The Green Plate: News from The Food World

ColumnNews worth eating.

Once a month, The Green Plate will harvest the most interesting, biggest, weirdest, and puzzling recent news stories on food politics, the food industry, eating trends, and edible discoveries from around the web, and share them with you.

In this, our first installment, learn how Whole Foods is helping us drink while we shop, the sugar industry is putting the smack-down on corn syrup, and everyone’s buzzing about ex-Gourmet editor Ruth Reichl’s new job.

No such thing as innocuous protein.

If tuna is the chicken of the sea then tilapia are widgets churned out in the shape of fishes. Highlighting the complications of sustainability in aquaculture, the New York Times delves into the details around tilapia’s production – showing how the one farmed fish we’ve been told is sustainable, isn’t always the case. Like any form of food production, there are good ways to do it and not such good ways.

Eat more fat and still lose weight with this new virus!

A Johns Hopkins study finds that, at least in mice, it may be possible to turn bad fat into good fat, and thus lessen the incidence of obesity, regardless of diet. Just inject a handy-dandy virus into the hypothalamus.

Sugar calls foul on corn syrup.

In a classic case of the pot calling the kettle black, the sugar industry sues the corn syrup industry. Apparently, in an effort to improve its reputation, corn syrup has taken to calling itself sugar, which, with all the bad news about sugar lately, is sort of like Ted Haggard trying to rebrand himself as George Rekers .

Whole Foods gives new meaning to the term “shop till you drop.”

You’ve got to hand it to Whole Foods for turning the chore of grocery shopping into a fun way to drop loads of cash. Drinking may be great social lubrication, but for the new Whole Foods stores with bars, it could now be economic lube too. Will the shopping carts come with breathalyzers?

Expect fewer poetic tweets from Ruth Reichl.

Gilt Groupe, the online marketer that sells designer fashion items at deeply discounted prices to members, is entering the food world with Gilt Taste. Ruth Reichl, author and former editor of Gourmet Magazine will lead editorial efforts, promising quality content for hordes of hungry, bargain seeking gourmands.

This is the latest installment in Vanessa Barrington’s weekly column, The Green Plate, on the environmental, social, and political issues related to what and how we eat.

Image: That Other Paper via Flickr

Vanessa Barrington

Vanessa Barrington is a San Francisco based writer and communications consultant specializing in environmental, social, and political issues in the food system.