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Are you smart enough to choose what you eat?

Are you smart enough to choose what you eat?

By Gene Hall

How’s that for a provocative headline? Make no mistake, there is a food elite, called The Food Police,” in an excellent book by Dr. Jayson Lusk that is quite determined to substitute their food choices for yours.

The thing I like about this book is that it so completely explodes all the food myths out there. I am not at all opposed to the local food movement, for example. I guess I assume that when it breaks down, as it must, that there will be exceptions. I hope so, because there just isn’t much commercial fresh fruit and vegetable production in Central Texas, where I live.

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Fearless agriculture predictions for 2013

Fearless agriculture predictions for 2013

By Mike Barnett

Whew, I’m glad 2012 is over. Elections, drought, bickering in Washington, no farm bill. 2013 has to be better. Doesn’t it? Here are my fearless agriculture predictions for 2013.

January: Voters push Congress over a physical cliff because we’re just tired of it all.

February: Rains bring widespread smiles to farmers and ranchers across the Lone Star State.

March: Voters respond favorably to initiative in Midwest that requires Humane Society of the United States to spend 90 percent of their funds taking care of homeless animals.

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A ‘grass-fed’ popsicle please, with a side of bean sprouts

A ‘grass-fed’ popsicle please, with a side of bean sprouts

By Mike Barnett

I wandered the Cedar Park Farmers Market in Austin recently and found every kind of agriculture product under the sun.

Of course there were the standard “fresh” tomatoes and other “local” food.

But a young couple was making good money selling “sustainable” bean sprouts and micro-greens. Another was selling “organic” fresh meat—everything from duck to rabbit to beef and pork—cut up, packaged and ready to cook.

There was even a lady selling “grass-fed” pops, a popsicle made with milk from dairy cows that apparently were not fed grain. Each to their own.

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Growing our own food—Been there, done that!

Growing our own food—Been there, done that!

By Gene Hall

Some believe the answer to future food needs is for many people to grow their own food.  As a nation, as a species, we once did that—nearly all of us at first. Now, more than 97 percent depend on those who work the land.

Could it be that way again?  Sure.  Growing up on the farm in the late ’50s, ’60s and early ’70s was an experience I would not trade for anything, but I left it willingly.  Since World War II, most of America has done the same.

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Let’s get real about ‘Real Food’

Let’s get real about ‘Real Food’

By Mike Barnett

I read and hear a lot about “real food,” and I’m always puzzled when someone or some group uses that phrase.

It’s usually in the context of local food or processed food, and the implication is if the food is not “whole,” or is grown by some other means, it’s inferior. Taken to the extreme, “real food” addresses social justice and, to buy it or eat it, it helps if you are politically correct.

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