And that coverage has, in turn, prompted a lot of interesting online discussion about the finer points of the situation between agricultural scientists and international development workers. As we’ve seen with crops from coffee to soy, a spike in global demand can have many negative impacts on the areas that cultivate them.

So far, the problems in the Andes seem relatively mild, but they’re there. As Philpott put it, “That doesn’t mean we should stop eating quinoa; it just means we shouldn’t eat quinoa without thinking it through.” Likewise, journalists shouldn’t stop covering the problems there, they should just stop covering them without… well, you know the rest.

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Curtis Brainard is the editor of The Observatory, CJR's online critique of science and environment reporting. Follow him on Twitter @cbrainard.