Media/News Archive

Considerations for Out-Wintering the Organic Dairy Herd: Webinar by eOrganic

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

eOrganic

Source: Tony Fischer

Join eOrganic for a webinar on considerations for out-wintering the organic dairy herd by Dr. Brad Heins. The webinar will take place on Thursday, November 20, 2014 at 11 AM Pacific Time, 12 PM Mountain, 1 PM Central, 2 PM Eastern Time. The webinar is free and open to the public, and advance registration is required. Click here to register.

Out-wintering cattle involves keeping livestock outside for some or all of the winter. In this webinar, Dr. Brad Heins will describe a study that evaluated the effect of two winter housing systems on organic dairy production, somatic cell counts (SCC), body weight, body condition scores (BCS), and dry matter intake (DMI). The study included cows that were housed outdoors on a straw pack and indoors in a compost-bedded pack barn at the University of Minnesota’s West Central Research and Outreach Center in Morris, MN. Heins will also describes some basic considerations when out-wintering organic dairy herds, including access to adequate feed, water, and shelter. Read Full Article »

Are These Nicotine-Like Insecticides Killing Bees?

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

Modern Farmer
by Brett Essler

Source: William Warby

Halfway between Düsseldorf and Cologne lies Monheim am Rhein, Germany, a town of about 40,000 tucked into a bend of the Upper Rhine River. Here you will find the Bayer CropScience Facility, a sprawling, 160-acre campus that is home to the Bee Care Center, where the 150-year-old company’s top researchers on honeybee health come together.

Four hundred miles away, Brighton, England’s Stanmer Park — a nature reserve reached by a narrow, dirt road not far from the University of Sussex — is a study in contrast. Just past a large mansion built in 1722 (and once home to King George IV’s mistress) sits a collection of small, overgrown organic farming plots, beautifully unkempt meadows and the occasional large-scale sculpture. This is where Dave Goulson, University of Sussex biology professor and one of the world’s foremost bumblebee experts, studies the effects of neonicotinoids, a kind of pesticide, on pollinators. Read Full Article »

Syngenta Faces Dozens of Lawsuits Over GMO Seed

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

LaCrosse Tribune
by David Pitt

syngenta-logoDES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Agrochemicals giant Syngenta is facing a growing number of lawsuits challenging its release of a genetically modified corn seed that China had not approved for import, with losses to farmers estimated to be at least $1 billion.

More than 50 lawsuits have been filed in 11 major corn-growing states, including Illinois, Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska with hundreds more being prepared. Some suits are from farmers represented by individual attorneys, others are class-action lawsuits representing hundreds more.

A federal court panel that manages complex lawsuits involving large numbers of plaintiffs has scheduled a Dec. 4 hearing in Charleston, South Carolina, to decide where to consolidate the cases. It’s likely to be in Iowa or Illinois, according to Rick Paul, an attorney representing 13 farmers who filed suit in federal court in Iowa. Read Full Article »

Monsanto, Dow Unit Sue Maui County Over GMO Law

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

ABC News (AP)
by Audrey McAvoy

Source: David Casteel

Monsanto Co. and a Dow Chemical Co. unit filed the lawsuit in federal court in Honolulu, asking a judge to immediately prevent the law from taking effect and to invalidate the measure.

“This local referendum interferes with and conflicts with long-established state and federal laws that support both the safety and lawful cultivation of GMO plants,” John Purcell, Monsanto Hawaii’s business and technology lead, said in a statement.

The case has been assigned to Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren, who earlier this year declared a Kauai County law regulating genetically modified crops was invalid because it was superseded by state law. Read Full Article »

Seasoned Organic Gardener Shares His Top Lessons Learned

Monday, November 17th, 2014

Effective deer control, efficient composting, timely irrigation, labor-saving weed control, and worthwhile variety selections help you grow tasty organic produce.

Rodale News
by Derek Fell

Source: Sally Hammerman,
In My Backyard Misty Hollow LLC

When I purchased historic Cedaridge Farm in rural Bucks County, Pennsylvania, in 1989, I needed it to use it as an “outdoor studio.” Formerly a dairy farm established by Mennonite farmers in 1791, the 20-acre property allows me to test different gardening techniques and different varieties of flowers and vegetables.

It also allows me to photograph the results, both good and disappointing. As the author of more than 100 garden books and calendars, I have used the property to test vertical growing techniques for my book Vertical Gardening and variety selections for my book Grow This! As a consequence, I have developed 20 theme gardens connected by a trail that leads from one area to another, creating a visual adventure. From the very beginning, I decided to do it all organically, using no harmful chemical controls, and the results have been spectacular, with blemish-free lettuce, asparagus as thick as a man’s thumb, and armloads of man-high gladiolus. Read Full Article »