Search Results for ‘food desert’

Debunking the “food desert” myth

No, this isn’t the first time the fashionable, First-Lady-approved theory has been debunked — see posts here, here, and here — but it’s gratifying to see the NYT’s formidable Gina Kolata get front-page space for a thorough treatment. One study found poor neighborhoods “had nearly twice as many supermarkets and large-scale grocers per square mile” as wealthier ones; another “found no relationship between what type of food students said they ate, what they weighed, and the type of food within a mile and a half of their homes.” [Tyler Cowen, Jacob Sullum] And Katherine Mangu-Ward notes the juxtaposition of Kolata’s piece with an opinion piece in the paper the very same day: “Food Deserts Are Not Real. Also, We Can Fix Them.”

“Cutting the ‘food desert’ myth down to size”

“The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines a food desert as a low-income census tract where a large number of residents are more than a mile from a grocery store…. [L]ess than 4.5 percent of the U.S. population [falls into that category], yet roughly two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese.” And that’s just the start of the difficulties with the food-desert theory [David Gratzer, Washington Examiner]

Food and nanny state roundup

  • Has Obama administration endorsed anti-GMO campaign with new labeling law? Not really [Thomas Firey, Cato, earlier here, here, etc.]
  • United Nations anti-tobacco meeting seeks to exclude persons overly involved with tobacco production, ban list turns out to include many officials of member governments [Huffington Post UK]
  • Dumping Michigan tart cherries to comply with USDA marketing order? There must be a better way [Baylen Linnekin]
  • “I am the man, the very fat man, who waters the workers’ beer.” [Science Daily, prompting Christopher Snowdon’s recollection of that line of song]
  • Feds alone have spent $500 million chasing food-desert mirage, with “negligible” impact on health [Mac McCann, Dallas News, earlier]
  • “FDA Assigns Zero Value To Smokers Who Die Because Of Its E-Cigarette Regulations” [Jacob Sullum, more on vaping]

Food roundup

Food and farm roundup

Food roundup

  • Chicago city government joins Boston in threatening to use regulation to punish Chick-fil-A for its political views [Josh Barro, Eugene Volokh, earlier, Tim Carney]
  • NYC hearing on Bloomberg soda ban “a pre-scripted event with a foregone conclusion” [ACSH, WLF] despite inclusion of Baylen Linnekin on witness list [Reason, Jacob Sullum] If calories are the point: “Hey, Mayor Mike, why not ban beer?” [Sullum, NYDN]
  • California restaurants serving foie gras “can be fined up to $1,000…or is it a tax?” [Fox via @ReplevinforaCow]
  • When nutrition labeling meets deli salads: the FDA invades Piggly Wiggly [Diane Katz, Heritage]
  • “Raw Milk Advocates Lose the Battle But Win the War” [ABA Journal]
  • “PLoS Medicine is Publishing An Attack On ‘Big Food'” [David Oliver]
  • More signs that Mayor Bloomberg is eyeing liquor as a public health target [NYP, earlier] Oasis in the putative food desert: “In praise of the corner liquor store” [Katherine Mangu-Ward, Reason]

Food roundup

  • Why eating local isn’t necessarily good for the environment [Pierre Desrochers and Hiroko Shimizu, The Locavore’s Dilemma via David Boaz/Cato, BoingBoing]
  • “Can Behavioral Economics Combat Obesity?” [Michael Marlow and Sherzod Abdukadirov, Cato Regulation mag, PDF] Get cranberry juice out of the schools. Must we? [Scott Shackford]
  • Portland might deem you a subsidy-worthy “food desert” even if you’re six blocks from a Safeway [City Journal]
  • “Policemen eying giant iced-coffee I bought near 96th and Broadway. I’m imagining a future of ‘stop and sip.’ ‘Is that sweetened, sir?'” [Conor Friedersdorf]
  • Crise de foie: California’s ban on livers of overfed fowl results in evasion, coinage of word “duckeasy” [Nancy Friedman]
  • In defense of policy entrepreneur Rick Berman [David Henderson]
  • The federal definition of macaroni [Ryan Young, CEI]
  • How food safety regulation can kill [Baylen Linneken, Reason] We’ve got a nice little town here, don’t try to grow food in it [same] And the prolific Linnekin is guest-blogging at Radley Balko’s along with Ken and Patrick from Popehat, Maggie McNeill, and Chattanooga libertarian editorialist Drew Johnson.

Food and agriculture law roundup

  • Just as FDA begins laying groundwork for mandatory salt reduction in prepared food, research raises new doubts about the science [Reuters, Atlantic Wire, Alkon]
  • Feds now scrutinizing “everything about kids’ food” [Star-Tribune] Top-down remake of school lunches runs into trouble in Congress [AP]
  • “Christmas tree tax”: blame big growers and GOP lawmakers, not White House [Tad DeHaven, , Mark Perry]
  • Living right by a USDA-designated “food desert,” she’s “never had better access to food in my life.” [Angie Schmitt, Urbanophile] “As income rises, so does fast-food consumption, study finds” [L.A. Times, Sullum] “You can eat local, or you can eat organic, but it’s very hard to do both.” [Felix Salmon]
  • Bloomberg News (not Bloomberg Hizzoner) hypes food-as-addiction, child obesity figuring in more custody battles [WSJ] Michelle Obama on the role of personal responsibility, alas not in this realm of life [Andrew Coulson, Cato]
  • Private bed-leasing law is finally restoring Maryland’s depleted oyster stocks [Rona Kobell, Reason] Catch shares for Alaskan king crab might even be saving human lives [Adler]
  • Why bother cooking for your kids at all? Feds ramp up program that serves them dinner as well as breakfast, lunch [Stoll]

Food law roundup

  • “Wisconsin Judge Rules No Right to Own a Cow or Drink Its Milk” [Food Freedom; related on demonstration at FDA]
  • We’re from the authorities, and we’re shutting down your “farm-to-fork” dinner [Amy Alkon]
  • “FTC Makes Strategic Concessions on Food/Beverage Marketing Guidelines” [Lammi, WLF]
  • Given a little humility, NYT’s Mark Bittman might have noticed that his new junk food insight contradicts his old [Jacob Sullum, Reason]
  • Urban myths about Halloween candy tampering [Free-Range Kids]
  • New Jersey lawsuit over serving of meat to devout Hindu vegetarians [Abnormal Use; compare 1999 case]
  • “First lady will achieve goal of eradicating all food deserts by 2017” — calm down, that’s “deserts” with just the one “s” [Obama Foodorama, more, more] Premise that lack of access to fresh fruits/vegetables accounts for poor urban diet, however, is sheerest fantasy [Katherine Mangu-Ward/WaPo, earlier here and here]