Hungry, poor, exploited: alarm over Australia’s import of farm workers
‘Those brought to Australia are bonded to a labour hire company or employer. They are not free to leave without risking deportation, nor complain about abuses without risking the same. The “boss-man”, as many of the seasonal workers refer to their employer, has an almost-total control over workers’ lives – if and where they work, where they sleep, what they eat, how much they will be paid, and whether they can stay in the country – and many workers feel there is no authority they can practicably turn to if they are exploited or abused.’
Chains are not the only way to enslave people.
The Fair Work Commission has been running a 3 year campaign The Harvest Trail ‘to help employers and employees working on the Harvest trail to understand their rights and obligations at work.’ It will be interesting to see the results of the campaign.
Three challenges we must overcome to secure the future of food
‘Governments are the first major obstacle. In both rich and poor countries they operate in silos on issues relating to agriculture, biodiversity, water, health, demography, and other environmental considerations. These issues tend to be discussed in isolation. Governments also fail to adequately tap into expertise from civil society, business, and the science community. A similar disconnect occurs among academics: climate scientists, agronomists, ecologists, hydrologists, economists, and representatives of other fields rarely come together to propose integrated targets for sustainable food and land use systems, or pathways for achieving them.’
Reading this article led me to check where Australia stood in terms of a comprehensive future food plan. I found the National Food Plan on the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources site. A report on the State of the Food System and a review of the Policy is due in 2018.
Who Orders Eggs Anymore? The Future of Sydney Cafe
‘I know a place that has closed their dining room and now they just use their kitchen to do UBER eats so they don’t have to pay wait staff. This is me at my darkest, where people don’t go out anymore. That’s horrible.’
Nicholas Jordan talks with Russell Beard, Nick Smith and Anthony Svilicich. Sadly, no-one is trending toward Sri Lankan egg hoppers with fish curry and onion sambol for brekkie.
Pineapple on pizza? The highly controversial fruit has a fascinating history in Australian cuisine
‘Her favourite recipe is the pineapple cartwheel salad in which a pineapple ring is cut in half, the two halves are stood on their edge next to one another and stuffed between the two are dessert prunes and cream cheese. “And it looks so delightful,” she said.’
The image at the head of this edition of Diggings is of said salad.
The article is only the entrée. Follow the other link below to James Valentine’s podcast on Food Crimes: Pineapple for some truly wondrous Oz recipes for deploying tinned pineapple, including the essentially ockerly named chicken slops.
And for those like me with a passion for the perversely pleasurable and the pleasurably perverse head to http://pineappleprincesses.blogspot.com.au/
Mugaritz Is Now Serving Moldy Apples
‘The dish was the result of an ongoing collaboration between the restaurant’s R&D and sommelier teams, a collaboration in which “they create the solid and the liquid part together, from the beginning, not looking for pairings, but for harmonies.” This dish in particular merges the two worlds, and represents “the beauty and the taboos surrounding fermented and rotten things.’
Tricksy, but I’m up for it being a taboo breaker from way back.
From Soil to Plate: District Exhibits at Sydney Royal Easter Show
‘TPH: Are you a farmer up there?
Arthur: No, I’m a burnt out farmer. I’ve got an acre of dirt and then I’ve got another acre five minutes away.
TPH: What do you do on your land?
Arthur: I grow the produce for the this, for the district exhibits at the Royal Easter Show. I grow melons, pumpkins, corn, ryegrass, oats etcetera.’
A delightful interview with Arthur Johns, manager of the Northern Districts display – a 9 times winner. Like The Plant Hunter, I have remained entranced by the District displays since I was in short pants.
Watch Gordon Ramsay and James Corden Judge Meals Cooked by Toddlers and Babies
‘On MasterChef Junior Junior toddlers and actual babies are tasked with preparing dishes for Corden and Ramsay, and the results include a croissant with a toy car baked in the middle, a doughnut made of Play-Doh, and a ground beef dish that makes the late night host violently ill.’
Gordon Ramsay almost redeems himself.
Australia: where healthier diets are cheaper …
Helen Greenwood forwarded this podcast on Australian research by Dr Amanda Lee on our “topsy turvy” eating habits.
Oh, Snap! Scientists Are Turning People’s Food Photos Into Recipes
‘You, too, can try out this interface, called Pic2Recipe. To use it, just upload your food photo. The computer will analyze it and retrieve a recipe from a collection of test recipes that best matches your image. It usually works pretty well, although it can miss an ingredient or two sometimes.’
Actually it usually works really really badly. I uploaded three images – one of a simple plat of roasted lamb cutlets with rosemary sprigs; another of a mix of a few ingredients but nothing special – mushrooms and olives pretty clearly pictured; and another more complicated eggplant paella where it should at least have found rice and parsley. The uploaded photos just sat there looking lost with nothing, nada happening to tell me anything about the ingredients or even a stab at a recipe.
But hey, go ahead, give it a try and tell me what you discover.