FERN’s Friday Feed: Women, alcohol and a challenge


welcome to FERN’s Friday stream (#FFF), where we share this week’s stories that got us thinking.

The long history of attempts to separate women and alcohol

London book review

“The recalcitrant women of the fourteenth century could achieve a certain economic independence by keeping a cauldron of bubbling beer, flavored with marsh myrtle, horseradish, juniper, caraway, yarrow, sycamore sap, ivy or acorns, â€writes Sophie Lewis. “Today, witch costumes for Halloween look like they have because alewives in England, explains O’Meara,“ wore big, sometimes pointy hats in order to stand out and stand out in a market. crowded “… The local alewaster watched over the alewives and regulations enforced… The persecution of the witches of Europe, according to this account, becomes in part a means of disciplining a class of semi-autonomous beer producers into accepting the household work and gender order.

The story of the “obesity paradox” and the storm that followed

American scientist

“In December 1994, former US surgeon general C. Everett Koop launched a national weight loss campaign at a White House press conference, declaring that obesity had become the second leading cause of death in the country. countries, resulting in the loss of an estimated 300,000 lives each year. ‘ It marked the start of a long life of influence for statistics, “writes Kelso Harper.” After a decade, the number had swelled to nearly 400,000 deaths … with predictions that it would soon reach half a million, or about 20% of all annual US deaths. But in 2005 those seemingly staggering numbers were overturned. The stat killer was Katherine Flegal, then a senior scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “

Limit your enthusiasm for food technology


“While politicians, tech promoters and eco-modernists love to focus exclusively on reducing emissions in food systems and tend to suggest that technology itself is the way to achieve this, this approach misses the bigger ethical and political questions of what kind of food system we should use technology to build, â€writes Jan Dutkiewicz. “It also allows politicians, businesses and think tanks to avoid the problem of fundamentally unsustainable systems and habits, like our global dependence on meat, which no technology, however sophisticated, can ever be. to correct.”

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The Native American pantry is wide and deep

High Country News

Wahpepah’s Kitchen in Oakland, California’s first Native American sit-down restaurant, “is part of a movement to reclaim – and redefine – Native cuisine,” writes Brian Oaster. “Many of the favorite foods in the world today are indigenous to the Americas: Italian tomatoes, Irish potatoes, Thai peppers, Belgian chocolate, and French vanilla are all in fact Native American foods carefully cultivated by agricultural geniuses. natives as Europe went through the dark ages gnawing hard. bread and, who knows? Maybe eating plague rats.

The meal of the future left me hungry


“Waking up with a crushing headache, I wondered if I had misunderstood what the tasting menu at Eleven Madison Park bar was even supposed to be,†writes LV Anderson. “Could it be a two-hour, six-course, $ 270 per person snack?” Should I have planned in time to get a Cheesy Stuffed Mushroom Burger at Madison Square Park Shake Shack afterwards? I wanted to ask [chef Daniel] Hmmm, but he declined an interview via a publicist, who didn’t respond to my email asking what Humm thinks about the role of protein in the plant-based menu.


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