Clear all

1,347 results found

reorder grid_view

Poultry welfare: Prof. Zulkifli Idrus in conversation with Clive Phillips

October 6, 2023

Clive Phillips was Australia's first Professor of Animal Welfare, at the University of Queensland, and has written widely on the welfare of farm, zoo and companion animals. In 2022 he conducted a series of recorded dialogues (Conversations With Clive) with senior animal welfare scientists and academic experts, including poultry welfare expert Prof. Zulkifli Idrus - at the University of Putra, Malaysia.These dialogues are aimed at upskilling organizations concerned with farm animal welfare, helping them gain a more nuanced understanding of welfare issues from academics with deep knowledge of animal agriculture systems and direct experience of practices. Relevant academic publications and references are included at the end of the recording.Key topics of the 40-minute conversation from August 2023: 1) Clive introduces Zulkifli Idrus. 2) Red Junglefowl are the ancestors of modern chicken breeds. 3) Tonic immobility tests show modern commercial chicken breeds are less fearful than Junglefowl. 4) Biggest problems to broiler (meat) chicken welfare - rapid growth, leg and skin problems. 5) Cardiovascular problems and sudden-death syndrome. 6) Skin problems - contact dermatitis with breast, foot-pad and upper leg (hock) injuries. 7) Feed restriction methods to manage rapid growth rate in hot climates. 8) Harvesting and transportation issues. 9) Nutritional supplements such as probiotics and prebiotics to improve gut health. 10) Heat stress mitigation and future challenges with climate change. 11) Welfare issues concerning stocking densities and litter quality. 12) Welfare of layer chickens and other poultry. 13) Final comments.

We're listening. We're learning. Feeding MI Families.

September 27, 2023

This document is the result of surveying 781 families from Battle Creek, Detroit, Grand Rapids and (through a non WKKF funding source) several rural counties. Additionally 105 in-depth interviews were conducted. The families worked with the grantee (Univ of MI) to co-create the policy recommendations in this KP. One of the recommendations is for expanded programs like Double Up Food Bucks - which is an initiative that WKKF has supported for several years. We shared the attached brief with state legislators that we spoke with during Legislative Education Day. 

Food Systems

True Cost of Food: Food is Medicine Case Study

September 26, 2023

This report, supported by The Rockefeller Foundation, features two national case studies evaluating the health equity and economic benefits of medically tailored meals (MTMs) and produce prescription programs. This provides the first "true cost" analysis of implementing Food is Medicine programs across the country. The report's top-line findings show that national implementation of MTMs in Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance for patients with both a diet-related condition and limited ability to perform activities of daily living could avert approximately 1.6 million hospitalizations and result in an estimated net savings of $13.6 billion in health care costs in the first year alone. Further, national implementation of produce prescription programs for patients with both diabetes and food insecurity could avert 292,000 cardiovascular events and add 260,000 quality-adjusted life years—a measure of how well a treatment lengthens or improves patients' lives—while being highly cost-effective from a health care perspective and cost-saving from a societal perspective.

Designing Governance Tools for Agricultural and Environmental Data

September 14, 2023

Open Environmental Data Project (OEDP)'s Environmental Dataset Re-Mix Workshops work on existing environmental datasets and data governance tools, articulating redesigns that make them usable to lay audiences, reusable to public needs, and inclusive of cultural knowledge within participants' communities.On April 4, 2023, OEDP co-hosted a Dataset Re-Mix Workshop with OpenTEAM, where we examined the development of data governance tools for both agricultural and environmental data. We mainly focused on drawing comparisons and contrasts between OpenTEAM's Ag Data Wallet and OEDP's Community Data Hubs model. This synthesis documents the key learnings from the Dataset Re-Mix Workshop.

Designing a "good life" for livestock: Could gene editing improve farm animal welfare in low- and middle- income countries?

September 6, 2023

Gene editing's successful application to benefit farm animals' welfare is unlikely in the short to medium term, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), given the high costs and low rates of success to date in research settings.Reasons: 1. Gene editing is biased toward outcomes that can be easily measured and assessed. More complex traits associated with animal welfare such as behavior or condition are less likely to be targeted using gene editing.  2. Gene editing has been designed for use in vertically integrated production systems as livestock breeding is centralized and breeds themselves are highly standardised in these systems. Many LMICs lack vertically integrated production systems, have higher numbers of smallholder farmers, lack investment by companies and NGOs to promote these technologies, lack gene editing researchers, and have limited local support for biotechnology research and training.Potential downsides of gene editing: 1. Where the intensification of livestock production is growing, gene editing is likely to further accelerate intensification and disadvantage farmers relying on less intensive production systems. 2. Genetic diversity across traditional breeds is valuable and should be maintained. It is not clear how gene editing could affect this diversity.There may be specific applications that could lead to improvements in animal welfare in certain LMICs, for example: 1. Using gene editing to bias sex ratios could be particularly valuable in India, given the country's extensive dairy industry. 2. Sex selection in layer hens in Egypt, given hens there are raised in an increasingly vertically integrated production system. 3. Producing polled cattle and eliminating the need for mechanical dehorning as currently occurs in many locales.Many farm animal welfare issues in LMICs are less likely to be addressed through applications of gene editing as opposed to lower technological measures such as better access to veterinary services, better management practices, improved biosecurity, and poverty reduction.

Effective Behaviour Change Strategies to Promote Meat Reduction in Brazil

September 6, 2023

Brazil's dietary landscape has a great deal of regional diversity, with meat playing a crucial role across many dishes and set against the backdrop of a complex social structure. Patterns of meat consumption vary significantly across the country, influenced by regional traditions, social disparities, and economic factors. Any strategies to promote meat consumption reduction in Brazil will need to be region-specific and tailored to the specific audience. Behavioral science research, primarily from wealthier Western nations, has found that there are many barriers for individuals in reducing their meat eating, such as the lack of dietary knowledge, strong cultural and social norms supporting meat consumption, misperceptions about the health benefits of meat, and resistance to trying new foods. The research also points to several promising strategies to promote a more plant-based diet.This report describes the COM-B model that brings together many theories of behavior change. It proposes that for change to occur, one needs: 1) Capability to carry out the action - physical (being able to do it) and psychological (having the right knowledge and knowing how to do it). 2) Opportunity to perform it - physical (having the right chance to do it ) and social (affected by what our peers think and say). 3) Motivation to do it - automatic (feeling like doing it) and reflective (deciding to do it).The report adapts the COM-B to provide practical advice on how to promote eating less meat for Brazil, giving examples applicable specifically to Brazil.Key lesson for frontline workers: One must define the precise behavior and specific audience to be influenced. Before taking any action, one should identify who (i.e., the specific population on whom one is going to focus), when one wants the reduction to occur (e.g., at home, away from home, only at dinner), how much of a reduction one wants to see. Do not go for "everyone in society".

Pastoral Agriculture: John B. Griffing, Agricultural Missionaries, and Transnational Agricultural Development

August 9, 2023

This report examines the life and career of John B. Griffing to understand the larger transnational project of rural development in the twentieth century. Griffing had an eclectic career that took him to various parts of the United States, China, and Brazil. While Griffing's papers are scattered across multiple institutions and countries, collections from the Rockefeller Archive Center (RAC) were particularly useful in tracing the evolution of Griffing's ideas about rural development over time. At least two themes emerge when studying his career. The first is his views on religion and rural development. As the son of a small-town dairy farmer and grandson of a Methodist minister, Griffing found a way to blend these two influences by working as an "agricultural missionary" where he promoted agricultural improvement as a tool for spreading Christianity in China. His later work in Brazil focused less on proselytizing but he continued to champion the rural church as an effective center for agricultural change. The second theme is Griffing's emphasis on extension work and the importance of reaching rural youth through programs such as 4-H clubs. For Griffing, club work (which focused mostly on boys) was an effective way to cultivate a form of rugged masculinity, while also spreading new agricultural crops and practices to their parents. 

Health Care Provider Survey Findings:  Addressing Food Insecurity Among Older Adults —  Health Care Provider Beliefs, Practices, and Resources

July 20, 2023

The Food Research & Action Center and AARP Foundation collaborated with Dr. Rachel Zimmer of Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist and Dr. Kimberly Montez, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, and conducted a survey to learn more about current efforts and promising opportunities for doctors, nurses, and other health care providers to address food insecurity among their patients 50 years of age and older. This report summarizes the findings of the survey responses from 144 health care providers. It also provides recommendations to enhance efforts by health care providers to address food insecurity informed by the survey findings.

Ensuring Access to Food Resources for Students Experiencing Homelessness

June 30, 2023

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 10.2% (or 13.5 million) of households were food insecure at some point during 2021. These households were uncertain of having or were unable to acquire enough food for all members of the household due to financial hardship or lack of food resources. Families experiencing homelessness often face additional barriers to accessing food due to high mobility or lack of transportation. Homeless liaisons play an important role in ensuring that students have access to free school meals and referrals are made to provide the family access to food resources in the community.

Large School District Report: Operating School Nutrition Programs as the Nation Recovers From the Pandemic

June 28, 2023

Many large school districts across the country reported decreased participation in school breakfast and lunch when the nationwide child nutrition waiver that allowed schools to offer school meals to all of their students at no charge ended, according to FRAC's latest report, Large School District Report: Operating School Nutrition Programs as the Nation Recovers from the Pandemic.Key FindingsThe 91 school districts highlighted in this report included a total of 10,748 schools representing 6,520,586 students.Average daily participation in breakfast decreased by more than 100,000 students across all surveyed districts — from 1.84 million children participating in breakfast each day in April 2022 to 1.74 million participating daily in October 2022.Average daily participation in lunch decreased by more than 250,000 students — from 3.61 million students participating in lunch each day in April 2022 to 3.36 million participating daily in October 2022.Collectively, most school districts served fewer children both school breakfast and lunch in October 2022 compared to April 2022. Thirty-three districts saw an increase in breakfast participation from April 2022 to October 2022, and 28 districts saw an increase in lunch participation from April 2022 to October 2022.

Addressing Food Insecurity through the FRESH Delivery Project, Osapa Tunowa: The Chickasaw Nation

June 28, 2023

In 2020, the Walmart Foundation awarded grants to 11 community-based projects offering innovative approaches to supporting healthy food access. The grants focused on initiatives that improve access to fresh foods for regions and populations experiencing disproportionately high rates of food insecurity. The Chickasaw Nation, one of the 11 grantees, focused on reducing food insecurity among tribal members through a mobile market that provided access to fruits and vegetables for tribal members in mostly rural areas.Key features of the initiative included providing prepackaged boxes of fruits and vegetables in 12 locations as well as delivery options for tribal community members who faced significant transportation barriers. We found that using a mobile market format and providing "last mile" delivery was reported to improve access to fruits and vegetables for tribal communities and citizens. 

Annual Report 2022: People at the Heart of Food Systems

June 6, 2023

Three years since the formation of the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT, our organization is emerging from a period of global and institutional change. The seeds that we sowed in 2019 – a fresh and ambitious set of Strategic Objectives to transform people's lives during a climate crisis – are now bearing fruit.What do establishing urban gardens (in Kenya), 'mining' cassava alleles (in Colombia), and delivering climate information services (in the Philippines) have in common? The answer is simple: communities, institutions, and people. Urban gardens empower vulnerable consumers to feed their families. Superior cassava traits guarantee farmers sufficient yield so they profit from each harvest. Climate information services provide farmers with forecasts while informing government policies and investments in disaster risk reduction.