The Fish at the Heart of the Food System

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By Alison Fairbrother and David Schleifer You have never seen a menhaden, but you have eaten one. Although no one sits down to a plate of these silvery, bug-eyed, foot-long fish at a seafood restaurant, menhaden travel through the human food chain mostly undetected in the bodies of other species, hidden in salmon, pork, onions, …

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Feds Propose Limited Immunity for Water Polluters

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Agriculture is the largest contributor to water pollution in the U.S., dumping millions of pounds of nitrogen and phosphorous into the nation’s waterways each year. But as the problem worsens and government scrambles to find a solution, a program offering regulatory exemptions to farmers who voluntarily take cleanup steps is getting terrible reviews. In March …

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Has the Atlantic Fisheries Commission Industry-Proofed its Scientific Process?: Live Blog

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Scientists in charge of determining how many menhaden are in the Atlantic Ocean will convene this week under a fresh set of public participation guidelines. The new rules outline clear procedures for hearing the opinions of the fishing industry and other interest groups, without undue influence over the scientific process conducted by government researchers. The …

Fowling the Bay?: Media Reports Absolving Poultry Industry of Pollution are Premature

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Good news about the health of the Chesapeake Bay is rare, which might explain the media flurry surrounding new research that suggests pollution from poultry farms isn’t so bad after all. Representatives of the poultry industry hailed the research, implying that it proved that environmental regulations on farmers have been too stringent. But that conclusion …

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Omega Protein Makes Good on Threat to Cut Jobs, but it Doesn’t Have To

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Omega Protein employs 250 people in Reedville, VA, mostly factory workers and fishermen who net Atlantic menhaden, taking whole schools of the small, oily fish from the ocean and grinding them into meal, oil and solubles. Some of those jobs are in peril, but they shouldn’t be. Omega Protein warned last year that catch limits …

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The Birds and the Bees at Risk?: Science Integrity Watch, April 1

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Editor’s Note: Until 2009, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) published an important weekly digest of news called “Integrity in Science Watch.” Journalist Merrill Goozner aggregated the most important conflict-of-interest stories from around the web in order to raise awareness about how these conflicts affected regulation, legislation, patient care, and academic research. …

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