Chinese Yuppies Becoming Organic Farmers

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The Washington Post profiles the small number of young Chinese professionals who've embraced organic farming. While most farmers have abandoned farming for industrial jobs, the island of Chongming has drawn a group of young urbanites who've given up the modern life for farming. What's bringing them? A simpler life, but more often, concerns about food safety.

In the U.S., even though we have a lot of organic foods, we're still throwing away 40% of the food we buy. The New York Times interviews Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland: How America Throws Away Nearly Half Its Food. So, why do we do it? Refrigerators that are filthy, set at the wrong temperature, or are so crowded we can't tell what food we have until it's rotten.

Perhaps the Africa Diet will curb food waste. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports on two sisters who were so stunned by the starvation they witnessed on an African trip that they cut back on eating and have been donating the money they've saved to famine charities. They're following suit of "Lose-a-Thons" in which people collect pledge money for losing weight.

The Japanese have the right idea. If we had live-plant vending machines like the ones featured on Re-nest.com, we'd probably have less waste ... and waist.

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