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The Oil Spill’s Effect on Our Food System

Iíve been leaving coverage of the oil spill mostly up to other bloggers here on MNN. Our Earth Matters blogger Shea, Green Tech blogger Karl and several of the news writers have been doing a great job keeping us up-to-date on whatís happening in the Gulf and how people are reacting to the spill.

But as the story continues and the devastating impact of this disaster becomes more apparent each day, I thought Iíd point you to some of the information out there about how the spill is affecting our food system and those who supply the seafood to our food system.

  • Slow Food USA is telling consumers that the best way they can help the fishermen in the Gulf right now is to eat Gulf seafood. Assuring readers that any seafood from the Gulf will have to meet safety regulations, the group is encouraging consumers to purchase and consume Gulf seafood as often possible.
  • If you can’t get your hands on seafood that comes from the Gulf, or youíre not convinced of the safety of seafood from that region but you still want to help with your dining dollars, you can participate in Dine out for the Gulf Coast starting June 10-12 and extending into July. Participating restaurants across the country will be donating proceeds (each restaurant gets to chose exactly what percentage) that will turn into emergency grants to nonprofit organizations helping the victims of the oil spill.
  • While most of the food news about the Gulf oil spill centers around seafood, Slateís Big Money is reporting about delays in getting corn and soybeans shipped to foreign markets. If oil clogs the canal that links New Orleans with the Gulf, ships that pass through it would have to be cleaned before entering clean waters. This would cause significant delays.
  • Georgia is depending on its oysters to tell if and when the oil has reached its coast. The Atlanta Journal Constitution says that because oysters donít move and because they absorb the pollution that is around them, they will be the first harbingers of disaster in that region.
  • New Orleans.com reports that yesterday, 36,000 pounds of food was handed out to families in St. Bernard Parish in Louisiana. Many of the residents of that parish are commercial fishermen who are now out of work because of the oil spill. Of course, the food wasnít available only to fishermen. In a region that is still recovering financially from Hurricane Katrina, everyone could use a little help.
  • Many of the fishermen and their families helped by the food handouts were probably much like this fourth-generation shrimp and oyster family highlighted on “The Early Show” earlier this week. Iíll finish with this video.


Watch CBS News Videos Online

More from MNN:
Photos: Gulf oil spill cleanup efforts
Interactive: Map of offshore drilling in the U.S.
The latest news from the oil spill

Read more: Food, Health, News & Issues, ,

By Robin Shreeves, MNN

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Megan, selected from Mother Nature Network

Mother Nature Network's mission is to help you improve your world. From covering the latest news on health, science, sustainable business practices and the latest trends in eco-friendly technology, MNN.com strives to give you the accurate, unbiased information you need to improve your world locally, globally, and personally Ė all in a distinctive thoughtful, straightforward, and fun style.

69 comments

+ add your own
3:38PM PDT on Sep 30, 2012

Thank you.

3:38PM PDT on Sep 30, 2012

Thank you.

5:59AM PST on Jan 23, 2011

ready to own a solar panel?
stop using plastic bags?
get a better car?
change.

3:00AM PDT on Jul 7, 2010

thanks

9:03PM PDT on Jun 25, 2010

Thanks for sharing this, Megan.

6:22AM PDT on Jun 24, 2010

They have just s.....d up everyting for good

7:18AM PDT on Jun 21, 2010

Sad news for the people in New Orleans Nice that they gave them some free food.

3:55PM PDT on Jun 20, 2010

frightening.

1:40AM PDT on Jun 20, 2010

what a mess!

6:59AM PDT on Jun 19, 2010

What are each of us willing to change to help this?

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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