My Generation
The Friday Five: Observation Edition

The Friday Five: Observation Edition

Chipotle and British pork, GMOs, grilled sweet corn and more: Here are five links to catch you up on the week in food and agriculture.

Dear Chipotle, what do you have against U.S. pig farmers? In case you've wondered what Chipotle is up to lately…they're busy buying pork from across the ocean. Here's why, in a well-articulated post from the Minnesota Pork Board president.

Unhealthy Fixation: This is a great if lengthy piece from Slate looking at GMO safety: "The war against genetically modified organisms is full of fearmongering, errors, and fraud. Labeling them will not make you safer." And also, God bless their graphic designer for knowing how to work a corn borer into that graphic.

Grilling the perfect corn: I refuse to type the full title of this piece because it's ridiculous, but I still like the merits of the story. Mostly, because we love sweet corn, and also because we embarked on our own grilled sweet corn adventure this week. Our winner: soak the ear with husk, peel back husks, brush with butter and sprinkle with seasoning salt, replace husks, grill for 30 minutes. Second favorite: soak, grill with husks, butter and season on your plate; it's almost as good and significantly easier if you have a lot to make.

What judges really want to tell you: We're heading to the county fair next week so this stuff is top of mind at our house. Maybe you are, too? I don't know exactly who wrote this and they don't quote anyone, but they do seem to know what they're talking about.

Why we're so scared of GMOs: This Washington Post blog purports to answer this question, "according to someone who has studied them since the start." And guess what? He interviewed Jayson Lusk! Lusk is one of my favorite ag/food economists. I first interviewed him as a Food Dialogues panelist a couple years ago, then for a series on GMO labeling I did last year. He's thoughtful and researched and well spoken. This is a good read with some provocative questions like, "when did all this GMO talk begin?" Lusk's answer: "What brought it to everyone's attention was, quite frankly, the sellers of many natural foods and organic products. I don’t want to say that they were stoking people’s fears, but they kind of were, at least to the extent that that helps sales of their own products. So there was some of that advertising, and the advertising that pitched products as not containing GMOs, which raised consumer awareness."

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