Agriculture, Beverages & Food

PepsiCo, one of the world's largest soft-drink makers, has introduced voluntary restrictions on its advertising to children, in response to rising levels of obesity in the US and western Europe.
Indigenous protesters from northwestern Venezuela marched Friday through the streets of Caracas, which is hosting the sixth World Social Forum (WSF), to protest plans for mining coal on their land.
Anti-tobacco activists have added a new weapon to their arsenal in advance of next month's negotiations in Geneva for a global Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).
Wilmar of Singapore, the world's biggest global processor and merchandiser of palm oil, has come in for harsh criticism for the environmental and social impact of its Indonesian plantations. The allegations also raise serious questions about the role of WWF and the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil.
An international list of chemicals subject to trade controls will expand to include all forms of asbestos, three pesticides, and two forms of lead if recommendations made by a committee of government appointed experts is approved under the Rotterdam Convention. The international treaty requires exporting countries trading in a list of hazardous substances to obtain the prior informed consent of importing countries before proceeding with the trade.
In time for Thanksgiving, the United Farm Workers union ended its 16-year ''Wrath of Grapes'' boycott Tuesday -- halting the longest of its three California table grape boycotts.
Canadian, Spanish and Danish companies are fueling a border clash in the remote coastal waters off the northern edge of South America in an effort to profit out of recently discovered coastal oil reserves. NEW!Hallliburton Wins New $4.9Billion Iraq Contract
WASHINGTON, DC -- Governor Gray Davis and the California Legislature have done the tobacco industry a favor and cheated the state's kids and taxpayers by agreeing to a budget that slashes funding for the state's highly successful tobacco prevention program and fails to increase the cigarette tax. With this shortsighted budget, California will cease to be the nation's leader in tobacco prevention, and the state will pay a high price as a result. We urge California's leaders to reverse course by increasing the cigarette tax and using some of the revenue to restore funding for tobacco prevention.
The state of California is suing nine top food manufacturers, including Burger King, Heinz and McDonald's, over their reluctance to issue warnings that some of their snacks could contain the potentially cancer-causing chemical acrylamide. Acrylamide was found to be linked to cancer in 2002. Then, the Swedish Food Administration reported high levels of it in carbohydrate-rich foods, such as french fries and potato chips, cooked at high temperatures. Studies indicated the chemical caused cancer in rats.
While officials from corporations like Monsanto mingle with Indian government officials and agribusiness CEO's, India's farmers will be joined by farmers from around the world, environmentalists and opponents of the genetic engineering of food at a series of events called: Global People's Seed 2000 (GPS 2000).