Chelsea Green Publishing

Chelsea Green Blog

A Good Year for GMO Companies

In the most recent issue of Rachel’s Democracy and Health News, Peter Montague wrote about all of the great things that happened for the biotech industry in 2005, and how those victories have literally planted the seed for further corporate success in years to come. Things “couldn’t have turned out better for the GMO crop companies if they had planned it this way,” he wrote. Now that everyone acknowledges GMOs are “leaky technology”, spreading into nearby fields and contaminating organic crops, some countries are trying to contain GMO crops and pollen, enforcing strict rules about where the seeds can be planted. In the US, probably the biggest success in enforcing a buffer zone between GMO crops and conventional crops came from Anhueser Busch, which didn’t want its Missouri rice fields contaminated with GMO produce. Apart from Aneuser Busch, some counties have successfully demanded that GMOs stay out. But Anhheser Busch demanded–and got–a 120-mile buffer zone between any fields that contain GMO seeds and their own fields, which is probably a wider area than any of the counties able to pass a moratorium. Now if only we could pit more corporations against the GM industry, we might get somewhere…


“If we work hard, we sleep well.” Independent Farmstead Q&A (part 2)

Twenty years ago, the land that authors Shawn and Beth Dougherty purchased and have come to name the Sow’s Ear was deemed “not suitable for agriculture” by the state of Ohio. Today, their family raises and grows 90% of their own food.Such self-sufficiency is largely the result of basing their farming practices around intensive pasture […] Read More

The Miracle of Farming: Toward a Bio-Abundant Future

Charles and Perrine Hervé-Gruyer’s Le Ferme du Bec Hellouin is a celebrated model of innovative, ecological agriculture in Europe, connected to national and international organizations addressing food security, heralded by celebrity chefs as well as the Slow Food movement, and featured in the inspiring César and COLCOA award-winning documentary film, Demain (Tomorrow).In this excerpt from their […] Read More

Sow Seeds: Stop Walking Around Doing Nothing

“In the last one hundred years, 94 percent of seed varieties available at the turn of the century in America and considered a part of the human commons have been lost.”That’s one of the key takeaways in award-winning author and activist Janisse Ray’s book, The Seed Underground: A Growing Revolution to Save Food. In her book, Ray […] Read More

True or false? Figs contain dead wasps

They are trees of life and trees of knowledge. They are wish-fulfillers … rainforest royalty … more precious than gold. They are the fig trees, and they have affected humanity in profound but little-known ways. Gods, Wasps and Stranglers tells their amazing story.Fig trees fed our pre-human ancestors, influenced diverse cultures and played key roles […] Read More

Imagination, Purpose & Flexibility: Creating an Independent Farmstead – Q&A (part 1)

Twenty years ago, the land that authors Shawn and Beth Dougherty purchased and have come to name the Sow’s Ear was deemed “not suitable for agriculture” by the state of Ohio. Today, their family raises and grows 90% of their own food.Such self-sufficiency is largely the result of basing their farming practices around intensive pasture […] Read More
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