Archive | Food Consumption

'Stealth' Strategy Gets Better Teen Eating

STANFORD, Calif., May 3 (UPI) — A “stealth” strategy motivates students to change eating habits for environmental and social reasons — not personal health, U.S. researchers said.

The study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, found students taking a course on the ethical, environmental and social ramifications of food consumption made healthier eating choices than students taking one of three courses dealing with the health aspects of food such as obesity.

Researchers at California’s Stanford University Medical Center said decisions based on the greater good — for example, cutting back on processed food and eating more locally grown vegetables to help curb global warming — resulted in more healthful eating than personal eating decisions made by students taking health courses.

“This is a novel strategy, and we believe it is an important new direction to pursue,” senior author Dr. Thomas Robinson said in a statement.

“When people get involved in social movements, it changes their behavior more dramatically than what we’ve seen with more cognitive-based approaches.”

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Food Consumption, Other0 Comments

U.S. Officials Warn of Raw Milk Dangers

WASHINGTON, March 29 (UPI) — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and several state health agencies are warning of an outbreak of campylobacteriosis associated with drinking raw milk.

The FDA said at least 12 confirmed illnesses have been recently reported in Michigan. Symptoms of campylobacteriosis include diarrhea, abdominal pain and fever.

The FDA said it is collaborating with health officials in Michigan, Illinois and Indiana in investigating the outbreak linked to raw milk produced by the Forest Grove Dairy in Middlebury, Ind.

Raw milk is unpasteurized milk from hoofed mammals, such as cows, sheep or goats. The FDA said raw milk may contain a wide variety of harmful pathogens — including Salmonella, E. coli, Listeria, Campylobacter and Brucella bacteria — that may cause illness and possibly death.

Symptoms of illness caused by various bacteria commonly found in raw milk might include vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, headache and body ache. People drinking raw milk who experience one or more of those symptoms should immediately contact their healthcare provider, the FDA said.

Since 1987, the FDA has required all milk packaged for human consumption to be pasteurized before being delivered into interstate commerce. Pasteurization, a process that heats milk to a specific temperature for a set period of time, kills bacteria responsible for diseases that also include typhoid fever, tuberculosis and diphtheria.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Consumption, Food Consumption, Mammals, Other0 Comments

Micro-algae Explored As Renewable Energy

BUENOS AIRES, March 18 (UPI) — Micro-algae as a source of cheap renewable energy are at the center of new research being conducted at Argentina’s National Technological University.

The use of algae as a source of energy is being researched in different countries across the world and is at an advanced stage in the United States.

But as research has grown so has the realization that converting algae into energy may not be as cost-effective as originally thought possible. As a result, new research and investigation has been two-pronged, both to make optimum use of algae as a source of energy and to do it cheaply.

Scientists at the National Technological University of Mar del Plata, on Argentina’s Atlantic coast, said they focused on developing techniques that would be both economically viable and environmentally sustainable.

A production module already in place would seek to convert micro-algae into energy with the minimum amount of energy being used in the whole process. The scientists said they would seek to achieve a ratio below 1:5 — to limit consumed energy to below 20 percent of the energy produced.

A fundamental factor in the project is the replacement of high-cost raw materials, such as carbon dioxide and cultivation agents, with “environmental liabilities” like industrial waste and emissions and sewage mud, the university said.

The research work is being conducted with the participation of scientists and technicians with an established knowledge base in aquaculture, biotechnology, environmental engineering and phycology, MercoPress reported.

The production of biofuels, particularly biodiesel from marine micro-algae, has won support from environmentalists and politicians because it doesn’t restrict human food consumption, as is the case with soybean and other agricultural crops, and fresh water is not used. Sea water cools the equipment deployed to convert micro-algae into energy.

Analysts said it was too early to determine if energy produced from micro-algae could be cost-effective on a longer term and if the technology could be used for large volumes of energy.

A hectare of micro-algae yields about 8,000 liters of bio-diesel.

Argentina is reviewing its energy efficiency strategies amid a continuing economic downturn and changing demographics, with forecasts that the upwardly mobile younger generation, although environmentally conscientious, will be consuming more energy in the coming years because of changing lifestyles and improved living conditions.

Argentina began exploring the micro-algae project in 2008. Scientists began the work with micro-algae species carrying high oil content. The micro-algae was cultivated in pools of up to 2,000 liters during the four seasons of the year, then collected in vats before being transported for processing.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Biofuels & Biomass, Energy Efficiency, Engineering, Food Consumption0 Comments

Santa Monica Restaurant Sold Banned Whale Meat

LOS ANGELES, March 10 (UPI) — Federal prosecutors Wednesday accused a Santa Monica, Calif., restaurant and one of its chefs of selling Sei whale meat illegally.

The sale of whale meat is banned in the United States under the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 and Sei whales are on the endangered species list, U.S. Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. said in a news release.

Prosecutors filed a criminal complaint Wednesday charging Typhoon Restaurant Inc. — the parent company of The Hump restaurant at Santa Monica Airport — and Kiyoshiro Yamamoto, 45, a chef at the restaurant, with the illegal sale of a marine mammal product for an unauthorized purpose.

“Federal law has a variety of provisions, including criminal statutes, intended to protect this planet’s threatened natural resources,” Birotte said. “People should be aware that we will use these criminal statutes where appropriate to protect endangered species, including to ensure that they do not end up part of a meal.”

Prosecutors said The Hump sold whale sushi to customers on three occasions since October — with scientists using DNA testing to determine the meat was Sei whale and receipts given to the restaurant’s customers indicating they had purchased “whale.”

The investigation began after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration received information from members of the public about the alleged violations, prosecutors said.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.

Posted in Animal Rights & Issues, Food Consumption, Food Industry, Food Quality & Safety, Mammals0 Comments

Pennsylvania Updates Fish Advisories Due to Lack of Health Tests

HARRISBURG, Pa., Dec. 31 (UPI) — Pennsylvania officials announced an advisory designed to protect against eating large amounts of fish from waters not tested, or of certain species.

All of Pennsylvania remains under a blanket advisory that recommends limiting consumption of any recreationally-caught fish to one meal per week. The advisories do not apply to fish raised for commercial purposes or bought in stores or restaurants.

New advisories have been added for 2010 limiting consumption of Largemouth Bass in Lake Canadohta to two meals per month and consumption of Largemouth Bass in Lake Jean to one meal per month as a result of elevated levels of mercury in the water.

A do-not-eat advisory has been issued for Channel Catfish in the Mahoning River due to PCB contamination.

Consumption advisories have been eased but not lifted for:

– French Creek for Smallmouth Bass as a result of mercury contamination.

– Lake Erie for Walleye as a result of PCB contamination.

– Schuylkill River from the confluence of Mill Creek at Port Carbon to the Auburn Dam for Trout as a result of PCB contamination.

Consumption advisories have been lifted for parts of Jacks Creek, Chartiers Creek, Monongahela River from Pool 4 between the Maxwell Lock and Dam and Lock and Dam 4 and Sinnemahoning Creek.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Posted in Consumption, Fish, Food Consumption, Food Quality & Safety0 Comments

National Steak and Poultry Recalls 248,000 Pounds of Beef for E. Coli

WASHINGTON, Dec. 27 (UPI) — National Steak and Poultry has recalled 248,000 pounds of beef products from six states because of a risk of E. coli, U.S. inspectors said.

The inspectors, working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said they linked meat from the plant to an outbreak of E. coli in the six states.

National Steak and Poultry, of Owasso, Okla., issued the recall in Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, South Dakota, Michigan, and Washington, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a release.

The recall included products labeled National Steak and Poultry beef sirloin steak, boneless beef tips, boneless beef sirloin steak, savory sirloin tips, bacon wrapped beef filet, select beef shoulder, marinated tender medallions, Philly steak and boneless beef trimmings.

Each package contained a label marked “EST. 6010T” inside the USDA mark of inspection and packaging dates of Oct. 12-14 or Oct. 21.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Posted in Farming & Ranching, Food & Nutrition, Food Consumption, Food Industry, Food Quality & Safety, Human Health & Wellness, Packaging0 Comments

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