In this file:

 

·         Snake Oil Mondays at Fridays

… TGI Fridays sees fit to disparage your business in a transparent attempt to bolster theirs… the folks at Meatless Monday are ecstatic...

 

·         Are we ‘Beyond Meat’?

... Start-up ‘envirotech’ companies are using their knowledge of global warming to make a positive imprint on the earth.  Many have gained the interest of some of the richest people in the world, allowing them to push their business further and create more awareness. Read on as we look at whether meat-free life could solve some of our problems...

 

·         Viewpoint: Oprah for president? Junk science enabler?

… From her featuring of vaccine denialism and crank health cures to her magazine’s demonization of conventional agriculture and idealizing expensive organic food, she has often embraced marginal and even quack views...

 

·         Ag industry challenged to tell real story of food production

Land-grant universities also need to start prioritizing how to communicate what agriculture industry is doing successfully.

 

 

Snake Oil Mondays at Fridays

 

Greg Henderson, Drovers

January 11, 2018

 

COMMENTARY - If you thought turning the calendar from 2017 to 2018 might usher in a refreshing new wave of logic and common sense…well, it didn’t. Nope. After a holiday break to stand in airports drinking $5 coffee on their way to see relatives they can’t stand, Americans are back to their normal routines – drinking $5 coffee while they stare at their phones absorbing the day’s news from social media.

 

Cynical much, you ask? Yep. Enveloped by a sense of despair? Close.

 

That’s because we are now living in the Golden Age for snake oil salesmen. The rapid advent of the internet and social media means that at no time in history has it been easier to promote false ideas and encourage people to take action that is at best, wrong, and at worst, dangerous to man and beast.

 

Today’s example is brought to us by TGI Fridays, the restaurant chain with 962 locations in 60 countries. A week ago Fridays announced it will add the plant-based Beyond Meat burger to its menu at more than 450 locations in the U.S. That’s cool, because Fridays is privately-owned by Sentinel Capital Partners and TriArtisan Capital Partners, and they’re free to operate their business however they see fit.

 

This week, however, TGI Fridays sees fit to disparage your business in a transparent attempt to bolster theirs.

 

Fridays, with a menu that includes burgers, wings, chicken strips, and an assortment of other delicious animal foods, now says it will join forces with the non-profit organization behind the Meatless Monday campaign. Let that sink in for a moment.

 

TGI Fridays, a restaurant chain in operation since 1965, will now actively promote – through its social media channels – an organization that hopes to end livestock and meat production, all while selling animal foods to its customers.

 

Announcing the collaboration, TGI Fridays says through its online promotional activities and social media it has the potential of drawing diverse consumers to the meat-centric chain. A head-scratcher, for sure, but the folks at Meatless Monday are ecstatic...

 

more

https://www.drovers.com/article/snake-oil-mondays-fridays

 

 

Are we ‘Beyond Meat’?

 

Environmental Technology

Jan 12 2018

 

With the world’s population increasing, we’re increasingly seeing pollution and the mass consumption of land jeopardising the earth’s future for generations to come. Can we help? Slowly, people are realising the importance in nurturing the earth and what can be done to positively progress.

 

Start-up ‘envirotech’ companies are using their knowledge of global warming to make a positive imprint on the earth.  Many have gained the interest of some of the richest people in the world, allowing them to push their business further and create more awareness. Read on as we look at whether meat-free life could solve some of our problems.

 

The global demand for meat

 

A quarter of the world’s emissions are a by-product of the global food industry, part of that being meat production. With livestock being responsible for 18% of greenhouse gases and playing a large part in water usage and polluting, the increase in meat consumption can only mean a negative impact to global warming as we know it.

 

Backed by Bill Gates, Beyond Meat is a Californian-based company that have set out to change global warming one burger at a time. Rather than sourcing burgers from animal meat, Beyond Meat use plant based ingredients to produce a product that no only looks and feels like an animal burger, but also tastes and smells like one too.

 

Beyond Meat aiming high ...

 

Targeting animal welfare ...

 

more

https://www.envirotech-online.com/news/environmental-laboratory/7/breaking-news/are-we-lsquobeyond-meatrsquo/44799

 

 

Viewpoint: Oprah for president? Junk science enabler?

 

Stephan Neidenbach | Genetic Literacy Project

January 11, 2018

 

Oprah Winfrey’s recent speech at the Golden Globes captured the imagination of countless people with rumors spreading that it could generate a popular well-spring of support that would prompt to her run for president in 2020. But many of the same science communicators and journalists who are concerned about President Trump’s anti-science tendencies are having similar problems with Oprah.

 

These concerns stem from her long career as a talk show host, the many guests she gave a platform to, and even her O magazine. She has a well-documented list of questionable views on science-related topics. From her featuring of vaccine denialism and crank health cures to her magazine’s demonization of conventional agriculture and idealizing expensive organic food, she has often embraced marginal and even quack views. Vox’s senior health correspondent, Julia Belluz, put it bluntly:

 

    During her 25-year reign as host of The Oprah Winfrey Show, from 1986 to 2011, Oprah repeatedly showed a weakness for crackpots and quack medical theories. One could even argue that she’s one of the most powerful enablers of cranks on the planet.

 

A well known incidence occurred when Oprah brought Jenny McCarthy on her show. The appearance served as a platform for McCarthy to spread misinformation in her campaign against vaccines.

 

Megan Jula with Mother Jones wrote about how this is “one thing she has in common with Donald Trump.”Winfrey’s role in this controversy dates back to 2007, when she brought Jenny McCarthy, the Playboy model and actress, onto her show to talk about autism. McCarthy’s young son, Evan, had suffered a series of seizures at two-and-a-half years old and was later diagnosed with autism. McCarthy was adamant that the MMR vaccination Evan received as a baby caused his autism……. On the show, McCarthy’s claims went virtually unchallenged. Winfrey praised McCarthy as a ‘mother warrior’....... Winfrey did read a brief statement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which said there was no scientific evidence of a connection and that scientists were continuing to study the causes of autism…….. But McCarthy had the final word. ‘My science is named Evan, and he’s at home,’ she said. ‘That’s my science.’

 

Weston Kosova for Newsweek also pointed out that this was not the only time Oprah’s show was the vehicle to spread dangerous falsehoods about vaccines.

 

    Christiane Northrup, a physician and one of Oprah's regular experts, took questions from the audience. One woman asked about the HPV vaccine, which protects women against a sexually transmitted virus that can cause cervical cancer. Northrup advised against getting the shot……. It is true that of the millions of women who have received the vaccine, 32 have died in the days or weeks afterward. But in each case, the Centers for Disease Control and the Food and Drug Administration investigated the deaths and found that they were coincidental and were not related to the shot....

 

Northrup went on to tell Oprah’s viewers that cancer causing HPV can be avoided with a healthy diet, a comment that went unchecked by Oprah.

 

One of the chief concerns about President Trump was that his lack of government experience meant he may choose advisors that also lack experience. Networking is key in politics, and celebrities have a completely separate network. Who do they really know that can give them the advice they need to run the United States?

 

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Michael Hiltzik, is especially concerned that Oprah would bring many of the cranks she has befriended with her to the White House...

 

Mystical claims and junk science ...

 

Embraces anti-GMO activism ...

 

more, including links

https://geneticliteracyproject.org/2018/01/11/viewpoint-oprah-president-junk-science-enabler/

 

 

Ag industry challenged to tell real story of food production

Land-grant universities also need to start prioritizing how to communicate what agriculture industry is doing successfully.

 

Feedstuffs

Jan 12, 2018

 

According to Donnie Smith, it's time for the agriculture industry to take back the story of food production. Smith delivered the second Heuermann Lecture of the 2017-18 season Jan. 9 at the Nebraska Innovation Campus.

 

Smith was president and chief executive officer of Tyson Foods from 2009 to 2016 and continues to serve the company as a consultant while focusing on his work to feed the world. He said he believes consumers are being told fictional stories about modern agriculture, which is leading to mass fear of the food system.

 

"There's a story being told in America and, frankly, around the world today about agriculture and what we do," Smith said. "It's largely fictional, based on partial truth, but Americans are buying it hook, line and sinker."

 

These fictional stories are being told as the agriculture industry is seeing major achievements –  such as Baby Boomers doubling food production in their generation – while still facing tremendous challenges, Smith said. Today's generation must find a way to double the amount of food the Baby Boomers produced using the same amount of land, air and water. They'll also have to do so with additional pressures on the food system, such as increased life expectancy and increased incomes, both of which lead to people eating more food.

 

Smith asked, "Why isn't our noble effort in agriculture to feed this world front-page news?"

 

He is no stranger to the challenges facing the food system. During his 36-year career with Tyson, Smith worked to learn every angle of the business. As an executive, he led the company to focus on feeding the world high-quality, affordable food.

 

Smith said the challenge of telling the true story of agriculture is that producers simply don't have the time. They spend considerable time making, processing, marketing and delivering food, so they don't have time to blog or post on social media.

 

"If we’re not telling the real story, the only story on the air is not true," he said...

 

more

http://www.feedstuffs.com/news/ag-industry-challenged-tell-real-story-food-production