May 14, 2009

Ethanol-Based Charcoal Reduces 99% Carbon Monoxide Compared to Charcoal

bbq.jpg Warm weather and the upcoming Memorial Day weekend means it's outdoor barbecue time. On the Fourth of July alone, Americans burn enough charcoal to power 20,000 households for a year! There is a cleaner alternative to traditional charcoal: ethanol-based charcoal. FlameDisk Charcoal Alternative reduces 99 percent of carbon monoxide and has 91 percent lower VOC than regular charcoal. Ethanol-based charcoal alternative is an eco-friendly option for all your grilling needs.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 13, 2009

Stainless Steel Ice Cube Tray Protects Your Family From Plastic Chemicals

stainless steel ice cube tray.jpg
We all know that the chemicals in plastics are bad for our health and our environment. Recent studies have even shown a correlation between phthalates in plastics and childhood obesity. It's easy to replace your plastic water bottles with stainless steel alternatives, but what about your plastic ice cube trays?

I remember stainless steel ice cube trays from my grandmother's house. These throwbacks from the 50s provide a modern day safe alternative to plastic ice cube trays. My kids think the handle that releases the ice is super cool, and I like how the metal actually seems to make the ice harden faster. At $25 a piece, these ice cube trays are more expensive than their plastic counterparts, but the stainless steel ice cube trays will last a lifetime (I bet my grandmother's trays are still in her home).

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 4, 2009

All Natural, Freeze-Dried Organic Fruit Snacks by Funky Monkey

funkymonkey.jpg We've reviewed freeze-dried fruit snacks before, but they were not organic. Now, Funky Monkey Snacks is offering three organic flavors: Bananamon, Purple Funk, and Jivealime. Matt Herzog, president of Funky Monkey Snacks explains:
The Natural Organic Program certification process is a rigorous examination of every step in a food product's life, from the field or orchard to the finished product. It's great to be able to officially assure our customers that Funky Monkey Snacks are not only respectful of the environment in every step of production, but also are grown and manufactured using organic methods.
Funky Monkey snacks are made from 100% real fruit. Each one ounce is equivalent to three servings of fruit. They are gluten-free and contain no added sugar or preservatives. Funky Monkey Snacks would be great for backpacking or putting in your child's school lunch.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

May 1, 2009

Natural Food Friday: Organic Optimum Slim High Fiber Cereal and Farmers Can Be Heroes

Fiber, protein, and whole grains are the secrets behind Nature's Path Organic Optimum Slim cereal. Ingredients:

Made with love and ...
Organic rolled oats, organic evaporated cane juice, organic roasted soy nuts, organic wheat bran, organic whole wheat meal, organic brown rice flour, organic soy protein, organic soy oil, organic flax seed, organic flaxmeal, organic freeze dried banana, organic oat syrup solids, organic raisins (coated with organic sunflower oil), organic almonds, organic oat bran, organic puffed Kamut® Khorasan wheat, organic sunflower seeds, organic barley malt extract, organic cinnamon, sea salt, organic matcha green tea, organic molasses, tocopherols (natural vitamin E) added to enhance freshness, organic rice bran extract.

Cereal doesn't have to just be for breakfast. If you are watching your weight (or not), Nature's Path Organic Optimum Slim cereal makes a great snack.

Nature's Path Organic Foods, Organic Valley, and Organic Gardening have teamed up to support the Farmers Can Be Heroes program. This program recognizes our farmers are our heroes who must feed our world while battling climate change. The program provides online courses for conventional farmers to learn about how to switch to organic agricultural practices.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 28, 2009

Farmers Must Feed the World While Reducing Emissions

farm_work.jpg Farmers are facing what many feel is an impossible task: they must feed the growing world population while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. From farting cows to growing crops that emit nitrous oxide, agriculture is globally a major source of greenhouse gases. According to scientist Richard John Eckard of the University of Melbourne:
We want agriculture to feed the world. We want farmers to be viable and continue to increase the rate of productivity growth. At the same time, we're telling them they are going to face a more harsh climate they need to adapt to. On top of that you impose a policy that you can now only emit a fraction of the emissions that you were emitting.
Australia is exempting agriculture, which accounts for 16 percent of the country's greenhouse gas emissions, from its emissions trading scheme until 2015.
Via: Reuters AlertNet
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 20, 2009

New Organic Snacks and Treats by SunRidge Farms

sunridgefarms.jpg SunRidge Farms makes delicious organic treats and snacks. Founded in 1977, SunRidge Farms has over 1000 certified organic and natural products, many of which are sold in bulk!
Our goal is to provide both the healthiest and freshest products to our customers. We do this by offering foods that have been grown and processed without the use of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, artificial additives, flavors, colors or preservatives.
Their facility is even powered by solar panels. From classics like Organic Yogurt Pretzels to brand new products, SunRidge Farms helps raise money for the Defenders of Wildlife through the sales of their products. Here are the new products SunRidge Farms is introducing:
  • Organic Sunny Worms: With 100 percent daily value of vitamins A, C, D and E per serving, these gelatin-free vegetarian gummy worms are bursting with natural fruit flavor.
  • Omega 3 Men's Energy Mix: This nut, chocolate, and fruit blend is specially formulated for men, including Zinc, Lycopene and Omega 3's for good prostate and heart health.
  • Frosted Star Cookies: All-natural and delicious real vanilla cookies, available in frosted raspberry, cinnamon, chocolate, peanut butter and mixed varieties.
Of course, my favorite SunRidge Farms product is the classic Hit the Trail MIx, which won the Best Taste Award from the American Culinary Institute in 2004.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 17, 2009

This Organic Cereal Does Not Contain: Pesticides, Herbicides, Preservatives, Additives, Irradation, Sewage

flax plus.jpg What could be better for your health than organic flax seeds, organic pumpkin seeds, organic raisins, and organic oats? Sewage-free cereal, of course. I was amused when I read this description of Nature's Path Flax Plus Pumpkin Raisin Crunch cereal. I thought sewage was the breakfast of champions! Seriously though, this organic cereal is high in omega-3s and is delicious (and I'm not even much of a raisin fan).
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 16, 2009

Salt May be the Key to Happiness

Physiologist Alan Johnson of the University of Iowa has discovered that salt intake may be linked to happiness. By depriving rats of salt, Johnson observed rats had less pleasure and desire to perform daily activities, such as pushing a bar to release sugar water. Once the rats were given salt, they became "happy" again. National Geographic explains:

He points to one study of people with chronic fatigue syndrome. Many of the patients were found to have reduced their sodium intake for health reasons. Increasing sodium in their diets alleviated many of the patients' symptoms.

Most people get more salt than the need in their diets, and there is a link between salt and heart disease, but Johnson's findings are interesting.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 14, 2009

Energy Costs More to Blame than Ethanol for Rising Food Costs

ethanol corn.jpg Ethanol has gotten a bad rap for causing the price of food to rise but also to blame is the rising cost of energy. Ethanol is not without fault, as a Congressional Budget Office report stated that ethanol production was responsible for 10 to 15 percent increase in food prices between April 2007 and April 2008; however, between 22 and 36 percent of the increase in food prices are due to the increase in the cost of energy sources. Tom Buis, chief executive of Growth Energy, an ethanol-industry association, explains:
The report released by the Congressional Budget Office confirms what we've known for some time - the impact of ethanol production on food prices is minimal, and that energy was the main driver in the rise of food prices
The Grocery Manufacturers Association, the American Meat Institute, the National Turkey Federation and the National Council of Chain Restaurants responded in kind:
Today's Congressional Budget Office numbers once again remind us of the unintended negative consequences associated with our nation's current policies which promote and mandate the conversion of massive amounts of corn and other food crops for biofuels production.
Whomever is to blame, rising food costs have hurt Americans during this economic recession.

Via: San Francisco Chronicle
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 10, 2009

Eco Food Friday: Get Your Omega-3s with Flax Plus Red Berry Crunch

NP-FlaxRedB_US-EB-RGB.jpg We eat a lot of cereal in our home. It's an easy snack and breakfast my young kids can assemble on their own, but I don't want them eating sugary cereals. My kids love Nature's Path Organic Flax Plus Red Berry Crunch, and I love that it is organic and good source of Omega-3s from the flax seeds. The organic strawberries and raspberries provide a tangy sweet flavor to contrast the crunch.
Made with love and ... Organic whole wheat meal, organic wheat bran, organic rolled oats, organic evaporated cane juice, organic flax, organic soy oil, organic brown rice flour, organic freeze dried raspberries, organic oat bran, organic barley malt extract, organic freeze dried strawberries, sea salt, natural strawberry flavor, organic oat syrup solids, tocopherols (natural vitamin E), organic molasses, organic rice bran extract, organic cinnamon.
You can even use Nature's Path Organic Flax Plus Red Berry Crunch to make smoothies! From the Nature's Path website:

1/2 c. cold water
3/4 c. Nature's Path Flax Plus Red Berry Crunch
1/2 c. vanilla yogurt
1 medium-sized ripe banana, peeled and halved
4 ice cubes

Pour water into blender and add cereal, yogurt, banana, and ice cubes.
Cover blender jar and puree until smooth, about 1 minute.
Pour into tall glass and enjoy.

We'll have try that! My daughter loves reading recipes and making smoothies.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

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