Gates Foundation Supports Local Farmers & States Ag Departments Receive Grants

Gates Foundation Supports Local Farmers & States Ag Departments Receive Grants

Gates Foundation Supports Local Farmers & States Ag Departments Receive Grants plus Food Forethought. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Northwest Report.

Bill Gates, Co-Chair of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation spoke at the 2009 World Food Prize in Iowa about working with local farmer groups to prevent short term gains and long term costs.

GATES: That’s why we’re one of the largest funders of sustainable approaches such as no-till farming, rainwater harvesting, drip irrigation and biological nitrogen fixation. The environment benefits from higher productivity. When productivity is too low people start farming on grazing land, cutting down forests and using any new acreage they can to grow food. When productivity is high, people can farm on less land.

Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan today announced the award of 55 grants totaling approximately $49 million for 745 projects to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops, which are defined as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture. Idaho Department of Ag receives $882,094.50, Oregon $1,673,704.49, Washington State $2,920,854.13

Now with today’s Food Forethought, here’s Lacy Gray.

Ever hear the expression, “you get what you pay for”? How about “be careful, it’s liable to come back and bite you in the……”; well you get the idea. Several American construction companies are learning both these lessons the hard way right now; sadly so are several homeowners who purchased new homes during the housing boom. At the height of the U.S. housing frenzy certain American construction companies imported millions of pounds of Chinese made drywall due to its cheapness, building materials in the U.S. were in short supply, and they were in a hurry. That cheap Chinese drywall has since been discovered to be defective, in fact it’s toxic.  The homeowners are caught in the crosshairs of living in a toxic home and being dropped by their home insurance agency.  Hmm…, is anyone really surprised at this discovery? Remember the toxic toys and toxic milk from China? How about the toxic toiletries, pet food, dried fruit, or imported livestock quarantined for disease and banned chemical contaminants? When is enough, enough? I’d say right about now.

Thanks Lacy. That’s today’s Northwest Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Northwest Ag Information Network.

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