Part 3: Despite a perpetual cold shoulder from the land grant agricultural establishment and the commercial food industry, organic agriculture grew steadily if silently during the 1980s. Each regional farmer group developed its own set of standards that specified the conditions with which a farmer must comply for their farm and the food it produced to be certified, labeled and sold as organic.
Part 2: However insightful it was, the organic vision that Howard and his peers, notably Lady Eve Balfour in England and J.I. Rodale in America, had outlined by 1950 was incompatible with the changes then transforming commercial agriculture. The components of this transformation were not all that new – chemically derived fertilizers and pesticides were introduced in the nineteenth century and hybrid seeds and mechanized tractors became commercially available during the 1920s.
In Claire Hope Cummings book, Uncertain Peril, she writes about the importance of preserving biodiversity, and native plant species.
Claire Hope Cummings, in this third segment of interviews hones in upon the essential problems plaguing our agriculture system, she argues is a direct result of the industrialization of agriculture. “Our bodies are not machines”, Cummings reminds us, all the parts of a biological (agriculture) system must remain healthy if we are to produce healthy […]
Permaculture: the use of ecology as the basis for designing integrated systems of food production, housing, appropriate technology, and community development. Permaculture is built upon an ethic of caring for the earth and interacting with the environment in mutually beneficial ways. —National Sustainable Information Service (ATTRA) In this 4-part series, journalist, environmentalist, and author of […]