Photo of Amy Halloran

Amy Halloran lives on six city lots in upstate New York with her husband and sons. She writes for regional and national outlets about the changing food landscape, and records dispatches from her family's gardening, cooking and chicken raising enterprises on her blog, amyhalloran.com. Along with photojournalist Ellie Markovitch, she launched Storycooking.com, a home for food based digital storytelling.

At the Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York’s annual winter conference in Saratoga Springs, about 40 farmers and farm workers packed a small conference room for a workshop on food safety.

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The session, titled “Food Safety: Best Practices for Farmers Markets and CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)” was listed on the schedule in both Spanish…

Last Friday and Saturday, the crew at Roxbury Farm in New York’s Hudson Valley prepared for the hurricane by stowing machinery and hay bales above the floodplain. Jean-Paul Courtens and his workers harvested ripe delicata squash, secured tomato plants against the wind, and pulled irrigation equipment from the Kinderhook Creek. However, there was no way …

As gardeners bring fresh produce indoors, questions of food safety may not be on their minds.  Here is the hard-earned product of carefully nursed seedlings, plenty of mulching, watering and endless weeding.  Tomatoes, zucchini, spinach and Swiss chard: if you grew these foods, you made be too blinded by pride to think that they could …

The recent deal between the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and the United Egg Producers (UEP), more commonly known as adversaries, to improve egg-laying hens’ living conditions struck many as surprising, for many different reasons.

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As reported earlier, cattle and pork producers are not pleased about the agreement, with the National Pork Producer’s …

The nose is a confusing tool, especially when the mouth is involved. Durian fruit is a delicacy in Asian countries, where people say that it “smells like hell, and tastes like heaven.”  Kim chi has a strong odor, too, yet many people find it equally satisfying.

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So can one’s nose be trusted to detect whether …

In the fall of 2004, more than 300 people were sickened in an outbreak of E. coli in Peru, New York. This cider-related incident led the NY Apple Association to push the state Legislature to pass the country’s first mandatory cider pasteurization law.

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The law became effective in January 2006, but producers were given a…

Ask meat vendors at a farmers’ market what their biggest headache is, and they likely will say getting their animals processed.  If those vendors are selling certified organic meat and poultry, the challenge is greater still.

Although slaughterhouses aren’t always close or available when farmers need them, there are efforts being made to address that, …

Last weekend, I cooked dinner using entries from the Recipes for Healthy Kids competition, the joint venture by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign to improve school meals with more nutritious and kid-appealing food.

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The contest invited schools around the nation to submit entries in three categories: whole …

In 1943, 20 million households raised Victory Gardens, and all those vegetables weren’t eaten fresh.  Steel was directed to pressure-cooker production instead of munitions, and a massive effort was made to educate people in the skill of canning.  “Department stores ran films and displays on canning, society ladies enrolled in classes on it, home economists …

New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo recently announced two state Senate confirmations, Darrel J. Aubertine as commissioner of the Department of Agriculture and Markets, and Kenneth Adams as president and CEO of the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) and commissioner of the Department of Economic Development.

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Announcing the two events simultaneously was not coincidence, but part …