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This issue of The New Farm® newsletter gathers together voices from farmers across the country, each reflecting on their very different situations as 2002 draws to a close.

You'll also find news, articles and commentary on everything from the latest GMO contamination scare to visions of how to end suburban sprawl and ensure vibrant local farm economies.

Fresh today from The New Farm

From the Midwest: Dick Thompson documents the benefits of regenerative agriculture through his decades of onfarm research
In this second installment of our "Pioneers of Iowa Sustainable Farming" series, Dick Thompson recounts how he has made sustainability profitable.
 

The Thompsons

     

From upstate New York: Mary-Howell & Klaas Martens reflect broadly on this year's harvest
As the season draws to a close, Mary-Howell shares her year-end insights on what she's learned about ensuring quality at harvest, crop rotations and no-till vs. low-till. She also gives a heart-felt thanks, despite drought and other challenges, for the privilege of harvesting her own crops.

 

The Martens

     

From Dairyland, USA: Brenda Cochran shares stories and insights from the raw edge of dairy disaster
Brenda was a city girl who's become a deeply committed dairy farm activist. She recounts the events that have shaped her farming experience, and her determination to create some true "freedom to farm" for family dairy producers.

  Dispatches from Dairyland
     
Read all about it!
How many of our first nominations for “100 Great Books for Sustainable Agriculture” have you read? The list is our opening salvo in what will become the multi-service NewFarm.org bookstore. By January, 2003, we’ll expand the list of “essential reading” to 1,000 titles with complete ordering information and hundreds of reviews. We’ll also make it easy for you to add your own thoughts and reviews. When you check out our 100 great ag books list, please let us know what books are missing that you'd like to see offered on the site.
  100 Great Books List
     

Dr. Don's research updates
Organic systems superior for erratic weather future
“Dr. Don” Lotter summarizes the research that documents the greater resiliency of organic systems to drought and weather extremes because of their greater water-holding capacity in the soil.
Bubble-enhanced greenhouse yields winter greens
A new system using double-walled plastic greenhouses is capable of producing salad crops all winter in Ontario ... while decreasing the energy cost.

 


Organic soils adapt in drought

 

Innovative greenhouse design

     
Foundation soybeans now contaminated by GMOs
Farmers have just learned that foundation seedstock used to produce their 2002 seeds last winter in South America were contaminated with genetically altered materials. The discovery brings to fore questions of genetic integrity, protection of seedstock, and who should pay for damages.
  Seedstock contamination
     
Capitol Hill ag update … pork for Big Pork … new GMO revelations
From syndicated columnist Alan Guebert: ag committee changes leave House leadership open; 92 benefit from pork check-off, while thousands lose their farms; and assessing growing GMO contamination worries.
  The Final Word
     

The latest news:

  • Farm chemicals may affect male fertility;
  • Florida voters outlaw gestation crates for hogs
  • Oregon's GMO labeling initiative fails
  • Mexican hog farmers face collapse if tarriffs lifted
  • ... and more!
  News Roundup
     

Gleanings: writings to get your juices flowing

  • National bottle bill: Tossed cans and bottles averages cost the average PA farmer $938 in PA. U.S. Senate Bill 2220 would help eliminate the damage to livestock, crops and equipment.
  • Pork check-off woes: One farmer's take on the ultimate effect of mandatory checkoffs on family farms.
  • A better world for farmers & consumers: All it takes is a few corporations and governments who agree to reward good stewardship, says Beth Sawin of the Sustainability Institute
  • Ending suburban sprawl: Sprawl eats up 3 rural acres every minute in the US -- but Europe's model may be the answer.
 

Bottle bill
Pork check off
A better world
Ending sprawl

 
   
   
     
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