The Best of Fast Company: Farm-Fresh Vending Machines, Obama's Agri-Biz Ties, and the Carbon War Room

German vending machines offer farm-fresh produce and dairy products, Obama nominates bigtime agri-biz execs to key agriculture posts, Richard Branson's Carbon War Room tries to slow down climate change, and eco-friendly roofs go mainstream, all this week at Fast Company.

Would you buy eggs from a local farm out of a vending machine? Peter-und-Paul-hof farm hopes so, which is why the German farm has teamed up with vending manufacturer Stuewer to sell its butter, eggs, cheese, and sausage in vending machines scattered throughout 13 towns.

Upon his inauguration, Obama promised that lobbyists wouldn't find a place in his administration. But now the president has gone back on his word and nominated lobbyists from Monsanto and CropLife USA to key agriculture posts. Why?

Environmentalism has traditionally been a grassroots endeavor, but as climate change and energy concerns become more pressing, green initiatives are increasingly being pursued by wealthy entrepreneurs. That's why the creation of the Carbon War Room, a big money-backed philanthropic initiative pushing to have ships lower their carbon footprints, is no surprise.

In the market for an upgraded roof? We've rounded up five recent attempts at producing roofs that stay cool, generate power, and even grow plants.

Fast Company sets the agenda, charting the evolution of business through a unique focus on the most creative individuals sparking change in the marketplace.

Tags: Agriculture | Barack Obama | Farming | Global Climate Change

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