Ohio tries to prevent foodborne Illnesses

Nearly a quarter of foodborne illnesses in the United States are cause by fresh produce, according to Ohio State University researchers. Research shows that leafy greens and sprouts cause the most illnesses, said Sarah Klein, senior attorney in Food Safety Program at the Center of Science and Public Interest in Washington D.C. Leafy greens and sprouts cause the most illnesses. She explained that leafy greens are grown in soil where manure can be used and it is fertilized with irrigation water. Sprouts can carry bacteria in their seed. Sprouts are normally grown in warm and moist conditions that cause the bacteria to grow.

Photo Friday: Pitcher’s thistle

Here’s a reminder of Great Lakes beaches in warmer times. This plant is the federally and state-protected Pitcher’s thistle, which is also known as a dune thistle. The photo was taken last summer by habitat restoration specialist Terry Heatlie at Bois Blanc Island in north Lake Huron between Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. The Pitcher’s thistle is native exclusively to the Great Lakes region, according to the National Fish and Wildlife Service. It was added to the government’s list of threatened species back in 1988.

Big Ten’s Eco Efforts: University of Nebraska

In the spirit of our “Green Gridirons” series (but just in case college football wasn’t your thing), the “Big Ten’s Eco Efforts” series highlights creative off-the-field sustainability efforts. Nebraska is the only state in the country that recognizes the last Friday in April as a civic holiday known as Arbor Day. Every year, businesses across the “The Tree Planter State” close down to allow folks to do just that–plant trees. The campus of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln has been marking the holiday for 40 years with a tree planting ceremony on campus where hundreds of trees are planted by students and faculty. The ceremony is part of Focus Nebraska, a week-long event that promotes environmental sustainability, awareness, engagement and activism, said Richard Sutton, professor of agronomy, horticulture and landscape architecture.