Monthly Archives: October 2010

How to Feed a Hungry World

Terry D. Etherton

As readers of Terry Etherton Blog on Biotechnology appreciate, I have written a great deal about the looming World population growth, and the challenges we will confront in feeding the World’s population over the next 40 years.

Recently, the scientific journal, Nature, published an excellent series of articles about this topic (July 29 issue).  This is noteworthy because Nature is the preeminent scientific journal in the World.  It is telling that the leading life science journal in the World focused much of the July 29 issue on this topic.

In the Editorial in this issue, How to Feed a Hungry World, several important issues are presented that must be overcome if we are to produce and distribute sufficient food to feed the projected population of the World in 2050, about 10 billion people (the current World population is approximately 6.9 billion). Continue reading How to Feed a Hungry World

Why do Journalists Use the Word “Frankenfood”? Another Example of Atrophied Logic

Terry D. Etherton

This morning, at home over breakfast, I opened the Wall Street Journal.  And, page A15 “popped” open.  What caught my attention was the article EU Extends ‘Frankenfood’ Fight, Nears Ban on Farm-Animal Clones.  The purpose of the story was to convey that the European Union (EU) had moved a big step closer toward a ban on cloning farm animals and a prohibition of imports of cloned livestock and their meat and milk.

The EU decision is silly, and is not based on a shred of scientific evidence.  I have written previously about the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) conclusion that “….the available data has not identified any food consumption risks or subtle hazards in healthy clones of cattle, swine, or goats.”  The “key” take-home message is that cloning is safe. Continue reading Why do Journalists Use the Word “Frankenfood”? Another Example of Atrophied Logic

Telling the Grass-Fed Beef Story

Dr. John Comerford
Associate Professor and Extension Beef Specialist
Department of Dairy and Animal Science
The Pennsylvania State University

Beef customers are being told many things about their food these days.  The advertisements for beef products shout this product is safer, this one is healthier, this one is better for the environment, and many other claims of value.  Mary Lou Quinlan, founder of the marketing company Just Ask a Woman, told attendees at the Food System Summit 2010 about research conducted from January to June indicating that the pressures of a bad economy, media stories about unsafe food, confusing and misleading labels and even friends questioning their food choices on Facebook all figure into beef purchase decisions. How can a customer sort all of this out and determine the real value they want in their beef ? Many of these attributes are placed on grass-fed compared to grain-fed beef. Continue reading Telling the Grass-Fed Beef Story

The “Smoke and Mirrors” of rbST-Free Milk Pricing Keeps Rolling On…and On

Terry D. Etherton

The latest American Farm Bureau Federation Marketbasket Survey of retail food prices was just released.  In this informal survey, for the third quarter of 2010, shoppers reported the average price for a half-gallon of regular whole milk was $2.04, down 2 cents from the prior quarter. The average price for one gallon of regular whole milk was $3.16, up 10 cents. Comparing per-quart prices, the retail price for whole milk sold in gallon containers was about 25 percent lower compared to half-gallon containers, a typical volume discount long employed by retailers. Continue reading The “Smoke and Mirrors” of rbST-Free Milk Pricing Keeps Rolling On…and On