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October 2005 after the first frost and summer grasses had turned brown.  The growth of winter grasses was delayed by the drought.

Columns

This is the Home Page for our quick-read nutritional health column for regional newspapers. If you have a local publication that might want to carry it, let us know or pass the link onto them.

No Money In It

Column #116

The law of supply-demand states that shortages coupled with rising demand causes higher prices and vice versa. But it doesn’t always apply on a permanent basis. That’s because increasing prices can inspire an increasing supply which results in lower prices.

Unless commodity producers significantly increase their volume versus fixed costs, more demand for their commodity doesn’t mean earnings increase. Because of a fast response time for changing crops, farmers and ranchers gain little or nothing as people change their food preferences. It’s also why agricultural producers can’t afford to fund aggressive long-term marketing programs. There’s simply no money in it.

To illustrate why there’s no incentive for farmers to advertise foods people should eat as recommended by nutritional and biological scientists, let’s compare agricultural commodity producers with healthcare.

Absolute vs Relative

Column #115

If consumers can’t figure out the differences between absolute and relative they can be victimized by some of the biggest marketing gotchas out there. This is also a media issue that tricks people into reading and often believing stories that are actually irrelevant, especially those discussing foods, supplements, and nutritional studies.

Simply put, references for absolute differences involve subtraction. References for relative differences express ratios. So how do these declarations regarding the same topic lead to so much confusion?

I Googled the world for Omega-3 chicken. I found a source in England from a Daily Mirror article. It is Waitrose Omega 3 Chicken. The Mirror article stated that the chicken is “high in Omega 3.” So I wondered, what is “high”?