Today's notes on national stories, local trends, random tastes, and other bycatch dredged up from the food media.
1. More Beard-worthy stories. Continuing this week's survey of stories up for Beard journalism awards, the Houston Press's Katharine Shilcutt is nominated in the multimedia category for a combo print feature and video about chefs cooking nose to tail. And nominated for best columnist is Grist's Tom Philpott, one of the most eloquent voices advocating for agriculture reform today. He eviscerates Big Ag, argues for policy reform, and puts urban farming in context, without ever sounding shrill or reductionist.
2. About that radioactive spinach. The prospect of food contaminated by radioactive fallout is scary ― especially since it's hard to tell how the contamination is spreading through the food chain. It's also unclear how harmful that contamination may prove to be. Writing on the Atlantic's lifestyle blog, Food Safety author Marion Nestle says that governments will have a hard time reassuring the public unless they're completely honest what the actual risks are ― and don't treat the public's fears as hysterical.
3. Science gives the thumbs-up to your habit. Eating Well's current issue proclaims that drinking up to five cups of coffee a day can reduce your risk for stroke, Alzheimer's, cirrhosis of the liver, and Type 2 diabetes. Bless you, science!