Fresh Take: Earth’s Rough Climate Report Card

Food & Drink

I ’m still reeling from the climate study that came out earlier this week, which revealed the Earth is past its “safe operating space for humanity” on six of the nine indicators tracked—climate, biodiversity, land, freshwater, nutrient pollution and manmade chemicals.

It’s unsurprising, and yet deeply unsettling. Time is running out to prepare the food supply chain for a compounding climate-driven crisis, but we can all take steps to limit our own impact right now. Try it out. Maybe go plastic-free this weekend and see how it feels.

— Chloe Sorvino, Staff Writer

Order my book, Raw Deal: Hidden Corruption, Corporate Greed and the Fight for the Future of Meat, out now from Simon & Schuster’s Atria Books.

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What’s Fresh

2023 Worst Year On Record For Billion-Dollar Climate Disasters, NOAA Says

This year is already the worst year on record for billion-dollar climate disasters in the U.S., a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said, as experts warn that extreme events are likely to become more frequent and intense unless drastic action is taken to curb human-driven climate change.

There have been 23 separate weather or climate disasters in 2023 so far that have caused at least $1 billion in estimated damages, the NOAA report said. In total, the events caused the deaths of 253 people and costs exceeded $57.6 billion.

Smucker’s Buying Hostess Brands in $5.6 Billion Snack Food Deal

The maker of Jif peanut butter, Smucker’s jelly and Folgers coffee is expanding its snack food empire to include the producer of the iconic Twinkie in a $5.6 billion deal that will see Hostess Brands bought by J.M. Smucker.

Dams And Flood Controls ‘Not Ready’ For A More Extreme Climate

Dams and flood controls are built to withstand meteorological conditions as experienced today. But as the climate gets warmer, events at a magnitude not known so far are more likely to happen.

Ancient Plant Protein Could Create Climate-Resilient Crops

A reconstructed ancient plant protein should help crops counter the ongoing rise in global temperatures, says a Cornell University plant biologist.

Water Quality Expected To Decline As Extreme Weather Becomes More Common, New Study Says

Droughts, heatwaves, rainstorms and floods are making it harder to guarantee access to clean water, researchers found.

Nespresso Launches Its First Paper-Based Compostable Capsules

The coffee giant has launched a collection of home-compostable capsules in France and Switzerland, as a response to mounting pressure around the wasteful nature of aluminum pods.

Field Notes

An overflowing plate of pesto hummus, chickpeas in yogurt and a sweet veg puree kicked off chef Samah Dada’s pop-up dinner at local food delivery service Farm To People’s Brooklyn warehouse earlier this month. Dada, as well as Farm To People’s cofounders Michael Robinov and Anina von Haeften, are all 30 Under 30 – Food & Drink listmakers.

Then, the rest of the feast: charred broccolini, whole-roasted cauliflower, butternut squash pasta, rice and beans, and lots of tangy green sauce to go around.

Thanks for reading the 84th edition of Forbes Fresh Take! Let me know what you think. Subscribe to Forbes Fresh Take here.

Chloe Sorvino leads coverage of food and agriculture as a staff writer on the enterprise team at Forbes. Her book, Raw Deal: Hidden Corruption, Corporate Greed and the Fight for the Future of Meat, published on December 6, 2022, with Simon & Schuster’s Atria Books. Her nearly nine years of reporting at Forbes has brought her to In-N-Out Burger’s secret test kitchen, drought-ridden farms in California’s Central Valley, burnt-out national forests logged by a timber billionaire, a century-old slaughterhouse in Omaha and even a chocolate croissant factory designed like a medieval castle in northern France.

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