Miscellaneous

Greece: Cost of Easter feast up 5.3%
The national confederation of Greece commerce (ESEE) reported on Tuesday that the cost of a traditional holiday meal will be 5.3 percent higher in 2015.From a survey of Easter staples at supermarkets and Athens’s central market from April 1-5, ESEE found that lamb, the highlight of the Easter meal, is 20.37.....

Farmworker health project expands
While fruit and vegetable cultivation in Georgia brings more than a billion dollars a year into the state, pickers remain low paid, living largely in makeshift camps or seasonal housing with little access to health care. The annual South Georgia Farmworker Health Project clinics have broadened their scope.....


Peru: Agricultural exports increased slightly
The Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation (Minagri) stated that Peruvian agricultural exports during the first two months of this year amounted to US $801 million, i.e. 1.7% more than the US $788 million achieved in the same period in 2014.In addition, the Directorate General of Monitoring and Policy.....

US (CA): Almonds become villain in drought
It takes nearly four litres of water to produce each solitary almond. Nobody seemed to care when water was plentiful. But now that water is so scarce that the government is forcing average residents to cut back, the healthy little nut has become agricultural enemy No. 1.Its sudden scoundrel turn — from.....


Cocaine discovered in banana boxes in French and Czech supermarkets
More than 80 kilos of cocaine were discovered last Friday morning in banana boxes at an Auchan retail store in the Paris suburb of Seine Saint Denis, as reported by police sources. On Wednesday, another 117 kg were also found at a Lidl store in the Prague district of Zbraslav, Czech Republic.The drug could.....

UK govt. supports food self-sufficiency
Farmers have said they are 'pleased' that the government has recognised the strong desire to secure the long-term future of food production in the UK.The comments come following the publication of the Government’s response to the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs report “Food security: demand, consumption.....

Scientists testing how plants grow without gravity
Researchers are planning to test how plants sense their growth direction in the absence of gravity in space.Investigators with Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency will conduct a second run of the Plant Gravity Sensing study after new supplies are delivered to the International Space Station (ISS).The research.....


Worldwide Consumption patterns
Chinese consume most fruit and vegetables
There are clear differences in consumption patterns between countries and regions, and over the years the patterns within each country can vary wildly. An overview over the years shows clear shifts and changes. We will look at consumer habits with twenty-year intervals, namely 1961, 1981 and 2001, followed.....

Vegan diet best for planet
A federal panel that helps set federal dietary guidelines is recommending Americans eat less meat because it’s better for the environment, sparking outrage from industry groups representing the nation’s purveyors of beef, pork and poultry.The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, a federally appointed panel.....

Record amount of cocaine found in Czech banana shipment
Czech police say they have seized a record amount of cocaine in a shipment of bananas for a supermarket.Barbora Kudlackova, spokeswoman for the police anti-narcotics unit, says more than 100 kilograms (220 pounds) of cocaine was packed among the bananas.Kudlackova said Friday it was a random find and that.....


Tomato plants ‘converted’ themselves’ into cannabis
A man whose tomato plants “miraculously converted themselves” into cannabis plants has been handed down an eight-month sentence, suspended for two years on condition he grows no more illegal drugs.Father of five Daniel Johnson, aged 34, of Garryglass, Cahersiveen, Co Kerry, pleaded guilty at the February.....


“It's the eleventh hour for wholesale markets!”
Wholesale market companies are suffering under the influence of the big four.The food market in Germany is being dominated by four great chain stores. Edeka, Rewe, Aldi and Lidl together have a total market share of 85 percent. The supremacy of the four retail giants makes it's strength known mostly on the.....

New art exhibit focuses on apples
Apples are the subject of a new exhibit opening this month at the 420 Loft Art Gallery. The exhibit “Appleseed” opens during the First Friday Art Walk from 5-7 p.m. Friday.The artists wanted to create a show based on a familiar theme to those in Central Washington, according to a news release from the.....


Chile: Heavy rain leave irrigation canals in critical condition
The landslides of the different streams along the Elqui Valley (Region of Coquimbo, Chile), after the storm last week, left more than 20 kilometres of intakes banked and about thirty automatic and manual intake gates submerged under large quantities of sludge and sediment, which prevents them from.....

Promperu seeks to market 13 new products 2015
PromPeru stated that they working on marketing 13 new products in international markets this year."Among the products in this process are organic bananas, organic mango, aguaymanto, sacha inchi, passion fruit, maca, quinoa, amaranth, pisco, olive, chestnut, specialty coffee, and cocoa," said the coordinator.....

Kiwifruit firms assist cyclone hit workers
Kiwifruit workers from cyclone-ravaged Vanuatu are being helped by local post-harvest companies. Seeka chief executive Michael Franks said it had 411 Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) people on its workforce from Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands, Samoa and Malaysia. The workers came for various times and were.....

Kenya: Suspended Ag secretary denies growing potatoes
Suspended Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Felix Koskei has termed corruption allegations levelled against him as mere fabrications.Koskei who appeared before Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) detectives on Thursday expressed confidence that he will be cleared after investigations.“We have had a.....

NZ food scientist elected Fellow of US Institute
Riddet Institute co-director, Distinguished Professor Harjinder Singh has been elected a Fellow of the United States Institute of Food Technologists (IFT).IFT is the largest union of food scientists in the world. Since 1939, it has been unlocking the potential of the food science community by creating a.....

German-Italian trade fair Cooperation to become closer
After Anuga FoodTec 2015 in Cologne, Gerald Böse (CEO Koelnmesse) and Antonio Cellie (CEO Fiere di Parma) announced the signing of a strategic agreement in which the framework for a cooperation between the two exhibition companies is settled for the CibusTec.Koelnmesse and Fiere di Parma already.....

Woman finds cocaine paste in tomato cans
Providence police say they found a large quantity of cocaine paste in some tomato cans hidden in the luggage of a 19-year-old woman.Maj. David Lapatin tells the Providence Journal the woman reported finding the three tomato cans in her luggage on March 23, after returning to South Providence from a weeklong.....


Stop of acquisition
Federal Cartel Office prohibits the acquisition of Kaiser's Tengelmann
The German Federal Cartel Office prohibited the acquisition of Kaiser's Tengelmann by the supermarket giant Edeka. So Edeka cannot incorporate the 450 branches of Kaiser's Tengelmann in Germany. The Federal Cartel Office announced as justification that the project would have led to a significant.....


Peru: Organic lettuce grown at highway billboard
We’ve seen vertical farms before, but this brings urban agriculture quite literally to the next level. In the Bujama region of Lima, Peru, thousands of lettuce heads are sprouting next to a major highway thanks to a very unusual source: a billboard.FCB Mayo Peru and University of Engineering &.....

Mexico: Exports from Jalisco are expected to grow by 7% in 2015
Jalisco’s export sector forecasts it will grow by 7% in 2015 because of factors, such as the diversification of exportable products, the opening of new international markets, and the dollar."The dollar has benefited us; even though it has dropped a little, it still remains high and it will benefit most of.....

UK: Drug cartel jailed after smuggling cocaine in banana boxes
Three members of a Columbian drugs cartel who imported £24 million of cocaine stored in banana boxes have been jailed for a total of 59 years.The consignment, which came from the South American nation and weighed more than 100kg, arrived in Dover on July 8 last year before being delivered by lorry to a unit.....

UK: Children prefer insects to vegetables
Kids don't want to eat their greensKids are more likely to eat a worm than a plate of Brussels sprouts.Almost half (47%) of children aged between two and 10 have eaten garden bugs - but 71% refuse a portion of greens.Worms top the list of favourite creepy crawlies (18% of kids say they’ve eaten one),.....

April Fools' Day jokes leave the unwary gobsmacked
April Fools' Day is a special time of year for the media.Plucky public relations companies attempt to hoodwink unwitting journalists spruiking too-good-to-be true sales such as "cabin class trips to London for $199", or natural phenomena such as crocodiles appearing in Centennial Park.Other publications just.....

First shopping malls in West African Union
Soon the architectural landscape of West Africa will get even more diverse with some projects unique for this region, namely the shopping malls that will cover the area of 100 thousand square meters each. These projects are a part of the investment-development program of the international direct investment.....


Argentina proposes a partnership agreement between SICA and MERCOSUR
Argentina’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hector Timerman, and the chancellors of the Central American Integration System (SICA), stated in a joint statement that they had met on Friday March 27th in order to stimulate and strengthen the cooperation and the diversification of trade between both regions.As.....

India farmers receive additional rain
Rainfall over the past 24 hours has added to the woes of farmers, who are already facing extensive crop damage due to heavy rain and hailstorm in the first 15 days of March. The region witnessed around 22.6 mm of rainfall over the past 24 hours, with temperatures dipping by 2-3 degree Celsius, Met officials.....

NZ: Fruit fly lockdown eases
Restrictions in Auckland's fruit fly zone have been eased.The inner-city suburb of Grey Lynn was put under a fruit and vegetable lockdown after a male Queensland fruit fly was found on February 16, the fourth time the pest had been found in northern New Zealand since 2012.But the last fly was found on the.....

Colombian scientist develops bean resistant to high temperatures
Stephen Beebe, an American scientist, presented a study about the discovery of a new bean resistant to high temperature that was developed in Cali (Colombia) and that can be grown in environments where it was not possible to grow it before.In an interview with Efe in London, Beebe stated that "even though.....

EC wants to reduce U.S. demands for FTA
The head negotiator of the European Commission for the trade agreement with the United States, Ignacio Garcia Bercero, said they were trying to reduce the requirements on fruit and vegetables to avoid the absurd situations caused by the slowness of authorizations by the United States. There are some.....

Farm workers vow continued fight
A push by farm workers for higher wages ended without resolution on Friday, with leaders refusing to settle for the 15 percent pay increase offered by growers in Baja California.“There is no will on the part of the businesses,” said Fidel Sanchez, one of the leaders of a strike that began on March 17 seeking.....

UK: Waitrose customer wins Jazz Honda
Waitrose customer, Mrs Nicholls of Bracknell, Berkshire, was delighted today to receive the winning prize of Win a Honda Jazz with Jazz in Waitrose. The competition was exclusive to Waitrose, entered by simply purchasing a promotional pack of Jazz Apples in Waitrose and registering details on the competition.....

Growers hope for ‘traction’ from Voice of Horticulture
A new advocacy organization representing more than 30,000 horticultural growers, close to 62,000 employees and an industry that reached exports estimated at $1.8 billion has also made its debut. Voice of Horticulture is chaired by Tania Chapman, who is also Chairwoman for Citrus Australia.At the launch of.....

2015 sponsorships Tour de Fresh now available
Organizers of the 2nd annual Tour de Fresh are proud to announce that sponsorship opportunities are now available. This collaborative industry event will unite produce companies for a four-day cycling event that will once again benefit the Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools campaign. This year’s 300+ mile ride.....

April 2
'Love Your Produce Manager Day' returns
Produce managers play an important part in changing the way America shops—and eats. They are the unsung heroes of the healthy eating revolution, quietly playing a key role in increasing fruit and vegetable consumption just by helping us take home the freshest produce. After all, according to a recent survey.....

Man says one sniff of a carrot could kill him
A father of two with a severe and rare allergy said one sniff of a carrot could kill him.Andy Walters, 33, of Wrexham, suffers from a series of serious allergies – the most unusual of which is an intense sensitivity to the orange vegetables.The allergies are so severe he has been hospitalised and has sought.....


Chile: La Serena under quarantine due to fruit fly
After discovering eight adult specimens and seven larval hotspots of the fruit fly in the urban area of La Serena, the SAG ordered this area be quarantined. The Agriculture and Livestock Service (SAG) continues to apply pesticides so the insect does not reach rural areas and, after the detection of this.....

Brilliant uses for banana peels
As compiled from takepart.com, Reader’s Digest, and Prevention magazine, here are reasons to never trash banana peels again.To grill a juicier piece of chickenYou’re a grilling expert, except when it comes to skinless chicken breasts or beef steaks that desperately need some tenderising. Meat has a tendency.....

Making biofuel from unwanted fruit
Graduate students at Mie University have produced biofuel from the region’s tangerines, saying the technique provides a use for unwanted fruit. They believe it could be promoted as a locally sourced form of renewable energy.The researchers at the university’s Graduate School of Bioresources fermented rotten.....

US (CA): Urban farms can help feed the hungry
Buying locally sourced fruits and vegetables may soon become as simple as walking over to a neighbor’s garden, thanks to a new urban farm ordinance passed Tuesday night by the Sacramento City Council.In a 6-1 vote, the city effectively opened the door to minifarms on private properties and in vacant lots.....


Only 5% growth Peru agri sector 2015
According to the Deputy Minister of Agricultural Infrastructure and Irrigation Development, Jorge Montenegro, this year, the agricultural sector would grow between 4% and 5%, approximately, because agricultural exports and investments in general have been affected to some extent by the economic.....


Dominican Republic contacts Russia and Canada to export
The Minister of Agriculture of the Dominican Republic, Angel Estevez, stated it had maintained contacts with officials and businessmen from various countries, including Russia and Canada, which are interested in buying fruits and vegetables produced in the Dominican Republic.Angel Estevez made this.....

Panama looks towards Europe
Panama has the potential to become a food supplier for the European Community, but the country would have to work hard to meet some of this market's basic requirements as it mainly values the product's quality and timely delivery of orders."The export success depends on complying with the requirements and.....

Indian farmers brace for more rain
Farmers across northern India and central India may have to brace for more unseasonal rain and even hail as the India Meteorological Department has predicted another wet spell between March 29 and April 1-2. According to the agriculture ministry 5 million hectares of crop has already been damaged due to.....

Central Africa in urgent need of ag assistance
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has launched an urgent appeal to help provide farmers in the Central African Republic (CAR) with seeds and tools for the country's upcoming planting season, warning that without additional assistance vulnerable populations risked a further.....

Pest discovered in bananas at port
A rare and destructive bug – seen in the United States only once before – was discovered in a shipment of bananas from Guatemala to the Port of Wilmington, customs officials said Monday.U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists found the leafhopper on March 16, spokesman Steve Sapp said.An.....

US (CA): Sewing needles found in apples
Sewing needles were found in two apples bought from a Fallbrook Albertsons and a sheriff's sergeant is advising the public to check fruit bought from the store.A woman purchased Honeycrisp apples from the South Mission Road supermarket on March 15. She sliced into one of the apples on Friday and found a.....

Father shoots son after OJ runs out
A Baton Rouge man was arrested early Sunday after he confessed to shooting his 18-year-old son in the buttocks during an argument over orange juice.Eldridge Dukes, 58, and his son were fighting about the lack of orange juice in their north Baton Rouge home, according to a Baton Rouge police arrest report.The.....

UK: Exotic locust found in salad
A stunned student has uploaded creepy footage of a large locust he found crawling around in his bag of Sainsbury's rocket salad. Stephen Oldham, 21, spotted the exotic bug rustling around inside the bag after putting it in his fridge when he got home from shopping.The architecture student, from Bath.....

Vietnam: Unknown pest destroying crops
The unknown species of arthropod that is destroying crops of different types of vegetables in the Central Highlands city of Da Lat, known as Vietnam’s hub for green produce, can move so fast that it is ironically dubbed ‘superman’ by local farmers.A wide area of strawberry, potato, cabbage, white onion, and.....


Does buying local really benefit farmers?
It’s a universally acknowledged truth that urban farmers markets are good for rural economies. Just ask U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. After announcing the availability of $96.8 million in grants to fund various local food projects on Monday, Vilsack said, “Increasing market opportunities for.....

50,000 baby lettuce plants stolen in Dublin
Fifty thousand baby lettuce plants have been stolen in Dublin. They were in a truck which has been reported stolen from Rush, in the north of the county. Brian McNamara owns the truck and the missing plants. He said: "They are in a compost block in a yellow create. We buy them in from the UK, and only got.....

Baja farmworkers' strike crimping US supplies
Thousands of laborers in the San Quintin Valley 200 miles south of San Diego went on strike Tuesday, leaving the fields and greenhouses full of produce that is now on the verge of rotting. Though they stopped blocking the main highway to export markets, the road remains hard to traverse as rogue groups stop.....


Agronomia reaches for Austria
Italian producer has ambitious plans
Immediately after the completion of the new production facility near Munich for 4,5 Million Euro, Agronomia Food GmbH is going to plan the next big step. “We plan to conquer the Austrian market completely by the middle of 2016. We want to become the market leader in the fresh-cut sector”, Mario Ebel Sales.....

Africa: Agriculture as a business for youth
Agriculture can be an essential driver of economic development and an area of great opportunity for Africa's youth. However, most young people in the region do not see agriculture as a profitable opportunity. Photo by: The MasterCard FoundationAgriculture is the single-largest source of income for rural.....

U.S. restricts entry of fruit and veg from Dominican Republic because of Mediterranean fly
The U.S. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced in a statement that, today, the United States had restricted the entry of fruit and vegetables from the Dominican Republic to avoid the Mediterranean fly (Ceratitis capitata) from entering its borders.Starting today, after multiple cases.....