Author: Fee Writes

Should There Be a Law To Make Growers Use Sprays?

Should There Be a Law To Make Growers Use Sprays?

I came across this today which really saddened me: French Organic Farmer Refuses to Spray (update – article no longer available)

Basically it said that an organic and biodynamic winemaker, Emmanuel Giboulot, had appeared before a judge for not treating his vineyard with a chemical spray as a preventive measure against a bacterial vine disease. He could face up to 6 months in jail for this. He has already been fined 1,000EU for putting his neighbors’ vineyards at risk.

He argues that the pesticide is harmful to beneficial insects and animals, and may not even be effective at preventing the vine disease. He says “I don’t want to undo decades of work applying a treatment where the effects on the health of the vines, and the public, are as yet unproved.”

Now I’m not disputing the fact that this disease is devastating to the vineyards in France (or anywhere else for that matter), but, as of date, this grower has not had the disease, in fact his vines are perfectly healthy and, as he does his own preventative measures, I doubt if he’ll ever have the disease ….. (his grapes, not him) .
My brain doesn’t get the logic of France’s law to use pesticides to control this disease when it’s obvious that it doesn’t work anyway.  
Which leads me to believe that, once again, big business has used (abused), its power to get more people to buy its product in order to gain more profit.
The court will be making its final verdict on April 7th – that’s when we’ll see what happens to Emmanuel Giboulot.
I’ll, hopefully, get the result and update this post. Let’s hope Emmanuel is strong enough to withstand the pressure.

UPDATE 8 April 2014:  The final verdict has now been announced. Emmanuel Giboulot has been ordered to pay pay a €500 (a fine of €1,000, with €500 suspended.) – he is going to appeal.  More Info






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Calcium Rich – Health Poor?

Calcium Rich – Health Poor?

It’s taken a couple of years but I finally got around to registering with a Doctor. The reason I’ve changed is because I shifted towns and now live too far away from the previous medical center that I used to go to.

So I picked a center close by and made an appointment to go in to interview the new Doctor. Silly me, I had a wild hope that this guy would be somewhat knowledgeable with the vegan lifestyle.

It wasn’t that he opposed my food choice, but he did admit to not knowing a lot about nutrition. He asked the usual questions about where I get specific vitamins (at least he didn’t ask about protein), then went on to say that the chances were that I’d be lacking in calcium …. the much needed mineral for bones.

He supplied me with a list of all the calcium rich foods which, naturally, had dairy products right at the top.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t quick enough to argue the point that if dairy was the best source then how come the rate of osteoporosis has increased in the Western world?

Studies have found that “Osteoporosis is, in fact, a disease caused by a number of things, the most important of which is excess dietary animal protein”. Now I’m not a scientist, I’m not a trained nutritionist but I do have the power of deduction and when I learn that people who live in countries that have no or very little animal products yet have no sign of osteoporosis and are able to live healthier lives than we do, my logical brain does have to wonder why.

1964 – 2013
The meat and dairy industry have hoodwinked us for generations into believing that we must consume animal products in order to be healthy.  If you take a look at food pyramids put out by “respected” sources like the Heart Foundation  you’ll see that, yes, they put vegetables at the top of the list, but they also have animal products including dairy designated to quarter of the plate.
I’m not against dairy, but in this day and age the dairy that is supplied to us is no longer true (unless you buy raw milk), as it is messed about with so much at the treatment plant that it is nothing like the milk that comes directly from the cow.  It’s for this reason, (along with animal welfare and environment), that I have chosen to no longer consume dairy.

So the next time I see this Doctor I just might bring up the topic of dairy, calcium and osteoporosis.

Oh, and his comment about not knowing much about nutrition?  Very common in Doctors – I wonder why they still take the Hippocratic Oath as Hippocrates says: “Let food by thy medicine and medicine be thy food”.
UPDATE:  Have had the results back from the blood tests that the doctor wanted me to have … you know, “just like to check that you’re not lacking in certain areas”. Well, what’d know – all perfect, in fact, more than perfect!  Iron higher than a healthy meat eater …. calcium high – duh, of course it is.  hahaha – love it!






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The Moon’s Not Made Of Cheese – It’s Green

The Moon’s Not Made Of Cheese – It’s Green

Laugh!  Geez did I have a real “laugh out loud” moment when I read the headlines “NASA plans to farm greens on the moon” – are they saying that greens are far more important than cows or sheep or pigs…..????

No, I realise that’s not what they’re saying that at all – it will be easier to “farm” vegetables than farm animals. But I do find it very interesting that they hold the “greens” in such high esteem as to want to actually grow them on the moon (or in space). The reason being is that, according to this article: Tossed In Space  the scientists are really working hard to make food from the new technology of 3D-printing.

I don’t have a problem with 3D-printing especially when it comes to tools etc that may be needed in space.  But food?  No, no, please don’t go there! I find this quite alarming especially for highly trained, fit and skilled astronauts – the last thing they need is cardboard food!!!

So here’s hoping they get the vegetables to grow …. then we can have Vegan astronauts – what wonderful role models they will be then!






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Promoting Unhealthy Food.

Promoting Unhealthy Food.

And, no, it’s not me who is promoting unhealthy food….far from it.

This video (at the end of this post) came across my desk the other day and when I first viewed it I must admit it did look like a good idea to help with a cultural tradition, but then I got to thinking about it and suddenly it just seemed wrong on many levels.

It’s not the actual “mask” that is the problem.

Again, people are bombarded with the marketing strategies of corporate fast foods – the most unhealthy foods on the planet. Here are people who have been healthy eaters until the western fast food companies arrived and now these companies are determined to really try to corrupt a nation and increase their risks of numerous diseases all associated with processed, nutrition-less foods.

Who gains by the deterioration of a country’s health – the pharmaceutical companies? the medical profession? the health insurance companies? the meat processing companies?….. I’m sure the list goes on and, do you notice that these are all the big corporations – of course you do.

And on the flip side – who suffers? The nation’s ordinary man in the street? the environment? the farmers who practice sustainable farming? the organic industry? all of whom are the victims of the abuse from the fast-food industry who really don’t give a jot about the Joe Blogs of this world.

Again, it’s not the “mask” – it’s the marketing ploy totally invented to increase sales (and it’s worked).

Time to make a stand. We can each do our bit by refusing to purchase from these food outlets – start eating whole foods and actually “know” what you are putting into your mouth.

In the meantime, have a look at the cultural aspect of this video it’s actually a very clever to get around a problem.






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Learning from History

Learning from History

I found this quite fascinating ….. but not surprising.

During WWII Britain’s population was short of food. Rationing was put in place for such things as butter, sugar and bacon which was then followed up with eggs, meat, cheese, cereals, jam and milk.


So far I see that list as pretty impressive.

Every person was issued with a ration book. Some exceptions were made with the likes of pregnant women and children given extra milk and eggs. The under 5 year olds had organ juice, blackcurrent juice, rosehip syrup and cod liver oil, but interestingly enough they were only allowed half of the meat ration.

To make up for the rationing, people were encouraged to dig up their flower gardens and plant vegetables. The government also provided public areas which, even today, are used for vegetable growing – called allotments…awesome idea.

Along with the rationing of food, there was also rationing of petrol which meant people either used public transport, walked or biked to get where they wanted to go. With all that walking/biking along with digging in a garden you can imagine how fit they were.

During this time, no-one went hungry. The population slimmed down, were healthier and there was a fall in tooth decay.  I would also guess that community spirit was lifted, and that people were more likely to help each other.

It’s a pity these ethics didn’t continue. Yes, I know, people were so grateful that the war years were over and so enjoyed the abundance that followed in the 50’s. I’m certainly not advocating a war, but I do wonder why we continue not to learn from history and apply those wonderful benefits somehow to our modern society.

Guess I’m just a fairy wishing upon a star.






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About Me

About Me

Thanks for dropping by, my name is Fee O’Shea. I’m a mother and grandma, an author and an Improver. I’ve got a resource website to help peeps go plant-based, I’ve scribbled six books centred around veganism, and have helped others write and publish their own stories.
But this blog is for my thoughts, my rants, raves, reviews and things that have grabbed my attention. From politics to social media to beauty, health and the environment. Fee’s Ramblings Over Coffee is written to bring you a smile or get you thinking. Enjoy.



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