Crisis: USDA Orders States to Withhold Electronic Food Stamps

#AceFoodNews – saving those spare dollars more important than food for the many not dollars for the few #hungry


EBT shutdown risks widespread looting, riots by welfare recipients
October 16, 2013

The USDA is directing states to withhold Electronic Transfer Benefits for the month of November until further notice, setting up a potential food stamp crisis that could very easily lead to riots and widespread looting if the government shutdown drags on.

The USDA, which oversees the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), issued the order in a letter to SNAP administrators which states, “Understanding the operational issues and constraints that States face, and in the interest of preserving maximum flexibility, we are directing States to hold their November issuance files and delay transmission to State electronic benefit transfer (EBT) vendors until further notice.”

In other words, up to 47 million Americans who rely on food stamps to feed themselves face the prospect of going hungry next month.

An EBT system failure that occurred this past weekend 

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BREAKING NEWS!!! Brazil …..

#AceFoodNews great post DRX and good news for the Brazil but still so much in the offing as day after day Monsanto patents even more ,also what about the seed bank? Who has got control over their use ,should the day come when people exceed resources? #SayNo2GMO

It Is What It Is

BREAKING NEWS!!! Brazil .....

Brazil Judge Rules against Monsanto over Seed Agreements

The background to this story is that last year the Brazilian Supreme Court ruled that Monsanto had collected royalties from farmers illegally for its RR1 soybeans and that the company must refund the farmers.


Monsanto then reached a deal with Famato and other farmers’ unions. The deal was that farmers who wanted to plant RR2 Intacta soybeans would sign an agreement with Monsanto at point of purchase, waiving their rights to a refund of the illegally collected royalties.

Any farmer who signed the agreement would also be signing away other important rights. He would grant Monsanto the right to enter and inspect his property at any time. The farmer would be left completely vulnerable to ANY decisions the company might make, including royalty fee increases or having part of his harvest confiscated – and he would agree not to sue…

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New York, Oct 16 2013 11:00AM
Efficient, well-managed and sustainable food systems are essential to end hunger and malnutrition as well as protect the environment, United Nations officials stressed today, marking World Food Day.

“The key to better nutrition, and ultimately to ensuring each person’s right to food, lies in better food systems – smarter approaches, policies and investments encompassing the environment, people, institutions and processes by which agricultural products are produced, processed and brought to consumers in a sustainable manner,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon <"">said in his message for the Day.

“Every day, more than 840 million people go hungry in a world of plenty. This fact alone should be cause for moral outrage and concerted action.”

The theme of this year’s Day, which is celebrated on 16 October in honour of the date of the founding of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in 1945, is “Sustainable Food Systems for Food Security and Nutrition.”

A food system is made up of the environment, people, institutions and processes by which agricultural products are produced, processed and brought to consumers. Every aspect of the food system has an effect on the final availability and accessibility of diverse, nutritious foods – and therefore on consumers’ ability to choose healthy diets. However, policies and interventions on food systems are rarely designed with nutrition as their primary objective.

“Addressing malnutrition requires integrated action and complementary interventions in agriculture and the food system, in natural resource management, in public health and education, and in broader policy domains,” FAO <"">said.

The World Food Programme (WFP) stressed that understanding food systems and ending malnutrition can transform individuals, societies and economies, and is central to all development efforts.

“Prioritizing nutrition today is an investment in our collective global future. The investment must involve food, agriculture, health and education systems,” said WFP Executive Director Ertharin Cousin.

In addition to the 840 million people suffering from chronic hunger, there are some 2 billion people who lack the vitamins and minerals needed to live healthy lives. Poor nutrition also means some 1.4 billion people are overweight, with about one-third obese and at risk of coronary heart disease, diabetes or other health problems.

WFP noted that if the global community invested $1.2 billion per year for five years on reducing micronutrient deficiencies, the benefits in better health, fewer child deaths and increased future earnings would generate gains worth $15.3 billion.

The Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Christiana Figueres stressed that food systems are closely linked to climate change as the latter is making it harder to feed a growing population.

“Aside from permanent shifts in climatic conditions which will affect farming, climate change is causing more and more extreme weather, for example tropical storms, floods and droughts which can push subsistence farmers and others living in food insecurity into dire circumstances,” she said.

“If we are to sustainably feed the world’s population in the future we need to see action today that prepares farmers around the world for the impacts of climate change.”

To mark the Day, FAO will be holding events all week at its headquarters in Rome and around the world on the importance of food systems for food security and nutrition.

Today it will hold a plenary hall with various UN agency officials as well as a high-level seminar on global food losses and waste, and on Thursday a special ceremony will be held to mark the culmination of the International Year of Quinoa, with Nadine Heredia Alarcón de Humala, First Lady of Peru and Special Ambassador for the Year in attendance.

On Sunday FAO will hold the Hunger Run 2013 in central Rome, a 10 kilometre competitive run and a five kilometre non-competitive run/walk to raise funds an anti-hunger field project in the Northern State of Sudan.
Oct 16 2013 11:00AM
For more details go to UN News Centre at


Grocery store ‘smart shelves’ will target consumers in real-time based on their facial features

#AceFoodNews facial recognition gets one step nearer to trying to work out what you want to buy in shops, problem is want will never overtake need #greed

Stop Making Sense

Reuters/Brendan McDermid From RT:

Going to the grocery store is about to get a lot more personal: one of the biggest names in food is preparing to launch “smart shelves” to gather intelligence on consumers and customize their shopping experience.

Mondelēz International, the parent company of Kraft Foods, plans on having their space-age smart shelves rolled out on supermarket floors sometime in 2015. And if all goes as planned, soon after the multi-national corporation behind products such as Chips Ahoy, Oreo, Wheat Thins and Ritz will begin collecting analytics about impulse buys and learn new ways to bring customers the products they crave.

The devices — still in development — will rely on high-tech sensors to snoop in on the facial features of shoppers and predict roughly their age and sex. From there, a database of intelligence can be matched in real-time and allow Mondelēz to make recommendations, offer discounts and practically…

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Press release: First Social Care Report puts spotlight on leadership


ofsted-assess-ideal (Photo credit: Terry Freedman)

Children’s services in England need strong and stable leadership to bring about sustained improvement in the help, care and protection of our most vulnerable young people, Ofsted said today.

Figures published in Ofsted’s first stand-alone Social Care Annual Report show that of the 17 local authorities judged ‘inadequate’ in the past year, 11 had seen a new Director of Children’s Services recently installed while 12 had undergone another major change in senior leadership of one sort or another in the period prior to inspection.

Today’s report finds that in a climate of turbulence, increased workloads and intense scrutiny of children’s social care – much of it arising from public anxiety following a catalogue of high-profile child deaths – many areas are struggling to improve their performance.

At the end of the first full three-year cycle of inspections, only four in 10 local authorities were judged to be ‘good’ or better for safeguarding children. And there are 20 local authorities (13 per cent or one in seven) judged by Ofsted as ‘inadequate’ for their child protection arrangements at the time of their most recent inspection.

The report finds that the nationwide map of poor performance is complex and changing – with the group of authorities currently judged inadequate looking very different to that of July 2012.

However, inspectors have found that a persistent absence of stable leadership was a feature of most ‘inadequate’ local authorities. In these weakest places:

  • The most basic acceptable practice was not in place
  • Supervision, management oversight, purposeful work with families and decisive action where children were at risk from harm were ineffective
  • The views of children and families were rarely considered
  • Support from key statutory partners – health, police, schools – was weak and poorly co-ordinated; and
  • In some inadequate authorities, managers did not seem to have a firm understanding of what constituted good practice – making the management of risk and support for staff at the front-line almost impossible.
  • More at: