Easter

Earth-Friendly Chocolate

Dear EarthTalk: I heard a reference to “Earth-friendly chocolate” and was wondering about what goes into chocolate that would raise environmental concerns.
--Ben Moran, Providence, RI

Like coffee beans, the cacao seeds from which we derive chocolate can only be grown successfully in equatorial regions--right where the world's few remaining tropical rainforests thrive. As worldwide demand for chocolate grows, so does the temptation among growers to clear more and more rainforest to accommodate high-yield monocultural (single-crop) cacao tree plantations. What are left are open, sunny fields with dramatically lower levels of plant and animal diversity. Adding environmental insult to injury, most cacao plantations use copious amounts of chemical fertilizers, pesticides and fungicides that further degrade the land that once teemed with a wide variety of rare birds, mammals and plants.

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Easter and Passover Recipes from Emeril LaGasse

Passover Brisket, Portugese Five Egg Bread and Sugarcane Baked Ham with Spiced Apples and Pears

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Grow a Wheatgrass Centerpiece

Whether the snow is still blowing outside or your spring bulbs are already making their appearance, garden fever is in the air. One way to quench your need to get your hands dirty is to bring spring indoors by growing your own living decorations. Many gardeners are familiar with forcing cherry, forsythia blossoms & and spring bulbs but you can add to this by sprouting wheat kernels in containers for a beautiful centerpiece. In France, sprouted wheat is a symbol of the abundance of the upcoming season.

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