil” by Alan Richman in GQ
After a month-long journey into ethical enlightenment, the author discovers Mokum carrots, a possible alternative to compulsory military service (killing chickens), and just how difficult it is not to eat like an asshole.

via Douglas Muth / Flickr

Sin City is doing something good for its less fortunate citizens as well as those who've broken the law this month. The city of Las Vegas, Nevada will drop any parking ticket fines for those who make a donation to a local food bank.

A parking ticket can cost up to $100 in Las Vegas but the whole thing can be forgiven by bringing in non-perishable food items of equal or greater value to the Parking Services Offices at 500 S. Main Street through December 16.

The program is designed to help the less fortunate during the holidays.

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For more than 20 years. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) has served the citizens of Maine in the U.S. Senate. For most of that time, she has enjoyed a hard-fought reputation as a moderate Republican who methodically builds bridges and consensus in an era of political polarization. To millions of political observers, she exemplified the best of post-partisan leadership, finding a "third way" through the static of ideological tribalism.

However, all of that has changed since the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Voters in Maine, particularly those who lean left, have run out of patience with Collins and her seeming refusal to stand up to Trump. That frustration peaked with the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

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via / Flickr and Dimitri Rodriguez / Flickr

Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign looks to be getting a huge big shot in the arm after it's faced some difficulties over the past few weeks.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a leading voice in the Democratic parties progressive, Democratic Socialist wing, is expected to endorse Sanders' campaign at the "Bernie's Back" rally in Queens, New York this Saturday.

Fellow member of "the Squad," Ilhan Omar, endorsed him on Wednesday.

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Photo by HAL9001 on Unsplash

The U.K. is trying to reach its goal of net-zero emissions by 2050, but aviation may become the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.K. by that same year. A new study commissioned by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) and conducted at the Imperial College London says that in order for the U.K. to reach its target, aviation can only see a 25% increase, and they've got a very specific recommendation on how to fix it: Curb frequent flyer programs.

Currently, air travel accounts for 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions, however that number is projected to increase for several reasons. There's a growing demand for air travel, yet it's harder to decarbonize aviation. Electric cars are becoming more common. Electric planes, not so much. If things keep on going the way they are, flights in the U.K. should increase by 50%.

Nearly every airline in the world has a frequent flyer program. The programs offer perks, including free flights, if customers get a certain amount of points. According to the study, 70% of all flights from the U.K. are taken by 15% of the population, with many people taking additional (and arguably unnecessary) flights to "maintain their privileged traveler status."

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