Monday, June 6, 2016

Tuesday Links +

Readers, note that my comments below are in italics.--K.M.

MUST-READ: Solving the 10,000-Year-Old Problem of Agriculture: An Interview with Wes Jackson (Rural America) As you know, Wes has named a replacement for himself at The Land Institute in Kansas, so I'm not sure how many more interviews like this we'll be seeing from him.

FARM WRITING:
Gene Logsdon, Ohioan who wrote the excellent weekly commentary "The Contrary Farmer", passed away this week. (The Contrary Farmer) R.I.P. ... Gene tried unsuccessfully to make a blog post about two days before he died, according to this announcement of his death. When I told my family about it, they agreed that I will surely share a similar fate.

FOOD COSTS:
Countries around the globe will probably spend $986 million importing food this year, the first drop below $1 trillion since 2009 (Bloomberg)

THEFTS:
In California, 1,734 bee hives were stolen during peak almond pollination season in 2016. (NPR)

AQUACULTURE:
Dartmouth team makes breakthrough toward fish-free aquaculture feed (Eurekalert)

WHEAT SURPLUS:
No room in grain silos means dumping wheat in parking lots (Bloomberg)

AG TRADE FRUITS AND VEGETABLES:
In 2015, the U.S. imported more than 2.8 billion pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables from Canada, valued at $1.4 billion. From Mexico, the U.S. imported 17.4 billion pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables for $9.1 billion. In 2015, the U.S. exported nearly 7.1 billion pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables to Canada and Mexico, worth $4.2 billion. (USDA)

FORESTRY:
The Wonders of Wood Buildings. (USDA) It is true that wood buildings sequester carbon whereas new construction with steel, concrete, and glass creates enormous amounts of new greenhouse emissions. Why society continues to ignore construction in assessing greenhouse gases is a testament to the hypocrisy surrounding the subject. We say we want to lower them but we aren't willing to sacrifice economic activity or personal comfort. Sustainably produced wood buildings would help and a few places are using them (especially Europe).
Also see:


RAISING QUAIL:
Craze for quails: Zimbabwe looks to bird for economic boost (AP)

LAB MEAT:
According to Australian science writer Julian Cribb, lab grown meat for consumption is the future. (Weekly Times Now)

BIOFUELS:
This graph shows the volume of ethanol shipped annually by rail. (EIA)

BIOFUELS:
Ethanol expert Ag economist Scott Irwin suggests the EPA is setting the groundwork for higher ethanol blends and more biodiesel. (Agree) Is it any wonder that Vilsack is the last holding out a cabinet post in the Obama administration?

COMMENTARY:
Alan Guebert ranted about corn grower politics this week. (Pantograph)

AG UN-INVESTING:
David Gray, senior adviser at investment fund manager Altima Partners, talks to Agrimoney about how stakeholders in farming production companies can best hope to liquidate an unfashionable investment. (Agrimoney)

FISHING:
A groundbreaking international accord aimed at stamping out illegal fishing is now legally binding for 29 countries. (FAO)

INDUSTRIAL MEAT TRAGEDY:
5,000 pigs killed in Iowa barn fire (Pork Network)

HEALTHY RECIPE: Green Smoothie, Oatmeal Smoothie (Treehugger)

INDOOR GROWING TECHNOLOGY:
This smartphone-controlled fridge can grow any fruit or vegetable (Business Insider) I included this for entertainment value only, as, I think, those of us who garden and have two feet planted squarely on the ground can see all kinds of problems with this crazy idea.


GARDENING BONUS: Keyhole Gardens Illustration

To learn more about keyhole gardens, go here.

Reader, Greg, how is your keyhole garden coming along? I hope very well - let us know.

To view last week's LINKS, click here.

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