YCQM: June 23, 2019

BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) Outgoing Norwich University President Richard Schneider discusses his vision for the university and his legacy; plus, UVM Medical Center's Dr. Eike Blohm discusses fatal foraging mistakes in the woods.

"You Can Quote Me" on June 23, 2019.

TRANSCRIPT:

GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE,
I'M DARREN PERRON.
RIGHT NOW ON "YOU CAN QUOTE
ME," FATAL FORAGING.
PEOPLE GETTING SICK FROM
HARVESTING WILD FOODS.
A SPECIAL REPORT, AND ADVICE
FROM A DOCTOR COMING UP.
PLUS, NORWICH UNIVERSITY NEEDS
A NEW PRESIDENT.
AND THAT'S WHERE WE BEGIN THIS
MORNING.
NORWICH UNIVERSITY LAUNCHED A
NATIONAL SEARCH TO FIND ITS
24TH PRESIDENT.
THE SCHOOL'S 23RD PRESIDENT,
RICHARD SCHNEIDER, PLANS TO
STEP DOWN IN JUNE OF NEXT
YEAR.
HERE'S NEAL GOSWAMI.
>> RICHARD SCHNEIDER BECAME
PRESIDENT OF NORWICH
UNIVERSITY IN 1992.
DURING HIS TENURE, ENROLLMENT
GREW BY 70%.
THE SCHOOL'S ENDOWMENT WENT
FROM 40 MILLION TO MORE THAN
217 MILLION.
>> IT'S NOT EASY WORK.
IT'S NOT EASY WORK FOR
ANYBODY.
WE ARE DOING VERY, VERY WELL.
BOTH ACADEMICALLY,
FACILITIES-WISE AND
FINANCIALLY.
>> WHILE MANY OTHER SMALL
SCHOOLS FAILED, NORWICH HAS
SEEN STEADY GROWTH SINCE
SCHNEIDER ARRIVED.
THERE ARE NOW NEARLY 2500
STUDENTS, AND SEVERAL NEW
BUILDINGS ON CAMPUS.
>> IN SOME WAYS IT IS A VERY
MILITARY THING.
WE PLAN REALLY WELL, AND THEN
WE EXECUTE THE PLAN.
>> THE SCHOOL HAS HIRED A FIRM
TO CONDUCT A NATIONAL SEARCH
FOR THE NEXT PRESIDENT.
SCHNEIDER WON'T BE INVOLVED,
BUT SAID HE'S OFFERED SOME
ADVICE TO THE BOARD.
>> JUST MAKE SURE THERE'S
GREAT FIT.
IT'S MORE ABOUT THE FIT.
>> SCHNEIDER WAS THE RIGHT FIT
FOR THE NATION'S OLDEST
PRIVATE MILITARY SCHOOL.
HE'S A 1968 GRADUATE OF THE
U.S. COAST GUARD ACADEMY, AND
SERVED EIGHT YEARS OF ACTIVE
DUTY.
HE RETIRED FROM THE COAST
GUARD RESERVE AS A REAR
ADMIRAL IN 1998.
HE'S OVERSEEN FOUR CONSECUTIVE
CAPITAL CAMPAIGNS THAT HAVE
EXCEEDED GOALS AND RAISED A
TOTAL OF $240 MILLION.
AND NOW HE'S GOT A NEW PLAN IN
PLACE FOR THE NEXT PRESIDENT.
>> THE PLAN CALLS FOR MAKING
US MUCH MORE AFFORDABLE.
AND THAT MEANS GROWING THE
ENDOWMENT EVEN MORE.
>> HE HOPES THE SCHOOL WILL
ADD 600 MORE STUDENTS, BUT
THEY WILL BE SPREAD ALL OVER
THE WORLD, GAINING CULTURAL
AND ACADEMIC EXPERIENCE WITH
PARTNERS.
IT'S PART OF HIS MISSION TO
FOCUS ON STUDENTS.
>> THEY WILL COME TO MY HOUSE
IF THEY ARE IN TROUBLE AT
NIGHT.
I MEAN, YOU HAVE TO DO THAT.
SO.
>> SCHNEIDER WILL BE VACATING
THE PRESIDENT'S HOUSE IN ABOUT
A YEAR, BUT HE PLANS TO
MAINTAIN THE STRUCTURE AND
DISCIPLINE THAT HE'S EMBRACED
DURING A LIFETIME IN UNIFORM.
>> GOING TO GET UP EVERY
MORNING, GOING TO DO MY PT,
GOING TO SHAVE, GOING TO ROLL
MY SOCKS AND BE THE SAME GUY
THAT YOU'RE TALKING WITH
TODAY.
>> HE'S GOT A YEAR TO PREPARE
FOR THE TRANSITION.
REPORTING IN NORTHFIELD, NEAL
GOSWAMI, CHANNEL 3 NEWS.
>> Darren: THE PRESIDENT
JOINED ME TO DIVE DEEPER INTO
HIS VISION FOR THE UNIVERSITY
AND HIS LEGACY.
THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE.
>> GREAT TO BE WITH YOU.
>> Darren: WHAT PROMPTED YOUR
DECISION TO RETIRE?
>> WELL, WE ANNOUNCED ABOUT
FOUR YEARS AGO THAT I WOULD BE
RETIRING.
THIS WOULD BE MY 28TH YEAR AS
PRESIDENT.
I THINK THAT'S A PRETTY LONG
TIME, ESPECIALLY IN TODAY'S
STANDARDS.
BUT I ANNOUNCED FOUR YEARS
AGO, I SAID I WANTED THEM TO
GET THROUGH THE BICENTENNIAL,
OUR 200TH YEAR CELEBRATION.
WHAT A GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO BE
THERE AS A PRESIDENT.
AND I AM 73, AND, YOU KNOW,
YOU ONLY GET SO MUCH OF A
RUNWAY, AND I HAVE 15
GRANDKIDS, AND I WANT TO SPEND
SOME TIME WITH MY WIFE AND MY
KIDS AND MY GRANDKIDS.
>> Darren: NEAL LISTED OFF A
LONG LIST OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS.
WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?
>> I THINK I'M LEAVING THE
PLACE STRONGER THAN I FOUND
IT.
AND I CAME IN '92.
I THINK EVERY COLLEGE
PRESIDENT INTENDS TO DO THAT
TO THEIR SCHOOL, WITH THEIR
SCHOOL.
YOU DON'T DO IT TO THEM, DO
YOU IT WITH THEM.
AND I KNOW WE'RE STRONGER IN
EVERY WAY THAT YOU CAN
MEASURE.
ACADEMICALLY STRONGER, HIGHER
QUALITY STUDENTS, BOTH
ACADEMICALLY AND WE HAVE
ALWAYS BEEN A GOOD SCHOOL
ABOUT LEADERSHIP.
OUR GRADS HAVE ALWAYS BEEN
GREAT LEADERS, BUT
ACADEMICALLY NOW THEY ARE
STRONGER BY EVERY NORMAL
MEASURE OF ACADEMICS.
CERTAINLY FROM A PHYSICAL
PLANT POINT OF VIEW, WE HAVE
THE EQUIPMENT, AND WE HAVE THE
BUILDINGS NOW TO TEACH REALLY
ADVANCED INFORMATION,
ESPECIALLY CYBER THINGS THAT
SCHOOL HAS BECOME KNOWN FOR.
SO, AND FINANCIALLY WE'RE MUCH
STRONGER.
OUR ENDOWMENT IS IN THE 10%
COLLEGES OR UNIVERSITIES.
STILL NOT BIG ENOUGH, BUT NOT
BAD.
>> Darren: ANYTHING YOU
REGRET.
ANYTHING YOU DIDN'T GET
ACCOMPLISHED YOU HOPED TO?
>> I STILL HAVE TONS OF THINGS
I WANTED TO GET DONE.
I FEEL LIKE I AM RUNNING OUT
OF TIME.
I ONLY HAVE A YEAR.
I TALKED WITH THE STAFF ABOUT
THAT A LOT.
WE ARE DEVELOPING ANOTHER
STRATEGIC PLAN.
IT'S BEEN APPROVED BY THE
BOARD, TOOK US ABOUT TWO YEARS
TO WRITE IT.
CALLED NORWICH AFTER NEXT.
AND THE TIME HORIZONS, 2035.
SO I'M IN THE TRYING TO BOX
THE NEW PRESIDENT IN.
THE BOARD IS NOT.
BUT WE KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON,
AND WHAT WE REALLY WANT TO
TAKE THE SCHOOL.
SO THIS PLAN WILL BE READY FOR
THE NEW PRESIDENT, THEY CAN
TWEAK IT WHATEVER THEY WANT,
BUT WE KNOW WHERE WE ARE
GOING.
>> Darren: YOU TALKED ABOUT
THE NEXT PRESIDENT BEING A
GOOD FIT.
AND THAT BEING IMPORTANT.
WHAT DOES THAT LOOK LIKE?
WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY THAT?
>> DARREN, I THINK THAT'S LIKE
THE MOST IMPORTANT THING.
THE BOARD HAS BEEN VERY OPEN
ABOUT SAYING, LOOK IT, YOU
COULD HAVE MILITARY
EXPERIENCE, MAYBE YOU DON'T.
WE WOULD LOVE TO HAVE A PhD,
BUT MAYBE YOU DON'T HAVE ONE.
MAYBE YOU'VE BEEN IN HIGHER
ED, BUT MAYBE YOU HAVEN'T.
BUT REALLY WHAT IT COMES DOWN
TO IS CAN YOU FIND A PERSON
THAT'S GOING TO LOVE THIS
SCHOOL, SPEND ALL OF THEIR
TIME AT THIS SCHOOL, AND
REALLY GROW THE SCHOOL.
BELIEVE IN THE MISSION.
AND BE THERE FOR THOSE
STUDENTS.
THAT'S THE WHOLE REASON WHY
WE'RE THERE.
AND THE WHOLE REASON WHY WE
LASTED 200 YEARS.
SO THAT'S THE KIND OF FIT.
YOU HAVE TO HONOR THE CULTURE
THAT'S THERE.
AND AS A SENIOR MILITARY
COLLEGE, WE WANT TO BE BETTER
AND BETTER EVERY YEAR.
>> Darren: YOU TALKED ABOUT
ONE OF THE GOALS YOU HOPED FOR
THE ENOUGH PRESIDENT IS THAT
TUITION CAN BE LOWERED.
WHAT IS TUITION NOW, WHAT
SHOULD IT BE?
>> WE PRICED NORWICH RIGHT IN
THE MIDDLE OF PRIVATE HIGHER
EDUCATION IN NEW ENGLAND.
THE TOTAL STICKER PRICE, NOT
ENOUGH PEOPLE PAY THE STICKER
PRICE, IS $50,000 A YEAR.
THE AVERAGE STUDENT, THOUGH,
AT NORWICH PAYS ABOUT 25,000 A
YEAR.
BUT WE NEED TO MAKE IT MORE
AFFORDABLE.
SO AFFORDABILITY IS ONE OF OUR
THREE KEYS GOING FORWARD TO
2035.
THE OTHER BEING RELEVANT.
IF YOUR ACADEMIC PROGRAMS
AREN'T RELEVANT, STUDENTS ARE
NOT COMING.
AND I HAVE A VERY SIMPLE
BUSINESS PLAN.
LASTLY, IT HAS TO BE FLEXIBLE.
TODAY'S STUDENTS WANT MORE
FLEXIBILITY THAN EVEN YOU WHEN
YOU WERE IN COLLEGE, OR I
WANTED CERTAINLY IN COLLEGE,
WE JUST KIND OF FOLLOWED
WHATEVER WAS LAID OUT.
THAT'S NOT THE KIDS TODAY.
SO WE HAVE TO BE A LOT MORE
FLEXIBLE THAN WE WERE BEFORE.
SO THE PRICE OF SCHOOL IS
REALLY DRIVEN BY HOW MUCH
MONEY I HAVE IN THE ENDOWMENT
THAT I CAN SUBSIDIZE THEM.
THAT'S WHY THE SCHOOLS THAT
ARE REALLY DOING WELL HAVE
LARGE ENDOWMENTS, AND THE ONES
THAT ARE STRUGGLING SIMPLY
DON'T HAVE THE FINANCIAL
RESOURCES TO DELIVER ON THE
PROMISE.
NORWICH IS DELIVERING ON THE
PROMISE.
>> Darren: YOU TALK ABOUT
FLEXIBILITY.
WHAT DOES THAT LOOK LIKE?
WHAT DO YOU ENVISION FOR
STUDENTS TO BE MORE FLEXIBLE
IN THEIR SCHEDULING?
>> IN ALL DIFFERENT KIND OF
MODALITIES.
I THINK WITH SO MUCH MORE
ONLINE OPPORTUNITY NOW, AND WE
ARE PUSHING MORE AND MORE
STUDENTS OVERSEAS, AND ALSO
STUDY AWAY, STUDY ABROAD.
WE HAVE STUDENTS IN CHINA, IN
THE FRENCH MILITARY ACADEMY,
ALSO IN PARIS, BERLIN,
GERMANY, YOU KNOW, AROUND THE
WORLD.
AND SO THEY WANT TO GO.
BUT YOU GOT TO KEEP THEM IN
LINE WITH THEIR COURSES.
SO THAT KIND OF FLEXIBILITY.
SOME OF THEM WILL COME FROM
OTHER SCHOOLS TO US, ABOUT A
QUARTER OF OUR STUDENTS ARE
TRANSFER STUDENTS.
THEY TRIED SOMEWHERE ELSE AND
DIDN'T LIKE IT, BUT THEN THEY
THINK, GEEZ, I REALLY LIKE
WHAT NORWICH IS DOING.
SO THEY COME TO US.
WE HAVE TO TAKE THEIR CREDITS
AND MAKE A PREF GRAM THAT FITS
THEM -- PROGRAM THAT FITS
THEM, ESPECIALLY THEM,
INDIVIDUALLY THEM.
THAT KIND OF FLEXIBILITY.
>> Darren: YOU TALKED ABOUT
ADDING 600 NEW STUDENTS.
THAT SEEMS LIKE AN AMBITIOUS
PLAN TO ME.
HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT DOING
THAT?
>> ALL RIGHT.
RIGHT NOW WE ARE AT 2400.
SO THERE'S 1600 CADETS AND 800
CIVILIAN STUDENTS.
SO WE'RE TRYING TO BUILD
SCHOOL JUST LIKE THE
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE.
TWO IN UNIFORM AND ONE
CIVILIAN FOR EVERY TWO.
YOU CAN'T GO TO WAR WITHOUT
YOUR CONTRACTOR.
BY THE WAY, WE THINK
DIFFERENTLY.
MILITARY PEOPLE SOMETIMES
THINK DIFFERENTLY THAN
CIVILIAN PEOPLE.
ONE TEAM, ONE FIGHT, DARREN.
WE HAVE TO KNOW HOW TO LEAD
MULTI-UNIT, MULTI-TASKED TEAMS
WITH DIFFERENT RELIGIONS,
DIFFERENT CULTURES, DIFFERENT
ETHNICITIES.
I MEAN, IT'S MUCH MORE
COMPLICATED NOW THAN I BECAME
AN ENSIGN IN 1968.
I MEAN, WE HAD ONE ENEMY, THE
SOVIET UNION.
WE WERE ALL WHITE MEN, WE WERE
ALL CHRISTIANS, WE ATE THE
SAME FOOD.
WE COULDN'T HAVE AN ARGUMENT.
THAT'S NOT TODAY'S MILITARY.
IT IS VERY COMPLICATED, VERY
COMPLEX, WHICH PUTS A LOT OF
PRESSURE ON YOUNG LEADERS.
SO WE WANT TO GET THEM READY
IN SCHOOL.
MAKE YOUR MISTAKES IN SCHOOL
SO WHEN YOU GET TO BE AN
ENSIGN OR SECOND LIEUTENANT
YOU ARE NOT MAKING A MISTAKE.
THAT'S WHERE WE NEED TO BE
TODAY.
AND I THINK THAT'S WHY I WANT
THEM OVERSEAS.
THEY WILL BE MUCH MORE
VALUABLE TO OUR GOVERNMENT,
ALSO TO INDUSTRY.
I MEAN, IT IS A GLOBAL
ECONOMY.
SO COMPANIES WANT STUDENTS
THAT ARE STUDIED ABROAD, SO WE
HAVE TO BUILD ALL OF THAT INTO
THE CURRICULUM.
MAKE IT FLEXIBLE ENOUGH SO
THEY CAN GO FOR A YEAR TO
CHINA AND STILL GET A DEGREE.
>> Darren: SPEAKING OF
STUDENTS, YOU GOT EMOTIONAL
WHEN NEAL WAS CHATTING WITH
YOU.
WHY?
>> WELL, THEY ARE VERY
IMPORTANT TO ME.
EVEN NOW I GET EMOTIONAL ABOUT
IT, BECAUSE THAT'S WHAT I'VE
COMMITTED MY LIFE TO DO.
I AM GETTING THEM READY FOR
LIFE.
I LOVE THIS AGE GROUP.
THEY ARE SO OPTIMISTIC, AND
THEY WILL LISTEN TO YOU, AND
WHEN EVERY ONE OF THEM
GRADUATES, THERE IS A LITTLE
PIECE OF ALL OF US, FACULTY,
STAFF, ME, GOING OFF WITH
THEM.
AND IT'S FABULOUS TO WATCH
THAT.
>> Darren: I WOULD LIKE TO ASK
YOU ABOUT ANOTHER TOPIC TO
KIND OF SWITCHING GEARS HERE
JUST A BIT.
THE GOVERNOR RECENTLY SIGNED
BURN PIT LEGISLATION, YOU WERE
THERE, IT HAPPENED AT NORWICH.
THIS FOLLOWED A WCAX CHANNEL 3
INVESTIGATION INTO THESE BURN
PITS MANY, MANY VERMONT
SOLDIERS SAYING IT MADE THEM
SICK, THEIR FAMILIES SAYING IT
MADE THEM SICK, INCLUDING
BRIGADIER MICHAEL HESTON, WHO
YOU KNEW.
>> MM-HMM.
HE WAS A GOOD FRIEND.
>> Darren: AND DIED.
AND I'M WONDERING WHAT YOU
THINK NEEDS TO HAPPEN IF THIS
LEGISLATION MAKES SENSE, AND
WHAT THE GOVERNMENT NEEDS TO
DO NOW.
>> WELL, IT WAS AN HONOR TO
HAVE THE GOVERNOR ON CAMPUS
ON, TO SIGN S111.
I WANT TO COMMEND YOU
PERSONALLY FOR THE EDWARD R.
MURROW AWARD.
I THINK WE WOULDN'T BE IN THIS
PLACE IF IT HADN'T HAVE BEEN
FOR YOU GUYS.
>> THANK YOU.
>> I DON'T WANT THIS TO BE
THIS GENERATION'S AGENT
ORANGE.
I AM A VIETNAM VET.
I WASN'T HURT BY AGENT ORANGE.
WE COULD HAVE BEEN, BUT THE
COAST GUARD GENERALLY, WHEN
WELL WE WERE OFF SHORE DIDN'T
GET ANY OF IT DRIFTING DOWN OF
THE AGENT ORANGE CHEMICALS.
BUT THIS REGISTRY IS VERY
IMPORTANT.
THESE, OUR VETERANS, BOTH
MILITARY AND CIVILIAN
CONTRACTORS WERE THERE.
REMEMBER, THIS IS NOT, AND
AGENCIES OF OUR GOVERNMENT
WERE ON THE GROUND.
THIS IS ANYBODY THAT WAS OVER
THERE.
THEY HAVE TO REGISTER.
I THINK THE GOVERNOR PUTTING
OUR HEALTH DEPARTMENT ON
ALERT, WE HAVE TO WATCH THESE
PEOPLE MUCH MORE CLOSELY TO
HELP THEM OUT, GET THEM GREAT
INFORMATION, BUT WE NEED TO
GET THIS DIAGNOSED MUCH
SOONER.
THERE ARE VERY RARE FORMS OF
CANCER.
CERTAINLY MIKE HAD A VERY RARE
FORM OF CANCER.
BUT IT TOOK A LONG TIME TO GET
IT DIAGNOSED.
AND I DON'T THINK WE ARE ALL
THAT AWARE ABOUT THINKING
ABOUT THE BURN PITS AND WHAT
WAS HAPPENING TO HIM
PHYSICALLY.
SO I'M THRILLED THAT THE
GOVERNOR DID IT, AND IT WAS
UNANIMOUS BY OUR LEGISLATURE,
BOTH THE HOUSE AND SENATE, SO
PROUD OF ALL OF THEM.
AND THIS IS THE FIRST STEP,
THOUGH.
I THINK NOW THE HARD WORK
HAPPENS.
WE GOT TO HELP EVERY ONE OF
THEM THAT'S SICK.
AND WE NEED TO DEAL WITH THAT
NOW.
>> Darren: LET'S GO BACK TO
YOUR RETIREMENT.
A YEAR FROM NOW.
WHAT'S THAT LAST DAY GOING TO
LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
>> I THINK IT WILL BE
INCREDIBLY EMOTIONAL.
BUT IT'S GOING TO BE FUN.
WE'LL HAVE PICKED OUR NEW
PRESIDENT BY THEN.
I WOULD HAVE HAD A MONTH OR
TWO, I HOPE, TO INTRODUCE HIM
TO ALL OUR DONORS AND BRING
HIM AROUND AND TEACH HIM ABOUT
WHAT'S HAPPENING AT SCHOOL AND
WHAT'S GOING ON, BUT MY WIFE
JAMIE AND I HAVE A CAMP AT
LAKE DUNNMORE.
WE ARE GOING TO LAKE DUNNMORE.
I PROMISED JAMIE I AM NOT
GOING TO DO ANYTHING MORE FOR
THE SUMMER.
AFTER THAT, ALL BETS ARE OFF.
I AM A HIGH INTENSITY GUY.
EVEN AT 74 BY THEN, I THINK I
AM GOING TO WANT TO KEEP
ADDING VALUE TO STUDENTS.
WE'LL SEE WHAT THAT PLANS OUT
TO BE.
I DON'T KNOW WHAT, DARREN.
BUT I AM GOING TO BE WATCHING
YOU, THOUGH.
I AM NOT GOING IT LOSE YOU, SO
I'M STILL IN TOWN.
>> Darren: PRESIDENT
SCHNEIDER, THANK YOU AND
CONGRATULATIONS.
>> THANKS.
GOOD TO BE WITH YOU.
>> Darren: THANK YOU.
STILL AHEAD, A WARNING ABOUT
WILD FOODS.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE
YOU TRY TO PICK YOUR OWN
TRENDY INGREDIENTS.
YOU'RE WATCHING CHANNEL 3'S
"YOU CAN QUOTE ME."
WE ARE BACK IN A MOMENT.
>> Darren: THERE IS MORE "YOU
CAN QUOTE ME" JUST AHEAD.
BUT FIRST, LET'S CHECK IN WITH
SCOTT FLEISHMAN TO SEE WHAT
THE SUNDAY MORNING NEWS CREW
IS WORKING ON.
>> GOOD MORNING, DARREN.
COMING UP ON THE CHANNEL 3
NEWS SUNDAY MORNING, TWO DOZEN
VERMONT FOOD VENDORS ARE IN
NEW YORK CITY THIS WEEK.
WE'RE TALKING FANCY FOOD WITH
VERMONT NUT-FREE CHOCOLATE.
WE WILL TELL YOU WHAT THESE
COMPANIES ARE LOOKING TO GET
OUT OF THIS WEEK.
AND IT'S SIX YEARS IN THE
MAKING, MADE IN VERMONT, THE
MOVIE IS FINALLY READY TO BE
RELEASED.
I DID A "MADE IN VERMONT"
SEGMENT WITH THESE FOLKS A
COUPLE YEARS AGO.
FINALLY THE MOVIE IS COMING
OUT.
WE WILL SPEAK TO A COUPLE OF
THE ACTORS IN THE FILM WHO HAD
A BIG PART IN MAKING THIS
POSSIBLE.
PLUS, ITS A SUNNY SUNDAY ON
TAP FOR MOST OF THE AREA.
DAVE WILL LET US KNOW HOW LONG
THE NICE WEATHER WILL LAST,
COMING UP AT 8:00 A.M.
>> Darren: SCOTT, THANK YOU.
UP NEXT ON "YOU CAN QUOTE ME,"
DANGEROUS DINING.
WHY FORAGING FOR YOUR OWN WILD
FOODS COULD END IN A MEAL
MISTAKE.
>> Darren: FORAGED FOODS ARE
BEING FOUND ON MORE AND MORE
DINNER TABLES.
THEY ARE EVEN SPROUTING UP ON
MENUS AT SOME OF OUR REGION'S
RESTAURANTS.
KNOW WHAT YOU ARE EATING,
BECAUSE FORAGING CAN SOMETIMES
TURN FATAL.
>> IT'S BECOMING VERY TRENDY.
>> Darren: TRENDY TREATS
GROWING IN THE WILD.
BEN LUCE AND HIS FAMILY
BELLYED UP FOR BREAKFAST
DURING A RECENT TRIP TO THEIR
VERMONT CAMP.
ON THE MENU, EGGS, TOAST, AND
RAMPS, HARVESTED IN THE NEARBY
WOODS.
>> WHICH ARE AN ONIONY,
GARLICY WILD ONION.
>> Darren: THEY WERE BUTTERY,
YUMMY.
SOON INTO A HIKE RIGHT AFTER
THE MEAL, THEY KNEW THEY'D
MADE A BIG MISTAKE.
>> I SUDDENLY FOUND THAT I
COULDN'T WALK VERY WELL.
I FELT THAT I HAD LEAD WEIGHTS
ON MY FEET.
AND THEN THE NAUSEA SET IN.
AND THE NAUSEA WAS
OVERWHELMINGLY EXTREME.
>> Darren: THIS WAS A PHOTO OF
THAT HIKE TAKEN JUST BEFORE HE
AND HIS WIFE GOT VERY ILL.
AT THAT TIME THEY DIDN'T KNOW
IT WAS ALMOST THEIR LAST.
>> I WAS COMPLETELY
INCAPACITATED.
>> Darren: SWEATING, VOMITING
AND THEN THEIR HEART RATES AND
BLOOD PRESSURE DROPPED, AND
FAST.
THEY STARTED TO PASS OUT.
LUCE BEGAN TO LOSE HIS VISION.
>> I REALLY WAS, I THINK, IN
JEOPARDY AT THAT POINT.
>> THEY REALIZED THE RAMPS
WERE NOT RAMPS AT ALL; AND A
FAMILY MEMBER WHO HADN'T
GOTTEN QUITE AS SICK YET
CALLED THE POISON CONTROL
CENTER.
>> POISON CONTROL TOLD US THEN
THAT IT WAS A CARDIAC ISSUE
AND WE HAD TO GET TO THE E.R.
>> Darren: THOSE RAMPS TURNED
OUT TO BE FALSE HELLEBORE, A
PLANT THAT CAN BE MISTAKEN FOR
RAMPS WHEN IT'S YOUNG.
LUCE AND HIS WIFE WERE DYING.
>> I FELT LIKE DEATH WAS
GRABBING ME AROUND THE THROAT.
IT REALLY FELT LIKE A HAND WAS
GRABBING ME AND JUST SEIZING
UP ALL THE MUSCLES HERE AND
CAUSING THE KIND OF CON VUMGSS
THAT WERE GOING ON.
-- CONVULSIONS.
DARE HIS WIFE'S BLOOD PRESSURE
DROPPED TO 20 OVER 40.
THEY SPENT 24 HOURS IN ICU.
IT TOOK TWO WEEKS TO FULLY
RECOVER.
HOW DANGEROUS WAS THIS?
>> IT CAN RANGE FROM VERY MILD
TOXICITY TO LIFE-THREATENING
TOXICITY AND DEATH.
>> Darren: DR. EIKE BLOHM
SPECIAL EYESES IN TOXICOLOGY
AT UVM MEDICAL CENTER AND THE
NORTHERN NEW ENGLAND POISON
CENTER, WHICH SAYS 70% OF
POISON CASES FROM EATING
PLANTS OR MUSHROOMS ARE
RELATED TO FORAGING MISTAKES.
FROM 2014 TO MAY OF THIS YEAR,
18 PEOPLE GOT SICK FROM FALSE
HELLEBORE ALONE.
14 OF THOSE CASES IN VERMONT.
IN THAT SAME TIME FRAME, 237
ADULTS GOT SICK FROM WILD
MUSHROOMS.
44 WERE VERMONTERS.
BUT DR. BLOHM SAID THE NUMBERS
DON'T ACCURATELY REFLECT THE
ENORMITY OF THE PLANT PROBLEM.
>> SO THESE CASES ARE VASTLY
UNDER-REPORTED?
>> YES.
A LOT OF PEOPLE GET A LICK
SICK, STAY AT HOME AND DON'T
GET HOME -- A LITTLE SICK.
WHEN THEY DO PRESENT TO THE
EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT SOMETIMES
THE ACTUAL CAUSE IS NOT
RECOGNIZED, AND THEREFORE IT
IS NOT REPORTED.
AND EVEN IF THE CAUSE IS
RECOGNIZED, IF THE POISON
CENTER IS NOT NOTIFIED OF
THIS, THEN IT DOESN'T GET
TRACKED.
>> Darren: DOCTORS OFTEN
MISDIAGNOSE THESE MEAL
MISTAKES.
PATIENTS PRESENT WITH SYMPTOMS
SIMILAR TO VIRAL ILLNESSES.
AND EVEN IF IT IS IDENTIFIED,
DEPENDING ON THE UNSAFE
EDIBLE, TREATMENT VARIES.
SOME POISONOUS PLANTS AND MUR
ROOMS HAVE -- MUSHROOMS HAVE
ANTI-DOTES.
SOME HAVE NO TREATMENT AT ALL.
>> IF YOU ARE NEW TO FORAGING
AND GO O.U. OUT BY YOURSELF,
THAT'S INCREDIBLY DANGEROUS.
>> Darren: RICHARD WITNESSING
ISN'T NEW TO FORAGE -- WITTING
IS KNOWN AS A WILD CRAFTER.
HE'S BEEN DOING IT FOR 20
YEARS, HARVESTING WILD
MUSHROOMS AND PLANTS.
>> THIS PURPLE FLOWER, WHICH
YOU WILL SEE GROWING ALL
AROUND HERE, DAME'S ROCKET.
IN THE EARLY SPRING THE GREENS
ARE GREAT FOR SALADS.
FLOWERS ARE A NICE GARNISH.
>> Darren: ALSO A CHEF, USING
FOR AND FOODS AT HIS --
FORAGED FOODS AT HIS CATERING
COMPANY.
WITTING TAUGHT A COURSE ON
WILD CRAFTING.
>> THIS IS A PATCH HERE ON THE
BANKS.
JAPANESE KNOTWEED.
NIGHT NOT ONLY PROVIDES FOOD
SOURCES, BUT MAKES USE OF
INVASIVE SPECIES, LIKE THIS.
>> IN ITS YOUNG STAGE, WHEN
IT'S ABOUT THIS TALL, IT IS
KIND OF A CROSS BETWEEN
RHUBARB AND ASPARAGUS.
>> Darren: HE SAYS THE SUDDEN
POPULARITY OF WILD CRAFTING
STEMS FROM THE FARM-TO-TABLE
FOOD MOVEMENT.
PEOPLE EXPANDING ON THE PUSH
FOR SUSTAINABLE, LOCALLY
SOURCED FOODS.
>> IF YOU GET IT EARLY ENOUGH,
YOU CAN SLICE IT UP, FRY IT,
YOU KNOW, I JUST DO THE
CLASSIC LIKE BUTTER, LEMON
JUICE, HERBS.
>> Darren: AND COOKS LOOKING
FOR NEW FLAVORS.
WILD FOODS NOW FEATURED AT
MANY RESTAURANTS.
BUT WITH THE DO'S, COME THE
DON'T'S, HE SAYS.
>> ASSUME IT'S POISONOUS UNTIL
YOU KNOW BETTER.
IDENTIFICATION IS KEY.
LIKE YOU REALLY HAVE TO KNOW
HOW TO IDENTIFY A PLANT AND A
MUSHROOM
YOU NEED TO LEARN ITS
CHARACTERISTICS, YOU NEED TO
LEARN IF THERE'S LOOK-ALIKES.
>> Darren: AND HE DR. BLOHM
POINT OUT THE TOP FIVE MOST
DANGEROUS WILD DINING
BLUNDERS.
FIRST, THE AMANITA.
TOXIC MUSHROOM.
SECOND, LILY OF THE VALLEY,
SOMETIMES MISTAKEN FOR WILD
GARLIC.
THIRD, FALSE MORELS, CONFUSED
WITH ACTUAL MOREL MUSHROOMS.
FOURTH HEMLOCK, WHICH CAN LOOK
LIKE WILD CARROTS.
FIFTH, FALSE HELLEBORE, WHICH
MADE LUCE SICK.
>> WILL YOU EAT FORAGED FOODS
AGAIN?
>> I THINK THE MORAL OF THIS
STORY IS IF YOU ARE GOING TO
FORAGE FOR WILD FOODS, YOU
HAVE TO KNOW WHAT YOU ARE
DOING.
SO I GUESS IT ALL COMES DOWN
TO, AS THEY SAY, AS A PHYSICS
PROFESSOR ALSO, DO YOUR
HOMEWORK.
>> Darren: THE DOCTOR TELLS ME
HE DOESN'T EAT FORAGED FOODS,
EVEN IF OFFERED AT
RESTAURANTS, AND ADVISES
AGAINST IT UNLESS YOU ARE
CERTAIN IT WAS HARVESTED BY A
PROFESSIONAL LIKE WITTING.
HERE'S MORE OF OUR
CONVERSATION ABOUT THAT.
WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE IF
SOMEONE, YOU KNOW, IT'S
BECOMING KIND OF TRENDY IN
VERMONT, YOU SEE IT ON
RESTAURANT MENUS.
WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE TO PEOPLE
WHO ARE CONSIDERING DOING
THIS?
>> I HAVE TO ADVISE CAUTION.
IF YOU GO FORAGING WITH A VERY
EXPERIENCED FORAGER, IT IS A
RELATIVE LIVE SAFE THING TO
DO.
IF YOU GO TO A RESTAURANT TO
EAT A FORAGED MEAL, YOU DON'T
KNOW WHO THE FORAGER WAS.
YOU HOPE THAT THEY KNOW WHAT
THEY WERE DOING.
YOU HOPE THEY PICKED THE RIGHT
PLANTS.
BUT THERE'S NO GUARANTEE.
IF YOU ARE NEW TO FORAGING AND
YOU GO OUT BY YOURSELF, THAT
IS INCREDIBLY DANGEROUS.
>> Darren: IS THERE A WAY TO
TREAT A PATIENT WHO COMES IN
AFTER INGESTING ONE OF THESE
PLANTS?
>> IT DEPENDS ON THE PLANT
THAT WAS INGESTED.
SOME PLANTS HAVE ANTI-DOTES,
OTHERS HAVE TREATMENTS.
THERE ARE SOME THAT HAVE NO
TREATMENT AT ALL.
SO AUTUMN CROCUS, FOR EXAMPLE,
NO TREATMENT FOR THE TALKS
IGSITY FOR THIS.
-- TOXICITY.
FALSE HELLEBORE, WE CAN TREAT
THE SYMPTOMS.
WE CAN ALLEVIATE THE SYMPTOMS.
FOR OTHER PLANTS LIKE LILY OF
THE VALLEY, OR FALSE MOREL,
TALKS IGSITY, THERE ARE ACTUAL
ATTNTIDOTES.
BUT YOUR PHYSICIAN MUST
RECOGNIZE WHAT THE TOXICITY
IS.
THESE TOXICITIES ARE VERY
RARE, AND THEREFORE THEY OFTEN
REMAIN UNRECOGNIZED.
>> Darren: YOU MENTIONED ALSO
THE FALSE MOREL, FOR EXAMPLE,
YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO EVEN
GET AN ANSWER OUT OF THE
PATIENT WHEN THEY COME IN IF
THEY ARE PRESENTING.
>> THAT'S CORRECT.
A FALSE MOREL HAS A TOXIN IN
IT THAT CAUSES A SEIZURE THAT
WILL NOT RESPOND TO
TRADITIONAL MEDICATIONS.
IF YOU HAVE EPILEPSY, FOR
EXAMPLE, WE HAVE A HOST OF
MEDICATIONS THAT CAN TREAT THE
SEIZURE.
BUT THE IS HE SEIZURE FROM
THAT MUSHROOM WOULD NOT
RESPOND.
YOU REQUIRE A SPECIFIC
ANTIDOTE WHICH IS NOT USUALLY
GIVEN FOR SEIZURES AND
REQUIRES A VERY ASTUTE
PHYSICIAN TO FIGURE OUT THAT
THIS IS WHAT YOU TOOK, IF YOU
ARE UNABLE TO GIVE THAT
HISTORY, BECAUSE YOU ARE
SEIZING, YOU CAN'T TELL US
THAT YOU FORAGED MUSHROOMS AND
ATE A SALAD WITH MUSHROOMS
YESTERDAY.
>> Darren: WITHOUT NAMING THE
RESTAURANT'S NAME, YOU DON'T
EAT ANYTHING THAT'S BEEN
FORAGED.
>> THAT'S CORRECT.
AS TEMPTING AS IT IS TO SEE
SOMETHING ALL NATURAL AND
GROWN IN THE WILD ON THE MENU
IN A RESTAURANT, I EXERCISE A
LITTLE MORE CAUTION, AND I MAY
BE BIASED BY THE EXPERIENCE I
HAVE BY WORKING HERE AND
TAKING CALLS AT THE POISON
CENTER, I WOULD RATHER NOT
ENGAGE IN FORAGED MEALS.
>> Darren: IF SOMEONE IS
THINKING PERHAPS THAT THEY MAY
HAVE GOTTEN SICK FROM A
FORAGED MEAL, WHAT SHOULD THEY
DO?
>> IF YOU HAVE EATEN A FORAGED
MEAL AND YOU DEVELOP NAUSEA,
ABDOMINAL PAIN AND VOMITING,
THAT IS THE TIME TO PRESENT TO
THE HEALTHCARE FACILITY
IMMEDIATELY.
SOMETIMES THAT'S ALL IT IS,
BUT YOU DON'T KNOW IF THAT
TOXICITY WILL GET WORSE NEXT
COUPLE HOURS, BECAUSE THAT
DEPENDS ON WHAT YOU ATE AND
HOW MUCH YOU'VE EATEN.
AND ONCE GET TO A POINT WHERE
YOU CAN NO LONGER CALL FOR
HELP, YOU CAN NO LONGER
DESCRIBE WHAT YOU'VE EATEN,
YOU PLACE YOUR PHYSICIAN AT A
SIGNIFICANT DISADVANTAGE IN
TREATING YOU.
PLANS HAVE EVOLVED.
SOMETIMES WE USE THE CHEMICAL
THAT A PLANT HAS DEVELOPED AS
A DEFENSE TO OUR BENEFIT.
FOR EXAMPLE, I JUST DRANK A
CUP OF COFFEE, CAFFEINE IS AN
INSECTICIDE, PROTECTING THE
PLANT FROM BEING EATEN BY
INSECTS, IF YOU EAT HOT
PEPPER, CAP SAYS INCH IS WHAT
THE PLANT -- CAPSAICIN IS WHAT
THE PLANT DEVELOPED TO NOT BE
EATEN, BUT WE USE IT FOR
SPICES.
OTHER PLANTS GROWN IN THE WILD
HAVE DEVELOPED OTHER DEFENSES
THAT ARE FATAL, EVEN TO US,
INCLUDING THINGS LIKE THE
AUTUMN CROCUS OR LILY OF THE
VALLEY, OR FALSE MOREL.
THIS IS THEIR SURVIVAL
STRATEGY.
THEY ARE POISONOUS SO THEY
DON'T GET EATEN BY ANIMALS OR
HUMANS.
>> Darren: IF YOU GET SICKENED
BY FORAGED FOODS, HERE'S THE
NUMBER TO THE NORTHERN NEW
ENGLAND POISON CENTER:
1-800-222-1222.
OR CALL 911.
THAT WILL DO IT FOR CHANNEL
3'S "YOU CAN QUOTE ME."
MORE NEWS NEXT.
TAKE CARE AND HAVE A GREAT
SUNDAY, EVERYBODY.
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