WIUM Tristates Public Radio

food

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

Farmers in the U.S. like to point out that their products feed people all over the world. And while this is a diverse country, the people working on farms and elsewhere in agriculture often don't reflect the nation's demographics. Changing that is becoming a priority, in hopes new people will bring fresh ideas to meet some of our food system's greatest challenges.

Jesse Howe for Harvest Public Media

Drones are not just a hot gift item or a weapon for use by the military. They're also helping farmers change the landscape of agriculture. 

Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

The hardest part of starting a new food business should be in perfecting the secret recipe. For many entrepreneurial cooks though, the tough times come when searching for a space to legally make and sell their food.

The Macomb Food Cooperative began as an idea among a small group of people in 2009.  A couple years later it incorporated, and in April, 2014 it started operating the Macomb Online Market.  Now the co-op is opening a brick and mortar store that will feature mostly local products.

Fuel: It's What's for Dinner

Dec 3, 2015
Stephanie Joyce for Harvest Public Media

There are few places where the connection between energy and food is more obvious than at the Bright Agrotech warehouse.

Tim Sackton, Flickr

Despite the bird flu epidemic that devastated Midwest turkey farmers this spring, the price of a turkey this Thanksgiving is a little cheaper than last year. This years turkeys are ringing up one cent less per pound than in 2014, according to the USDA’s most recent numbers.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

Walk down a grocery store aisle today and you're likely to find lots of food -- and lots of marketing claims. Whether a product's label says it's low in fat, produced without hormones, or a good source of protein is largely governed by consumer demand and corporate profit.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

The packaged foods found in supermarkets, convenience stores and vending machines are full of ingredients you often cannot pronounce.  They've been carefully developed and tested in a lab and likely have been shipped long distances. They can hold up to weeks or even months on the shelf.

Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media

Walking through the warehouse of food processor Heartland Gourmet in Lincoln, Neb., shows how complicated the food safety system can be. Pallets are stacked with sacks of potato flour and the smell of fresh baked apple-cinnamon muffins is in the air.

Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media

You’ve probably seen, but may not have noticed, labels on the meat at your grocery store that say something like “Born, Raised, & Harvest in the U.S.A.” or “Born and Raised in Canada, Slaughtered in the U.S.”

These country of origin labels, as they are known, are part of an ongoing international trade dispute that has swept up Midwest ranchers. And they may not be long for store shelves.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

Bacon and pork chops could become cheaper this year thanks, in part, to fewer pigs getting sick with the virus that devastated hog farms in 2014.

Kristofor Husted/Harvest Public Media

When it comes to organic certification, there are strict guidelines for food producers to follow.

Illinois Key State in Food Distribution

Jan 4, 2015

More food passes through Illinois annually than any other state.

Wikipedia

2014 was the year even the lunch ladies got political.

The online market opened by the Macomb Food Co-op in April continues to grow in popularity among shoppers and producers.

Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

An effort to label genetically modified foods in Colorado has failed to garner enough support, following a national trend of statewide GMO labeling ballot measures facing uphill battles.

taryn/Flickr

Americans had to dig deep into their wallets to cover costs associated with foodborne illnesses, according to new estimates from the U.S. Department Agriculture.

With Curbside Composting, Food Waste Not a Total Loss

Sep 27, 2014
Cassandra Profita for Harvest Public Media

Wasting around 40 percent of all the food produced in the U.S. certainly has its drawbacks: It's not feeding people in need, it's expensive and it does a lot of environmental damage.

Luke Runyon/Harvest Public Media

Lunch time at Harris Bilingual Elementary School in Fort Collins, Colo., displays all the usual trappings of a public school cafeteria: Star Wars lunch boxes, light up tennis shoes, hard plastic trays and chocolate milk cartons with little cartoon cows. It’s pizza day, the most popular of the week, and kids line up at a salad bar before receiving their slice.

Grocery Stores Waste Tons of Food as They Woo Shoppers

Sep 24, 2014
Kristofor Husted/Harvest Public Media

Grocery stores and restaurants serve up more than 400 million pounds of food each year, but nearly a third of it never makes it to a stomach.

Peggy Lowe/Harvest Public Media

The long line of semi-trucks waiting to get in the gates of the Farmland Foods plant could simply wait around for a few hours to head back, fresh products on board.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

On a wet, grey day in Grinnell, Iowa, the rain beats a rhythm on the metal roof of a packing shed at Grinnell Heritage Farm.

Pat Aylward/NET News

It’s a hot summer day outside of Lincoln, Neb., and Jack Chappelle is knee-deep in trash. He’s wading in to rotting vegetables, half-eaten burgers and tater tots. Lots of tater tots.

Rich Egger

Despite the abundance of food we see around us this time of year, many families still struggle to get enough to eat.

This semester's Sustainability Brownbaggers at Western Illinois University will begin by focusing on food-related issued.

Timothy Collins, Assistant Director of the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at WIU, helped organize the series. He said the first brownbagger is titled “Local Food Possibilities and Issues.”