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Photo by Michael Woolsey

Photo by Michael Woolsey

My first  time writing for this fine publication.

SNAP and Market Match Program at Farmers’ Markets Makes It Easier to Eat Healthy

It’s a sunny late-September morning at the Santa Rosa Community Farmers’ Market and Sam Pratt, thin and brown-haired in a green T-shirt, approaches the information booth with reusable grocery bags in hand. He’s greeted with a smile by Jim Fenton, the market manager, who swipes Pratt’s electronic benefits transfer (EBT) card through a small machine similar to those used for credit cards.

Today, Pratt, who depends on CalFresh benefits to buy his monthly groceries, will use $20 of his monthly allotment to purchase food items from local vendors at the farmers’ market. But that’s not all. Thanks to Market Match, a statewide healthy food incentive program, he’ll receive another $20 in tokens for additional fruits and vegetables.

ExtraFood.Org Tackles Food Waste and Hunger with Technology and Love

Sometimes the problem is the solution. Marv Zauderer, the founder of ExtraFood.org, arrived at this conclusion as he thought hard about how to solve two pressing issues in Marin County, where he makes his home. First, he asked himself, why do 40,000 Marin residents struggle with hunger in a community so seemingly abundant it has been ranked as the healthiest county in California? And, second, how is it that food waste makes up 30% of the waste stream in Marin, millions of pounds per year?

41.k shares on Facebook! People are stoked about veggie burgers.

 

In two weeks, an organic farmer at an undisclosed California potato patch will harvest the first crop of potatoes destined for the fryer in the kitchen at the soon-to-launch Amy’s Drive Thru restaurant in Rohnert Park, California. The fast food restaurant with a twist is the brainchild of Amy’s Kitchen, the popular frozen food and soup company.

It took two years, and thousands of pounds of potatoes, to find the right organic variety of potato for fresh-cut french fries cooked in sunflower oil. “Most businesses would go to a company and buy a bunch of frozen potatoes,” says John Paneno, Director of Sourcing at Amy’s Kitchen. “Amy’s started from scratch. We hired experts who could find the best varieties that met our sensory requirements. We had to figure out where they grew best and who is the best farmer to process them. We’re not taking any shortcuts.”

– See more at: http://civileats.com/2015/05/26/amys-clean-fast-food/#sthash.HKKHf4RD.dpuf

In two weeks, an organic farmer at an undisclosed California potato patch will harvest the first crop of potatoes destined for the fryer in the kitchen at the soon-to-launch Amy’s Drive Thru restaurant in Rohnert Park, California. The fast food restaurant with a twist is the brainchild of Amy’s Kitchen, the popular frozen food and soup company.

It took two years, and thousands of pounds of potatoes, to find the right organic variety of potato for fresh-cut french fries cooked in sunflower oil. “Most businesses would go to a company and buy a bunch of frozen potatoes,” says John Paneno, Director of Sourcing at Amy’s Kitchen. “Amy’s started from scratch. We hired experts who could find the best varieties that met our sensory requirements. We had to figure out where they grew best and who is the best farmer to process them. We’re not taking any shortcuts.”

– See more at: http://civileats.com/2015/05/26/amys-clean-fast-food/#sthash.HKKHf4RD.dpuf

In two weeks, an organic farmer at an undisclosed California potato patch will harvest the first crop of potatoes destined for the fryer in the kitchen at the soon-to-launch Amy’s Drive Thru restaurant in Rohnert Park, California. The fast food restaurant with a twist is the brainchild of Amy’s Kitchen, the popular frozen food and soup company.

It took two years, and thousands of pounds of potatoes, to find the right organic variety of potato for fresh-cut french fries cooked in sunflower oil. “Most businesses would go to a company and buy a bunch of frozen potatoes,” says John Paneno, Director of Sourcing at Amy’s Kitchen. “Amy’s started from scratch. We hired experts who could find the best varieties that met our sensory requirements. We had to figure out where they grew best and who is the best farmer to process them. We’re not taking any shortcuts.”

– See more at: http://civileats.com/2015/05/26/amys-clean-fast-food/#sthash.HKKHf4RD.dpuf

I interviewed Michelle Tea for KQED Arts. Unfortunately, I had to leave out all the cool stuff about astrology and money.

Michelle Tea has come a long way since her days as a poor young writer, penning drug-fueled memoirs and novels like Valencia and Rent Girl about her colorful life as a sex worker and queer artist in the ’90s-era Mission District. Now, she lives in a cozy house in the Outer Sunset, not so far geographically from the gritty streets where her DIY literary career ignited. But at 43, sober, newly married to her partner Dashiell and a mother to a three-month old boy named Atticus, Tea has grown up—on her own terms.

Michelle Tea’s Bumpy Backroad to Adulthood

New piece up at Civil Eats this week:

These days, consumers expect organic food manufacturers to pay close attention to how ingredients are sourced. But, one company has taken the process a step further. Nature’s Path, the British Columbia-based organic cereal manufacturer, has kicked off an innovative crop-sharing model with local farmers by purchasing 5,640 combined acres of farmland in Canada and northern Montana.

Why would a company that sells over $300 million worth of boxed organic cereal in outlets like Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s dive into the organic farmland business?

– See more at: http://civileats.com/2015/01/28/growing-organic-cereal-from-the-ground-up/#sthash.vd89Akmp.dpuf

These days, consumers expect organic food manufacturers to pay close attention to how ingredients are sourced. But, one company has taken the process a step further. Nature’s Path, the British Columbia-based organic cereal manufacturer, has kicked off an innovative crop-sharing model with local farmers by purchasing 5,640 combined acres of farmland in Canada and northern Montana.

Growing Organic Cereal From the Ground Up

Nature’s Path is going against the grain by investing in organic farmland.

– See more at: http://civileats.com/2015/01/28/growing-organic-cereal-from-the-ground-up/#sthash.vd89Akmp.dpuf

Growing Organic Cereal from the Ground Up: Nature’s Path is going against the grain by investing in organic farmland

July (credit Todd Cole) for Kroll Project

I reviewed Miranda July’s new novel The First Bad Man and Joshua Davis’ Spare Parts for KQED Arts Do List.

Body Talk: Miranda July’s Unsettling, Dirty, and Triumphant New Novel 

Robots Can Only Get You So Far: ‘Spare Parts’ and the American Dream

boyhood_0

A short list of music, books, and films I loved in 2014.

BOOKS

Roxane Gay – Bad Feminist

Naomi Klein – This Changes Everything

Rebecca Solnit – The Encyclopedia of Trouble and Spaciousness

Amy Poehler – Yes Please

Leslie Jamison – The Empathy Exams

 

MUSIC

Angel Olson – Burn Your Fire For No Witness

 

MOVIES/TV  (Disclaimer: I watched about three movies this year)

The Punk Singer

Boyhood

Transparent

 

I’m happy to be a new contributor over at The Do List, part of KQED Arts.

Here are links to some of my pieces from the past month:

The Marvelous, Complex World of Rebecca Solnit’s ‘The Encyclopedia of Trouble and Spaciousness’

If Hamlet Had an iPhone: Talking With Mallory Ortberg About ‘Texts From Jane Eyre’

How to Blend In With tUnE-yArDs Technicolor Trip

Cold Beat’s Surreal, Frenetic Pop Comes to Leo’s

A Hopeful Defiance: Angel Olson Talks ’90s R&B, “Women in Music,” and Her Whirlwind Year

I have a story up at Civil Eats, also running online at Time Magazine.com, about new data and guidelines on rice

All rice and rice products are not created equal, according to a new study released today by Consumer Reports. Some types of rice, and some rice grown in specific regions, contain much higher levels of inorganic arsenic (IA) than others.

How Much Arsenic is in Your Rice? 11/18/2014

Elsa_Gidlow_1974_by_Lynda_Koolish

The Rumpus is excellent and I’m super happy that they published my essay ‘Like Elsa’ last week.

A few summers back, I received a letter from one of my best friends, written from Prospect Park in Brooklyn. She wrote of blue herons, boys in horn-rimmed glasses, our dreams of moving together to a communal property, and, towards the end, of a writer she thought I would like: Elsa Gidlow. My friend had been particularly inspired by Druid Heights, the unfettered bohemian community just outside of Muir Woods in the San Francisco Bay Area, where this radical feminist anarchist lesbian poet had lived for the last half of her life. A copy of Gidlow’s autobiography would arrive on my doorstep within the week, my friend wrote.

From ‘Like Elsa’ – The Rumpus, November 13, 2014

schoolgarden

On the stands at Oliver’s Market, Copperfield’s, Healdsburg SHED and lots of other locations:

On a sunny Friday morning in the Wright Charter school garden, first graders bustle about between rows of lettuce, dried sunflowers, corn, scarlet runner beans, and cabbage. The students tease and jostle, watering and tending plants. The scene looks straight from Anne of Green Gables or any one of those other classics about the simple pleasures of rural life. But this isn’t 19th century Nova Scotia and no one, except possibly the scarecrow, wears calico. These kids live in Roseland, a low-income, unincorporated area of Sonoma County, where high density housing and little access to parks and open space is the norm.

Learning to Eat: The school garden movement could end diabetes and does provide Common Core curriculum. So why is it still viewed as a hippie’s daydream? – Made Local Magazine, Nov/Dec. 2014