What is the impact of space tourism? A surprisingly short flight into “space” has a not-so-surprisingly high cost, both monetary and planetary. When I think about the problems we face here on earth, contrasted with media worship of insanely wealthy men and their rockets, I worry that humanity is collectively losing it.

Let’s look at the basic carbon footprint of the rocket fuel first. Some high-ranking news stories implied that Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin flight didn’t emit carbon because it was fueled by liquid hydrogen and oxygen.

Technically, the hydrogen didn’t directly release carbon dioxide when it was burned but…


Spero Foods sells a range of vegan cream cheese spreads that are made from organic sunflower seeds. Like everything else on this site, I discovered them at the Grocery Outlet — they cost $2.49, compared to the normal price of $5.99 at Whole Foods. I’m happy to say that they are now one of my favorite vegan cheese products, alongside Violife’s vegan feta.

About Spero Foods

Phäedra Randolph, a scientist who previously worked as a software developer, established Spero Foods in the Bay Area around 2017. Since then, the company has been attracting a lot of attention for a number of reasons. First…


Violife has produced a vegan feta cheese, Just Like Feta, that’s probably the best vegan cheese product that I’ve had so far. It seems appropriate that Violife is based in Greece, where feta cheese originated. Typically, vegan cheeses like sliced cheddar and mozzarella are not really that appealing to eat on their own, but are alright when melted on toast or a burger. The Violife feta, however, is perfectly good to eat on its own, or (the way I’ve been eating it) in Greek salads. When combined with olives, tomatoes, etc., I really can’t tell that this feta is vegan.


When I saw an entire freezer full of Impossible Burgers at a local Grocery outlet, I did a double take. I had not imagined seeing them on sale there — especially at a price of $2.50 per pack, each containing two of the plant-based burgers from Impossible Foods (compared to a regular price of $6). I’ve been vegetarian since I was 15, so I’ve eaten my fair share of meat substitutes but had not yet tried the Impossible Burger. …


Why you should avoid Amazon right now

Last week, the Bay Area went back down into stricter lockdown conditions — no outdoor dining is allowed and most salons, etc., have to close down again. It’s really hard to watch local businesses that we love struggling so much. Bay Area restaurants employ over 300,000 people and, especially if you’re passionate about cooking and the food industry, you can imagine how tough it must be to be stuck at home. …


I picked up a bottle of Califia Protein Oat milk at the Grocery Outlet a week ago for $1.99 — it’s normally $6 at other stores such as Whole Foods. I am very fussy about what I put in my coffee and over the last couple of years I’ve found two things that work well: homemade hazelnut milk and oat milk. The Califia Protein Oat milk worked really well in my coffee and tea — it’s similar to Oatly, which I’ve also bought at the Grocery Outlet. I want milk that doesn’t change the flavor of the coffee much but…


I found Kite Hill butter at the Grocery Outlet last week — $2.99 for the 8-ounce tub, normally $6 at other stores. I’ve now tried it a few times on various toasts and sandwiches and found it to be fine — it spreads well, melts well, and has a fairly neutral flavor that doesn’t interfere with whatever you’re creating in the kitchen. At the same time, Kite Hill butter doesn’t really add anything because the flavor and texture are both so neutral. It doesn’t elevate toast in the same way as good butter from pasture-raised cows (e.g., …


I picked up a box of 12 Purely Elizabeth peanut butter bars at a Bay Area Grocery Outlet last week. They are marketed as Whole Food Nut + Seed Bars, and the ingredient list verifies this: peanuts, pumpkin seeds and sunflower kernels are the top three ingredients and they also contain hemp and chia seeds and almond meal. They are sweetened using coconut sugar and also include coconut in the form of flakes and raw coconut oil. An intriguing ingredient is reishi extract — I was interested to see this because medicinal mushrooms are on my mind these days and…


What exactly is an ethical review? Well, it’s basically a review of a product or business in which the rating is for social and environmental impact.

Normally we rate products for price and quality and this is usually summed up as a rating somewhere between 1 and 5 gold stars.

The goal of the Green Stars Project and the posts on this site is to include the rating for price and quality as normal, but also to include a rating for social and environmental impact, summed up as a rating somewhere between 1 and 5 green stars.

Perhaps the best…


I’ve read many quotes from Republican voters who are undecided (or have already decided to vote against him) and a recurring concern is Trump’s character. Some of the voters like his policies but can’t abide the way he behaves on Twitter. Many are embarrassed by him at times but will still stick with him because they think he represents Republican values. He actually doesn’t represent Republican values, as I argued in a previous post but, more importantly, the undecided voters should be giving Trump’s character a lot more weight in their decision-making process.

The top reason not to vote for…

GreenStarsProject

User-generated ratings for ethical consumerism. Mission: to encourage consideration of the social and environmental impact of our choices as consumers.

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