Normal Good – A Camet Tue, 21 Jun 2022 09:27:51 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Normal Good – A Camet 32 32 Ian McNulty: For restaurants in New Orleans, the double-edged sword to face a normal summer | Where NOLA eats Tue, 21 Jun 2022 09:00:00 +0000

The calendar says summer begins on June 21, information that basically tells us that calendars don’t know New Orleans. We all know that summer really starts immediately after Jazz Fest and lasts until around Halloween.

Still, the “official” start of summer signals what is historically the toughest time of year for restaurants in New Orleans. Things could be different this summer though, given the history we’ve been through and are still dealing with.

Will this be the normal slog of low tourism, slow business and inevitable restaurant closings? Or, with the pandemic clearly in a different phase now, with no restrictions or mandates in place, will the pent up desire to get out and live life in a social, not socially distanced way, going to continue?

Either way, restaurants seem to be facing a double-edged summer.

After absorbing all the blows of the pandemic, restaurants badly need the boost of a busier than normal summer season. But at the same time, most cannot always manage the business. Right now, many restaurants are operating at full capacity, trying to keep up with demand as they are understaffed and while trying to rewrite old business models around spiraling cost increases across the exploitation.

That’s enough to make New Orleans’ summer slump a breeze.

You have to go back to 2019 to find the last “normal” summer in New Orleans. The pandemic has dictated restaurant conditions for the past two years far more than the usual seasonal rhythms.

But don’t forget how tough the season is usually for restaurants. Research by this article in 2018 found that nearly half of all restaurant closings in New Orleans over the previous decade occurred during the summer months, and full-service restaurant revenues sold out dropped 30% in the summer compared to their peak winter months.

The answer, in normal years, is well established. Restaurants are battening down the hatches, trimming the sails, and often dipping into the gains they’ve made in good times to deal with it.

This is why diving into the summer of 2022 makes me particularly worried. Restaurants have been on the ropes for so long now that the usual coping mechanisms may not work.

Restaurants are largely on their own to find the way. The latest round of federal relief funding, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund, was quickly depleted last year and, despite pleas and campaigns from small businesses that need it most, lawmakers have sniffed out opportunities to replenish this fund.

According to the Louisiana Restaurant Association, that left $1 billion in aid requests to Louisiana restaurants alone unfunded. Nearly 3,000 restaurants in the state that applied were left out when the underfunded fund ran out.

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I’m afraid that will leave many restaurants one step closer to closing, whether it’s the kind of family issues that can plague the smallest moms and pops, a breakdown of local infrastructure, or (it must be admitted) a damaging or simply disruptive hurricane, as we saw after Hurricane Ida.

There is good news to come. This summer marks the return of some major events for the first time through the pandemic. This includes Essence, from June 30 to July 3, and Cocktail Talesthe spirits industry conference, back July 25-29.

Restaurant week is in progress at the moment, an offer to add a spark to the beginning of the summer. Coolinairethe ever-popular campaign of fixed-price meal deals at many restaurants returns in August.

As deep summer approaches, some restaurateurs tell me they’re actually hoping for a slowdown this season, after a frenetic spring.

This may seem counter-intuitive for companies that have lost so much. But there are also bandwidth, energy, and morale factors beyond the balance sheet.

It could be a season to reset, and maybe even try to restructure for the higher costs and changing business conditions they face now.

What they can still hopefully rely on are their best customers, locals and visitors who are so loyal and frequent that they practically count as restaurant dwellers.

It’s at least one thing that should continue despite all that this impenetrable summer has in store for us.

I walked past closed bars and toasted them with a drink to take home, hoping they would come back, not knowing how or when they might.

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Farmers plan well for winter Sun, 19 Jun 2022 17:00:00 +0000

As June marks the official start of winter, farm teams across New Zealand are preparing for the onset of cold weather, with a focus on keeping cows dry, comfortable and well-fed .

Dean Rabbidge, a Southland dairy, sheep and cattle farmer, says farmers rely on winter crops to ensure animals get through winter healthy before calving.

“During the winter, grass growth slows down and doesn’t provide enough food or nutrition for the cows, so they graze on winter crops like fodder beets, rutabagas or kale,” says Rabbidge.

He started preparing for winter last November.

Southland farmer Dean Rabbidge has plenty of winter feed for the cows.


Southland farmer Dean Rabbidge has plenty of winter feed for the cows.

“Selecting the right pen is key to providing livestock with access to shelter and water. It’s also important to have a detailed feed budget to know how much feed we need for each animal. .”

Farmers in Southland faced a tough autumn last year due to drought, but Rabbidge managed to overcome this by bringing in extra feed.

In case of bad weather, he plans to move the animals to shelter under the trees and feed them with hay (preserved pasture).

“This will give them a dry, sheltered and warm place to lie down,” says Rabbidge.

The farm team discussed different scenarios to understand when to move cattle to keep them comfortable and sheltered from the elements.

West Coast farmers Dan and Kate King with children Lizzie and Sam on a winter rutabaga harvest.


West Coast farmers Dan and Kate King with children Lizzie and Sam on a winter rutabaga harvest.

On the west coast of the South Island, dairy farmers Dan and Kate King are focused on applying the lessons learned last winter to continue to improve animal care.

From June to December 2021, their district received 1800 mm of rain – compared to 1900 mm of normal annual rainfall.

“Last winter went relatively well, but constant rains in the spring, along with calving cows, damaged pastures and put pressure on feed and supplements. So we planned ahead in case it rains a lot again this winter,” says Dan King. .

The kings ordered about 270 bales of meadow hay, in addition to winter crops. They have also made 200 bales of fodder to distribute when needed over the coming year.

“Having extra feed puts us in a strong position to deal with any adverse conditions and keep the cows in good condition,” says King.

West Coast farmer Kate King has grown Italian alders from seed, which will be planted in the spring to provide more shelter for their cows in winter and summer.


West Coast farmer Kate King has grown Italian alders from seed, which will be planted in the spring to provide more shelter for their cows in winter and summer.

Giving cows enough time to lie down is also a priority. The Kings use back fences and portable waterers so the cows don’t have to travel far for food and water. This reduces mud, creating a better environment for cows and reducing sediment loss to waterways.

The Kings are also planting 140 trees this year to provide more shelter for cows in hot and cold weather.

DairyNZ South Island manager Tony Finch says farmers have worked hard to improve overwintering practices and winter planning.

“Last season, about 90% of farmers had a contingency plan to protect their animals and the environment in case of bad weather,” says Finch.

“It’s great for farmers to have their efforts to improve winter grazing recognized by councils and government. It helps fuel their commitment to continue improving animal care and wintering practices.”

Farmers can find tips for overwintering well on and

Are the waste issues around Jacksonville finally in the rearview mirror? Sat, 18 Jun 2022 00:16:41 +0000

JACKSONVILLE, Florida. – The Jacksonville City Council released a final report from its solid waste select committee, and Councilman Ron Salem said the issues should be behind River City.

“It’s not perfect,” said Salem, chairman of the committee. “You are always going to have people (employees) absent for illness and that sort of thing. But I think the services right now are pretty much back to normal.

Over the past few months, Salem says, the group of legislators found that the biggest issues had been resolved.

“We all thought the labor issue was the root of most of our problems, and we’ve found that now that the carriers are full, the complaints have gone down significantly,” Salem said.

While Salem said he wanted the city to stop recycling glass, saying it wasn’t profitable these days, other committee members disagreed.

In particular, what you put in your recycling bins will be scrutinized in order to educate people.

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“We have a huge program coming up, a grant we received, where we will inspect your recycling bin and leave you a report on the bin telling you what was good, what was not good” , Salem said.

The councilman said funds have been set aside for continuing education. He also has high hopes for a transfer station that can make solid waste management efforts more efficient.

“Our landfill is way beyond the Westside on (US) 301, and it’s a 50-minute drive for some of the garbage trucks. So if we can reduce that commute and get the drivers back to the neighborhoods, that’s a win for everyone,” he said.

Salem says residents have to pay about $13 per household per month for solid waste. He says the cost to the city is about $18 per household.

Copyright 2022 by WJXT News4JAX – All Rights Reserved.

Normal-looking food: the new trend taking over Instagram! Wed, 15 Jun 2022 08:38:57 +0000
The last decade has seen the rise of the Instagrammable food trend, where restaurants have changed menus to prioritize visual uniqueness – often at the expense of taste.

In a competitive social media landscape where users are inundated with content, the question for restaurateurs has been how to stand out and generate audience engagement in the form of likes, comments and shares.

Under the assumption that creating unique foods will help businesses stand out and drive more engagement on social media, the Instagrammable food trend has spawned novelty items like unicorn lattes and poo coffees. .

But does this strategy really work? Do foods that are unique, distinct, and atypical in appearance drive the most engagement? Or are people more interested in normal, familiar, typical-looking foods?

What People Think About Instagrammable Food

As social media platforms use ranking algorithms to prioritize and boost content, determining which foods get the most engagement on social media will help restaurants and food content creators determine how best to amplify the reach of their content online.

Conventional social media wisdom suggests that people will engage with social media content that they find entertaining, where “entertaining” is synonymous with unique, distinct, and atypical content.

In a food context, entertaining has been assumed to mean food that looks more unique, distinct and atypical.

This assumption sparked an industry trend where restaurants abandoned taste instead of visual aesthetics, such as bright and unusual colors, to drive engagement on visual social media platforms, such as Instagram.

There are many different examples of this over-the-top food trend on Instagram, from the Bagel Store in Brooklyn, NY, to Fugo Desserts, Enchanted Poutinerie and Glory Hole Donuts in Toronto.

Suggested Reading: Adding Black Pepper to Your Food Could Be Good for Your Health: Here’s Why

What Instagrammable Food Really Is

Our recent survey, published in the Journal of Business Research, investigates which foods are truly the most Instagrammable – in other words, which garner the most likes, comments and shares.

Our research looked at over 10,000 food images on Instagram from over 850 top restaurants (according to using Google Vision, a machine learning algorithm that extracts information from images.

Photo credit: Healthline

We found that when Google Vision was more convinced that an image contained real food – an indicator of the normalcy and typicality of food – the more engagement it received on social media.

A follow-up experiment suggests that positive affect, which is how good we feel, helps explain this relationship.

While social media forecasters may suggest unique foods are a trend, this logic contradicts some tenets of evolutionary psychology. Humans have evolved to quickly recognize food visually, not only for what is edible, but also for what is high in calories.

Since finding and eating edible foods was crucial for survival when humans were hunter-gatherers, we may be wired to feel inherently good when we simply see foods we know we can eat.

Why is normal-looking food trendy?

How is this relevant for social media? The average user spends over two hours a day on social media platforms, exposing them to hundreds of different posts in a single scrolling session.

While quickly processing content, the brain can instinctively feel more positively about images that are more easily recognized as food. These positive sentiments can then be transferred to post-directed behaviors, increasing the likelihood that the post will receive likes, comments, or shares.

Suggested reading: Ultra-processed foods are destroying our health and the planet

Since people feel better when they see easily recognizable foods as food, normal-looking foods tend to taste better. On the other hand, unique foods tend to lead to lower social media engagement because they are harder to recognize and categorize as foods.

Despite food industry bloggers and social media trends suggesting that people are looking for unique and eye-catching content, the most successful Instagrammable foods are the normal-looking ones that are more easily recognized as food.

No ice cream disguised as feces served in toilets, waffles shaped like penises or ice cream in unusual colors. Instead, consumers seem to engage more with regular foods, like a classic burger or regular pizza – no unconventional shape or color required.

Matthew Philp, Assistant Professor, Marketing, Toronto Metropolitan University, Ethan Pancer, Associate Professor of Marketing, Sobey School of Business, Saint Mary’s University and Jenna Jacobson, Assistant Professor, Ted Rogers School of Management, Toronto Metropolitan University first published this article on The conversation.

Stress protein could be a good target for future cancer drugs Mon, 13 Jun 2022 08:49:58 +0000

A stress protein that is overactive in many types of tumor cells also plays a key role in tumor-supporting cells called fibroblasts, and could be a good target for future cancer treatments, a study by researchers suggests from Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

The researchers, whose findings seem in Cell Biology Nature, found in experiments in mouse models of pancreatic cancer and melanoma that the stress protein, known as ATF4, enables fibroblasts to support tumor growth by promoting the formation of blood vessels serving to the tumor. Deleting ATF4 in fibroblasts severely impaired the formation of new tumor-supporting vessels as well as tumor growth, without causing significant harm in the mice, the researchers found.

“Our results suggest that inhibiting ATF4 could act against many types of cancer, and we are actively pursuing this strategy,” said the study’s lead author. Constantinos Koumenis, PhD, Richard H. Chamberlain Professor of Oncology Research in Penn’s Department of Radiation Oncology. “Every tumor we looked at upregulates ATF4.”

The study’s first author, who performed most of the experiments, was Ioannis Verginadis, PhDSenior Researcher and Adjunct Assistant Professor in Koumenis Laboratory.

ATF4 is produced in cells as part of a broad response to stresses such as oxygen or nutrient deprivation. It functions as a master switch for the activities of hundreds of genes that help cells survive these stresses. As the Koumenis lab and others have shown in recent yearsmany types of tumors depend on this ATF4-associated stress response to survive despite the severe stresses they create for themselves by their rapid growth.

The researchers began the new study by designing mice whose ATF4 gene could be deleted from the whole body at any time. They found that if they removed ATF4 before or even after tumors started growing in the mice, tumor growth and their ability to spread to distant organs were greatly impaired. The scientists then used a powerful and relatively new technique called single-cell RNA sequencing to examine the impact of ATF4 deletion in all tumor cell types and observed a surprisingly large effect on a population of cells. supporting cells called cancer-associated cells. fibroblasts (CAF).

Fibroblasts are supporting cells that exist in virtually every organ, producing collagen, a key structural protein, promoting the formation of new blood vessels, and generally aiding in tissue repair and maintenance. Many types of tumors co-opt neighboring fibroblasts, shifting them into CAF mode in which they primarily support the tumor. However, the researchers observed that in their ATF4-deficient mice, CAFs often lacked the usual activation markers and were defective in collagen production and secretion of molecules that promote the growth of new vessels. As a result, levels of collagen and tumor-supplying blood vessels were dramatically reduced in mouse tumors, causing massive tumor cell death.

When the scientists suppressed ATF4 only in the fibroblasts, they saw a tumor-slowing effect almost as strong as that observed with the suppression of ATF4 throughout the body. And when the researchers added normal ATF4-containing fibroblasts to ATF4-deficient mice, the growth-slowing effect of ATF4 deletion was largely reversed.

“These results indicate that ATF4 support for tumors is largely mediated by CAFs,” Verginadis said.

Highlighting the likely relevance of their findings to human cancers, the researchers found that in tumor tissues from human pancreatic cancer and melanoma patients, there was a significant correlation between markers of ATF4 activity and markers of the production of collagen. Additionally, in cases of melanoma, higher collagen production was correlated with worse prognoses.

The researchers hope that targeting ATF4 will not have unacceptable side effects, since mice in which the gene was deleted as adults showed only modest and temporary weight loss and d other minor anomalies.

“Overall, ATF4 appears to be an attractive cancer target,” Koumenis said. “A drug that inhibits it would block its pro-tumor effect not only in tumor cells but also in cancer-associated fibroblasts, so it should be a double whammy for the tumor. But we are still a few years away from that.

Koumenis’ lab is currently working on developing ATF4 inhibitors that could be tested in further animal studies and, ultimately, in human cancer patients.

Reference: Verginadis II, Avgousti H, Monslow J, et al. An integrated stromal stress response activates cancer-associated perivascular fibroblasts to drive angiogenesis and tumor progression. Nat Cell Biol. 2022. do: 10.1038/s41556-022-00918-8

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]]> The parades of graduates, born during the pandemic, become a tradition Sat, 11 Jun 2022 17:01:07 +0000

PORT ORCHARD — The rain couldn’t stop the joyful cheers of family and friends congratulating the South Kitsap 2022 graduates as they walked down Bay Street in a parade on Friday night.

Parents, grandparents, siblings and community members lined the road decorated with Southern Kitsap flags on both sides, some holding umbrellas and others huddled under awnings. The parade took place on the eve of South Kitsap’s official launch ceremony, which took place Saturday afternoon at the Tacoma Dome.

Seniors Alexis Meister and Selena McCoy decorated their car in the high school parking lot ahead of the parade on Friday. Meister said she thought it was good the tradition started in 2020 as a way to honor seniors through the COVID-19 pandemic. The two said they were excited and nervous about graduating and that they would be missing their music class at South Kitsap High School.