Food and Agriculture

We need to fix our broken food system—and science can help us do it. UCS food experts highlight solutions to ensure that every American has access to healthy, green, fair, affordable food.


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Latest Food and Agriculture Posts

The Second Worst Flooding in Iowa History That You Probably Didn’t Read About

, Kendall Science Fellow

“No news is good news” was a take-home message from heavy rains that soaked Northern Iowa in late September, raising river levels to their second highest mark ever. Thanks to proactive work of emergency responders, community leaders, flood scientists and eager volunteers, there were not damages on the scale of other recent deadly floods in Louisiana and North Carolina.

However, the increasing intensity and frequency of heavy rainfall means that the damages escaped this time around should not lead to complacency. Rather, even more proactive planning will be required, particularly in agricultural areas, in order to prevent future floods from making headlines. Read more >

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Sweets for the Sweet? How to Lower Your Child’s Sugar Intake (and Why It Matters)

L. Matthew Schwartz, MD, FAAPM&R, FAADEP, , UCS

Who doesn’t love cookies, candy, cake, and ice cream? Soda, fruit juice, starch? They satisfy our brains’ pleasure and addiction centers. It’s even harder to limit our intake of sugar, as it is added to so many foods we eat. Why? It’s cheap and it sells. Just read all of your food labels for a real shock! Read more >

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Photo: Karen Perry Stillerman

Food and Farm Progress to be Thankful For

, senior analyst, Food and Environment

It seems like a million years since October 2008. That’s when author Michael Pollan published his open letter to the next “farmer-in-chief,” calling on the incoming president to take bold steps to transform the nation’s food system. The role of farmer-in-chief has been inhabited ever since by Barack Obama, and as his presidency winds down, some observers—including Pollan—have criticized the administration for not doing enough.

Others have tempered that assessment, arguing that the Obamas accomplished a lot in the food arena under tough circumstances, even though we have a long way to go. Personally, I agree with the latter view: we have quite a bit to be thankful for, in terms of concrete progress over the last eight years toward a healthier, fairer, more vibrant food system. Read more >

Photo: Karen Perry Stillerman
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Photo: Jim Robinson, USDA-NRCS/CC BY 2.0, Flickr

Farming Carbon into Soils and Trees: A Climate-Smart Mid-Century Strategy for Agriculture

, agroecologist

In 2050, the Paris Agreement will be 34 years old,  Google will be 52,  the National Park Service will be 134, the tractor will be 158, the United States will be 274, and hopefully we’ll all be celebrating being well along the way to a cooler future. While it may seem like a lot of time, there’s a lot of work ahead of us. Read more >

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Sonia and me last summer outside of her mobile produce market that she stocks full of vegetables and delivers to neighborhoods in need in Cedar Rapids.

We Can Help Veterans, Bolster an Aging Agricultural Workforce, and Reduce Food Insecurity. Here’s How.

, Kendall Science Fellow

This Veterans Day, I wanted to profile an amazing veteran-turned-farmer, Sonia Kendrick, and share her inspiring vision for how increasing opportunities for new farmers might eliminate food insecurity. Sonia’s channeled her post-war trauma into a successful non-profit that grows healthy food across her hometown of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Through her organization she also trains beginner farmers, something needed on a large scale to succeed the current aging agricultural workforce. Read more >

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