Saturday, March 26, 2011

why conventional agriculture sucks

A few examples of how conventional agriculture will not only fail to feed us all, it will contribute to our troubles. Our oceans are dying. Our pollinator populations are in desperate decline and chicken production is contributing to our inability to fight off disease illness through the use of anti-biotics. These are just snippets of information on topics that I think are most important for people to contemplate. These three subjects alone have the potential to cause a serious devastation of our own human population.

Every now and then I get tired of tweets and posts from proponents of conventional agriculture with their head in the sand. Follow the money people. Do your own research and please continue to vote with your food choices.

The Big Three arguments against conventional agriculture not in any particular order (and there's a lot more than three by the way).

1) Hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico from ground water run off in the agricultural regions of the Mississippi River drainages.


From the website...http://co.water.usgs.gov/hypoxia/html/newpubs.html "The effect of nutrient loading from the Mississippi Basin on the areal extent of the Gulf of Mexico Hypoxic Zone is investigated using a dissolved oxygen model. Results suggest that a 30% reduction in nitrogen loads may not be sufficient to reduce the average size of the hypoxia zone to 5,000 km2."

from the website...http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100927122225.htm In the summer of 2010 this dead zone in the Gulf spanned over 7,000 square miles."

2) Antibiotics in chicken production to render useless the world's known anti-biotics.

According to the recent Marketplace episode "Canadians are becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics. As a result, people are getting sicker and are taking longer to get well. It is now not uncommon for people to be administered antibiotics through an IV because the usual drugs in pill form can't fight off their infections.
While we've all heard that over-prescription of antibiotics to people is one cause of the resistance, what many Canadians don't know is that another major cause is because the animals we eat are also given large amounts of antibiotics. And not just when they're sick: healthy animals can be fed antibiotics every day because it makes them grow bigger, faster."


From the website... http://www2.macleans.ca/2009/06/17/playing-chicken-with-antibiotics/ "Disturbing data from the Public Health Agency of Canada reveals that antibiotics such as cephalosporin used in chicken hatcheries across the country is causing human resistance to the medicines, according to a startling report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal today.

3) New pesticides directly related to mass Bee deaths. We all know how important pollinators are to our own survival as a species.

From the website...http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10701335 "A new generation of pesticides is making honeybees far more susceptible to disease and may be a clue to the mysterious colony collapses that have devastated bees around the world.

Yet this discovery has remained unpublished for nearly two years since it was made by the United States Department of Agriculture's Bee Research Laboratory."
http://www.tindakmalaysia.com/showthread.php/2037-Bees-Petition-to-Save-the-Bees-from-the-Global-Chemical-Companies..."increasingly, independent research has produced strong evidence blaming neonicotinoid pesticides. France, Italy, Slovenia and even Germany, where the main manufacturer Bayer is based, have banned one of these bee killers. But, Bayer continues to export its poison across the world "

I HATE having to write these posts. I see so many other people out there fighting against conventional, unsustainable agriculture, I just can't sit back and watch. Sorry.

2 comments:

  1. You had me at the title. #2 is the most concerning to me at the moment, but they're all critical issues, no question.

    I asked every farm this summer "how do your practices differ from conventional ag practices". They all did. It's amazing how much of our local food scene that's starting to explode is entirely anti-conventional ag. It's a motivator for me to be waving the 'hey! this stuff's cool, industrial food sucks' flag.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Kevin, I think you should print a bumper sticker!

    ReplyDelete