July 26, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
I first spoke with the then 25-year-old Macauley Kincaid a little over a year ago, shortly after he attended a Soil Health Academy school.
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July 10, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Parasite control in livestock is a major issue and has been heavily focused on for several decades now. There are numerous anthelmintics (chemical dewormers) available for internal parasite control and a host of pyrethroid and organophosphate products available for fly control. The issue with any of these products is that they are chemicals that impact not only the target pest but also other beneficial organisms. Parasite control products can negatively affect dung beetles, earthworms, other beetles, and a host of other beneficial insects.
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June 13, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
The 1859 novel written by Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities, was required reading for millions of school kids in English Literature classes and is one of the best-selling novels of all time. The story is set in the late 18th century against the background of the French Revolution. Just as there were challenging times then, we are facing challenging times once again.
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June 7, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Did you know that the health of plants, animals, ecosystems and humans is inextricably tied to plant phytochemical diversity? So, what are phytochemicals? In short, they are compounds naturally produced by plants that help the plants thrive in challenging conditions, fight off competitors, pest insects and disease. When you bite into a juicy strawberry or blueberry, enjoy vibrant-green lettuce or spinach, munch on a tomato or chow down on a juicy steak or hamburger, you consume much more than vitamins, minerals, protein and fiber. You can also benefit from the incredible richness of phytochemicals.
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May 31, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Concerns about the US food chain supply made their way into the mainstream this week, as more meat processing and packaging plants suspend operations temporarily due to coronavirus outbreaks in the workforce. When Smithfield Foods announced it was shutting its Sioux Falls plant indefinitely, CEO Ken Sullivan warned that doing so would create a ripple effect that would eventually hit grocery store shelves. The COVID-19 panic has revealed the weakness of our food system. Our current system is very fragile. It is estimated that the meals in the United States travel about 1500 miles to get from farm to plate.
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May 24, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
By the time you read this we will be fully into summer 2020. In many parts of the country it has been much cooler than normal well into the month of May. Even here in Mississippi we have had a very pleasant spring. Nighttime temperatures in the 40s and 50s with daytime highs in the 70s. Our cool-season perennials and annuals have persisted far longer than in most years. In the South we are full bore into our 2020 grazing season. Many of you in the northern states are just getting started. Regardless of when your grazing season begins, here are my top 10 tips for grazing success in 2020.
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May 17, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Empty shelves and meat cases in grocery stores, oil at negative prices, record unemployment, skyrocketing national debt, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected many aspects of our lives.
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May 10, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
In my previous blog, I examined several institutional, philosophical and educational issues that have created unintended social distancing in agriculture. In this article, I want to shift the focus to examine another type of “social distancing.” This one involves the “relationship” we have with our food.
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May 5, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
“People are fed by the food industry, which pays no attention to health, and are treated by the health industry which pays no attention to food.” -Wendell Berry It may have been this quote from one of my heroes, farmer and activist Wendell Berry, that inspired me years ago to become a healthcare practitioner and to start on a quest to investigate our food and healthcare systems. I remember thinking to myself in astonishment, “How can two obviously related industries continue to endure in a state of complete disconnection from one another?”
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May 3, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
Recently, I went to a local sandwich shop, hoping for a sit-down lunch. But instead I walked into a nearly empty restaurant. This empty area made me feel uneasy, like I had walked into a futuristic sci-fi movie displaying the de-population of humans by some strange pestilence. A sense of awkward consciousness enveloped all of us while we were waiting for our takeout lunch. It felt like we were the last surviving humans on the planet and our survival depended on this one outcome: that we stay six feet away from each other.
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April 23, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
It’s the time of the year when many of us are thinking about growing a garden. With the ongoing pandemic highlighting the importance of having a healthy immune system, it is more important than ever that we do what we can to ensure that we are growing and consuming nutrient-dense food.
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April 20, 2020 • 0 comment(s)
I want to preface this blog by stating up front that some may find the contents controversial. My intentions are not to belittle the current situation, anyone or anything an individual does. My intention is to promote thought and conversation as to how our country can move forward so we, as a country and as individuals, do not find ourselves in this situation ever again.
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