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Union of Concerned Scientists


Top 10 Food Facts

Share your favorite science-based fact to show your support for a healthier food and farm system in honor of Food Day!

 

 

ACTION ALERT This Food Day, Share the Facts
Today is Food Day! To celebrate, I’m sharing a list of my “Top 10” favorite facts from recent UCS reports, including our brand new report, The Healthy Farmland Diet.
The Healthy Farmland Diet is the first economic analysis of its kind to show how increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables would not only be healthier for our bodies, but also healthier for the environment and local economies. This report also demonstrates how modest government investments can remove obstacles standing in the way for consumers and farmers to reach this goal.
So tell me: what’s your favorite science-based food fact? Use the links below to share it on Twitter to show your support of a healthier food and farm system! You can also share all 10 facts on Facebook or by forwarding this email.
1. Healthy farms=win-win-win for health/wellbeing of people, economies & natural resources we all depend onj.mp/1c0h1ib #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
2. Sales of locally grown food now total $5 BILLION/year. j.mp/1eNiV7u #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
3. Modest public investments in ~500 farmers markets/year could create >13K jobs over 5 years. j.mp/1aHULHx#FoodDay2013 Tweet this
4. Got (organic) milk? #Organic dairies = better for environment, consumer health & regional economies.j.mp/1aa5xLI #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
5. Shifting policy from supporting junk food to fruits/veg could save $17B in health costs. j.mp/HjDc8I#FoodDay2013 Tweet this
6. Burger with a side of…pills? j.mp/HjDuwq >70% of antibiotics sold in US are used in animal agriculture. #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
7. Only 2% of US cropland is devoted to fruit/veg. Time for smarter gov’t policies. j.mp/HdWQDK #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
8. If Americans ate fruit/veg according to @myplate, US production of fruit/veg would increase by 88%.j.mp/HdWQDK #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
9. Just 1 more serving of fruits/vegetables could save >30K lives/yr. j.mp/HjDc8I #FoodDay2013 Tweet this
10. Scientists have shown that cover crops can reduce nitrogen groundwater pollution by 40-70% j.mp/1c0h1ib#FoodDay2013 Tweet this
As you can see, we’ve got the facts on our side AND we’re making progress because of it. Just last week, wedelivered a petition from more than 18,000 UCS supporters to House leadership urging them to proceed with the Farm Bill. They listened, and the Farm Bill process is now moving ahead. Moreover, President Obama listed the Farm Bill as one of his three near-term priorities.
With all of this, we’ve got a lot to be excited about—and a lot of work to do. Join us, and this Food Day, share your favorite fact now for a healthier food and farm system!

Sincerely, Ashley Elles Ashley Elles National Field Organizer Food & Environment Program Union of Concerned Scientists

Union of Concerned Scientists ~~ Today, is Food Day!


Union of Concerned Scientists

Today is Food Day!

To celebrate, I’m sharing a list of my “Top 10” favorite facts from recent UCS reports, including our brand new report, The Healthy Farmland Diet. The Healthy Farmland Diet is the first economic analysis of its kind to show how increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables would not only be healthier for our bodies, but also healthier for the environment and local economies. This report also demonstrates how modest government investments can remove obstacles standing in the way for consumers and farmers to reach this goal. So tell me: what’s your favorite science-based food fact? Use the links below to share it on Twitter to show your support of a healthier food and farm system! You can also share all 10 facts on Facebook or by forwarding this email.

Top 10 Food Facts

Share your favorite science-based fact to show your support for a healthier food and farm system in honor of Food Day!

1. Healthy farms=win-win-win for health/wellbeing of people, economies & natural resources we all depend onj.mp/1c0h1ib #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

2. Sales of locally grown food now total $5 BILLION/year. j.mp/1eNiV7u #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

3. Modest public investments in ~500 farmers markets/year could create >13K jobs over 5 years. j.mp/1aHULHx#FoodDay2013 Tweet this

4. Got (organic) milk? #Organic dairies = better for environment, consumer health & regional economies.j.mp/1aa5xLI #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

5. Shifting policy from supporting junk food to fruits/veg could save $17B in health costs. j.mp/HjDc8I#FoodDay2013 Tweet this

6. Burger with a side of…pills? j.mp/HjDuwq >70% of antibiotics sold in US are used in animal agriculture. #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

7. Only 2% of US cropland is devoted to fruit/veg. Time for smarter gov’t policies. j.mp/HdWQDK #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

8. If Americans ate fruit/veg according to @myplate, US production of fruit/veg would increase by 88%.j.mp/HdWQDK #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

9. Just 1 more serving of fruits/vegetables could save >30K lives/yr. j.mp/HjDc8I #FoodDay2013 Tweet this

10. Scientists have shown that cover crops can reduce nitrogen groundwater pollution by 40-70% j.mp/1c0h1ib#FoodDay2013 Tweet this As you can see, we’ve got the facts on our side AND we’re making progress because of it. Just last week, wedelivered a petition from more than 18,000 UCS supporters to House leadership urging them to proceed with the Farm Bill. They listened, and the Farm Bill process is now moving ahead. Moreover, President Obama listed the Farm Bill as one of his three near-term priorities. With all of this, we’ve got a lot to be excited about—and a lot of work to do. Join us, and this Food Day, share your favorite fact now for a healthier food and farm system!

Sincerely, Ashley Elles Ashley Elles National Field Organizer Food & Environment Program Union of Concerned Scientists

Farm Bill debate begins–yo​ur voice is needed:


The Pulse: Facts you need from experts you trust

Visit our interactive farm

Our government is currently paying farmers to grow virtually the opposite of what it recommends that Americans eat—including billions to subsidize items such as corn syrup that go into processed food. Not only do these policies undermine our health, they damage our air, soil, and water. Thankfully, there’s a better way. Check out our new analysis, The Healthy Farm: A Vision for U.S. Agriculture, that identifies four ways that modern, science-based practices can produce abundant, affordable, healthy food and protect our environment. Be sure to visit our interactive healthy farm and take action as debate on the Farm Bill heats up. —Karla

Science in Action
Farmers Market Debate on Farm Bill begins—we need your help
We have an opportunity right now to reorient government policies to provide greater support for healthy food and farms. A proposal has been introduced to strengthen support in the Farm Bill for programs that meet our food needs, provide economic opportunities, and minimize harmful environmental costs. Tell Congress: the Farm Bill should support healthy farms and food—not processed food and industrial agriculture!
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Cartoon of the Month
Cartoon: Farm Bill
Click to view larger image.
 VOTE for UCS! Support our submission in the Looking @ Democracy video contest. INFOGRAPHIC: Are U.S. farms growing the food we should eat? Find out! Organic dairy—it’s good for your bones and great for the local economy. Learn more. Just rotate the crops? How one scientific study is upending the claims made by chemical companies!
Ask a Scientist
Karen Perry StillermanKaren Perry Stillerman
Senior Analyst,
Food and
Environment ProgramFollow
Karen’s blog >>
Our country has one of the highest costs for medical care, and has increasing amounts of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other diseases. To what extent can changes in our food system help make Americans healthier and what is UCS doing about these problems? —Janet Cruz, Kamiah, ID It’s true that healthcare spending in the United States currently accounts for 18 percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and is expected to rise sharply as the population ages. And rates of diet-related chronic diseases are soaring. Most of us know we should eat a healthier diet—with more fruits and vegetables, and less meat, sugar, and processed foods—but we’re being undermined by a food system that sets us up to fail. MOREDo you have a question for UCS scientists? Submit your question today.
This Just In
Visit our interactive farm Take a trip to a modern, sustainable farm
Healthy farms can meet our need for affordable, healthy food while providing real environmental and economic benefits. Our interactive graphic takes you on a tour of the top practices and benefits associated with modern, sustainable farming. Start your journey now!
Got Science
ALEC’s at it again: this time pushing state legislation that threatens our food’s safety by shielding factory farms from whistleblowers. Here’s what you need to know…
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  Did you miss Ricardo Salvador on @MHPnews? http://ow.ly/kwGSx Check out this weekend’s segment on #GMOs, Monsanto, hunger, and more…  VIDEO: Planning for sea level rise http://ow.ly/kqsaI @weatherchannnel highlights the growing risks of rising seas. #climate  We need a science champion for @EPAadm. Tell your senator to confirm Gina McCarthy: http://bit.ly/141B77I  States are choosing renewable energy facts over fiction peddled by #ALEC, #Koch brothers @CSMonitor http://ow.ly/kr03y
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Register for the Webinar Today! UCS


Join Our Webinar to Learn about the Farm Bill

What does the Farm Bill have to do with you? The answer to that question is simple: a lot. The Union of Concerned Scientists is hosting a webinar to help you learn why, with the inside scoop from our experts.

Toward Healthy Food and Farms: How Science-Based Policies in the 2012 Farm Bill Can Transform Agriculture
Date: Thursday, June 14
Time: 2:00-3:00 p.m. EST (11:00 a.m.-noon PST)

Register for the Webinar Today!

When you’re grocery shopping, do you ever wonder why corn chips and sugary drinks cost less than carrots and squash? In large part, it’s because government policies make the wrong foods cheaper and more abundant. UCS analysis shows that practical changes to agricultural policies can shift priorities to provide greater support to healthier food and farms instead of subsidizing unhealthy, processed foods.

Congress is currently working to finalize the Farm Bill, and while we’ve seen some good changes, they’re not enough. And the chance to change these policies comes just once every five years!

The webinar will cover the latest Farm Bill news from Capitol Hill, followed by an overview of UCS analysis showing that support for local food can benefit the economy and our health. Finally, we’ll share how you can take effective action now to urge Congress to support healthy and sustainable food production in the 2012 Farm Bill.

Time is ticking down for us to encourage a healthy and sustainable food system, so register for the webinar today!

Sincerely,
Jenn Yates
Jenn Yates
National Field Organizer
UCS Food & Environment Program

Tell Congress that sustainabl​e agricultur​e is the right investment – repost


Today the Backyard, Tomorrow the Farm!

 Most gardeners will be planting bulbs for next spring and taking steps to protect perennials from harsh winter weather over the next few weeks. But did you know that actions you take now can also help in the fight against global warming?

The following advice from a gardening expert offers a simple step you can take this fall to be a climate-friendly gardener by increasing your soil’s ability to store carbon—a key component in the leading cause of global warming. After you read the tip, take action to call for the same kind of actions on our nation’s farms.

www.ucsusa.org

In Your Garden

Tracey Payton, a horticulture educator from Norman, Oklahoma, offers this tip on how to be a climate-friendly gardener.

“Mulch is a great way to protect bare soil, and most importantly for the climate-friendly gardener, it can help prevent carbon loss. Uncovered soil is vulnerable to releasing more carbon than it stores. Mulch also has other benefits, such as protecting against temperature fluctuations that can damage plants, suppressing weeds, and reducing moisture loss and soil erosion. Using mulch can be as easy as an additional 2-3 inch layer of compost or straw in the garden; in the flower bed, cotton seed hulls, bark mulch, or wood mulch can be used. Do only keep mulch about 2-3″ deep and away from perennial plant stems to prevent rot and other moisture problems.”

More information about how healthy soil can lock up carbon may be found in The Climate-Friendly Gardener. This guide also contains more valuable tips and information on how to fight global warming in your own backyard.  http://action.ucsusa.org/site/R?i=CbQwBKQYI1GwQMSDdIzNGA

On the Farm…

If gardeners can adopt practices to combat global warming on a small scale, think what could be accomplished if similar steps were taken on the millions of acres of farmland across the country!

Similar to mulching, one of the most effective farm practices to store carbon in the soil on a large scale—while building soil health and preventing erosion—is widespread planting of “cover crops” in the winter. A sort of living mulch, cover crops protect farm fields when other crops aren’t growing. They also have the benefit of releasing nitrogen—one of the main ingredients in fertilizers into the soil just in time for spring-planted crops, which can reduce the need for added fertilizer (another source of  global warming emissions).

We can help expand the adoption of this practice by making sure that the next Farm Bill rewards farmers who plant cover crops. Voted on every five years, the Farm Bill helps determines what food farmers will grow and what practices they will employ. This bill includes programs to help farmers successfully adopt a wide array of sustainable agriculture practices, including the planting of cover crops.

Write to your members of Congress and demand farm policies that help farmers protect our water, air, and land while producing the food we need!

Take Action Today!   www.ucsusa.org

Sincerely,

Jenn Yates
National Field Organizer
UCS Food & Environment Program