Tag Archives: drink

McDonald’s failure in Bolivia: two different takes

So, what Bolivia ejecting McDonalds a blow against capitalism, or was it capitalism in action?

Stephanie Garlow wrote for Global Post 1 November 2011, McDonald’s failure in Bolivia: The country closed its stores and left Bolivia in 2002. Why couldn’t it succeed there?

It’s the country that turned its back on McDonald’s.

The fast food giant added the traditional llajwa sauce to its classic patties, but still Bolivians weren’t conviced.

So after five years, McDonald’s closed its eight branches and left the country in 2002.

Now a new documentary, “¿Por qué quebró McDonald’s en Bolivia?”, explores why McDonald’s failed. Filmmaker Fernando Martinez focuses on social and cultural aspects to explain the company’s lack of success. “Culture beat a transnational, globalized world,” he said.

Here’s the movie trailer. Yes, it’s in Spanish, but I think you’ll get the general idea from the pictures without needing to follow the dialog. Or here’s another version with even less dialog and some English subtitles. Continue reading

South Georgia Growing Local Conference, 14 January 2012

Last time some okravores (south Georgia locavores) realized nobody else was going to hold a conference about growing local in the characteristic soils and climate and with the characteristic foods and culture of south Georgia, so okravores met in Tifton and learned about everything from controling insect to which breeds of cows produce the best organic milk. Raven demonstrated you can make cheese in south Georgia and Gretchen demonstrated preserving beautyberry and other jams and jellies, along with many other interesting talks and demonstrations, and good food. The South Georgia Growing Local Conference is back, this time near Reidsville, in January.


Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012, 9-5


UGA’s Vidalia Onion & Vegetable Research Center, between Lyons & Reidsville, Ga. & Red Earth Farm, Reidsville
What: Continue reading

Organic farming as productive as pesticiding (proven yet again)

Rodale Institute has been running a side-by-side comparison of organic and chemical agriculture since 1981. They report:
After an initial decline in yields during the first few years of transition, the organic system soon rebounded to match or surpass the conventional system. Over time, FST became a comparison between the long term potential of the two systems.
Year after year, Rodale found:
Organic yields match conventional yields.

As Tom Philpott reported for Mother Jones 17 November 2011, Yet Again, Organic Ag Proves Just as Productive as Chemical Ag,

And now comes evidence from the very heart of Big Ag: rural Iowa, where Iowa State University’s Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture runs the Long-Term Agroecological Research Experiment (LTAR), which began in 1998, which has just released its latest results.

At the LTAR fields in Adair County, the (LTAR) runs four fields: one managed with the Midwest-standard two-year corn-soy rotation featuring the full range of agrochemicals; and the other ones organically managed with three different crop-rotation systems. The chart below records the yield averages of all the systems, comparing them to the average yields achieved by actual conventional growers in Adair County:

Norman Borlaug, instigator of the “green revolution” of no-till and pesticides, when asked in 2000 whether organic agriculture could feed the world, said: Continue reading

Even winter farmers markets

We already know that the long trend in growth in farmers markets continued this year as more farmers markets opened, including even winter farmers markets, such as Indy Farmers Market in Indianapolis:

And it’s not just about food, it’s about the local food chain and economy, and “in that food chain you find relationships.”

Henderson said she wasn’t looking to start a business when she started Indy Winter Farmers’ Market. Her efforts, she joked, were more about making Indianapolis into a place she wanted to live.

But on that first day at 25th and Central, with people lined up outside the door, she realized her goals were similar to those of many others in the community. Her market and others like it, she explained, are about more than food.

“It’s not just about the market,” she said. “We should be proud to be Indiana, the Heartland, a farm state.”


Farmers markets: twice as many as ten years ago

According to USDA’s Farmers Market Growth: 1994-2010, there are more than twice as many farmers markets in the U.S. as ten years ago, and the growth rate is 6% a year.


Farmers markets are an integral part of the urban/farm linkage and have continued to rise in popularity, mostly due to the growing consumer interest in obtaining fresh products directly from the farm. Farmers markets allow consumers to have access to locally grown, farm fresh produce, enables farmers the opportunity to develop a personal relationship with their customers, and cultivate consumer loyalty with the farmers who grows the produce. Direct marketing of farm products through farmers markets continues to be an important sales outlet for agricultural producers nationwide. As of mid-2010, there were 6,132 farmers markets operating throughout the U.S. This is a 16 percent increase from 2009.
USDA is updating their directory now.


Via Campesina: locavores worldwide

Claimed to be “the largest social movement in the world, with more than 400 million members,” it’s Via Campesina:
Enterremos el sistema alimentario industrial!
La agricultura campesina puede alimentar al mundo!

Bury the corporate food system!
Peasant agriculture can feed the world!
Peasant agriculture as in local agriculture. It’s a global movement of locavores!

They’re planning an International day of Peasant’s Struggles on 17 April 2011: Continue reading

Monsanto alfalfa unleashed

If 1 PPM glysophate can kill a human fetus within 12 hours, where are the right-to-lifers on this?

In this radio interview, a farmer gives his view of Monsanto’s strategy and tactics for infesting farmland and the food supply even more with their poisons, after they already feed poisoned hay to cows which concentrate it in their milk which is in children’s milk and ice cream.

This post owed to John Pate.


Local food for sustainability

James Polk provides us some Food for Thought:
Let’s take a quick tally. 1) Locally grown food uses less fossil fuel getting to market, 2) fresh fruits and vegetables are healthier than packaged foods, and 3) buying locally grown food supports your local economy possibly keeping your would-be deadbeat friends employed.

My favorite reason to eat locally grown foods is the taste. Go to a farmers’ market and load up on freshly picked tomatoes, bite into a raw crisp green bean, take home some succulent zuccinni and eggplant to stir-fry – you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more delicious meal.

Yep. That and okra. Anybody need some okra?


Farmland for Food, Wildlife, Flood Control, Air Quality, and Agrotourism

Gretchen found this one, too (think I can get her to blog?). Judi Gerber writes about Why Saving Farmland Is So Important:
…without local farms, there’s no local food, or, as the American Farmland Trust (AFT) puts it: “No Farms, No Food.”.

And it’s not even just food:

Farmland is green space, even though most people don’t think of it that way. It is a significant contributor to environmental quality. As AFT states, “Farm and ranch lands provide food and cover for wildlife, help control flooding, protect wetlands and watersheds, and maintain air quality. They can absorb and filter wastewater and provide groundwater recharge. New energy crops even have the potential to replace fossil fuels.”

And there’s more:

Farmland provides fiscal stability to local governments and boosts the economy. It does this by contributing to a community’s infrastructure and helps a local economy through sales, job creation, and support services or businesses.

One of the most unique of these support services is tourism, or more specifically, agri-tourism. There are plenty of places that people visit to see rural scenery or to enjoy the food or drink of a specific region including the wineries in California’s Napa Valley, or popular farm stays like those found in Italy, and increasingly, here in the United States.

There are some plans afoot about agrotourism in Lowndes County.


Food Conversations Quantified

Bill McKibben on Why Future Prosperity Depends on More Socializing — Access to cheap energy made us rich, wrecked our climate and left us lonely, and what to do about it:
Often a farmers’ market is the catalyst — not just because people find that they like local produce, but because they actually meet each other again. This is not sentiment talking; this is data. A team of sociologists recently followed shoppers around supermarkets and then farmers’ markets. You know the drill at the Stop’n‘Shop: you come in the automatic door, fall into a light fluorescent trance, visit the stations of the cross around the perimeter of the store, exit after a discussion of credit or debit, paper or plastic. But that’s not what happens at farmers’ markets. On average, the sociologists found, people were having ten times as many conversations per visit. They were starting to rebuild the withered network that we call a community. So it shouldn’t surprise us that farmers’ markets are the fastest-growing part of our food economy; they are simply the way that humans have always shopped, acquiring gossip and good cheer along with calories.
Local food isn’t just about food: it’s also about conversations and community.

So if you want to act the way you feel, one way to start is to change your obesity network by going to the farmer’s market. It’s good for the local economy and environment, too.