The way he sees it, genetic modification isn’t the sole answer to the world’s food problems, but it’s an important tool. Sometimes the right one, sometimes not.Read the rest of our cover story on the science behind — and controversy surrounding — GMOs here.
Carter speaks with an even tone even when recounting the hostile comments routinely directed at the company.
“It is a point of frustration that sound bites and attention spans are very short,” he says. “But that’s the reality, right?”
The company faced a new round of disapproving attention last year when the USDA opened the comment period on the Arctic apple application. Even the U.S. Apple Association voiced opposition, writing that the non-browning trait was “insufficient to warrant introduction into and possible disruption of the consumer marketplace.”
Carter says the industry so far has done “just a really bad job” communicating with consumers. The company actively engages with angry commenters on Facebook with a firm, cheerful tone, and invites critics to look at the trove of documentation posted online.
Despite the hostility, Carter is confident that consumers can and want to understand the science. He trusts that people who look into it sincerely will come to believe the assurances he’s repeated many times.
“They’re as safe as any apple,” he says. “They just don’t turn brown.”
Let the countdown begin: the third annual Inlander Restaurant Week is about five weeks away, starting on Friday, Feb. 20, and running for 10 days through Sunday, March 1. Creative menu concocting is underway, and the offices of Visit Spokane and the Inlander have been abuzz of late with preparations for the fast-approaching event.
For its third inception, the basic format is the same as diners should remember from the past two years. Culinary teams at participating restaurants from the Inland Northwest's hugely diverse dining scene put together a menu of three-courses especially for Restaurant Week. Depending on the restaurant, that three-course meal is offered at a fixed price — or, in French, prix fixe — of $18 or $28 per person. Restaurants featured range from casual pubs to fine dining establishments, and many restaurants pair their courses with local libations, too.
Menus for the more than 90 (so far) participating restaurants in Restaurant Week 2015 are to be released online on Jan. 29, two weeks from this Thursday. Then, watch for the official Restaurant Week guide, inserted in the Feb. 19 issue of the Inlander, along with all our editorial coverage previewing the event. (Check out last year's RW features to whet your palate.)
For its third inception, Restaurant Week has grown immensely from what it sought to be in its inaugural year, when 53 restaurants in just the Spokane area participated. In 2014, that number grew to 74, and we expanded the event across the border to North Idaho.
For the third year, roughly 40 percent of restaurants participating are new to Restaurant Week, including many establishments that have debuted since last March.
Many have tried but only few have triumphed. To be exact, only 28 contestants amongst 130 brave souls have conquered the infamous Pizza Rita 5-pound pizza challenge. These true testimonies to talent gorged their way through 24 oz. of crust, 12 oz. of sauce, 9 oz. of cheese and 35 oz. of various meats and veggies to earn their rightful plaque on the wall of champions.
The rules of the challenge are simple: the pizza must be consumed within 30 minutes, only one person can tackle the monstrous pizza, substitutions can be made as long as the weight remains at five pounds and previous winners can only partake once a year following their victory.
Spokane's Torrey Lybbert holds the current winning record at 11 minutes and 48 seconds. In addition to a plaque on the wall, winners receive Rita Bucks (Pizza Rita gift certificates so they can eat even MORE pizza), a $40 donation to a charity of the winner’s choice, a stomachache and a pride boost.
In recent years however, Pizza Rita has seen a decline in people daring to try their hand at the 5-lb. challenge. In light of so little participation, owner Brian Dickmann will be adding a new gut-busting pizza challenge to the list: Rita’s Rapid Challenge.
“It will be a test of speed,” Dickmann says. “If someone can consume a large thin-crust single-topping pizza in under five minutes we will give them 50 Rita Bucks.”
The thin-crust pizza is meant to entice participation from those who are intimidated by the original 5-pound challenge.
According to Dickmann, Pizza Rita offers these contests for three main reasons: for charity, for fun and to demonstrate the true meaning of a “large pizza.”
“Everyone says ‘we have a large pizza’ but really, how large is large?” Dickmann says.
Pizza Rita hopes to begin offering the Rita’s Rapid Challenge this January. These challenges are not for the faint of heart, and those willing to eat his or her heart out can mentally prepare themselves for the physical turmoil by reading former Inlander staff writer and current contributor Jordy Byrd's testimony of the 5-pound challenge here.
A total of 22 regional and local craft breweries and cideries come together for the second annual PowderKeg Brew Fest this weekend, Nov. 7-8, a sampling event catering to the various tastes of Inland Northwesterners. Attendees can choose from one of three tasting packages ($15-$25), take a spin at the prize wheel and try out some seasonal beverages in celebration of the coming winter.
After we've set our boots by the fireplace, shed our frost-covered scarves and put our feet up after a good day on the slopes, it just feels right to indulge in a seasonal ale that can only be appreciated during this time of the year. Local Hopped Up Brewing Company features Destroy my Sweater at PowderKeg, an earthy beer brewed with caramel and mulch malts. Some other seasonal drinks include the Jubelale and Chasin' Freshies from Deschutes Brewery, Sleigh'r from Ninkasi Brewing, No Li's Winter Warmer, the Winterfest Seasonal Ale from Sockeye Brewing and Trickster's Brewing Co.'s Winter Ale. Mmmm. Get cozy.
For fruit lovers, One Tree Hard Cider pours their Ginger Lemon Cider to wake you up and a Caramel Cinnamon Cider to bring you back to Grandma's apple pie. Finnriver Farm & Cidery goes tart and purple with their Black Currant Cider, made with organic and heirloom apples.
You're into the hops? Try Alaskan Brewing Co.'s classic Freeride APA, MickDuff's Noho, or Bale Breaker's Topcutter IPA with hops from the nearby Yakima Valley. More of a porter person? Give a taste to the bronze medal winner from the 2011 North American Beer Awards, MickDuff's Knot Tree Porter.
Here's a comprehensive peek at all the beer and cider on tap at this year's PowderKeg:
If it turns out your friends don't want to be your designated driver. Don't worry — we're partnering with Lyft. Only one ticket purchase is necessary for access both days to these two festive events: PowderKeg and Snowlander Expo. Get yours at the Snowlander Expo site, at the door or through Tickets West.
PowderKeg Inlander Brew Festival • Fri, Nov. 7 from 4 pm-9 pm and Sat, Nov. 8 from 12 pm-8 pm • $15-$25 • Spokane Convention Center • 334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. • snowlanderexpo.com/powderkeg
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