Archive for the ‘Agriculture’ Category

Eating Animals, a new documentary about factory vs traditional farming

Friday, June 15th, 2018

Chicken Factory

By Catherine Haug, June 15, 2018 (photo, right, from factory farming.org)

More and more people are learning about the harm of factory farming – to the animals, and to the people who eat them – but many don’t know how they should be raised. Especially people in cities who have never seen a real farm or seen a chicken or cow in its natural environment.

There’s a new movement afoot to turn this around, and that’s the major topic of this film that is now available in certain theaters around the country (the nearest theater from Bigfork is in Seattle WA).

We – every one of us – are a big part of the problem, because we buy our meats, eggs and dairy from a supermarket where most of these products come from factory-raised animals. We need to start asking for the source of these products, and then look into how the animals are raised, then spread the word. Then switch to locally farmed products, where you can visit the farmer and see for yourself if his animals are raised humanely.

You can read about the film and see the 2 minute trailer (2), or view the trailer on YouTube, below. You can also purchase the book; see Amazon (3) for more about the book, or go to your local library. (more…)

All about bees, our precious pollinators

Saturday, May 5th, 2018

Honeybee

By Catherine Haug, May 5, 2018 (Photo, right, from Bug Guide (5))

I’ve written many posts about the plight of bees, and how to help our native mason bees by providing homes for them. But I’ve not written much about these amazing animals. I hope to correct that by bringing your attention to an article by a British blogger, Clive Harris, who requested I provide a link to his post: The Ultimate Guide to British Bees: How to Protect Their Declining Population (1). While he writes from Britain, we have many of the same bees including honey bees, bumblebees and other ground-dwelling bees, and mason bees. He also goes into a lot of detail about bees:

  • An amazing video about the waggle dance;
  • How do bees make honey and beeswax?
  • How do bees help the garden?
  • What’s the difference between bees and wasps?
  • 4 things you can do to help bees.

His is a long post, but full of lots of great information – share with your kids/grandkids! See Reference (1), below.

Below I include:

  • 3 videos about the waggle dance, and how scientists discovered it’s meaning;
  • List of prior articles on The EssentiaList about bees, including John Holbrook’s articles on mason bees and bee motels;
  • References

(more…)

Online documentary-series: GMOs Revealed

Saturday, March 17th, 2018

Frankenfood

By Catherine Haug, March 17, 2018, and updated same date, for the start date of the series (Image, right, used by permission from the Organic Consumer’s Association)

This new 9-part series, hosted by Dr. Patrick Gentempo, will be available for free viewing beginning today, March 17, 2018  The first episode (almost 2 hours long) is available now (the version on YouTube (1) says Aug 22-30, but that was in 2017). They must be doing a replay now, or this could be an updated version . This first episode features interviews with Dr. Zach Bush, Vani Hari, and Gunnar Lovelace.

You can register (2) to watch the entire 9-part series, GMOs Revealed, for free, prior to the  date the series premier begins, and also any day during the 9-days (but you may not be able to see prior days’ episodes). Each day, a new episode is up for 24 hours and the previous day’s episode is no longer available, for a total of 9 episodes in 9 days. See reference 2 for the link to register for this free showing. (more…)

McDonald’s invests in regenerative, sustainable agriculture

Wednesday, December 20th, 2017
No-Till Farming

No-Till Farming

By Catherine Haug, Dec 20, 2017 (image right,  is from Fairfax County .gov (2))

I’ve never been a fan of fast food, and avoid it. But this news about McDonald’s (from a Mercola article (1)), is good news for the planet.

I’ve written before about regenerative agriculture, and how important it is for the planet, not to mention for our personal health. Now McDonald’s wants to get on the regenerative ag bandwagon with a pilot program to assess the ability of its cattle ranchers to sequester carbon in soil by implementing regenerative grazing practices. If this pilot program is a success, it could give a big boost to regenerative agriculture in general.

Read the Mercola article (1) for more about McDonald’s pilot program. And read on for more about what I believe it involves, and its benefits. (more…)

“Food Evolution”: New GMO technology even worse than Roundup-resistance

Monday, August 28th, 2017

Frankenfood

By Catherine Haug, Aug 28, 2017 (Photo, right, from Organic Consumers Association (14), used with permission)

By now we should all be familiar with herbicide ag chemicals like Roundup, and harm they can cause to the herbicide-resistant crops on which it is sprayed. But the harm they cause to humans who eat those crops, and the soil in which they are grown, is not as well known. For example:

  • Roundup is a patented broad-spectrum antibiotic, which means that as the plant takes it up, it moves to the roots where it kills the soil microbiome that enable to plant to take up nutrients from the soil. This explains why after just a few plantings of the Roundup-resistant crops, they suffer root damage and do not yield a good crop. And other crops planted in the same soil likewise suffer root damage.
  • Its antibiotic nature also means that if you eat any part of a Roundup-resistant plant, you are taking up this antibiotic which then kills/damages the microbiome in your mouth and gut, lowering your resistance to disease and interaction between your brain and your primitive brain (the gut), which can ultimately lead to inflammation in both organs. Inflammation in the brain can manifest as depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s.

And while the harm of existing GMOs is more broad than this one example, new GMO technology pose even more harm. With advances in ag-chemical research, genetic modification techniques are even more sophisticated, and can do even more harm to nature as a whole, including humans. To me, this is downright scary – even more so than the worst horror film you could watch. (more…)

Honey bees vs pesticides; Boom in organics; Monsanto Tribunal

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

By Catherine Haug, July 26, 2017 (image, right, from organic.org (2))

I subscribe to the Montana Organic Association “Organic Matters” magazine (1); the Spring issue this year has a couple articles I’d like to share with our ESP readers in the form of transcriptions of each article:

  • Bee Victory
  • Organic Agriculture Research Act
  • International Monsanto Tribunal Verdict

Note that I have added comments – in square brackets – to these transcriptions, and include links to related articles on this site.  (more…)