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Weekend Reading: The Best of Food Writing From Around the Web

What’s threatening food producers this week? Our short list includes immigration policies and global warming. But it’s not all doom and gloom. To keep your reading light, we’re also spicing things up with hot sauces and Harambe in Flamin’ Hot Cheeto form. Read on!

+ California’s Central Valley farmers who supported Trump are now concerned about losing cheap, immigrant labor. According to researchers at UC Davis, nearly 70% of all farm workers are undocumented, and given the Valley’s agriculture-dominated economy, any threat to low-wage labor would severely impact the region’s 6.5 million people:

“If you only have legal labor, certain parts of this industry and this region will not exist,” said Harold McClarty, a fourth-generation farmer in Kingsburg whose operation grows, packs and ships peaches, plums and grapes throughout the country. “If we sent all these people back, it would be a total disaster.”

+ We’re making a beeline for the hottest new restaurant on the West Coast: SingleThread. Head over to Tasting Table to read about the up-and-coming restaurant and its epic, table-specific 9-course menus.

‘Hot Sauce’ by Alan Turkus

+ If you like it hot, check out this list of 30 hot sauces sure to spice up your life. 

+ Rising saltwater is threatening Vietnam’s prodigious rice production, so the country is converting its rice fields into shrimp farms. Vietnam’s shellfish industry is projected to increase exports from $3 billion a year to $10 billion to stave off the loss of cheaper rice fields, but climate change will continue to make life difficult for the  millions who call the watery regions of Vietnam their home.

In the lower reaches of the Mekong, saltwater is penetrating as far as 37 miles inland during the dry season, according to government meteorologists, killing crops and forcing farmers to leave or find a new way of making a living. Some 30 million people live in the Mekong Delta area, with 18 million more in the Red River Delta near Hanoi.

+ Someone made wine condoms – to keep your wine safe from spoilage! They’re easy to slip on and according to its maker, the condoms can be stored conveniently in your wallet. However, don’t get them mixed up with traditional condoms because these only fit on wine bottles.

Someone just bought a Flamin’ Hot Cheeto that looks like Harambe for $100,000. Enough said.

According to science, food coma is real. However, if you’re looking to avoid the inevitable slog, we suggest ordering an espresso at the end of your meal, because who really wants to take up these suggestions: smaller meals, low carbs, low fat, early lunches, and of course, avoiding fun altogether.

According to David Levitsky, professor of nutrition and psychology at Cornell University, the most likely explanation for food comas has to do with changes in circulation. When food enters your stomach and activates the gastrointestinal tract, “blood flow shifts from the muscles and brain into the stomach and intestines,” he explained. “And when blood volume goes down in the brain, we get woozy and tired. It’s why I have to make my lectures extremely exciting: They’re right after lunch.”

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