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Mussel Beds Threatened & Major Farm Survey
by Greg Martin, click here for bio
Program: Northwest Report
Date: May 30, 12
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Mussel Beds Threatened & Major Farm Survey plus Food Forethought. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Northwest Report.
Penn Cove on Washington’s Whidbey Island is home to one of the more famous mussel beds and now there is a very real threat in the form of a sunken fishing boat leaking oil. Some 14-thousand gallons of oil has already been recovered after leaking from the ship. The mussel beds have been closed to harvest until toxicity reports can be made. Crews are looking at the feasibility of recovering the boat.
Upwards of 140-thousand farmers are soon going to be asked by USDA to respond to a round of farmer surveys which will deal with everything from crop acreage to livestock numbers. Bob Bass with the Ag Departments Statistics Service says a number of USDA surveys are going out.
BASS: Most will be contacted by mail or by telephone but 40-thousand will be visited in person. Farmers and ranchers make decisions every day that affect their bottom line. Whether it’s how much to plant, when to market, how many livestock to hold back. Accurate information is the best vehicle in order to make a good decisions.
Now with today’s Food Forethought, here’s Lacy Gray.
Michael Pollan could learn a lot from John Reganold, author and Washington State University Regents professor of soils and agroecology. Pollan stresses phasing out conventional agriculture in favor of organic farming systems. While Reganold is an ardent organics supporter he’s also a voice of reason when it comes to feeding the world’s expanding population. In an article published in Nature magazine he says it will take a blend of agricultural systems to feed the planet. Reganold states, “if we want to feed a growing world population, producing adequate crop yields is vital.” Organic farming alone may not yield enough food, but Reganold notes that according to a report by the U.S. National Research Council “growing enough food is only one of four main criteria for making agriculture sustainable - we must enhance the natural resource base and environment, make farming financially viable, and contribute to the well-being of farmers and their communities.” According to Reganold and the NRC report it will take a blend of organic farming methods and conventional agriculture for future global food and ecosystem security.
Thanks Lacy. That’s today’s Northwest Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network.
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