5@5: Churches distribute federal food aid | World's biggest food suppliers pledge to halve waste

Each day at 5 p.m. we collect the five top food and supplement headlines of the day, making it easy for you to catch up on today's most important natural products industry news.

New Hope Network staff

September 29, 2020

2 Min Read
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Churches distributing USDA food boxes are blurring the boundaries between church and state

Religious groups have apparently been distributing boxes of food as part of the Department of Agriculture's Farm to Families Food Box program; some of the delivered boxes contained notes obscuring the fact that the food aid was paid for by taxpayers, which raised flags for some recipients who believe that these religious organizations may be saving the boxes exclusively for their members. One note in a box of food distributed by the Jehovah's Witnesses Disaster Relief Committee urges "Brothers and Sisters" to keep the food boxes regardless of their level of need and to not alert the media or "post pictures of the provisions on any electronic network." Find out which other churches have been promoting their own agendas alongside the taxpayer-funded boxes at The Counter.

Nearly 200 of the world’s biggest food suppliers pledge to halve their food waste

Unilever, PepsiCo, Nestle Global and other big food makers have joined the world's largest retailers in pledging to cut their food waste in half by 2030 as part of the global 10x20x30 initiative. Data from the U.N. show that 30% of the world's food is either unharvested or thrown away at some step of the supply chain, and this lost food then makes up 8% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Consumers, however, are responsible for the vast majority of food waste (80%). Get the systems-level view of the problem at The Washington Post ... 

Automated harvest is coming. What will it mean for farmworkers and rural communities?

Farmers are increasingly interested in automated food harvesting robots, especially now that farmworker communities nationwide are grappling with high rates of COVID-19 illnesses. But many remain skeptical that robots could effectively replace humans in this arena. But if they did, it would be economically devastating to many immigrant communities, prompting worker advocates to begin planning potential avenues of recourse. Civil Eats has the full story.

New super-enzyme eats plastic bottles 6 times faster

A super-enzyme derived from bacteria that evolved to eat plastic has been engineered to work six times faster than its 2018 predecessor. Now, researchers are focused on combining the plastic-eating enzymes with existing enzymes that are able to break down mixed materials, thus enabling them to be fully recycled. Find out why this could have an outsize effect on the fashion industry at The Guardian ...

Study finds Russian prescription drugs hiding in 'brain-boosting' supplements

A recent analysis of "brain-boosting" supplements found that two of the workout supplements and eight of the cognitive enhancement supplements tested contained five drugs that are currently unapproved by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration. They are, however, licensed for use abroad; for example, one of the drugs found is a prescription drug used to treat cognitive impairments and stroke in China, Russia and Germany. Read more at Inverse …

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