To the political novice, a federal government shutdown sounds like an excuse to get crazy. Anarchy in the streets! Do more than the usual drugs in Deep Ellum! Operate a bandit taxi service from the same 1993 minivan you use to transport DISD students to school! But that's not how it really works. In ... More >>
Even when the USDA rolled out the new, healthier, Michelle Obama-approved version of the National School Lunch Program last year, there were grumblings. Kids complained that the new menu, which includes generous helpings of fruits and vegetables while capping meat, carbohydrates, and overall caloric ... More >>
Since everything needs its own day, week and month -- today alone it's national rice pudding day, apple week, and catch fish, peach and brownies-at-brunch month -- this week we've all been asked to celebrate farmers markets. That's a noble cause, so we're all in. Aren't we? Yes. We are. The United ... More >>
Meet Chip and Trump, Pantego resident Kristen Beauregard's prize miniature ponies. As of Wednesday afternoon, they were healthy and contented. By that evening, they were dead. Their end came after the pair was swarmed by 30,000 bees that emerged from a nearby shed. "They were chasing us down, they ... More >>
Chiladas Fresh Mex Grill is poised for a local takeover. The restaurant opened its second location in University Park on Lovers Lane last week, and five additional locations are expected over the next two years in the DFW area. Chipotle fans will recognize the playbook. Ingredients are sourced resp ... More >>
Behind the scenes of the death match between Big Ag and undercover animal-rights activists.
In recent years, as North Texas' feral hog population has exploded, Arlington, Irving and other suburbs have taken to rounding up the swine and selling them for bacon. Now, it's Dallas' turn. Robert Wilonsky brings news this morning that the city is looking for someone to harvest its feral hogs.
First we have the Mayan calendar to contend with. Then, Miley cut all her hair off. Now, there's another apocalypse to contend with ... Bloomberg Business reported today that because of a dramatic rise in grain prices around the world, feeding pigs over their projected lifetimes costs more than wha ... More >>
While I wait for the USDA to sort out its feelings about Meatless Monday with breath that is most certainly bated, I continue the valiant search for meatless dishes that don't suck and aren't cheese nachos from 7-Eleven. This week, I couldn't ignore the dull roar of ballyhoo any longer and decided t ... More >>
Imbroglios don't get more prosaic than this: A USDA newsletter suggests its employees practice "Meatless Mondays," thereby shrinking their ecological footprint. Skip the Salisbury steak at the cafeteria and eat a plant instead. Take into account the ever-swelling asses of the American public and th ... More >>
See also, from Unfair Park: *Meatless Mondays at USDA Out-and-Out "Treason," Ag Commish Staples Says An internal USDA Newsletter has some Republican tweeps in an uproar. On July 23, the USDA posted a five-page newsletter for employees, offering tips and status updates on "greening efforts" includin ... More >>
We've decided to take a look at a few of Dallas' most glutton-friendly dishes and do something you probably really don't want us to: count calories. Total buzzkill? No. More like "smart calorie allocation." So, let's get smart. Say you have 2,000 calories, more or less, at your disposal everyday; ... More >>
Meatingplace is a trade publication for, you guessed it, the meat industry. NPR reported last week that the magazine's most recent cover screamed in bright pink "SLIMED," followed by the subhead "What the hell happened." In her article, April Fulton at NPR outlined what four editors of Meatingplace ... More >>
Earlier this week the Wall Street Journal published an article noting the increased demand for chicken legs at grocery stores. The story claims that shoppers have been driven by TV cooking shows that celebrate dark meat's richer flavor and softer texture. Finally, people have realized: It tastes bet ... More >>
Processed-meat fever came to a head over the weekend. It started with a full-page ad, which appeared on Friday in the Wall Street Journal (and is on display below), paid for by Beef Product Inc. The company branded itself a paragon of food safety and cited "pink slime" libel as a threat to 3000 jobs ... More >>
In an effort to raise awareness of the importance of choosing nutritious foods, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has deemed March 8 as National "What's on My Plate?" day. The idea is to snap a photo of breakfast, lunch or dinner and post it on #MyPlate or Flickr. In a press release, Agricultu ... More >>
And no, it's not hard to find.
Nearly every time I knock the food at a chain restaurant, a few commenters jump to and tell me why chains are great. Often those comments brand me as a chain-hating snob who only wants to eat trendy food, served by a waiter with bad facial hair and a fedora. But that's not true. Mostly I just want t ... More >>
Short of earning a Ph.D in bio-tech science, making sense of genetically modified (GM) or engineered (GE) ingredients in America's food chain is almost impossible. Primarily because by law GM foods aren't required to be labeled as such. So you literally need that degree along with a boatload of data ... More >>
FlickrSee that green thing over there? You're supposed to eat it, apparently.You may have heard of this whole Meatless Monday thing. It's a simple idea: to abstain from eating meat for just one day a week. It's not a radically new concept; the term was coined during WWI as a slogan (along wit ... More >>
None of the commodity-on-the-hoof gurus saw this one coming. They had predicted another fat increase in feedlot placements, not unlike July's USDA Cattle On Feed report. Yet here we are, and the Beef Engine of America is in the midst of an historic drought, our forage exhausted, our ranchers ... More >>
As my grandfather would say, "It's drier than a popcorn fart." We're smack-dab in the middle of the worst one-year drought ever. The costliest too. Feed prices are nearly unaffordable. Stock tanks are drying up. But the final boot to the gut of the Texas rancher never came. It's the strange artifac ... More >>
Fast food state -- see the pretty, pretty purple.The only thing worse than coming back from vacation is beating the rest of the world back to work -- especially if you're a reporter waiting for return phone calls. It's been a quiet day in the office. But all that time spent in silence hasn't ... More >>
Food lovers must talk with their mouths full, since there was plenty of discussion of many, many food-related topics in 2010. But a few national stories struck us as most important. Let us know what you think. 1. The food safety bill The massive food safety bill had been left for dead when the ... More >>
My counterpart at the Houston Press recently tweeted about how pleased she was when an entrée arrived topped with an egg. Eggs, most culinerati agree, make everything better. Chefs have lately been cracking eggs with abandon. It's not just burgers and salads getting the cooked egg treatment ... More >>
"It's killing our markets. Where they got the name, I just don't know." (Iowa hog farmer Francis Gilmore on the effect of swine flu on the value of his product. Since the outbreak and spread of this virus, hog prices have dropped from a $62 per 100 pounds average to $59 per 100 pounds, on ... More >>
"Because it sells, food companies are slapping it on anything. And consumers believe natural equals nutritious. Actually, it's a bit like Alice in Wonderland. It means what I want it to mean." (Julie Miller Jones, professor of food safety and nutrition at College of St. Catherine in Minnesota on th ... More >>
Goods things here are worth waiting for
The fare is disappointing at this upper-end steak house
For Texas cattle ranchers, "What's for dinner?" is a touchy question
Animal rescuers try to find a Texas home for Miami's unwanted bunnies
The taste of victory is bittersweet for a local meatpacker who challenged the USDA
Years of little or no regulation have made Texas a place where big cats prowl--and sometimes kill
Supreme Beef wins in federal appeals court, but not soon enough to save its plant
The USDA backs off its tough new meat-inspection standards. That's a good thing, beef producers say.
Dallas-based Supreme Beef wins a major round in its court battle with the USDA
Dallas-based Supreme Beef fought what it believes are unfair regulations, only to wind up on the USDA's killing floor
Ducks and chicks and geese better scurry from Samuell Farm
Can growing protests stem the tide of genetically engineered crops?
Is prime beef really prime?
Wildlife activists claim that the managers at Samuell Farm Park are abusing the land, its animals, and anyone else who gets in their way
Lawry's The Prime Rib: an old wrinkle ahead of its time