If you're familiar with the micro-blogging service Twitter, you've probably heard the termÂ hashtag.
Hashtags are what Twitter aficionados use to streamline the search process and to group updates into categories. According to Twitter Support:
Because Twitter provided no easy way to group tweets or add extra data, the Twitter community came up with their own way: hashtags. A hashtag is similar to other web tags - it helps add tweets to a category.
To create a hashtag, just put a pound sign "#" before a word in a tweet (that's the commonly used lingo for a Twitter message or status update). The symbol transforms the word into a link that will allow your friends to see all the other tweets that use the same hashtag.
A tweet with hashtags might look something like this:
eatingfreely: #gf #vegan soaked oat & sprouted quinoa waffles didnt work this morning. try again! i know i'm on to something good. #realfood
Hot Hashtags For Eco-Foodies
Using Twitter hashtags is a great way to find recipes or to find the latest updates on a particular topic of interest to you. Here are a few of our favorites:
- #foodies is used very prolifically, but it's more for browsing than finding specific information.
- #realfood is a great catch-all for making, eating and writing about unprocessed or minimally processed food.
- #foodchat &Â #agchat are actually chats that you can participate in when you use the hashtags during their scheduled time. Both are moderated byÂ Michele Payn-Knoper, an agri-business advocate, and offer insight into the concerns of the modern farmer. AgChat is held every Tuesday (except the third week of the month) from 8-10 p.m. EST and is geared toward people working in agriculture.Â FoodChat is 8-10 p.m. on the third Tuesday of every month and fosters a healthy dialogue between farmers and consumers.
- #profood is a reaction to the negativity food often receives from the media. Instead of being against a type of food or method of food production, the ProFood mission is to celebrate food and respect every step it takes to get from the earth to the consumer.
- #locavore &Â #localfood are highly active tags will help you find information on how to eat more locally. Some common accompanying tags are #FarmersMarket, #csa, #buylocal.
- #foodjustice will direct you to the more political side of the food industry. You will likely run into discussions about issues like GMO's, animal cruelty, and world hunger.
- #slowfood promotes theÂ Slow Food movement -- they believe food should be "good, clean, and fair".
- #fda -- TheÂ U.S. Food and Drug Administration is on Twitter, too! It is a great one for those of you concerned about food policy and food safety.
- #recipes is best used with other hashtags about specific ingredients -- but it isÂ veryÂ handy.
Make Your Own
Don't be afraid to simply create your own hashtag, either. This can be helpful in finding other people with the same interests or needs as you. For example:
People with special dietary restrictions might use:
And you can often find great recipe ideas by using ingredients or types of food:
Follow @EarthEats On Twitter!
We'd love to hear what your favorite hashtags are, leave a comment and let us know about the ones we missed.
And if you're new to Twitter, be sure to follow @eartheats to get our latest news and recipes.