"American consumers are becoming increasingly aware of how their eating habits can affect the environment, national security, the local economy and their own bodies.
And that's a very good thing.
If Americans bought much more of their food from local producers, they would help reduce the nation's carbon footprint, lower dependence on foreign oil, foster their neighbors' prosperity and eat less of the over-processed food that is contributing to a mounting health crisis.
But the farmers who are part of the growing local-food movement say that proposed new federal food-safety regulations could put them out of business. They contend they can't absorb the cost of new and onerous regulations that big corporate farms can handle.
Food-borne illness, however, is a real problem that must be addressed. Outbreaks of salmonella and E. coli have killed scores and made many thousands more seriously ill. And, food-safety advocates argue convincingly that the nation's 70-year-old food processing regulations aren't up to the task of stemming this ominous tide..."