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The Food Magazine issue 76

January/March 2007

Food Magazine 76The Olympics and the allotments
Organisers of London 2012 promise that the Olympic and Paralympic Games will leave a lasting legacy for future generations. But legacies come in all forms, as the eighty or so plot holders at Manor Gardens Allotments in Stratford well know. The bulldozers are scheduled to roll over their carefully tended patches sometime after they are evicted this April to make way for footpaths and a giant TV screen for the 2012 Games.

Hackney Council yields fruit
A section of Butterfield Green in Hackney, once a BMX bike track and then derelict, has been turned into a community orchard. The joint project, instigated by Shakespeare Neighborhood Residents Association and local social enterprise Growing Communities, received Hackney Council backing and now local people have come together to plant the trees.

More than neeps and tatties
Scottish Executive backed schemes to promote fruit, vegetables and other healthy foods in local shops are providing some heartening results.

Palm oil producers fight back
As previously reported in The Food Magazine, the UK’s demand for imported palm oil could threaten the survival of the orang-utan. Their natural habitat, the lowland forests in Malaysia and Indonesia, is rapidly being cleared for palm oil plantations. Faced with such criticism and, wary that some food manufacturers are now starting to take corporate responsibility seriously, the palm oil industry is launching a PR fightback.

Drinking to climate change
Alcohol: a social pleasure for some… and a social headache for others. But, while the papers are full of stories about teenage binge drinkers, scant attention is paid to the fact that alcohol production and consumption – as with many foods and drinks – carries with it both environmental and health burdens.

Healthy schools and fair trade
School children all over the UK are running their own fair trade co-operatives selling a range of food products. One, called Cocoafair, has ditched their school's vending machines and set up healthy food projects, with all profits going to an educational charity in Sri Lanka.

Does TV encourage teenage drinking?
Popular soap shows are awash with alcohol, according to a survey published in The Food Magazine. Alcohol featured in 18% of scenes shown during Hollyoaks, in over 17% of scenes shown during Coronation Street and in over 16% of scenes shown during EastEnders and Emmerdale. Home and Away did better, with alcohol limited to just 6.7% of screen time.

The slice is right?
Bread is big business. On a typical day in the UK we spend over £7.4 million on nearly 12 million loaves of bread, 70% of which will be white. But how much do we really know about our daily bread? Ian Tokelove reports.

Living bread
Jessica Mitchell goes in search of 'living bread' – the stuff made from stoneground, wholemeal flour, water, yeast and salt – and plenty of time.

Science of life?
Dr Rafik Taibjee is a junior doctor training to be a GP. He is also an inspector of medical schools for the General Medical Council. He has taken sabattical leave in order to study Ayurvedic medicine in India.

GPs and dietary advice
A few readers have been in touch with The Food Magazine recently to express concern about the dietary advice on offer at their local GP surgeries.

A spoonful of sugar?
Medicines for babies and young children frequently contain a cocktail of additives which are banned from foods and drinks designed to be consumed by the under threes.

5 a day the seaweed way
Dr Duika Burges-Watson's recently designed ‘seaweed tour’ of Ireland hopes to remind us all that seaweeds and Westerners have a long history as tablemates. She finds signs that old traditions are being revitalised.

Moral panic over child obesity
Dr Wendy Wills, a Registered Public Health Nutritionist, thinks recent guidelines for tackling obesity are letting down young people.

9pm watershed for junk ads?
Pressure is mounting on the government to introduce a 9pm watershed for junk food adverts.

Advertising: Legal, decent, honest and true?
Food and drink companies have been keeping the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) busy over the last few months, with several companies pushing their advertising claims too far.

Voices from the past
“I mean, tinned soup, I would never hae it in the hoose unless it wis maybe Karen [daughter] comin’ in an’ I wis gaun away in a hurry…we were nae brought up like that, we wis brought up to get a’ thing oot o’ the groun’ and intae a pot…” This interview with a Scottish grandmother was conducted in the 1970s for a health study called Mothers and Daughters (Blaxter and Patterson, 1982). Her interview, along with 45 others, is archived at the Economic and Social Data Service (ESDS) Qualidata-UK Archive housed at the University of Essex. It is just one of around two hundred collections containing a rich store of historical information about food and meals.

Letters
Orange oil & juice concentrate
McDonalds bury GDA info
Eggs and extremists