This week there are some great things going on locally including a heritage meat tasting event hosted by Slow Food Santa Fe and taking place at the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market pavilion. Additionally the New Mexico Organic Farming Conference is taking place this weekend. All growers, sellers and buyers are encouraged to attend!
Concerning large scale operations there was also some news this week. I don’t usually watch mainstream media, but this last week CBS highlighted the dangers of routine antibiotic use in animals. Unfortunately the woman representing the pork board is clearly on the payroll of the drug companies. And the farmers are concerned only about profit. It is an eye opening interview, although I’m not sure anyone involved realizes the message they are really conveying. Additionally, the USDA released new organic dairy regulations. While most seem to be pretty happy that there are stricter rules, some organic dairy’s, including Strauss Farms, were not pleased.
For all of you New Mexico readers, the state senate has passed the food tax bill, although no one is sure if it will pass house approval. The main reason I am following this story is because the tax, apparently, applies only to things like candy, soda, processed foods and, strangely enough, white flour tortillas. Any food that is considered applicable to WIC (the federal Women, Infant’s and Children program) will not be taxed. This includes things like milk, eggs and vegetables – although it also includes peanut butter. We will see if it goes through, but I find it at least a little heartening to learn that the state of NM is trying to encourage its citizens to eat better, even if it means taxing the bad stuff. The only real concern, of course, is the tortilla tax. New Mexican’s eat a lot of tortillas. Check this article out for more info on the two sides of the debate.