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Food

Haiti Accuses Japan of Sending Contaminated Rice

Haiti national dish, Rice and Beans

Recently the news media published an article reporting that Japan had sent Haiti rice containing radioactive particulate matter. The article claimed the rice stored was located close to the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear plant. The Japanese Embassy strongly denied the report, and presented its version of the facts.

The embassy responded by saying the storage space used for housing the rice wasn't located close by the Fukushima evacuation areas, but at Ishikari and Otaru storage facilities on Hokkaido, a northern island at a distance of 404 miles from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Not only was the rice stored well outside the areas of contamination, but that Japan had imported the rice from the U.S. in 2009 and 2010, well before the earthquake and tsunami hit Japan on March 11, 2011. In addition, Japan exported the rice to Haiti two weeks before the earthquake, allowing the government of Haiti (GOH) plenty of time to test and certify the rice's safety for consumption. The delivery happened ahead of schedule due to the GOH's demand for it so they could issue it to the poor and hungry.

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Partnership with Saint Thomas University helps bring Haiti's coffee to the global market

Coffee used to be Haiti's main agricultural industry; the country is also one of the Caribbean's oldest and original coffee producers. Yet Haitian coffee has been overlooked and unrecognized in the world market. This is due to the difficulty in entering Haitian coffee to the international market, as well as the lack of benefits given to local coffee growers, thus a decline in local production. But recently, new light and hope has been given to the country's declining coffee industry.

The Haitian government, in partnership with Saint Thomas University, launched the Café COCANO Fair-Trade Coffee Project five years ago and has since been able to help boost Haiti's coffee market and assist local farmers in production and compensation. This project is also in partnership with the Cafeiere et Cacouyere du Nord' Ouest Coffee Cooperative, Pascucci Torrefazione, an Italian coffee roaster, and the University's Center for Peace and Justice.

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Thousands of People in Cap-Haitian in the Street against Michel Martelly

Protest Cap Haitian

On Friday, September 21, 2012, thousands of people took to streets in the second city of Haiti, Cap-Haitian, to demonstrate against Martelly - Lamothe government. Barricades made of tires, stones and garbage were erected in several areas of the city. Traffic was difficult in many areas and in the neighborhood of La Fossettete and Cite Lescot where the tires were burning, impossible.

The people demonstrating were throwing slogans to show their dissatisfaction with the current policy of the government. They chanted against recent increase in food price and government corruption. Some of the people in the crowd were asking for Martelly to leave the government.

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Struggle against high prices, Haitian government ordered 300,000 bags of rice

Rice Haiti Imported

Understanding the vulnerability in which the Haitian population is today in regard to high cost of food, the Haitian government has reacted by creating a price stabilization Commission. In addition, the government has ordered 300,000 bags of rice in order to affect the current price of rice in the market.

The 300,000 bags of rice is expected to be injected immediately into the market in order to reduce the price of rice. The Martelly Lamothe government informed the public that they will continue to follow this policy every time they see an increase on price of rice.

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Gourmet gift

Gourmet gift baskets can be given on many occasions throughout the year. Whether a birthday, anniversary, housewarming, holiday, or to congratulate someone, you can find a gift basket to suit the occasion and person.

For the chocoholic, a chocolate gift basket is appropriate. The basket contains dark chocolate, milk chocolate, Belgium chocolate, white chocolate, and truffles.

For those who are nuts about nuts, the nut gift basket will make them nutty with pleasure. Walnuts, cashews, pecans, pralines, and peanuts fill this basket.

The luxury basket for someone you love shows you care. Bath and body products like scented bath candles, essential bath oils, fluffy scruffs, and bath towels pamper.

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Third People Canteen Provides a Hot-Lunch Meal for Kids

President Michel Martelly, as part of his ambitious agenda to engage all sectors of the Haitian population, inaugurated the People Canteen Tet Kale in Créole in Carrefour on July 27, 2012. Minister of Social Affairs and Labor, Ronsard St-Cyr joined Martelly. Together they were there to initiate a dialogue of goodwill with the community and demonstrate their commitment to improve the quality of life for the underserved population.

At the People Canteen, located on 4th Avenue Bolosse, President Martelly and Minister St-Cyr stood behind the line and served nutritious meals to school-age children. Then they joined the children at tables and chatted with them about what they wanted to be when they grew up. Later Martelly and St-Cyr handed out soccer balls to screaming and excited children, who asked Martelly if he would play with them. Martelly replied he would do something even better, he would show them a few soccer-ball tricks.

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How to make Dous Makos or Douce Marcos

Douce Marcos or Dous Makos from Petit Goave

Haiti is home to the most exotic and colorful cuisine in the world. Most of Haiti's cuisine originated from the country's historical settlers like the Africans and the French. One of the country's many delicious foods known worldwide is the Dous Makos.

The Dous Makos was created by Fernand Macos back in 1939, a Belgian entrepreneur who settled and put up his business in the coastal town of Petit-Goave in Haiti. The popular delicacy's recipe was at first a secret but was generally known to be made of milk and was commercialized years after. There are now dozens of producers of the Dous Makos that sell and export their produce to different parts of the world.

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Cafeteria Tet Kale

The official launch of the "Kafeteria Tet Kale" or "People Canteen" on 4th Avenue Bolosse in Carrefour, a largely populated commune in the capital Port-au-Prince, was led by Haitian President Michel Martelly last July 27. Together with Ronsard St-Cyr, the country's Minister of Social Affairs and Labour, the project is aimed at building better relations with the population and at the same time improving their living conditions. During the launching, President Martelly distributed food and soccer balls to numerous children.

The Martelly administration's Kafeteria Tet Kale is quite popular in Haiti, serving more than 500 customers a day. It is a cafeteria in the form of a truck, and was first introduced in the Carnaval des Fleurs, or the Carnival of flowers, the first carnival in Port-au-Prince since the 2010 earthquake. It immediately attracted carnival goers with its eye-candy color scheme of pink and white. The Haitian Creole term "tet kale" means heart and soul or from head to toe, which is perfect for the President's new movement on serving the country and its people with care and definiteness.

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Guidelines for Refusing Food without Offending

The problem for many to refuse food after it has been offered to you

Holiday parties are about to begin in a couple of weeks. Hosts go all out, putting time and effort into menus for their dinner parties. Sensing this, people, who have dietary requirements, allergies, or are health nuts often feel uncomfortable refusing their host's offering of certain foods.

Here are a few guidelines to refuse food without giving offense.

Put a smile on your face. It's hard to take offense when someone refuses with a big smile. Research has revealed smiling serves as a stress reducer and elevated-mood enhancer. Smiles are also infectious. Hosts will often return the smile and the refusal is graciously accepted.

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Stop Imports of Fecal-laced Salami from Dominican Republic, Deputy Fritz Chery, Gros Morne

Concerns are mounting that salami imported from the Dominican Republic (DR) is tainted with unhealthy levels of fecal matter. Deputy Fritz Chery has urged Minister of Commerce and Minister of Health and Population to ban importation of salami from the Dominican Republic.

Chery became alarmed after reading in the DR Listin Diario the Dominican Institute for the Protection of Consumer Rights (DIPCR) discovered 51% of 258 salami samples revealed fecal coliform at unacceptable levels.

Chery's belief is that dangerously high levels of fecal matter risks developing cancer in consumers, who ingest the contaminated meat. From a lay-person's perspective, with no training in microbiology, it's not necessarily the fecal matter itself, which may cause cancer, but the occurrence of sodium nitrate, a known carcinogen. Very high levels of fecal particulate may turn into a deadly form of ecoli, an intestinal illness, but not lead to cancer.

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