Given the sad state of affairs in today's affairs of state - record federal budget deficits, record trade deficits, illegal domestic eavesdropping, the sale of key U.S. ports - one would think the U.S. House of Representatives has more important problems to address than a proposal to virtually wipe out state food labeling laws.
Well, no actually; the biggest fish fried by the House March 8 was just that: the National Uniformity for Food Act of 2005.
The uniformity act is a fat, old carp multinational food firms have been selling Congress for years. The goal is to Read more
WASHINGTON -- A controversial food-labeling measure passed the House on Wednesday after years of legislative efforts and heated opposition from consumer's groups and organic foodgrowers.
The bill, which passed 283-139, would establish a national food-safety labeling system but has been criticized as undermining states' authority to develop their own regulations on food packaging issues.
Among the bill's backers are House Majority Leader John Boehner, R-West Chester, a former businessman who worked in the packaging business.
Boehner said the variety of Read more
ORGANIC may be all the rage these days, in everything from cars to houses, but when it comes to baby clothes, not everyone is buying.
Nicole Mastrell, the owner of NunoOrganic, an Ossining-based online seller of certified organic baby clothing in cotton, linen, silk and wool, extolled the merits of all-natural materials grown without the use of pesticides or other toxic substances. Even the teddy bears and crayons that the company sells are chemical-free, she said.
"Organic is especially popular with young mothers," said Ms. Mastrell, who started her business several Read more
If you wait long enough, someone will come up with an answer to all of your questions, including one about which I have wondered for some time - how to go organic without going broke? Consumer Reports has done just that in its February issue.
Urvashi Rangan, an environmental health scientist with the magazine's publisher, Consumers Union, expresses the truth about a thought that had been lingering in my mind as well. Rangan states, "Not all organic products are created equal. It is important that consumers know where their organic dollars spent meet their expectations and where Read more
Perhaps you were on a road trip with your family the first time you heard the word organic. While you're zipping down the highway in the family wagon, your father crunches through a last bite of apple, rolls down the window and hucks the core into the roadside grass. You accuse him of littering, but he assures you it's okay. "It's organic."
Today, the word organic in a food context means so much more than carbon compounds that break down in the Earth's soil. Its meaning has taken on all sorts of positive and healthy connotations regarding diet and lifestyle. The word itself has Read more
WASHINGTON- Taking a little sweetness out of Valentine's Day, a consumer group says child labor and pesticides may be ingredients in those chocolates and flower bouquets.
The Organic Consumers Association is urging a boycott of traditional Valentine's gifts in favor of organic and fair-trade chocolate and flowers.
"Most Americans have no idea what goes into these Valentine's Day gifts," said Ronnie Cummins, the group's national director.
The group noted that major cocoa suppliers, Nestle SA, Archer Daniels Midland Co., and Cargill Inc., are accused in a Read more
Who says that love isn't political? This Valentine's Day, the Organic Consumers Association is urging shoppers to avoid non-organic flowers and chocolate, arguing that the posies are linked to harmful pesticides and the sweets are the product of slave labor. The group has launched an Internet-based campaign, featuring an animated video, so its poisoned-flowers-and- tainted-chocolates message can be heard by hundreds of thousands of consumers.
"We're not trying to be Debbie Downers," says Adam Eidinger, a spokesman for the association. "There are horrific working conditions for the Read more
Those who want to show their Valentines their green hearts can do so with organic flowers, organic wine, fairly traded chocolate and greeting cards made of recycled or hemp paper.
The Organic Consumers Association has put together a bunch of green suggestions with its "Unchain Your Heart" Valentines campaign center: http://www.organicconsumers.org/valentines/.
Why care? They point out that more than 40 percent of the world's chocolate comes from Cte d'Ivoire, where the International Labor Organization and U.S. State Department have reported widespread child slavery. Read more
If you want to know one of this year's hottest fashion trends, don't look to pink. Or black. Or anything metallic. This year, fashion is going green.
Green as in T-shirts and jeans made of organic cottons that haven't been doused with harmful chemicals. Green as in dresses that weren't made by third-world garment sewers in sweat-shop conditions. Green as in fabrics that were made by villagers in India, Africa and South America who are being paid fairly for their artisan work.
Mainstream America, more than ever, is looking at the uglier side of fashion and making the Read more
When Martha Han of Duluth, Minn., shops for groceries, she considers the health of her children, ages 3 and 5.
Some products she buys are certified organic. For instance, she prefers organic grapes and apples for her kids because nonorganic ones contain the highest pesticide levels.
"I won't buy everything organic, but I like having the choice," she says.
Judging from sales nationwide and anecdotal information locally, people such as Han are pushing organics into the mainstream.
"Organic foods are very, very big," says Nancy Christensen, executive Read more