Sustainable Chick Farm Fresh News for February

February is a great month to dust off your tools and start your Spring garden plans, and depending upon where you live, to protect your plants from late winter frosts.  If you are a Sustainable Chick, it’s also time to catch up on what’s new and innovative in the farm to table movement with our Sustainable Chick Farm Fresh News for February… read on!

This month we have updates on food safety, how you can help save the endangered rusty patched bumble bee and plant-based dyes you can make from your farmers market haul.  Read on!


Country Life Coloring BookSustainable Chick Farm Fresh News for March

With 45 ready-to-color pages include a mixture of intricately hand-lettered phrases and charming scenes of farm life and outdoor beauty — including chickens, honey bees on flowers, and barns.

It’s a great pick for sustainable chicks who love the adult coloring book craze!


Backyard Beekeeper – Revised and Updated, 3rd EditionSustainable Chick Farm Fresh News for March 

Backyard Beekeeper makes the tradition of beekeeping an enjoyable and accessible backyard pastime that will appeal to gardeners, crafters, and cooks everywhere. The expanded edition gives you even more information on “greening” your beekeeping with sustainable practices, pesticide-resistant bees, and urban and suburban beekeeping.


Every Which Way Crochet Borders: 139 Patterns for Customized EdgingsSustainable Chick Farm Fresh News for March

Crocheting is our DIY passion this year and this book offers step-by-step instructions and symbol charts for 139 creative new border designs within reach for beginning and advanced crocheters alike. If you’re ready to chart your own crocheted course, Edie Eckman offers plenty of helpful design advice, including how to choose an appropriate border for each project and how to incorporate an element from the main stitch pattern into a new border design.



Earth-Friendly Ways to Freshen Up Your HomeSustainable Chick Farm Fresh News for March – If you’re interested in giving your “Spring Clean” a little more “green” this year, check out these tips. – It’s almost time to start shopping for late winter and early Spring produce.  What should you be looking for and how do you snag the best deals?

Hawaii agritourism taking root for next generation – Looking for a new twist on eco-tourism, Hawaii agritourism is redefining family vacations in island paradise with a wealth of educational opportunities.

Urban farmers grow crops in Brooklyn parking lot – If you have any doubt that the farm to table movement can thrive in urban settings, this program will inspire you to think again and embrace new gardening innovations!

With local food readily available, are farmers markets now out of date? – Interesting question posed here.  I think it’s very different answer depending upon where you live.  What are your thoughts?



Are You Recycling Correctly? 4 Simple Mistakes You May Be Making

As someone who composts, recycles, re-purposes and reuses as much as I possible can, I like to think that I have the whole recycling process down-pat.  Truth is, I’m not always recycling correctly. Changes in the industry are constantly happening and it’s easy to make simple mistakes.

According to the waste management firm, virtually everybody is making the same simple mistakes that reduce the amount that they recycle because they’re not washing and squashing.

Are You Recycling Correctly? 4 Simple Mistakes You May Be Making

The good news, according to the UK’s fastest-growing commercial waste and recycling company, is that with literally the tiniest bit of extra effort, we can all get our rubbish game back up to scratch.  Though this study was conducted by a European country, its fully applicable to those of us recycling our home products in the United States.

Recycling Mistakes You May Be Making

Two of the simple errors we’re all making include keeping lids on plastic bottles and failing to wash out food containers.

“You may think we’re being extra fussy, but we’re not,” says spokesperson Mark Hall, “Getting your recycling wrong means extra work and extra costs, and could even result in whole loads being rejected at the recycling plant.”

Recycling waste correctly includes:

  • Ensuring all refuse correctly is separated according to local authority regulations
  • Washing or rinsing glass, plastic bottles and foil food trays
  • Removing lids from jars and plastic bottles
  • Crushing metal cans and plastic containers

Why You Should Wash and Squash says a simple household strategy will get people recycling better, and it’s one the government, local councils and refuse collection companies has been quietly pushing for years:  Wash and squash.

Rinsing out used containers and squeezing the air out of them removes contamination and means recycling is more energy efficient. That makes the whole process worthwhile for everybody.

“Just rinse out containers, then squash them flat, simple as that,” say Hall. However, he says, there’s nothing wrong with using the full force of modern technology to give you a helping hand: “The dishwasher’s fine,” he says. managing director David Adams says: “We always run everything through the dishwasher on eco-friendly mode with the regular washing up.

“Then it’s ready for the recycling bin with zero extra effort. Any householder can do that – just don’t do special loads for your rubbish, because that’s unbelievably wasteful!”

All of these simple steps are easily integrated into your current recycling habits.  While we may not be mistake-free, if we take a few moments to stay up-to-date on recycling trends, our efforts will have an even greater positive impact.

Sustainable Chick News | November Farm to Table Trends

Harvest time is ending and the holidays are drawing near, it’s time to enjoy the farm to table bounty we’ve worked so hard to preserve!

Sustainable Chick News | November Farm to Table Trends

If you are a Sustainable Chick, it’s also time to catch up on what’s new and innovative in the farm to table movement.

This month we have updates on food safety, how you can help save the endangered rusty patched bumble bee and plant-based dyes you can make from your farmers market haul.  Read on!


Buck, Buck, Moose: Recipes and Techniques for Cooking Deer, Elk, Moose, Antelope and Other Antlered ThingsBuck, Buck, Moose

Buck, Buck, Moose is the first comprehensive, lushly photographed, full-color guide to working with and cooking all forms of venison, including deer, elk, moose, antelope and caribou.



The Homestead Planner & Logbook: Record All Your Important Information for Easy, One-Stop ReferenceThe Homestead Planner & Logbook 

Easily keep track of the work you’ve put into your homestead or small farm – or figure out the work you need to put into it – with the help of this convenient planner. Ideal for homesteaders and small farmers working anything from 2 to 40 acres,


Spit that Out!: The Overly Informed Parent’s Guide to Raising Healthy Kids in the Age of Environmental GuiltSpit That Out!

Lighthearted yet authoritative, Spit That Out! cuts through the information overload, sorts cloth from disposable, and empowers readers to make simple but impactful changes.





Food Safety, Farm to Fork – Great food safety tips and reminders for the holidays

How You Can Help the Endangered Rusty Patched Bumble Bee TODAY! – Super easy and quick steps you can take right now to help save the bees

Does Your Grocery Store Kill Bees or Protect Pollinators? – Before you head out to purchase your holiday food, check this list to see how “bee-friendly” your grocer is

8 Pro Tips for Shopping Your Farmers Market – Benefit from these insider tips on how to make the most of your budget and time.

An Ode to Farmers Markets – Sweet tribute with some great salad recipes

Where do ingredients at farm-to-table restaurants come from? – Interesting insight behind-the-scenes

Hunters should try Share the Harvest – Terrific example of a program in Missouri where hunters donate venison to those in need

5 Gorgeous Plant-Based Dyes you can make from your Farmer’s Market Haul  – great way to start your own soil to studio movement!



5 Quick and Easy Ways to Give Your Living Room an Eco Makeover

Does your living room need a makeover? Then it’s a good time to invest in some energy saving, eco-friendly changes. Or maybe you are setting up your living room for the first time. Either way, there are ways to save money while keeping the environment in mind.

5 Quick and Easy Ways to Give Your Living Room an Eco Makeover

It’s easier than you think to take steps towards reducing the carbon footprint of your home.  They these five quick and easy steps that will help you save money and create a more eco living room:

Use power strips. Power strips are an energy-saving option because they can be turned off, cutting power to multiple electronic devices all at once. Devices that are plugged in still use electricity even when turned off, especially if the appliance has a rechargeable battery.

Buy a smaller, LCD television. A big screen plasma TV may be an exciting prospect, but think before you purchase one. Smaller, LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) TVs use less electricity than plasma, and the smaller the TV the more energy-efficient. There are flat-screen, LCD TVs available.

Freshen the air with plants. You don’t need to invest in chemical air fresheners, many of which contain perfumes that can irritate allergies. Air fresheners also have to be replaced regularly. House plants, on the other hand, are inexpensive, beautiful, and natural air fresheners. They turn carbon monoxide into oxygen and absorb toxins from the air. Succulents, cacti, and orchids are good for beginners.

Consider salvaged wood furniture. This is furniture that is made from collected wood, such as fallen trees or driftwood. This kind of furniture can be purchased or, if you really want to save money, collect and make something yourself. You can assemble driftwood pieces artistically and glue them together into a mirror or picture frame, for example, or use a cross-section of a fallen log as an end table.

Update your lamps. You don’t have to sacrifice style to go green with your lighting. Simply replacing your existing bulbs with CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Bulbs) will cut your energy costs. Putting an inexpensive timer on your living room lamps is another way to save energy.


Sustainable Chick News | August Farm to Table Trends

Summer is winding down but the harvest season is just beginning.  Crops are plentiful and we’re busy preserving all of nature’s bounty!

If you are a Sustainable Chick, it’s also time to catch up on what’s new and innovative in the farm to table movement.  This month we have updates on gardening as therapy, pro tips for shopping your farmers market and how oysters are fueling sustainable waterways.  Read on!

Sustainable Chick News | August Farm to Table Trends


Medical Medium Life-Changing Foods: Save Yourself and the Ones You Love with the Hidden Healing Powers of Fruits & VegetablesSustainable Chick News | August Farm to Table Trends

Information about healing included highly targeted regimens of nutrition, supplements, and lifestyle adjustments, with fruits and vegetables playing a major role.



Natural Color: Vibrant Plant Dye Projects for Your Home and WardrobeSustainable Chick News | August Farm to Table Trends Using sustainable methods and artisanal techniques, designer, artist, and professor Sasha Duerr details achievable ways to apply these limitless color possibilities to your home and wardrobe.





Resorts’ rooftop garden takes farm-to-table to a higher level – A great example of the rooftop to table restaurant trend.

Leaving Academia to Become a First-Generation Farmer – Chris Holman gave up on a Ph.D. in world languages to start a farm in Wisconsin.

Surprising use for fresh herbs: Emeril’s Apple Tarragon Granita recipe – Recipe and insight into this fresh trend.

8 Pro Tips for Shopping Your Farmers Market – Benefit from these insider tips on how to make the most of your budget and time.

Chefs launch Urban Seed to offer homegrown produce – Good example for a community-based farm-to-table gardening effort.

The Oyster’s Mighty Comeback Is Creating Cleaner U.S. Waterways – Interesting insight on how oysters are connected to the farm-to-table movement.

Gardening as Therapy, Even for PTSD – Can gardening could keep your brain fit?

Sustainable Chick News | July Farm to Table Trends

Summer has arrived and we’re now beginning to reap the rewards of all our Spring planting.  As the fresh watermelon ripes on the vine, it’s time to kick back and enjoy the sunshine!

If you are a Sustainable Chick, it’s also time to catch up on what’s new and innovative in the farm to table movement.  This month we have updates on how to best shop your Farmer’s Market, how to meal prep on the farm, and the farm-to-medicine movement.  Read on!

What’s On Our July Bookshelf:

Sustainable Chick News | July Farm to Table Trends

June Farm to Table Trends:

How to Save Money at the Farmers Market  Eight tips for saving money while supporting your local businesses.

How to Meal Prep on the Farm  Insights into life on the farm and how to meal prep.

Apothecary gardens fuel farm-to-medicine-cabinet movement  A fascinating offshoot of the farm-to-table movement.

Why These Die-Hard Nature Lovers Want You To Eat The Plants They Find On The Forest Floor  A peek inside the world of foraging.

Farm to keyboard: why software is the next “craft” industry  A little off-our-true topic, but an interesting read how software development and the values that set a craft software company apart from the others.

Head, Heart, Hands, Health: How 4-H Enhances My Life  Personal insights on how 4-H is pertinant to all aspects of life.

The newest farm-to-table trend: fresh-cut flowers Why locally sourced flowers may be the next logical step in the movement.

Down on the Back Forty Farm  How the Alstads are part of the effort to retrain, reframe our food consciousness.

What Will it Take to Build a Local Foods Movement?  Discussion on the barriers to building a local, sustainable food movement.

Food Adds Flavor (and Value) to Real Estate “Agrihoods,” Food Halls and Other food-based concepts.

Start on the path to homesteading today with author Barb Webb’s new book Getting Laid: Everything You Need to Know About Raising Chickens, Gardening and Preserving — with Over 100 Recipes! (ISBN 1632280213,) an encyclopedia of farm to table knowledge designed to empower modern homesteaders!

Related articles

Sustainable Chick News | June Farm To Table Trends

Summer is nearly here, the earth is warm and welcoming!  Now is the time to harvest the early bounty, work on summer home improvements, enjoy the sunshine and plan your fall garden.

If you are a Sustainable Chick, it’s also time to catch up on what’s new and innovative in the farm to table movement.  This month we have updates on how to spot fake farm-to-table foods, wine-to-table trends and everything you need to know about coconuts!  Read on!

What’s On Our June Bookshelf:

Sustainable Chick News | June Farm To Table Trends


June Farm to Table Trends:

U.S. wine changed forever 40 years ago, but not just at a blind tasting in Paris  How farm to table initiatives continue to change the wine industry

Bike-Powered Farming Program Turns Lawns Into Urban Farms  Fleet Farming, a bike-powered, all-volunteer team of farmers in Orlando, Florida is turning wasteful, water-hogging lawns into mini urban farms to help boost local food production.

At Tampa Bay farm-to-table restaurants,you’re being fed fiction  Enlightening and thought-provoking article on whether farm-to-table restaurants are selling truth or fiction

How to tell if your ‘local’ food is actually local  Fantastic information you need on how to distinguish real from fake “farm-to-table” food at restaurants and grocers

Corn Whisperers  Interesting read on chefs grinding corn for grits, for polenta, for masa to fashion into tortillas while helping to preserve the 59 heirloom varieties grown in Mexico and the small family farms.

Best and Worst Cities for Staycations  As we try to keep our travel eco-footprint low, where are the best staycations spots?

Cracking The Coconut Guide to the paleo movement’s favorite fat

How to Host a Farm to Table Meal Experience the magic of gathering people together and sharing seasonal food.


Start on the path to homesteading today with author Barb Webb’s new book Getting Laid: Everything You Need to Know About Raising Chickens, Gardening and Preserving — with Over 100 Recipes! (ISBN 1632280213,) an encyclopedia of farm to table knowledge designed to empower modern homesteaders!

6 Ways to Make Your Coffee Green

Growing and processing your own organic coffee beans may be the most organic way to go, but depending upon your climate, soil and time constraints, it may not be the most productive method.  There are plenty of ways to eco-up your java fix, though.  Before you fill your next cup, try one of these “green” options:

6 Ways to Make Your Coffee Green

Seek out fair trade and organic.  Fair trade is the coined term for the effort to support small farmers by guaranteeing a minimum price for their crops and promoting long-term sustainable solutions.  Not all fair trade farmers use organic methods, so you may also want to identify those dedicated to using organic farming practices.

Ditch your filters.  Did you know you can brew coffee the same way you brew tea?  In fact, in many countries, steeping coffee is the preferred method for enjoying a great cup o’ jo.  Using a French coffee press is one of the preferred methods, delivering an incredible brew with minimal effort.

Use reusable filters.  Can’t bear to ditch your filters or still wish to use your traditional coffee maker?  Replace your paper filters with reusable ones.  Even a lot of the “fancy” electronic cup brewers offer reusable mesh filters in place of standard plastic cups.

Compost your coffee grounds.  There’s absolutely no reason to toss your coffee grounds in the trash.  Coffee grounds make excellent compost material.  If your coffee habits are heavy and your compost bin is full, consider working with a local park or environmental agency to find a good spot to spread your grounds.  Coffee grounds can be spread directly on soil and will quickly be absorbed.

Go local.  The further a food product has to travel, the more resources it consumes.  If you want to purchase a truly eco-friendly brew, seek out local coffee growers or whenever possible, stock up on local coffee during your travels.

Use a travel mug.  If you regularly crave a cup of java on-the-go, be sure to carry a travel mug or purchase a refillable mug from your favorite coffee hangout.  This way you will avoid having to use and dispose of cardboard cups, plus you’ll likely get a discount from the vendor for having a reusable mug.

6 Ways to Make Your Coffee Green

Sustainable Chick News 5:16 | What’s New in Farm To Table

We are mid-May and the earth has awakened to fill the landscape with blooms and greens.  Now is the time to finish your garden inventory, wrap up Spring cleaning, plan summer home improvements, finalize your summer travel plans and tend to your floral plants.

If you are a Sustainable Chick, it’s also time to catch up on what’s new and innovative in the farm to table movement.  This month we have updates on “farm to glass,” “farm to beauty,” and even tips on how to talk about your farming efforts with non-farmers.  Read on!

What’s On Our May Bookshelf:

Spring Planting

May Farm to Table Trends:

Growing small businesses in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park – great insight into successful sustainable community business practices

5 Things To Know Before You Buy a Farm – interesting article from the perspective of the couple who started 3 Porch Farm

How To Start A Garden Club – tips for starting your own gardening club or how to find one in your area

A Band of Biking Farmers in Florida Reinvents Sharecropping – Fleet Farming transforms lawns into farms to create a new local food system

Cocktails on the Farm: An education about cocktails – fun insights (and event information) on farm to glass drinking

Wolfgang Puck Launches Farm-to-Table Series – Mark Andelbradt, executive chef at Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill, debuts a farm-to-table series

Farm on four wheels changing the landscape of urban farming – a major investment in a new popular twist to the farm to table concept

Redefining Farm-To-Table Eggs in Minnesota – an Interview with Locally Laid Egg Company

How to talk about farming with non-farmers – tips for effective communication between farmers and non-farmers

Farm-to-Face Beauty: This Hot Beauty Trend is Growing, Literally – all about the farm-to-face beauty trend

Start on the path to homesteading today with author Barb Webb’s new book Getting Laid: Everything You Need to Know About Raising Chickens, Gardening and Preserving — with Over 100 Recipes! (ISBN 1632280213,) an encyclopedia of farm to table knowledge designed to empower modern homesteaders!

What’s Stopping You? Top 10 Homesteading Myths

What does it take to be a homesteader?

People entertain the idea of homesteading because they have the desire to reduce their global footprint and/or to live a simpler, healthier lifestyle.  What it takes is that initial desire, the willingness to learn, and possibly some investment in initial supplies. All doable and easily achievable, so what’s holding you back?

Chances are you’ve fallen into the number one myth we tell ourselves – “I can’t start until __(fill in the blank)__.”

There are 10 common homesteading myths that keep people in the land of hesitation, postponing the desire to homestead, constantly waiting for the perfect day to begin the journey.  The day to begin the homesteading adventure, though, is now!  When you dispel the myths, a wonderful eco-journey will greet you.  Just take that first step!

What's Stopping You? Top 10 Homesteading Myths


Top 10 Homesteading Myths


Myth #1: You need to own a lot of land.  In reality, you can live a more sustainable lifestyle in an apartment or condo.  Space is not the issue.  Traditional homesteading implies settling on land in a house and acreage is certainly desirable, but there are plenty of people homesteading on 1 acre or less and creating eco-friendly environments in small spaces.  The key is to live responsibly within the space you have.

Myth #2: You can only “truly” homestead with free land.  If we were living in the late 1800’s or early 1900’s this may have a ring of truth, but in 2015 the 1862 Homestead Act is no longer applicable.  In modern times, we need to accept a more modern definition of homesteading and make it work within the parameters we have available.  Just because you pay for your home and land doesn’t mean you cannot be a homesteader.

Myth #3: You have to prep for the zombie apocalypse to homestead.  There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having a survival plan but it’s simply not synonymous with homesteading. You don’t have to stockpile or make preparations like a survivalist to live a more sustainable lifestyle unless you choose to.

Myth #4: You have to live off-grid.  Plain and simple, you do not have to live in the mountains with no form of communication or access to the modern world.  It’s perfectly acceptable to choose this lifestyle option but you can live in the city and still adopt a homestead style.

Myth #5: You need to have skills before you homestead or come from a farm background.  This is the most popular homesteading myth I hear from people who are contemplating homesteading, but are hesitant to start.  If you have access to a library or the internet, you can find and learn everything you need to know to begin homesteading.  In addition to these resources, there are a wealth of classes available to help you learn some of the skills you may lack, such as proper animal care or gardening techniques, at your local extension agency, community center or college.  All you need is the willingness to learn!  The original homesteaders learned through trial and error, you have the huge benefit of history and modern technology to get you up to speed quickly!

Myth #6: Homesteading is hard and you can’t have a full-time job outside your home. Animals and gardens do need constant attention and I won’t minimize the fact that there is work involved in living a sustainable lifestyle, but there’s plenty of resources and alternatives available to find a desirable balance between work and homesteading.  Options like self-watering gardens, easy compost setups, animal sitters, low-maintenance tools and other time-saving conveniences are available to help you.

Myth #7: Homesteading is easy and doesn’t take much time.  On the flip side, some people con themselves into thinking that homesteading is a quick and easy process they can start in a flash, so they postpone until they have a pocket of free time to dive in and set everything up.  Homesteading is a process and doesn’t happen overnight.  However, don’t be afraid of the work or time involved.  You can approach it step by step and get started today even by implementing simple things like starting a window herb garden, setting up a compost station or implementing a water conservation plan. The time to start is now!

Myth #8: You have to be 100 percent self-sufficient.  I would love to be 100 percent self-sufficient and admire people who have taken the steps to reduce their eco-footprint to the lowest possible number.  They are eco champions! There are some modern conveniences holding me back from being among them, such as my cell phone, laptop and dishwasher.  But here’s the thing, I try to use my cell phone, laptop and dishwasher until they are nearly past the point of being obsolete and dispose of or re-purpose them properly when they’ve outlived their usefulness.  I also try to be responsible with my purchase decisions and buy products that are energy-efficient, comprised of renewable or recycled materials, and ideally have a low eco-footprint, when possible.

Also keep in mind, that you don’t have to do it all.  If you are homesteading on one acre, you may not be able to grow all of the crops you need to feed your family or animals.  Truthfully, there’s no reason you have to.  Bartering with neighbors or shopping at the local farmer’s market for organic goods is a viable, acceptable way to supplement your homesteading.  We may not be able to be or choose to be 100 percent self-sufficient, but we can certainly get as close as possible by consciously walking the sustainable path and using all of the resources available!

Myth #9: You can’t make a living as a homesteader.  If you want to leave your job and make a living homesteading, it is possible.  Like any other business, you’ll need to do your research and choose a homesteading business that provides a viable income.  There are plenty of profitable farming ideas and also a lot of artisan products to explore.  You may even consider other sources of home income like tutoring, writing or pet-sitting to help support your homestead lifestyle.  The key here is to have a plan and a budget established before you dive in.  You can easily begin homesteading while you still have a full time job and work on a timeline for transitioning to self-employment.

Myth #10:  You have to be a hippie, homeschooler, vegetarian or whatever label misconception you can come up with.  My husband and I don’t fit easily into any of these category, nor do most of the homesteaders I’ve interacted with.  The fact is homesteading is for everyone.  If you have the desire to homestead and the willingness to learn how, you are the perfect person to become a homesteader!

What other homesteading myths have you encountered?  What’s holding you back from taking the steps towards a more self-sufficient lifestyle? 

Start on the path to homesteading today with author Barb Webb’s new book Getting Laid: Everything You Need to Know About Raising Chickens, Gardening and Preserving — with Over 100 Recipes! (ISBN 1632280213,) an encyclopedia of farm to table knowledge designed to empower modern homesteaders!

44 Farm To Table Websites You Need to Read

When you are intent on making every page count and fitting in every morsel of information you know will benefit readers, unfortunately some sacrifices must be made in the publishing world to reach this goal.  In the case of my new book, Getting Laid: Everything You Need to Know About Raising Chickens, Gardening and Preserving — with Over 100 Recipes! (ISBN 1632280213,) in order to deliver the encyclopedia of cumulative farm to table knowledge I wished to present and empower readers with, I had to cut the page count which meant sacrificing the “resource guide” suggestions for further reading in the back of the book.

44 Farm To Table Websites You Need to Read

Well, I just couldn’t leave you hanging without this valuable bit of information so I went one step further and produced an even bigger, more comprehensive farm to table websites list to share on Sustainable Chick.  Hope this continues to enhance your sustainable living journey!



44 Farm To Table Websites You Need to Read

Food & Beverage:


Sustainable Living:

Get Involved:

Food Tank

Food Tank is focused on building a global community for safe, healthy, nourished eaters. They spotlight environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable ways of alleviating hunger, obesity, and poverty and create networks of people, organizations, and content to push for food system change.

Slow Food USA

The mission of this international grassroots membership organization is good, clean and fair food for all.

Eco Agriculture Partners

An international initiative for dialogue, learning and action about landscapes for people, nature and food.

Center for a Livable Future

The mission of the Center for a Livable Future is to promote research and to develop and communicate information about the complex interrelationships among diet, food production, environment and human health.

Leaders for Nature

Leaders for Nature is the IUCN NL business engagement network of twenty multinationals and major Dutch enterprises working together on greening the economy.

44 Farm To Table Websites You Need to Read

7 Ways To Cut Down on Food Waste Today

food waste - ripe bananasThe not-so-pretty truth is – Americans waste a lot of food. The other not-so-great truth is that in addition to adversely affecting the planet, food waste also has a negative impact on your grocery bill.

What do you do to help curb food waste? Is there a good truth to be found?

Yes! The super-good truth is there are many easy ways to put an end to food waste in your home. Get started with these seven tips and you’ll be saying hello to extra money in your budget and good-bye to food-wasting habits!

1. List the leftovers.

Put a magnetic pad on your refrigerator. When you put a leftover in, note the item, date, and, if you’re using opaque containers, note that too. (“Green beans, 2/16/10, cottage cheese container.”) The list will look right at you when you go to browse for your next meal or snack, even if the leftovers end up out of sight in the back of the fridge.

2. Freeze your foods.

If you buy in bulk, buy those food items that can be frozen. Freeze refrigerated leftovers after 5 days.

3. Discover some creative uses for your leftovers.

Shepherd’s pie, vegetable soup, and casseroles are just some of the creative ways you can use your leftovers. Whiz stale (but not moldy) bread in the blender to make bread crumbs, which you can freeze if you do not need them right away. Stale bread can also become homemade croutons or melba toast. Leftover meat can be incorporated into chicken salad or soups and stews.

4. Store refrigerated foods in the right places.

The back of your refrigerator is colder than the front, and the door shelves are warmer still. Relegate dairy foods that are prone to spoilage to the back of the fridge, and keep items such as condiments and salad dressings toward the front or in the door.

5. When it’s too late, compost your spoiled food.

Then you can use the compost to grow more fresh food!

6. Skip the fruit bowl whenever possible and refrigerate fresh fruits.

Some foods, such as tomatoes, do not do well under refrigeration so they should be consumed within a few days of purchase. But apples, oranges, grapefruits, and lemons last much longer in the crisper drawer of your fridge.

7. Plan your grocery shopping and meals carefully to avoid waste.

And don’t grocery shop when you’re hungry! Save your hunger for those leftovers.

Do You Know How To Reduce Your Food Miles?

food milesHave you ever thought about the fuel it takes to get food to the grocery store? Produce from large farms is harvested using gas-powered machinery. It is then transported – often hundreds or even thousands of miles – by airplane or truck to your local store.

For example, if produce travels from Mexico to Virginia, it travels over 1800 miles. That’s a lot of fossil fuel for a head of lettuce!

Another consideration is the safety and nutrients in food. The longer food sits, the more chance there is that it will be exposed to dangerous bacteria such as salmonella. If food has been processed and shipped for long distances, it is usually sprayed with preservatives to keep it “fresh” during the long journey. Fresh fruits and vegetables are often coated with wax to prevent them from drying out during transport. In the meantime, nutrients are lost as the foods sit for long periods.

If you’d like to cut down on your food mileage, here are some ideas that can help.

Grow your own food. This is not necessarily the enormous task it may seem like at first. You don’t need vast amounts of sunny acreage to make a fruitful garden. If you do have a moderately-sized or large yard, however, consider sectioning off part of it for a garden.

If not, try container gardening. Tomatoes, cucumbers, and strawberries are particularly suited for pots or containers. Get creative; you don’t need to spend a lot of money on commercial flower pots. Use flower boxes for lettuces, old pots or buckets for strawberries or tomatoes, and hanging baskets for cucumbers. Many herbs and even vegetables can be grown indoors in sunny windows.

Forego the imports where you can. Tropical fruit is, of course, grown in the tropics, and unless you live there, the tropics are a long way from home. This includes canned and dried tropical fruits as well.

Buy locally grown food. Not only will you get seasonal vegetables that are well suited to your body’s needs, but you’ll support your local community. And, of course, you’ll reduce your food miles. In fact, if there is a farm nearby where you can pick your own produce, that’s even better. Carpool with friends and gather your own produce by hand – no need for gas-guzzling harvesters.

Speaking of seasonal produce, buying food when it’s in season reduces food miles. If you live in New York, for example, and you want strawberries in mid-January, you will have to buy berries that have been shipped from somewhere much warmer (and farther away). A better option is to stock up and freeze or can your own summer strawberries and use those to assuage your January berry craving! You’ll save money buying produce in season, too.

Want more information? The NRDC has a great pamphlet on the subject at