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219: Prairie Fire - Revolutionize the Food System

Monday, September 10th, 2012

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Novelist Dan Armstrong’s Prairie Fire is a fast-paced thriller whose characters forge unlikely alliances to revolutionize the American food system. It’s spearheaded by farmers squeezed by skyrocketing oil prices while marketeers get whopping price gains. This revolution is unlikely to succeed, yet… well, we won’t spoil it! In Dan’s Taming the Dragon, climate change causes Chinese grain production to plummet, bringing the world to the brink. Dan illuminates the real-world backdrop behind both novels. His solution? Localize food production. Meet farmer Harry MacCormack with exciting results in central Oregon. [www.mudcitypress.comsunbowfarm.org]

 

BlipTV | iTunes | Audio

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211: The Straight Poop on Sustainable Farming

Friday, April 27th, 2012

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Innovative farmer Joel Salatin says sustainable agriculture requires both perennials (like native grasses) and herbivores (like cattle) to build soil. Mimicking patterns from nature, this maverick Virginia farmer rotates cattle followed by chickens into short-term pasture enclosures, where their poop fertilizes the earth. His new book  Folks, This Ain’t Normal is a critique of the industrial food system, and envisions a future where humans are participants in a regenerative, sustaining community of abundance. [polyfacefarms.com]

 

Watch high-quality video. Listen to Audio.  Read a near-transcript of Joel’s presentation after this conversation. Download video on iTunes.

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191: The Vegetarian Myth

Monday, March 14th, 2011

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pm191_150.jpgWhat we eat is destroying both our bodies and the planet, according to author Lierre Keith, a recovering twenty-year vegan. While she passionately opposes factory farming of animals, she maintains that humans require nutrient-dense animal foods for good health. A grain-based diet is the basis for degenerative diseases we take for granted (diabetes, cancer, heart disease) - diseases of civilization. Annual grain production is destroying topsoil and creating deserts on a planetary scale.  Lierre urges the restoration of perennial polycultures for longterm sustainability. [http://lierrekeith.com]

Listen to Audio.  Read Transcript. Download video on iTunes.
Read Janaia’s journal “Eating to Save the Earth” about this conversation.

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171: A Permaculture Course for Busy People

Friday, May 21st, 2010

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pm171_150.jpgBill Wilson and Wayne Weiseman pour their hearts into their permaculture design courses, changing lives as well as landscapes. In a unique format, students do initial course work online and then attend a one week hands-on course.

In this chat along with Sivananda Yoga Farm sponsor Vidya Chaitanya, Wayne discusses principles starting with with observing elements like wind, water, sun and topography in a specific property.

Bill provides alarming information on “peak soil.”  Together they note that permaculture’s goal is to create small, intensive ecologies, a foodweb where everything is exchanging with everything else.

“Eat and Be Eaten, and Share the Bounty.” Listen to Audio. Watch Bill Wilson in “The Heart of Permaculture”(Peak Moment episode 157).

pm171_vidya_80.jpgVidya Chaitanya: www.sivanandayogafarm.org

pm171_bill_80.jpgBill Wilson: midwestpermaculture.com

 pm171_wayne_80.jpgWayne Weiseman: permacultureproject.com

 

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161: Local Food — By and For the People

Sunday, January 31st, 2010

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pm161_150.jpgWhat if the food system benefited local producers, nourished nearby people, and built a stronger community? Krishna Singh Khalsa of Eugene, Oregon wants to turn the food system on its head. He wants it to be run by, and for the benefit of, ordinary people — not corporate profit. He’s exploring models of local cooperative, entreprenuerial organizations where people provide the labor, share and hire resources, caretake the land, use all of nature’s abundance, support farmers and food producers, distribute food so that no one goes hungry, and build strong social bonds. Empower people, not profits!

Listen to audio.

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68: Bullock Brothers Homestead - A 25-Year Permaculture Project

Thursday, July 19th, 2007

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pm68_150.jpgTake a tour with Joe, Doug and Sam Bullock on their Orcas Island homestead, site of a yearly Permaculture design course. Using nature as their model, they create edges and wildlife habitat, move water through the landscape, promote diversity, and raise an astonishing variety of plants from sub-arctic to tropical — a wise investment in these climate-changing times. [www.permacultureportal.com]

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50: Land Trusts - Keeping Local Agriculture Alive

Thursday, March 8th, 2007

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pm50_150.jpgLand trusts are an important part of the voluntary protection of working agricultural lands, which can also protect water quality, habitat, and beauty, not to mention food production expertise. Land trust veterans Cheryl Belcher and Dan Macon, himself a farmer, discuss the critical role of small scale food producers in the local economy and the challenges they face — from misperceptions of farming to policies favoring big agriculture. [www.nevadacountylandtrust.org]

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1: Conserving Farmland

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

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Increasing local food production requires preserving agricultural land rather than developing it. Conservation easements on Bill and Anna Trabucco’s ranch preserves agricultural land now supporting a grass-fed cattle operation.

 

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