• News & Commentary: SNAP Data in Court
  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation
  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion
  • News & Commentary: SNAP Data in Court

    Last week, Civil Eats ran an extended article on a battle that’s gone to the Supreme Court over access to retailers’ SNAP benefits data. The article points out the many possible implications of this data release, including how plays into the conversation around whether (or, how) to use SNAP to shape Americans’ diets.

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  • Looking Back on a Decade of Maple Innovation

    Back in 2007, Local Baquet ran an article by Bonnie Hudspeth on maple innovation and production in Vermont. Since then, maple production in Vermont has tripled to 1.8 million gallons a year and innovation seems to have entered a new golden (or perhaps amber) age. We did a quick maple innovation news round up for 2018 / 2019 to help everyone keep up with the some of the trends. 

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  • Listening to Farmers’ Voices in the Ecosystem Services Discussion

    In 2015, the USDA funded a project for UVM researchers to engage in discussions with Vermont farmers about the idea of being paid for ecosystem services. Ecosystem services are things farmers do that improve the environment for everyone, a common example is grass-based farms capturing carbon in the soil as a way to combat climate change. Some services happen naturally through sustainable farming, others take more of an incentive to implement, and either way some policy makers believe that farmers shoudl be compensated for their contribution. 

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Last Morsel—Wrap Local

Bees Wrap

Written By

Caroline Abels

Written on

November 25 , 2015

Those of us who eat local food, diligently compost our kitchen scraps,  and use natural cleaners on our kitchen counters may feel a pang of guilt whenever we reach for a piece of plastic wrap or a plastic container in which to store our food.

All that sustainably grown goodness covered in a petroleum-based, throwaway material?

Thankfully, Sarah Kaeck of New Haven has taken the ‘sting’ out of food storage. The Bee’s Wrap product she invented allows bread, cheese, and vegetables to be wrapped in a reusable material made of organic cotton fabric coated with beeswax, jojoba oil, and tree resin. It can be used to cover bowls of food, too (although it’s not recommended for meat or fish).

The material is slightly stiff but becomes pliable through the warmth of the hands that are molding it. Bee’s Wrap can be washed and reused for up to a year, then it can be composted. It comes in a few colors, and the mild scent of beeswax fades after a few washes.

Sarah sources her beeswax from sustainably managed hives in the Southwest, where there are fewer golf courses and lawns (which tend to use chemicals that infiltrate wax production).The managers of these hives use pesticides and antibiotics minimally, if at all, and they feed the bees their own honey in the winter, rather than replacement sugars.

Bee’s Wrap is made in a small shop in Bristol by Sarah and a few other workers. It has gained widespread attention beyond Vermont, having been been featured in O: The Oprah Magazine, The Boston Globe, Saveur, and Real Simple. Bee Culture magazine called the product “paradigm-shifting.”

“I would love to see Bee’s Wrap become a staple in kitchens all over the country—and the world, for that matter,” Sarah told one journalist. “The thought that Bee’s Wrap could eliminate a substantial amount of plastic wrap for food storage is encouraging.”

About the Author

Caroline Abels

Caroline Abels

Caroline Abels is the editor of Local Banquet and the founder-editor of Humaneitarian.org, a website that inspires people to buy and eat humanely raised meat.

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Our stories, interviews, and essays reveal how Vermont residents are building their local food systems, how farmers are faring in a time of great opportunity and challenge, and how Vermont’s agricultural landscape ties into larger questions of sustainability and the future of our food supply.