Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
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News

Agriculture: The Next Battleground for Climate Justice

June 4, 2019 – Food First – Calls to limit the environmental damage caused by the food system are ancient. Just forty years ago, in Limits to Growth, the world’s leading scientists warned that Western civilization was headed for overshoot and collapse. But the conservation management they counseled flew in the face of Cold War strategies to knit Third World countries into the capitalist bloc through economic expansion and increased resource use. When the Soviet Union fell in 1991, capitalism exploded across the planet and governments abandoned environmental, labor, and market regulations for the will of the “free market.” The world’s resources—and the food system—were sold off to the highest bidder, ushering in an era of climate change and mass species extinction.

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Certification of Organic Crop Container Systems

June 3, 2019 – By Jennifer Tucker, Ph.D., USDA Agricultural Marketing Service – This memo clarifies that the legal requirements related to the three-year transition period apply to all container systems built and maintained on land.

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Locavore Index 2019

May 31, 2019 – Strolling of the Heifers – Vermont still ranks at the top of the Strolling of the Heifers Locavore Index, meaning that it has the strongest producers and consumers of local food of any of the 50 states. But the rest of the Index has been considerably shaken up by new data derived from the recent Census of Agriculture conducted by the U. S. Department of Agriculture.

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Seeds of Resistance: A conversation with Mark Schapiro

May 31, 2019 – Pesticide Action Network – PAN recently spoke with author Mark Schapiro about the state of our food and farming system and the release of his new book Seeds of Resistance — “an exposé of the high-stakes battle underway for control of the world’s seeds as climate volatility threatens the security of our food supply.”

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Chinese Peasants Taught the USDA to Farm Organically in 1909

May 21, 2019 – By Lena Zeldovich, JSTOR Daily – In 1909, American agricultural scientist Franklin Hiram King embarked on a journey to Asia. Having been chief of the Division of Soil Management in the USDA Bureau of Soils from 1902 to 1904, King was concerned about the United State’s rapidly deteriorating soil health. He wasn’t alone. The 19th and 20th centuries were marked by an increasing demand for food from the growing populations in Europe and America, along with decreasing soil productivity. But in Asia, the situation was starkly different. Chinese farmers grew their crops on the same land year after year, but their soil never seemed to lose its fertility.

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Organic Trade Association lauds members of Congress

May 21, 2019 – By Chris Koger, The Packer – The Organic Trade Association has named two members of Congress — Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.) and Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) — as the group’s Organic Champion Award recipients.

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