29 August 2012
"This is a victory for those pig farmers in the UK who adhere to higher welfare standards like the Soil Association's organic standard."
Joyce D'Silva, Compassion in World Farming – The Guardian – 29 August 2012
Red Tractor 'pork not porkies' ads banned
Three ads trumpeting the high welfare standards of pork sold with the Red Tractor quality mark have been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which found the claims could mislead consumers into thinking pig welfare in Britain was better than it is. In the article, Soil Association certified pig farmers are praised for their ‘higher animal welfare standards.’
The Guardian (29 Aug)
The welfare of animals is central to Soil Association organic principles. Find out more on the website.
NHS: not healthy scoff
Hospital dinners are packed with more saturated fat than a fit adult should eat in an entire day, a study has found. The findings emerged from a study of 35 hospital meals served in at least 80 NHS trusts in England. Alex Jackson of the Campaign for Better Hospital Food, which analysed the meals, said: “Hospital meals should be seen as the simplest form of medicine. Setting standards for hospital food would improve its quality, make it healthy to eat and put patients on the road to recovery.”
The Sun (29 Aug)
Read the Soil Association report on first aid for hospital food
Autumn farm rent reviews need 'reality check'
The Tenant Farmers Association is urging all rural landlords and their agents to take a common sense approach to this autumn's farm rent reviews. The autumn is a traditional time for settling farm rents normally for the next three years following notices served in the previous year.
FarmingUK.com (29 Aug)
Thousands of farmers to be removed from NVZ restrictions
Around 9,400 farm holdings in England will be de-designated as Nitrate Vulnerable Zones (NVZ) next year, as nitrate pollution levels fall. With 2,700 holdings being brought into NVZs in England, the overall number of farmers caught up in onerous NVZ regulations in 2013 will fall by around 6,700 compared with this year. Announcing changes to NVZ rules to take effect in England from January 2013, Farming Minister Jim Paice said: “The changes have been designed primarily to reduce water pollution, but this is also another opportunity to cut even more red tape and where possible help farmers save money.
Farmers Guardian (28 Aug)
Read the Soil Association report: ‘Just say N2O,’ which argues organic systems can meet the double challenge of reducing nitrogen losses and building stores of soil organic nitrogen in order to reduce dependency on manufactured nitrogen.
Research charts growing threats to biodiversity 'arks'
Many of the world's tropical protected areas are struggling to sustain their biodiversity, according to a study by more than 200 scientists from around the world.
Guardian Environment Network, (28 Aug)
Ryanair food costs more than price of flight
Ryanair passengers could find themselves paying more for snacks on board the plane than for the flight itself, research has shown. Six basic items from a Ryanair in-flight menu, such as a cup of tea, a sandwich, a tin of Pringles, a Kit Kat, a bottle of water and a glass of wine, were found to cost £18.07 in total. That bill is higher than the £18 price of one-way flights currently being offered by the airline to Genoa, Warsaw and Paris.
Daily Telegraph (28 Aug)
Use coffee to beat slugs? Beware the EU pesticide police
Brussels bureaucrats have ruled that gardeners who sprinkle coffee grounds around their cabbages to kill slugs are breaking the law.
Daily Mail, (27 Aug)
An ad campaign claiming 'Red Tractor Pork is High Welfare Pork' has been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority. The British Pig Executive, which represents the industry, argues the decision was based on a technicality and doesn't reflect badly on Red Tractor standards. Also in the programme: an examination of the role co-operatives could play in the future of UK farming and the golden wheat from Shropshire which will be on the Paralympic winners' podium.
BBC Radio4, Listen Again
And finally…. British boy stumbles upon extremely valuable whale vomit
An 8 year old boy struck gold as he found what he thought was a stone, which later turned out to be a rare ambergris, worth a fortune.
The Post Game, (Aug 29)