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NCPR News Staff: Julie Grant

Reporter and Producer

Stories filed by Julie Grant

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Humans lend a hand to vegetable shapes

Vegetables sometimes grow into really freaky shapes. But what if you could make fruits and vegetables into just about any shape you wanted? Some avid gardeners come up with strange looking hybrids, but Julie Grant talked with a researcher who's taking the shape of produce to a whole new level.  Go to full article

Saving energy and making the Internet greener

One industry that's not suffering in the economic downturn is information technology. The demand for IT keeps growing. That's good, but the environmental consequences worry some people. Turns out the Internet is not "carbon free." Internet searches and data storage use an increasing amount of energy. Julie Grant reports on how some companies are making their IT more environmentally friendly, and saving money in the process.  Go to full article
The Akron multi-modal transportation center was built by the tracks, but before completion Amtrak pulled out, leaving only the bus. Photo: Julie Grant
The Akron multi-modal transportation center was built by the tracks, but before completion Amtrak pulled out, leaving only the bus. Photo: Julie Grant

All aboard for Amtrak?

People who like the idea of passenger trains have been waiting for decades for the federal government to get on board. Now, some think Congress might be ready to get funding on track for Amtrak. Julie Grant reports.  Go to full article

NY mandates plastic bag recycling

Under a new state law, large stores and retail or grocery store chains in New York will have to provide collection bins for used carry out bags.
Lots of supermarkets encourage shoppers to carry re-usable bags. The new law goes further, to try to make sure those plastic bags still in use are recycled. Julie Grant reports.  Go to full article
Chef Ben Bebenroth and his crew plate mushroom dishes for their dinner guests.  (Photo by Julie Grant)
Chef Ben Bebenroth and his crew plate mushroom dishes for their dinner guests. (Photo by Julie Grant)

Chef takes diners into the woods

More and more people are thinking about where their food was grown. Local growers and farmer's markets are seeing the benefit of increased interest in buying locally. More chefs and restaurants are interested in local sources as well. One caterer from northeast Ohio is upping the ante. "Plated Landscapes" takes the restaurant to the woods...or the fields, creating gourmet events "in situ." Julie Grant reports the chef wants people to connect the dots between the environment and their food.  Go to full article

The buzz on bug sprays

As you head out on the trail or just into the backyard for this holiday weekend, the bug dope probably won't be far away. For decades, bug sprays with DEET have been the most effective to keep those disease-carrying pests away. But there are some new repellants on the market and even more to come. Julie Grant has the buzz on bug sprays.  Go to full article

Tomato ban hits hard on the farm

The Food and Drug Administration continues to investigate the source of tainted tomatoes that sickened more than 160 people. It's narrowing down the source of the salmonella bacteria, and has lifted a ban on tomato sales in many states. Julie Grant reports on how the ban has affected tomato growers.  Go to full article
Produce section of a supermarket in VA. (Photo by Ken Hammond, courtesy of USDA)
Produce section of a supermarket in VA. (Photo by Ken Hammond, courtesy of USDA)

A closer look at Chinese organics

More companies are importing organic products from China and other countries. But contaminated pet food, tainted toothpaste, and unauthorized antibiotics in fish have been imported to the U.S. from China. Now, some people are concerned about organic foods from China. Julie Grant reports.  Go to full article

What?s behind the organic milk label?

Organic used to be on the fringes of mainstream culture. Not any more. Ever since the National Organic Standards went into effect five years ago, organic foods have become big business. Sales of organic products now total about $20 billion a year in the US. But that quick growth spurt is coming with some growing pains. Julie Grant reports.  Go to full article

Corn ethanol: farmland conservation takes a back seat

Federal farmland conservation program have saved water, soil and wildlife through simple set-asides. That's when farmers get paid to take some cropland out of production. It protects waterways and provides wildlife habitat. It makes sense for the soil, too. But, in the second of our two-part series on ethanol, Julie Grant reports that as demand for corn and soybeans for ethanol production grows, farmland conservation is taking a back seat.  Go to full article

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