Tag Archives: organic farming

Organic farming in poor countries could double food production within a decade

From a UK newspaper, The Guardian:

A move by farmers in developing countries to ecological agriculture, away from chemical fertilisers and pesticides, could double food production within a decade, a UN report says.

Insect-trapping plants in Kenya and ducks eating weeds in Bangladesh’s rice paddies are among examples of recommendations for feeding the world’s 7 million people, which the UN says will become about 9 billion by 2050.

“Agriculture is at a crossroads,” says the study by Olivier de Schutter, the UN special reporter on the right to food, in a drive to depress record food prices and avoid the costly oil-dependent model of industrial farming. Continue reading

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“Pay the farmer or pay the hospital”

11 year old, homeschooled Birke Baehr has decided he wants to be an organic farmer when he grows up, instead of an NFL football player. Thanks to Augie at the Journal of Natural Food and Healing for posting this:

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Does “free range” labeling make organic farming look bad? — is that an accident?

Judith McGeary, Esq., Founding Board of Director Member, Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund and President, Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance takes a closer look at the research sited in this Atlantic Monthly May 2010 Article.

Is Free-Range Meat Making Us Sick? by James McWilliams

The author, James McWilliams tries to claim that sustainably raised foods are “making people sick,” but the studies he cites show no such thing.

While McWilliams portrays “free range” as the alternative to factory farms or CAFOs, this is simply wrong.  Under U.S. law, “free range” means only that the animals are given “access to the outdoors.”  http://www.fsis.usda.gov/FactSheets/Meat_&_Poultry_Labeling_Terms/index.asp

While some small sustainable farms use the term, “free range” operations are often still factory farms, in which thousands of chickens or hogs are housed in a large building with a door leading to a dry lot with no grass in it.  “Free range” operations often use the same poor-quality feed, antibiotics, vaccines, and hormones as regular CAFOs, contrary to McWilliams’ claim in his concluding paragraph. Continue reading

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“Organic farming has sold out and lost its way” — Sir Julian Rose

Here’s an excerpt from a recent story on The Ecologist blog. Thanks to Gordon Watson for drawing it to our attention:

BBC photo of Sir Julian Rose. Click on picture to go to the BBC web-page this photo is from.

“The dreams of the early organic pioneers have been subsumed into a rush for global supply chains, strict regulations and fast-selling brands

Back in 1975, when I first started converting my farm to organic agriculture, there were no standards for production and no rule book. Continue reading

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Why the U.S. “Food Safety” bills should worry even rich bankers on Wall Street

Here’s a fascinating proposition, from Patrick Henning:

Sure they may be rich enough to have a plane in every garage, but if S-510 is allowed to pass the Senate, even the super rich may eventually not be able to buy any food worth eating.

In the 1980s, a British psychiatrist lived in the US.  He was making a great deal more money than he could ever have made in the UK but for financial reasons, he went home.  He returned because his daughter had a medical condition and he said that he could never be rich enough in the US to be sure she got adequate care, whereas in the UK, even on a considerably smaller salary, he knew she would be covered by the health system there.

Wall Street brokers are not immune from their own fears of threatening things happening in the world.  Out of fear for their own lives, they do the opposite of that psychiatrist.  They hope to be immune from world issues by amassing unheard of wealth.  And they have the money, already, through stealing from everyone else in the country. Continue reading

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