Miolea Organic Farm

  (Adamstown, Maryland)
Organic Farming from a City Boy's Perspective
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Growing for Health

There is institutional advertising that a major seed manufacturer is playing over the radio airwaves.  It is about how farming uses so much water and that their genetically engineered seeds will use less water and yield more food and how this is going to help farmers world-wide.  If that is true, why is this major seed manufacturer suing American farmers for patent infringement?  The infringement, by the way, is caused by pollen drift.  Pollen drift, think about that, bees, wind, birds and insects all carry pollen.  Pollen from Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) fields or even trucks carrying gmo products drift into neighboring fields and boom, the company sues the farmer for patent infringement.  In addition, the court rulings have backed up the company not the farmer.

When pollen drift is as natural and inevitable as the sunrise why is the farmer on the hook for stopping GMO pollen drift?  Go to www.hulu.com and search for the "Future of Food".  It is a documentary on how genetic engineering was accomplished, how seeds are patented and then used as a big stick to force farmers into the herbicide ready club and how pollen drift allows Monsanto to sue farmers.  However, in one of the greatest examples of turning the tables Wood Prairie Farms, an organic potato farm, has brought a class action lawsuit against Monsanto for contaminating their organic potatoes.  Now that is fighting fire with fire.

We are at a cross roads in our concepts of food, where you see grass root efforts like the Slow Food, buy local, urban farming and support local farms movements.  We have groups like Ark of Taste, which is a movement to bring back heritage breeds from pigs, cows and chickens to tomatoes and everything else that has been genetically modified to fit the needs of the profit motive not the taste for consumers.  From my standpoint, nasty chemicals on the food and pathogens cause health problems.  Recall after recall, year after year, has become commonplace because the industrial food complex is making people seriously ill, with some resulting in death.  What is worse is that recalls are a relatively new phenomenon.  Did we have recalls in the sixties and seventies?  My mind is going but I do not know of any.

We have had recalls because people are getting sick and we are hearing more and more about bacteria becoming anti-biotic resistant.  We know that Atrizine is an endocrine disrupter.  The endocrine system in the human body regulates hormonal balance.  Studies recently found that high levels of Atrizine are castrating and feminizing other predictor species.  Predictor species like bass and frogs have similar physiological make ups as humans, hence “predictor”.  Scientist look at predictor species with the supposition that what happens to them is an indication of what can happen to humans.  Atrizine is one of the most used chemicals by the IFC.

Then there is taste, remember taste, when tomatoes were sweet, soft, watery spheres of goodness.  Which would you pick to eat, a tomato from the grocery store or one out of the garden?  So far, every single person that I have asked that question picks the latter.  Why?  Because there came a time when the IFC turned the tomato into a bottom line calculation and its taste was compromised for its longevity.  As was most vegetables and fruit.

An organic plant struggles to get its nutrients out of the ground.  When a predator attacks the plant, the plant releases its own sent that attracts bugs that are predators or parasites of the bug eating its leaves.  This does not work with a heavy infestation but if the plant survives, it grows stronger and has a better taste then a plant that was sprayed with synthetic fertilizers and insecticides.  That is why when you grow fruits and vegetables you want to get native plants in your own area.  The fauna has lived and adapted to the environment.  That means they have adapted and survived the bugs, fungi etcetera.

I trust my taste buds, I know what is on my plants, I know that the more we allow large corporations to genetically modify food the greater susceptibility we all face for unknown genetic mutation, and greater risk of bacterial out breaks caused by anti-biotic resistance.  That is why more than ever supporting your local farmer is important.  It really is cheaper and healthier for everyone in the end.  

 Buy Local: Every dollar you spend keeps local growers growing.

 

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