Father And Son Team Leave Their Mark On The Organic Industry
Jun17

Father And Son Team Leave Their Mark On The Organic Industry

The organic food industry is experiencing a boom. Organic food sales in the U.S. amounted to approximately 45.21 billion dollars in 2017; with more people going organic every day, that number is only expected to rise. However, just because organic foods are currently popular doesn’t mean they’re a recent invention. Gary Hirshberg created his business, Stonyfield Organic, back in 1983 with a focus on dairy products; from yogurt, smoothies, and milk, Hirshberg has dedicated his life to the idea that “healthy food means healthier people, healthier business, and a healthier planet.” Now, his son Ethan has decided to follow in his footsteps. “I grew up in the natural products industry. I’d go to trade shows with my dad when I was a kid,” Ethan Hirshberg explained. “So I always had an interest in it and that eventually developed into a passion.” Those experiences inspired him when he set out to launch a business in organic two years ago. He created the aptly named Ethan’s line of organic products; offering the benefits of apple cider vinegar without the bitter taste, Ethan’s is an organic, functional drink business that sells shots designed to provide antioxidant support, immune system support, digestion support, as well as promote weight loss by helping you feel full. The younger Hirshberg recently landed a nationwide partnership with Whole Foods, which is expected to double his revenue to four million dollars this year. Gary has stood by his son’s side throughout the entire process, offering support and “keeping [his] mouth shut” when needed. Overall, he believes Ethan’ endeavors and successes have brought them closer together. “This experience has deepened our relationship and mutual respect. We talk and share all the time, and we’ve seen that we speak the same language and our observations enhance each of our understandings and empathy. I think he now better understands all that I went through in building Stonyfield, and I have been impressed how much quicker a learner he is than I was at his age,” the elder Hirshberg said. “And we’ve had a lot of fun.” The father-son duo have definitely left their mark on the organic industry. Who knows; maybe Ethan will continue the legacy with a child of his own to bring into the fold years down the...

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Backyard Bungalos: Why Your Home Should Have A Detached Office
Jun14

Backyard Bungalos: Why Your Home Should Have A Detached Office

Florida is known for its sunshine and warm weather. With an average temperature in the mid-70s, most people who visit want to spend all of their time outside. If you’re lucky enough to live in the Sunshine State, you’re free to explore the Floridian outdoors in all its glory, year round. One of the best ways to truly take advantage of such ideal weather is to invest in a backyard office; let’s take a look at the many perks building a detached studio or office can bring to your life. Increased Storage Space Did you know that the average American home has 300,000 things in it? Considering the fact that we tend to collect more as we age, it makes sense to try to move some of the more cumbersome items — from couches to collectibles — into a separate space outside. Though you’ll need to invest an initial amount in the structure itself, you’ll end up saving more than you would if you were simply relying on a storage unit; with the convenience of being able to access your extra items in your own backyard, you’ll never be too far away from anything that you need. Home Away From Home We all need to escape from our lives every once in a while. Since most backyard studios can be transformed into fully livable spaces, you won’t have to give up the luxuries of life when you retreat to your personal haven. You can include electricity, air conditioning, and even spruce up the place with some quality window treatments (their two main uses are for functionality or decoration, and your backyard office can make use of both). When you need to recover from a hard day at work or simply get away from your bustling home, your own oasis will be waiting for you. Privacy, Guaranteed Working from home can be a nightmare. If you’ve got little ones running around and constant distractions (such as neighborly nuisances), it can be extremely hard to focus. Rather than retreating to a space across town where you may end up ostracizing yourself from your loved ones, heading to your backyard office will give you all the privacy, peace, and quiet you need; you’ll be a stone’s throw away from your family should they need to contact you, yet you’ll be able to experience the serenity of an entirely separate, private office. With an average size of 10 feet by 12 feet, backyard studios allow you all the space you need to do what matters most to you. Whether you decide to furnish your space with a cozy chair and bookshelf or turn it into the ideal office, you’ll be happy that you can enjoy...

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New Tech Might Help Identify and Forecast Freezing Pipes in Saskatoon
Jun14

New Tech Might Help Identify and Forecast Freezing Pipes in Saskatoon

Even though summer is almost here, that isn’t stopping the Saskatoon city hall from preparing for the winter to come. Only a few months ago, more than 80 homes throughout Saskatoon were left without water when the coldest winter in 80 years led to frozen pipes. Though the deep freeze primarily affected older pipes that were less insulated or less used, such frigid temperatures have the capacity to put entire neighborhoods at risk. This risk is worsened for older neighborhoods with outdated pipes. This resulted in city crews and contractors working nonstop to deliver water to households in need. But this isn’t the first time that Saskatoon’s icy winters have led to frozen pipes. The city also notes that they experienced a similar issue back in 2014, according to Mark Rogstad, the city’s media relations manager. But this winter witnessed frost reach 2.4 meters below the ground. When all was said and done, the city reported that there were 271 frozen water connections in the winter of 2019 alone. This resulted in the second-highest number of frozen pipes ever seen by the city, with 2014 being the worst on record. Fed up with the deep freeze, Saskatoon’s city council has been working hard on a new technology that can predict which pipes are most at-risk for freezing and when this problem will occur. It’s the city’s hope that this type of model will serve as a type of warning for homes so that residents can make the appropriate precautions before winter sets in. The city is accumulating data from historical records regarding past freezes to make the model. In the meantime, the city recommends that homeowners seal entry points to keep cold air out during freezing conditions. According to the StarPhoenix, the city will also purchase two more boiler trucks, bringing their total number of thawing machines up to five. This winter, one resident had to wait more than six days for the city to unfreeze her pipes. Left without water for almost a week, it’s almost enough to make a family move to a new area. It’s estimated that 45 million Americans move each year. Whether it’s because of work, family, or frustrating weather conditions, it’s not surprising for people to move in the face of recurrent pipe freezing. While pipe corrosion costs the United States more than $9 billion each year, frosty conditions have led to water main breaks and other issues throughout the city for decades. Though city hall hasn’t said how these new measures will affect their response time to such emergencies, this information may be released when the model is...

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5 Tips To Prevent Water Damage In Your Home
Jun11

5 Tips To Prevent Water Damage In Your Home

Whether you’re a new homeowner or living in the home your family’s been in for decades, there’s one thing that all homeowners will have to deal with at some point – water damage. Water damage might not seem like a serious threat to your home’s construction, but if you’re not careful, a damaged pipe or particularly rainy season could mean major issues for your home. Use these tips to avoid water damage in your home and keep your space safe and healthy for you and your family. Watch For Leaks Household leaks might not seem like a serious issue right away, but they can quickly contribute to damage throughout your home. Leaks can damage walls, floors, or other appliances if left unchecked. They’re also incredibly wasteful and can increase your utility bills. A trillion gallons of water, worth $6 billion, is wasted each year as the result of running toilets, leaking faucets, or other leaks. If you notice a leak in your home, it’s best to address it as soon as possible. Find Problem Areas Certain areas and spots in your home are more likely to cause or be responsible for water damage. Look for areas with lots of plumbing or water use. Don’t limit yourself to inside your home as well – exterior features like pools can sometimes cause issues as well. California health code requires a 6 hour turnover rate for pools, to get 100% of the pool water through the filtration system. Stay aware of your local codes with regards to your pools and maintain them frequently to avoid water damage. Update Materials Not all materials are created equal in the construction of your home. Materials used in older construction might have decent long-term durability, but can be weak to certain types of damage. Water damage, in particular, can be particularly harmful to common materials used in older buildings. Wood only needs three things to rot: water, oxygen, and favorable temperature between 40 and 105 degrees Fahrenheit. If you notice damage to older parts of your home, or materials that might be more vulnerable to water damage, you may want to consider swapping them out for newer alternatives. Recognize Signs One of the most frustrating things about water damage in your home is it can be difficult to spot while still in the early stages, meaning that by the time you find it, it can already have done serious damage. It’s best to learn the signs of water damage in your home, so you can catch it early. For example, pay attention to your home’s air quality. Indoor air often contains twice as much dust as...

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Study Finds Bee Colonies Suffered Great Losses During Winter Season
Jun10

Study Finds Bee Colonies Suffered Great Losses During Winter Season

People all around the world enjoy getting outside and experiencing nature. In fact, there were about 30 million paid fishing license holders in the U.S. alone in 2018. But as enjoyable and important as all of nature is, honey bees play an integral role. And a new study has found that during the winter of 2017-18, the number of honey bee colonies decreased by 16% throughout 36 countries. The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Strathclyde and looked at data from 25,363 beekeepers. The beekeepers were in 33 European countries, Israel, Algeria, and Mexico. The data showed that at the start of the winter, there were 544,879 total colonies. And by the end of the season, 89,124 colonies were lost. Reasons the colonies were lost ranged from weather conditions, natural disasters, and even problems with a colony’s queen. Furthermore, the researchers found that when beekeepers relocated their colonies, giving them access to forage or for pollinating purposes, they saw fewer losses. Additionally, smaller beekeeping organizations saw higher losses than those with more bees and resources. According to Alison Gray, a lecturer in Strathclyde’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics and lead author of the study, “Loss of honey bee colonies is a highly complex issue. It tends to be influenced less by overall climate than by specific weather patterns or a natural disaster affecting the colony. We observe colonies in winter but what happens to the bees then can be partly determined by the conditions of the previous summer… The impact of beekeepers migrating their colonies would be expected to be partly dependent on the distance traveled and the reasons for migration; this would be worth further investigation.” Some areas experienced minor losses, like Israel, Serbia, and Belarus, all of which experienced losses below 10%. But other areas were not so lucky — Italy, England, Portugal, and Northern Ireland all saw losses higher than 25%. With Ireland alone being 32,595 square miles big, these large countries saw drastic losses which could greatly impact their overall ecosystems. The study focused on a variety of sources of forage, or plants that bees can collect pollen and nectar from. They were broken down into six groups: heather, autumn forage crops, orchards, maize, sunflower, and oilseed rape. Beekeepers who gave their bees better access to these sources were the ones who saw a lowered fall in colony numbers. Without easy access to forage options, bee losses during the winter months were seen to be more likely. Bee numbers are dropping all around the world due to a variety of causes — weather and bee health are certainly concerns, along with the...

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