The Swap-a-Fish Program That Traded Tilapia for Seafood Contaminated by Agent Orange

environmental justice, Food

AS IT GLINTS IN THE afternoon sunlight, Newark, New Jersey’s Passaic River looks peaceful. But a plaque along the boardwalk has a warning for visitors. “The river remains full of life,” it reads. “Try to spot these creatures, but until the pollution is removed from the river, be careful NEVER to catch or eat any of them.”

Read more at Atlas Obscura. Photo: Rowan Heuvel/Unsplash.

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In Zambia, a Craze for a Traditional Treat Is Endangering Wild Orchids

Food

WHEN RELATIVES VISITED BRIGHTON KAOMA’S childhood home in the Copperbelt Province of central Zambia, they’d come bearing gifts: oblong brown chikanda, freshly dug from the earth of the family’s ancestral village.

Read more at Atlas Obscura. Photo: Petra Keßler/Unsplash.

This Engineer Is Preparing to Feed a World Without Sunlight

Food

DAVID DENKENBERGER WANTS TO BUILD a system to feed eight billion people in a world without sunlight. His inspiration: the humble mushroom. In 2011, Denkenberger was reading a scientific paper that suggested that after such a catastrophe, humans would die out, while mushrooms would thrive in the dark. According to Denkenberger, his reaction was, “Well, why don’t we just eat the mushrooms and not go extinct?”

Read more at Atlas Obscura. Photo: Søren Astrup Jørgensen/Unsplash

When the U.S. Interned Italians in Montana, They Rioted Over Olive Oil

Food

It started with suet. Some say camp administrators decided that Italian internees should cook with suet instead of olive oil to cut costs. Others say lower ranking internees, who had been crew members on the ships they were taken from, suspected that former officers were getting olive oil while they were stuck with beef fat. Either way, tensions hit a breaking point when a group of angry internees charged into the kitchen.

Read More at Atlas Obscura. Photo: Roberta Sorge/Unsplash