Cooking a Continent

While we might be heading into yet another terribly unsuccessful climate debate in Durban, let us take an African view on things.

A lot is at stake for many countries at this year’s COP 17 climate summit in Durban, taking place from November 28th until December 9th. That is why “the countries of the global South hope for some listening as well as all the talking”. Those are the words of Nnimmo Bassey, international climate campaigner.

The mottos of the conference “working together” and “saving tomorrow today” seem appropriate if we think like the Fiji Times that “the stakes could never have been higher”. Continue reading

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Food Definitely Rules

Michael Pollan has one outstanding rule about food: whatever your grandma would not have recognized as such, is not food.

Which means that for example mashed potatoes is food, whereas weird shapes of fried potato derivates are not. “Michael Pollan’s Food Rules began with his hunch that the wisdom of our grandparents might have more helpful things to say about how to eat well than the recommendations of science or industry or government.” Continue reading

Words on Paper.

When is the last time you have read a book from the first to the last page? I mean reading just for fun, not because you had to.

I am quite old-fashioned I must admit. I do not own an Ipad nor anything similar. I buy books with pages rather than bytes. I am not only old-fashioned but it looks like I – and I’m sure you reader are too – part of a close-to-extinct species: the book readers.

Back in 2007, the Guardian wrote: One in four Americans read no book last year. From an article on Boston.com I can extract: Continue reading

More Than Nothing

Today I would like to introduce you to Raj Patel, who calls himself writer, activist and academic (in that order). Others even call him the Antichrist, which sounds even more appealing, doesn’t it?

So who is Ray Patel? He says about himself that he “has worked for the World Bank and WTO, and protested against them around the world.” Which to me already makes him an interesting figure. He has studied in England and the United States and has written several books. His books talk about the poor and the world food system which starves people on one hand and makes them obese somewhere else. Continue reading

(STOP) Eating Animals

Novelist Jonathan Safran Foer writes a book about eating animals. Why? Because there is more than one story which has to be told. A first taste:

“This raises all kinds of bizarre questions — questions that before I learned about our two types of chickens, I’d never had reason to ask — like, What happens to all of the male offspring of layers? If man hasn’t designed them for meat, and nature clearly hasn’t designed them to lay eggs, what function do they serve? Continue reading