Posts Categorized: Food and Sustainable Agriculture

Interested in farming? Consider Morris Farm Beginnings

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By the time he was 20, Nolan Lenzen had already completed a dairy management course at a local college and launched a farming career in partnership with his father and grandfather. They were milking 90 cows in a tie-stall barn and cropping 300 acres near the south-central Minnesota community of Watertown. Some might say it… Read more »

Bud Markhart’s Sustainable Legacy

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

The sustainable agriculture community lost a true friend this week when Bud Markhart passed away after a courageous battle with cancer. I had the opportunity to interview Markhart last fall for an LSP podcast. He was a professor of horticultural science at the U of M, and so it’s no surprise that he made his… Read more »

Senate Listens to Public & Makes Crop Insurance More Accountable to the Environment

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

The  U.S. Senate passed its version of the 2012 Farm Bill this week. While it’s far from perfect, specific amendments related to conservation and accountability  that were passed during the floor vote give one hope that the voices of average citizens can be heard inside the Beltway. Let’s hope this is a sign of things… Read more »

Battling Diabetes on the Street & in the Garden

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

One can almost detect the longing in Denise Crews’ voice when she describes what foods she misses the most since she was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. “The hardest thing to give up was the fried chicken—Popeyes, Kentucky Fried Chicken. Their biscuits. The grease,” Crews told me during a recent LSP podcast interview at a… Read more »

Rolling Our Land To Death

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

I sat in a farmhouse one afternoon last month as a hot wind lifted rich topsoil from surrounding fields. On the drive in, I’d noticed a surprising amount of rill erosion on newly tilled cropland—surprising because recent rains had not been all that intense and the fields were not unusually steep. Out of the blue… Read more »

As Senate Farm Bill Heads to Vote Next Week, Now’s the Time to Reform Crop Insurance

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Al Franken, Amy Klobuchar, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By Adam Warthesen, Land Stewardship Project— Well, this is it. The Senate Ag Committee’s version of the 2012 Farm Bill is up for a floor vote the week of June 4, and boy does it need an overhaul before it’s finalized. The biggest area in need of reform is the massive giveaway of $95 billion… Read more »

Senate Farm Bill Falls Short on Conservation, Family Farm Ag

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By Adam Warthesen, Land Stewardship Project On April 26, the U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee passed its version of the 2012 Farm Bill by a vote of 16 to 5. The bill, which includes $23 billion in cuts over the next 10 years, is anticipated to be brought to the Senate floor for a vote yet… Read more »

Why is James E. McWilliams Ignoring the Facts on Sustainable Ag?

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

History Professor James E. McWilliams’ recent doubled-barreled attack on sustainable livestock production and the local food movement in general is so contradictory and full of factual holes, it’s tough to know where to begin to pick it apart. But it must be picked apart, since it has appeared in the New York Times and subsequently… Read more »

Crop Insurance: A Safety Net Becomes a Threat

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

When it comes to the crop insurance sweepstakes, southwest Minnesota farmer Darwyn Bach is a winner. But he concedes that his good fortune presents a quandary, since the way the program is implemented these days creates significant losers: the soil, beginning farmers and Main Street businesses that suffer when the number of families in a… Read more »

Anti-Local Control Bill Fails in Senate; Now Let Lawmakers Know it Should be a Dead Issue

Posted by & filed under agriculture, Food and Sustainable Agriculture, Loon Commons blog.

By Bobby King, Land Stewardship Project Last week the bill weakening local control, Senate File 270, came up on the Senate floor, met with strong opposition, and failed to pass. This is significant for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is that the bill was given the thumbs down even after key… Read more »