Daily Archives: April 25, 2011

Backyard Chicken-keeping in Toronto

From “Update on Toronto Chicken Law” blog:

There is finally a feeling of optimism among chicken-keepers and chicken-supporters on the issue of legalizing backyard hens in the City of Toronto.

It is important to understand how the process of changing a bylaw works, and thus the chart. Right now the chicken file is in the Policy Development phase. The next step is a written report. Once the report is written, it will go to one of the Committees, likely the Licensing and Standards Committee. The Committee can then recommend, amend or reject the proposal (50% vote in favour is required). Continue reading

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AIDS in Africa more from medical re-use of needles than sexual transmission

From Nigel Hawkes and Michael Dynes at The Times Online:

“THE African Aids pandemic was caused more by careless use of needles in healthcare than by unsafe sex, a report published today by an international group of scientists says.

They estimate that more than half the cases of Aids in Africa before 1988 were caused by unsterilised needles. The claim, directly challenging the belief that 90 per cent of cases were sexually transmitted, implies that the African Aids pandemic is largely the result of unsafe medical practices and mismanaged vaccination campaigns.

The team says that the evidence was discounted because of “preconceptions about African sexuality and a desire to maintain public trust in healthcare”. Continue reading

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Shoemakers redefine high-end dairy

From Rachel Dodes in the Wall Street Journal:

“…Last year, Arethusa, their 325-acre farm in Litchfield County, began selling pricey branded milk and yogurt at 23 retail accounts, including Whole Foods. The milk sells for $4.49 per half-gallon, or more than twice the national retail average.

Arethusa’s products, like the footwear, are being touted for their careful production and limited distribution. The farm’s milk, packaged in a plastic bottle emblazoned with cows and the logo “Milk Like it Used to Taste,” is sourced only from the farm’s 350 show-strutting cows.

“Are we going to do some kind of berry granola crunch yogurt? No!” says Mr. Malkemus, who prefers to stick with the classics in both of his businesses. “We don’t do platforms,” he adds, dismissing the top shoe trend of the past three years.

Their venture is putting to the test just how far dairy marketers can milk the notion of exclusivity. Not everyone swallows the idea. Continue reading

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Germ theory and the post-antibiotic age

From Tim O’Shea on Life Enthusiast blog:

When once you interfere with the order of nature, there is no knowing where the results will end.
– Herbert Spencer

It was great while it lasted: the age of antibiotics. Sure came and went in a hurry, though, didn’t it? Left me with a few questions:

  • How did antibiotics run their course already in just 50 years?
  • How did we get so sick?
  • Where does all the money go?
  • Why aren’t we making any progress?
  • What’s going to happen now?

These are the questions for which you can almost never get a straight answer. Unless you look beyond Newsweek, beyond the San Francisco Chronicle, beyond 20/20, or Ted Turner, beyond the media which year by year seem to cater to an ever-dwindling level of literacy and awareness… Continue reading

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