|Late blight yields bitter harvest|
The Boston Globe - 7/31/2009.By Bina Venkataraman – Lincoln, Mass: Slumped in his tractor, Ari Kurtz looked out at his fields, where rotting fruit and gnarled plants fringed with dead leaves were all that remained of what should have been a bountiful tomato harvest. In just the past week, Kurtz, the farm manager at Lindentree Farm, lost the season’s crop, a half-acre field that at this time of year typically yields up to 2,400 pounds per week, to a contagious fungus that has spread to farms and home gardens across the Northeast.
|Why not start “Agri-Corps”, for a new generation of farmers|
Common Dreams - 7/31/2009.By Lisa M. Hamilton – When the Agriculture Department released its 2007 census recently, the news appeared surprisingly good: For the first time since World War II, the United States did not lose farms, it gained them – 75,810, to be exact, for a total of 2.2 million. But on closer inspection, the numbers aren’t so hopeful. The discrepancy stems from this tricky question: What is a farm? The census has changed its definition nine times since 1850, most recently to “any place from which $1,000 or more of agricultural products were produced and sold, or normally would have been sold, during the census year.”
|FSA report on organic food – our response|
Soil Association UK - 7/31/2009.As you may be aware, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has just published a report on organic food, which claims that there are no significant benefits to be gained from eating organic. This is a serious piece of research, and the Soil Association will examine its conclusion seriously – however at first glance the research appears to be a fairly limited piece of analysis.