View from the fence

Social, environmental and economic issues surrounding GM foods, and the latest news


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Now we have a name for people like me: flexitarian

Since I wrote about the arguments for being an ethical omnivore, I’ve discovered that someone has made a word for what I was trying to say: flexitarian. Flexitarians commit to reducing their meat consumption without cutting it out completely.

It seems to be popular – 2017 YouGov research found that 44% of people in Britain were willing or already committed to cutting down on or cutting out meat eating. Continue reading

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How to change someone’s mind

This new video from Wellcome is so relevant to the GMO debate: ‘How to be convincing: 5 tips for the next time you’re trying to change someone’s mind’.

Watching it is 0:45 seconds very well spent, but I can summarise the message as approach a debate from the other person’s perspective and not your own.

This was created as part of Wellcome’s ongoing #ExpertDebate about whether we have really had enough of experts. Join in on Twitter. Continue reading

Cows - India food security


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Does ‘ethical omnivore’ beat ‘vegetarian’?

There are many reasons to reduce our meat consumption: the extra land needed to produce livestock rather than crops, the impact of meet on climate change, the poor conditions livestock are often kept in… This has prompted many people to go vegetarian, but have they really found the answer? Continue reading

Cows - India food security


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News roundup: April 2017

The best piece of advice I heard this month came from Professor Jessica Fanzo. Her tip for anyone concerned about corporate control of the food system was to give up fizzy drinks. These are generally produced by some of the largest companies who promote very unhealthy products. You can watch the video of her thoughts on this any many other food topics.

And in the headlines we have:  Continue reading

Indian mango juice - agri-tech branding


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Attitudes to technology – cultural differences revealed by my mango juice

On my recent trip to India I was told, quite rightly, that the mango juice was delicious. The bottle also turned out to be enlightening, and revealed a difference in attitude across the continents.

I was disappointed, though not surprised, to see that the juice was a product of Coca-Cola – the global power of soft drinks companies is clear to see. What did surprise me was the note about new technologies increasing yield: Continue reading