(From the Little Green Book)
Several campus organizations- Residential Student Services Program, Green Campus, Residential Sustainability Program and ASUC have put together an awesome website, the “Little Green BooK,” a wikipedia site for cal students on sustainable resources available near campus!! http://littlegb.berkeley.edu/
They provide tools and information like a carbon foot print calculator, tips for becoming vegetarian or eating less meat, a map of all of the water bottle refill stations on campus, and ways to make your dorm room more environmentally friendly. So take a look!
ReUSE is Hiring - PAID Assistant Manager Position
Coming up next week….EARTH WEEK!
Excited? What if we told you we were going to have a LOW CARBON DIET CHALLENGE?!
The details will be up in the store by Monday morning, but to give you a heads up:
Monday- Meat-less or vegan
Tuesday- Eat local and minimize food travel distance
Wednesday- Raw foods…don’t use your oven, microwave, stove, toaster or even your COFFEE MAKER all day (nooooooo!) But you can make sun tea or use a solar oven. Or a magnifying glass
Thursday- eliminate packaging day. How do you pack your food? How much packaging do you purchase?
Friday- all organic day
Saturday- minimize water usage (an excuse not to do your dishes!)
Sunday-eliminate food waste! where does your old food go? trash, compost, recoiling, back of your fridge until it smells really bad?
We will use scratch paper to make checklists for you to mark off what days you participate! ARE YOU UP FOR THE CHALLENGE?
Hola! Education Committee is back again!
Last thursday, Micheal Pollan, Karen Ross, Ken Cook and other speakers discussed the U.S. Farm Bill at UC Berkeley.
They talked about SNAP, the food stamps program, which benefits a large portion of society- but some legislatures want to cut its funding. The program is meant to be a supplement, and is really only about $3 a day per family member. When the aid runs out (usually before the end of the month) some families don’t have any income to replace it. Kids do poorly in school without proper nutrition, and in the long run this may prevent them succeeding in their education.
Pollan talked about government subsidies that go towards big-ag crops such as corn, wheat and soy. Any products with corn, wheat and soy from these agribusiness tend to be cheaper, but because the prices do not show the true cost of production. This is why high fructose corn syrup is used in so many products- it’s so cheap!
Pollan suggested that we change the subsidy system, so that the funds go towards more diverse products, including fruits and veggies (yummy!). This would make produce more affordable, though the price of hamburgers (the cows eat a mixture of subsidized corn and soy) may rise to their true cost.
After the Great Depression, the Farm Bill originated to stabilize market prices from season to season. The government payed farmers to produce less corn- they wanted the prices of corn high enough to provide farmers with a viable income.
In the 80s, however, the subsidy system changed so that farmers would produce lots of corn at low prices.
A new farm bill comes up every four years, and its composition is largely determined by big-ag lobbyists. If representatives start hearing from actual voters, the farm bill will reflect the interest of the voters, not the agribusinesses. That means that if this topic interests you, its time to get involved! Contact your representative, or senator:
Barbara Boxer- http://boxer.senate.gov/en/contact/
Dianne Feinstein- http://www.feinstein.senate.gov/public/
Find out- http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/yourleg.html
Food Democracy Now Phone Call Script
Hey hey hey from the education committee!
Here’s a message from Annies at College:
“Like free food? Of course you do! Hop on over to GBC this Friday, 4/6, from 11-2 to try Annie’s Honey Bunny Grahams! Like their Facebook for more info, and enter to win a month of microwavable mac & cheese! Facebook.com/AnniesAtCollege”
From the Annie’s Homegrown website
“For more than 20 years, Annie’s has been nourishing families with simple, down-to-earth foods that taste great and are easy to love. Annie’s is driven by a team of folks who are passionate about food, people, and the planet we all share. That’s why we’ve sought out the best ingredients Mother Earth has to offer, harvesting pure, natural flavors to make delicious foods every family can feel good about. “
Definitely gonna get myself some of those free samples…
From the education committee:
You have probably eaten quinoa before, the chenopod (not actually a grain, but a cousin to beets) has recently become popular in the American market. But did you know it comes from Bolivia, and is a staple for Andeans (its one of the few things that grows in the high plains)? As richer countries have demanded quinoa, the price and income that Andean farmers earn has soared…Great right? Yet there is another side- as quinoa farming has become more profitable, problems have arisen: feuds over land, loss of traditional llama herding for soil fertilization, and dietary deficiencies in children who no longer consume the staple, as it is now shipped abroad or families have enough money to purchase “city foods” like Coca-Cola. Take a look at this article to read more http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2110890-2,00.html
Education committee here! In support of Cesar Chavez’s Day, March 31st, here is some information about farmworkers awareness.
Cesar Chavez led boycotts, marches and strikes to gain civil rights for California farm workers. In the famous grape boycotts, Chavez called on millions of American to stop purchasing grapes, forcing grape growers to accept union contracts. The farmworkers movement gained enough support to push through legislation allowing agricultural employees full freedom to unionize in California.
However, across America today “farmworkers are excluded from the basic labor and safety standards firmly established in other employment sectors,” (from Inventory of Farmworker Issues and Protections compiled by the United Farm Workers and Bon Appetit Management Company Foundation http://www.bamco.com/uploads/documents/fwi_execs
Interesting facts from the report:
“A mere 1 percent of farmworkers interviewed reported that they worked under a union contract….”
“In 2009 the occupational fatality rate for farmworkers was five times the rate of the average worker”