Friday, August 22, 2008

Staez Energy Drink

I just noticed something that I found to be very cool! I get so frustrated when in convenience stores and you are forced to choose between HFCS drinks and aspartame drinks if you want a little caffeine. If I have a long drive or just didn't get enough sleep, I usually try to get a little caffeine. I don't drink coffee and any drink with coffee in it needs to be incredibly watered down and with lots of sugar and milk. I am usually just fine with a Tea for lunch or the likes to get me through a day when I'm tired. "Energy Drinks" are normally way too loaded with caffeine and sugar for me. I bounce off the walls. All I need is a little pick-up. And we won't go into the controversies over Taurine and other ingredients.

So, I'm wandering my office...feeling tired, wondering if there's anything that can help. Usually an apple or something can give me that little boost, but today I knew I needed something more. I'm looking at our shelves and pick up a diet Steaz. Now, for reference, it's about 10:30am when I do this and if I have too much sugar in the morning it usually leads to a big crash in the afternoon no matter what I eat for lunch. So, I can't have anything with a lot of sugar. And by the afternoon I can't have caffeine or energy stuff if I want to go to bed at night. So I normally don't pay much attention to even organic energy drinks. But I look at the diet Steaz ingredients and it still has some sugar, just not much. Perfect! I don't have the guilt associated with consuming artificial sweeteners and I avoid the afternoon crash from too much morning sugar. Seems almost genius to me. And it tastes good. I don't really want a super sweet drink. I want a little sweetness and a little caffeine. Diet Steaz to the rescue!

And I would be remiss not to mention that we sell Steaz and diet Steaz for the same prices as the grocery stores.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Sustainable Food Center

I joined their Public Policy Task Force on Wednesday and I sat in on their Board of Directors meeting tonight. I think food security is an incredibly important issue and that Austin should be a model community for others and so I'm very interested in the work and progress of SFC.

I'm always interested to learn more about organizations before I get involved. I love to encourage and praise organizations with a good mission, but when it comes to my time or money I also like to see if they live their mission or not and how efficiently they work towards their mission. I have been very impressed with the SFC, their organization, leaders, and work. They are really passionate about their work and they have a very smart and talented group of people working there! It's such a great thing to see.

I don't really like the competitiveness that seems to be ubiquitous throughout food organizations in town and I saw some of that with this group, but it's rare to find a group that doesn't have some of that so I'm not complaining. Just hoping that everyone eventually sees we've all got the same goals - improving nutrition and security in our food system. If we all worked together, this town would be such an amazing place. And as long as each organization was providing real value for the community, they would be fully supported. I prefer to not worry about competition and worry most about if my organization is doing the best it can to provide that value.

So, check out their farmers markets, browse their website at and volunteer!
Also, volunteer at Green Corn Project...I love what they do, too.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Consummate Produce

As local food grows legs and gains attention across the world, there is this notion to hold it in the highest regard possible. While farming is one of the most noble professions on the planet I feel I need to remind people that someone growing vegetables next door to you can just as easily dump pesticides and herbicides on those vegetables as someone 1000 miles away.

We all love local food, but don't trust it beyond reproach. Know your farmer or let Greenling know them for you. Michael Pollan describes it as surrogates for getting to know the farmers. Remember that Peaches are the most polluted fruit available (meaning even after washing them there are more pesticides found in a peach than any other fruit or veggies - up to 96 pesticides were found in test samples). So those yummy Texas peaches you enjoy may be loaded with chemicals. They might not be, but you'd have to ask the farmer. Greenling's Texas peaches, of course, were certified organic this year so they had absolutely no chemicals applied to them. They sure were good!