Cow versus plant-based milk which offers the most nutrition? – Gerhard Uys:
Plant-based milk alternatives contain just a fraction of the nutrition of cows’ milk, and are more expensive, a Riddet Institute study shows.
The study, done at Massey University and funded by dairy interests including Fonterra, compared the nutritional profiles of a range of plant-based drinks like soy, oat, coconut, almond or rice drinks, to standard cow milk.
For the study, 103 plant-based products were bought from supermarkets in Palmerston North. The plant based drinks had lower quantities of 20 nutrients measured, such as calcium and protein. They were also more expensive than cows’ milk, the study showed.
The institutes’ nutritional sciences professor, Warren McNabb, said plant-based beverages were often marketed as alternatives to cows’ milk, and consumers could easily believe they were nutritionally interchangeable. . .
Here’s why food prices might have further to rise – Jacqueline Rowarth:
Organic pasture-fed ruminant meat animals are the farm products most damaging to the environment in terms of nitrogen loss and greenhouse gas production. This is according to UK-based science journalist Goerge Monbiot.
No doubt vegans will feel vindicated and organics people will feel misunderstood, while regenerative aficionados will be confident, until they read what he actually wrote – because regenerative involves pasture and eschews synthetic nitrogen like organics.
The conclusion will be disappointing to many people, who saw a ‘natural solution’ but there are no easy answers with an ever-growing global population to feed, and feed to meet their nutritional requirements.
No Hunger is the second of the Sustainable Development Goals from the United Nations, the first is No Poverty. Nearly a third of the global population lacks access to regular food and one in 10 are hungry. In 2020, 47% of countries reported escalating food prices in comparison with 16% in 2019. . .
New Zealand’s red meat sector achieved sales of $1.1 billion during July, a 26 per cent increase on July 2021, according to an analysis by the Meat Industry Association (MIA).
China remained the standout market with red meat exports worth $460 million, up 42 per cent on last July.
Other major markets were Japan at $58 million, up 36 per cent, the Netherlands at $38 million, up 132 per cent, and the UK at $38 million, up 97 per cent. Exports to the US dropped by 22 per cent to $191 million.
MIA chief executive Sirma Karapeeva says strong red meat prices in global markets were continuing to help absorb the impact of continued market volatility and higher costs. . .
Environmental efforts recognised with award – Tim Cronshaw:
A Canterbury grower who has put in more than 500 solar panels at his family’s vegetable growing operation has won high praise for his environmental work.
Oakley founder and head agronomist Robin Oakley has won the Horticulture New Zealand (HortNZ) Environmental Award for his efforts, which includes reducing greenhouse gas emissions and nitrogen leaching.
The fifth-generation farmer grew up on his family farm and has been working the land since he was a young boy.
He started the Southbridge fresh vegetable business in the 1990s with his wife Shirleen. . .
Forestry needs an urgent reset – Gary Taylor:
Forestry has an important place in our economy, but it’s time to improve the sector’s environmental performance. Gary Taylor explains how.
The recent serious floods in Marlborough and Tasman and previous extreme weather events on the North Island’s east coast point to an urgent need to tighten up environmental controls on exotic forestry. The old method of allowing large scale clear-felling at harvest on erosion-prone land is no longer fit-for-purpose in a climate changing world.
Having large swathes of hill country denuded of stabilising vegetation for several years between forestry cycles is exacerbating run-off volumes and flood velocity, as well as vastly increasing sediment loads entering the coastal marine area. Sediment smothers and kills marine life.
The Government is about to release a discussion document on the review of the National Environmental Standards for Plantation Forestry (NES-PF). This is the opportunity to fix this problem through setting improved regulations for the sector and moving towards a safer and more environmentally responsible regime for forestry. . .
Harnessing the power of saffron color for food and future therapeutics – Xiongjie Zheng:
A highly efficient enzyme combined with a multigene engineering approach offers potential for sustainable production of water-soluble pigments in plant tissues.
Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice. Usually obtained from the stigma of Crocus sativa flowers, it takes 150,000–200,000 flowers to produce one kilogram of saffron. Now, KAUST researchers have found a way to use a common garden plant to produce saffron’s active ingredient, a compound with important therapeutic and food industry applications.
The color of saffron comes from crocins: water-soluble pigments derived from carotenoids by a process that is catalyzed by enzymes known as carotenoid cleavage dioxygenases (CCDs). Crocins also occur, albeit in much lower amounts, in the fruits of Gardenia jasminoides, an ornamental plant used in traditional Chinese medicine.
Crocins have high therapeutic potential, including their role in protecting neural cells from degradation, as well as their antidepressant, sedative and antioxidant properties. They also have an important role as natural food colorants. . . .