The latest: July 7, 2017

Cheap eggs, mean fish, and scammy influencers
Jack Decoster egg mogul recallGetty Images

Egg mogul Jack DeCoster sickened 56,000 people. He’ll serve just three months in prison. 

In 2010, the FDA recalled 550 million eggs from his plants in Iowa. Seven years later, he’ll finally serve his time.

By Joe Fassler | Read more

Newsletter subscribers get this digest in their inbox before it’s published online. Sign up—it’s free.


Former USDA inspector writes a thriller about the dark world of dairy cattle slaughter 

It’s not always a pretty business.

By Patrick Clinton | Read more

Eggs are cheap, but only the caged ones. Remember the bird flu epidemic of 2015, when egg shortages got so bad that fast food companies were exploring (gasp) vegan egg substitutes? Well it’s been a long two years, and our egg windfall is leading to the cheapest egg prices in at least a decade, according to a recent USDA report. This news is a sad trombone for cage-free egg producers, who’ve been having a tough time selling their higher-priced wares. Read more.
—Jesse Hirsch

Sea weeds. By the end of the century, the rats and cockroaches of the sea—small, aggressive sea creatures scientists call “weedy” species—may dominate the depths. That’s according to a study published Thursday in Current Biology that examines the effects of ocean acidification on marine environments. For marine biologist Ivan Nagelkerken, a future abundance of weedy fish doesn’t bode well for seafood circa 2100. “There’ll be plenty of them around but no-one really wants to eat them,” he said in a press release. Read more.
—Claire Brown

Insta-scam. In the murky world of pay-to-play Instagram influencer marketing, it’s no great shocker that “wellness” purveyors with tenuous, unverifiable benefits have found purchase. Case in point: Pinnertest, a pricey “food intolerance” blood test (with a name just a little too similar to Pinterest to be accidental). The product the company is peddling lives in that gray zone of unproven health claims—namely, a $490 test can assess your intolerance to more than 200 foods. Vegetables might be killing you!

The lack of legitimate science hasn’t stopped Lindsay Lohan from ‘gramming Pinnertest for money, though. Read more.
—Jesse Hirsch

A dash of cayenne. As the demand for antibiotic-free meat grows, major food companies continue pledging to remove antibiotics from their supply chains. Meanwhile, pig and poultry farmers are scrambling for alternatives as they try to keep pace with corporate mandate and consumer demand.

Some have found hope in an unlikely place: the spice rack. Read more.
—Joe Fassler

Just the one-liners

Yogurt wars! In a complicated dairy dance, Danone announced it will sell Stonyfield to French dairy Lactalis in order to dodge antitrust violations from its purchase of WhiteWave. Confused? Fortune has the scoop.

Soy milk, by any other name. The dairy industry has already been railing against the use of “milk” to describe the product; it turns out the FDA and USDA have been sparring about it too, according to the AP.

And in case you missed it over the holiday weekend, check out Investigate Midwest’s deep dive on Monsanto’s migrant labor abuses.

GMO fish aquabounty regulationAKVA Group

Transgenic fish are ready for us. Are we ready for them?

After decades of regulatory and legal challenges, AquaBounty aims to bring genetically engineered salmon to U.S. and Canadian markets next year.

By Eric Bender | Read more 

The Counter Stories by our editors.