The Guardian – In California’s ‘salad bowl’ – a landscape portioned into emerald fields of spinach, lettuce, kale, and other leafy vegetables, grown to satiate the nation’s appetite for greens – hush-hush food safety standards are deforesting land and forcing wildlife out. These practices are unnecessary for ensuring safe food, say experts in a new study, and yet they spell marginalisation for a number of species.
The Californian Salinas Valley is the fertile, riverside floodplain where salad growing is concentrated in the state, and where 70% of America’s greens are produced. It is also near to the site of one the most devastating bacterial outbreaks in recent American history. In 2006, E coli bacteria found nestling in the folds of spinach leaves killed five people, and sickened over 200 others.