Frank visits Pete and Gerry's egg farm in Vermont in October 2013.

Bird flu and egg substitutes

It’s strange that so few people are talking about this flu outbreak in chickens in the US. I don’t think it’s something we can ignore. The outbreak is sad for many reasons, including the birds’ suffering, the needed yet wasteful culling of flocks, and the human toll of the workers dealing with so much death plus the farmers seeing their cared for animals and their business killed. We should expect a rise in egg prices, starting with liquid eggs and processed foods that use liquid eggs (including baked goods and ice cream, as the NY Times article states). I doubt in-shell egg prices are far behind. That’s bad news for people struggling to put food on the table. 

Girl Scout Cookies - Thin Mints & Samoas - by Brianpdx via flickr

Celebrate cookies and science

Scouting was a very important part of my childhood. I learned independence, teamwork, and so many other important life traits. Not to mention the camping, singing, crafts… and cookies! Selling cookies was one of the highlights of each year. Thanks in large part to my grandmother who worked in a hospital and my aunt who worked in a law firm, one year I was one of the top 25 cookie sellers in the whole United States! My dad is archiving our family photos and he was able to find these for me… I was a Girl Scout from Daisy all the way to Cadette, and my mom was a troop leader for many of those years. Now that I have a baby daughter, I look forward to her joining Girl Scouts and to being a troop leader myself. I’m especially excited about the science and engineering badges that they have added since I

Frank-piano

Let’s make Music for Cooking with Frank N. Foode™!

As many of you may have heard, following the unboxing of our Frank N. Foode™ and Papaya plushies, we have placed the order for these plushies and the factory is beginning production. Not only that, but we managed to increase our order from the original 500 Franks and 250 Papayas to 750 Franks and 500 papayas! The tremendous amount of support and enthusiasm that we saw in our Kickstarter campaign and while we perfected the new designs has been phenomenal, and I personally can’t wait to get the boxes ready to ship as soon as the plushies arrive! We know that Frank N. Foode™ is going to be a hit, and he will help us reach more people and make science more fun for them. Right now we are preparing to launch Frank into a whole new domain with cooking videos and science festivals – and to do that we need to

Gluten-free waffle breakfast at Silver Diner. Image by Teri Centner via Flickr.

What does a non-GMO label get you?

I’m all for voluntary non-GMO labels. They’re a market based solution that meets a niche demand. They provide diversity in the market without raising prices for everyone. Still, I prefer to avoid them (and thankfully in the US, I still have the choice to do so) in large part because I don’t think they’re accomplishing anything useful, especially considering that such products often cost more. That’s my personal choice, though I also don’t think these labels accomplish much for the companies that use them. I’ve got two examples that I recently noticed that don’t make sense to me – maybe you can help me untangle the issues.