FROM Stephanie Strom
Whole Foods vs. Organic Farmers Whole Foods is practically synonymous with “organic.” But now the grocery chain is on the outs with organic farmers. As other stores have begun to take over the organic market -- Costco is now the biggest seller of organic foods -- Whole Foods has had to innovate. One of their new sales tactics could, ironically, push customers away from organic foods. This is making organic farmers in California and elsewhere very angry. What’s their (organic, grass-fed) beef?
New Menu Item: Calorie Counts If you’ve ever wondered how many calories are in that tub of buttered popcorn at the movies, it looks like you’re about to find out -- whether you want to or not. This morning, the FDA announced new rules that will require movie theaters to post calorie counts, along with chain restaurants, vending machines, and amusement parks. We look at how the Affordable Care Act paved the way for more food labeling, and the intense lobbying to control who’s affected.
If You Like Us, You Can't Sue Us How much do you like Cheerios? Enough to give them a thumbs-up on Facebook? Well, if you do end up “liking” Cheerios - or any other product made by General Mills - you could be giving up your right to sue the company.
China and America's Food Supply The United States once called itself the "food basket" for much of the world, but that was before economic globalization. Last year, the US imported 4.1 billion pounds of food products from China. More than half the cod and tilapia we eat -- 50% of the apple juice and 31% of the garlic -- originated in China, a country infamous for food-safety problems. The FDA inspects less than 3% of the imports, but China reportedly treats food for export very differently from what it grows for domestic consumption. Where do Chinese food imports turn up without your knowing it? Are they getting a bad rap because of international politics?
Whole Foods to Label Genetically Modified Products Whole Foods Market has announced plans to become the first US retailer to require labeling of all genetically modified foods sold in its stores. In California, often called America's food basket, the food industry spent millions of dollars last year to defeat a ballot initiative to require the labeling of genetically modified foods. Now Whole Foods will go the way of the European Union. Stephanie Strom, who reports for the New York Times , has more on the possible impact.
Website Exposes Petty Bribery Worldwide It's estimated that one in every four people on Earth pay a bribe every year, with a total cost of $1 trillion. Bribes are said to be one fourth of Afghanistan's GDP. Can social media campaigns make a difference? Websites exposing petty bribery are "spreading like kudzu around the globe," following the paradigm set by IPaidABribe.com in India. There, it costs an extra 10,000 rupees to get a legitimate income tax refund and 120 rupees to get a birth certificate for one's own baby. That's according to Stephanie Strom in today's New York Times .
Who is winning the fight to control LA’s public schools? Twenty-two people were killed by a suicide bomber last night at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England. Who was the terrorist and what does the attack mean for Manchester’s immigrant community? Also, we talk to newly elected LAUSD school board member Kelly Gonez and Alex Caputo-Pearl, head of the LA teachers union, about the most expensive school board race in the country’s history, the conflict between the union and charter school supporters, and the future of LA’s public schools.
Gina Prince & Reggie "Rock" Bythewood: Shots Fired Directors Gina Prince and Reggie “Rock” Bythewood join Elvis Mitchell to discuss examining US police activity and corruption from all angles in Shots Fired.
Fighting for the soul of the California Democratic Party Over the weekend, Eric Bauman was elected as the new chair of the California Democratic Party. But his main opponent, progressive Kimberly Ellis has not conceded. It was a raucous weekend with Bernie Sanders supporters saying the party is not listening to their concerns.