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Friday, August 04, 2006

 

Canadians Saying No to Pig Factories

No more pig factories in Quebec have led to more in eastern Ontario and now the MPP party wants them treated the same as other factories. Oh, Canada!

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Saturday, July 29, 2006

 

Local Infrastructure

Here are details of the creation of a local meat infrastructure in the NY area: Local Meat

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Tuesday, July 25, 2006

 

UC Davis ASI

Thomas Tomich will lead UC Davis' Agricultural Sustainability Institute which is a multi-disciplinary program with local and global goals.

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Monday, July 24, 2006

 

Next Farm Bill

Reading about the 2002 Farm Bill today and came across this article from "The Nation" dated less than three weeks from before the bill became law. A little late but just in time for it to be news. Now is the time to be debating the next farm bill not in the days before votes are traded for favors. It still is time to realize that it is a Food Bill as well as a Farm Bill -- The Farm and Food Bill.

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We're Better Than You

This one is a little thick on the we're better than you because we eat organic vibe:
Jenny Pirc, ""I think it's a values kind of thing," Pirc said. "If you have to talk them them into it, they're not really the type of people who would do it."

Also the article finishes with the supposition that Wal-Mart increasing its organic supply will increase prices. Wal-Mart is going to peg their organic prices to conventional prices and that is the real pricing problem. Increase or decrease shouldn't matter as long as the price is the Real Price. Is Wal-Mart's increased supply of organic going to affect the Real Price of organic? Farmers have expressed concern that Wal-Mart will seek the bottom as they do to all of their suppliers. Since there is a booming market for this local (American) farmers will not have to sell to them but can retain their crops for their current markets. This, conventional wisdom holds, will shift production overseas. There is a three year lag in converting land to organic so it is not as if Wal-Mart can flood the market with cheap organic overnight. This will be interesting.

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Organic in Indiana

Article in the Indy Star stemmed off of the Quaid article. It is interesting to see the lagtime of this article. There are more details and a little local flavor added but the basis is Quaid.

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Pitfall of Organic

Nice op-ed from Craig Underwood that raises the question of sustainability of organic methods. He supports a middle ground. There is a lot of logic to that. Being dogmatically tied to organic is as closed minded as thinking it is only for granola munching hippies or urban elites.

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Way up north

In northern Wisconsin farmers are working to figure out a sustainable model that works near Lake Superior. Paul DeMain mentions that the Amazon is not the only natural drugstore, so are many plants that are native to Wisconsin woods.

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Sunday, July 23, 2006

 

Local Crop Failures

What happens to the local food model when the crops fail in a locality? The east coast is getting swamped and strawberry fields are washing out, California stone fruit crops are having an off year and Governor Jim Doyle of Wisconsin has called a state of emergency. Emergency irrigation will be allowed under supervision of the Department of Natural Resources and the crops will be alright.

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Saturday, July 22, 2006

 

Fresh Direct

Rachel Mooneyis her own local distribution center. Hats off to her. There needs to be good stories too.

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IDs for Piggies

In order to stop the spread of dangerous pathogens the piggies may get ID'd. There seems to be some hesitation toward being able to figure out where the pig came from. What is there to hide?

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How Fat are Happy Pigs?

Since the report from the USDA confirming pork's whiteness was first reported I've noticed the news treated with a range of view points from positive negative with a little neutral. Here is the report: Pork as lean as chicken. In summation, a pork tenderloin is as lean as a boneless skinless chicken breast. They probably taste very similar as well. There was a lot of pride in the fact that fat had been reduced but protein levels were maintained. The question is what kind of pork is this, industrial pork. I wonder how some Niman Ranch pig would do. How about something from Heritage Farms or Flying Pig in upstate. What would it cost to replicate the experiment with delicious pork, with Pork, a red meat?

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Not on point but important

An instructor at UW is now in trouble for his ideas about 9/11. Here is the article on CNN.com. This is a little off the topic of this blog but I went to Madison and ideas are important. Go to this link for several articles on Barrett: The Capital Times.

Barrett's website: MUJCA.com

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Friday, July 21, 2006

 

Organic Valley Expanding in WI

Organic Valley Co-op in Wisconsin is building a new high-tech processing facility. Good for them. Wisconsin has seen the total number of its dairy farms decrease in the past decade but the number of organic ones increase dramatically. Long live "America's Dairyland."

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ps blogger.com thinks I'm a robot so I now have to verify each post.

 

Past Organic in Upstate NY

People that insist on organic should try to be open to the idea that eating local is very important. Here is an article from upstate that makes the point well: Albany Times Union

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Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation

New CAFO, well not a CAFO since 2,200 pigs is below the limit, has won court approval. Shouldn't common sense say that if my neighbors are going to take me to court over how I am going to raise these animals maybe I should reevaluate my plan. Lots of Pig Poo

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The Ethical Gourmet and Two Other Cookbooks

Jay Weinstein has a new cookbook, The Ethical Gourmet, now on bookshelves. Here is a sample: The Ethical Gourmet.

In fairness to the ladies here are two others that have been out for sometime:

Melissa’s Great Book of Produce: Everything You Need to Know About Fresh
Fruits and Vegetables, By Cathy Thomas, John Wiley, 326 pp., $29.95

Grub, Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen, By Anna Lappé and Bryant Terry
Tarcher/Penguin, 352 pp., $18.95

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Eat Illadelphia

Sustainable organic produce grown inside Philadelphia, yes. Plus John Smith of the White Dog Cafe Foundation counters the point that organic can't provide everything for everyone now:
“A farm like this isn't going to provide food for the entire neighborhood,” he says, “but the more successful models we have, the more we can prove the viability of urban agriculture and grow more accessible food.”

Philly is third in the country on SustainLane'sFood and Ag rankings. Madison, WI was not big enough to make the rankings, the bigger cities are just scared of the biggest Farmer's Market in the country.

More eat philly news: Get it local

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Feral Pigs

Feral pigs have been getting some press on the west coast. California has them on the mainland and on islands off the coast but some of the best visuals come from this article on Hawaiian feral pigs. Hunters will corner them with dogs and then kill them with a knife. That seems like a situation that could go either way.

Two more pieces of tropical pork: Hawaiian Pigs Gone Wild and Don't Forget About the Children

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Granola Fueled

The state of Oregon is organizing organic information for its farmers: Statesman Journal. The lack of easy to find information for farmers was mentioned twice in the Quaid article a couple of days ago. There is the information, but it feels scattered. When three agencies are needed to certify one farm people become confused. Here is the site for the Organic Sustainable Agriculture Resource Center.

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Organic Demand Outpacing Supply in Oklahoma

This article has happy things to say about organic food but says that current supply can't meet demand, and that is what critics of organic have been saying. You can't feed the masses. Oh those critics.

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Generation Organic

Off the nipple and straight to the organic table (wonder what it would take to certify breast milk as organic). Let them eat cake?

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