We've reported on the fraudulent practices of Horizon Organic and Aurora Dairy before. Now, a federal judge has suspended one of their suppliers, Promiseland LLC., from organic commerce.
The Worldwatch Institute declares that many people worldwide are turning to organic agriculture to feed themselves and others, while feeling good about protecting the environment in a time of economic depression.
Secure grant funds for your farmers market, community-supported agriculture program and more by applying to the USDA by April 27.
Lundberg Family Farms announces the opening of a new warehouse that is powered by 100% solar energy. Lundberg Family Farms produces wholesome, healthful rice products while protecting and improving the environment for future generations.
Relax: HR 875 isn't a bill to outlaw organic farming, as you might have heard. But it's not exactly good news for pesticide-free producers, either. Here are the details.
More on the much-feared food safety bill, HR 875, and its Congressional counterparts.
Are organic foods healthier? In the wake of a media frenzy revolving a “study” by Stanford University claiming to answer this question, many people were left wondering. Benefits of organic food go beyond the vitamin content: The overwhelming amounts and types of pesticides in our food play a major role in many shoppers’ decision to go organic.
At least four major beef recalls due to E. coli tainted meat occurred in 2010. A substantial percentage of the meat was certified organic. With these beef scares in mind, the fact that Grist readers voted hamburgers as the second scariest food of 2010 comes as no surprise.
Managing Cover Crops Profitably, 3rd Edition, is now available in print and by download from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program. Learn how to make your soil perform at its very best!
Amid mounting concerns over food security and sustainable food systems, the rise of urban gardens and agriculture has been on the rise. Due to a paralleled increase in the numbers of people interested in learning how to garden, programs in urban agriculture at colleges as well as nonprofit urban garden training programs have sprouted up across the country.
At first glance George Siemon and Doc Hatfield don’t appear to have a whole lot in common. But George and Doc and a bunch of conspirators are revolutionizing agriculture: they are putting consumers back in touch with the people who grow their food.
Sustainable farming expert Michael Pollan has some words of wisdom for the next president of the United States.
America's Best Organics introduces American-made gift box.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture deems Roundup Ready alfalfa safe, leaving organic crops vulnerable to contamination and paving the way for more superweeds.
One of our "14 Sustainable Food Companies You Can Trust," Plum Organics is good for your baby's health and the health of the planet.
emerginC, a leading professional skincare collection, has just launched a natural yet serious results-oriented collection aptly named Scientific Organics.
This blog post started life as an article in The Natural Farmer,published by the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA). It could be said to herald the birth of that entity we have come to call The Cynical Optimist.
A quick essay regarding the "size" question of a top bar hive, from the bee's point of view - where it's all about the "volume"!
It helps us feel better to know "why" things happen, but we don't always get to know that answer...
By the 4th of July, there's a palpable shift in the feel of the beekeeping season. New beekeepers wish for more guidance, and may even be wondering why they started this project! Here's a little reassurance that you are not alone in your endeavor.
Sauerkraut is an effective and delicious way to store cabbage and add something "fresh" to the winter months
Steve Judge of Bob-White Systems in Vermont offers his Micro Dairy expertise in this blog series on how to start and manage a Micro Dairy, from farm and barn planning to selecting dairy cows, goats and sheep to daily operations and being profitable.
The next time you stop to buy a bunch of flowers you will look for the Rainforest Alliance green frog seal — your assurance the flowers were grown in a way that respects both the environment and farm workers alike. Since the mid 1980s, growers in a Latin America have been increasing their production of roses, carnations and other blooming species. Ninety percent of the cut flowers and ferns imported to the United States come from Latin America.
Simran Sethi looks back at her New Year's resolution: to nourish herself.
An organic cotton and wool body pillow goes a long way to help relieve pregnancy back pain.
What's behind the food contamination issues plaguing us of late? Poop. Plain and simple. The Cornucopia Institute weighs in.
Draughts alone don't cause desertification, but drought, overgrazing and bad agricultural practices — the results of overpopulation — create more desert land.
With population growing and oil supplies diminishing, more land than ever is being consumed to grow both food and fuel crops.
A recent report noted concerns about top seed and agrochemical corporations that are placing claims on multigenome crop patents, which could put the planet’s agricultural biomass at stake.
Urban Agriculture activists and advocates work to change the zoning laws in Chicago to be more friendly to urban agriculture.
In eggs from a healthy chicken, proteins found within the egg white control the growth of dangerous bacteria. If a chicken is infected with salmonella, the proteins can't protect you.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the American Egg Board are being sued for using $3 million in public funds to fight a phase-out of inhumane farming practices.
A sustainable agriculture professor explain the organic certification process.
The Organic Exchange released the 2007-2008 Organic Cotton Market Reports—and the top 10 list contains a few surprises. Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains more about these organic cotton retailers.
Jessica Kellner, editor of Natural Home and Garden Magazine, shares three pregnancy skin care products that will help prevent stretch marks and keep your baby belly soft and smooth.
The process of mechanically tenderizing steaks creates a food safety hazard by transferring bacteria that otherwise would be limited to the surface of a steak to the entire cut of meat, inside and out. Rare steak lovers, beware.
The National Animal Identification Plan will be easily implemented by large factory farms, but it means trouble for smaller operations. Will the system really keep us safe from disease, or will industrial ag and tracking system manufacturers be the only beneficiaries?
Pass the cold, wintry months with warm thoughts of how you can eat more local food while supporting sustainable agriculture this coming season.
While conservation is neccessary for providing for an ever-growing human population, it alone cannot solve our problems. In fact, it may distract us from the real issue at hand.
It's official: The USDA has finally hammered out the details on country of origin labeling. The rule will take effect March 16, but some say it could use a little tweaking first.
Hello to my new life and good-by to the old.
This listing links to information resources related to sustainable agriculture, organic farming and gardening, and growing and buying good, safe food.
Many sustainable agriculture groups sponsor conferences in the winter. Learn more about these opportunities to continue your learning and broaden your network.
The Global Organic Textile Standards certify organic fabrics from start to finish. The GOTS database lists certified facilities and importers, making it easy to find truly organic fabric.
There are thousands of organic products available today, and they're not limited to food. Tell us what you buy organic and why.
The Midwest Organic Sustainable Education Service is looking for an organic farmer worthy of being named their 26th annual Organic Farmer of the Year.
While productivity is often the name of the game at large farms, local food, minimal environmental impact and healthy conditions for farm workers also are hot topics today. Yet, our agriculture — and our living — have a greater impact on the environment and the life it supports than these issues alone address.
New Holland Agriculture is unveiling new equipment, and exciting new technology at the 2012 Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa.
This coming Tuesday, March 17, new legislation will be introduced in an attempt to protect Americans from antibiotic resistance. The Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act of 2009 will end the use of certain antibiotics in agriculture unless animals are sick.
H1N1, or swine flu, didn't have to be the epidemic it is today. Are factory farms to blame?
Legislation to control the use of antibiotics on the farm is gaining momentum in D.C., and emotions on both sides of the issue are heating up. Tell us what you think of the bill.
Grit magazine is offering a Belted Galloway heifer as a prize in a giveaway.
Looking for a farming internship or apprenticeship? Search the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Center’s online directory of farming internships and apprenticeships to find one that interests you.
Hermann and Laura Weber are preparing to host their ninth annual pasture poultry seminar on their farm in Attica, N.Y. Speakers include Peter McDonald of Pasture Pride Farm, Dave Snyder from ADM Alliance Nutrition, Inc. and Brian Fleishman from the Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce and the Wyoming County Tourist Program. Contact the Webers for more information: 585-591-0795.
The workshop series "In Her Shoes: Sustainable Farming for Women, by Women" will provide on-farm, women-led sharing of resources, experiences and inspiration to further connect, encourage and support female organic farmers, entrepreneurs and agricultural leaders. These all-day workshops will be in Wisconsin and Minnesota, and each will cost $20 and include lunch.
The story of two ladies and their small CSA in the Rocky Mountains.
Learn a few tips for efficiency from seasoned CSA Farmers: La Vista CSA Farm.
Flashy technologies billed as holding the key to an “age of plenty” cannot ward off future hunger. But strong rural communities working with, not against, nature can create an age of sufficiency.
Proposals to weaken the links among conservation, farming and fair access to food would worsen the problems of U.S. agriculture.
Productive urban landscapes, if managed correctly, can reduce pollution in local watershed.
Guest blogger and longtime advocate of sustainable food Gwen Roland reflects on the new popularity of local eating, and highlights some of the innovative local food projects funded by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grants.
The Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture’s upcoming annual conference on sustainable farming will focus on how to achieve sustainability in our food system, as well as the future of agriculture in general.
We know why we love heritage breed livestock, but why do you?
A study links Roundup herbicide and genetically modified maize to a wide range of health maladies, including liver and kidney damage.
Rodale Institute today announces the launch of Your 2 Cents, an innovative program that unites consumers and companies in support of the next generation of American farmers.
Go Greens - Super Fruits and Veggies supplies the natural antioxidant power of 6 servings of vibrantly colored organic fruits and vegetables in every handy “stick” pack. To Go Brands plans to continue to expand the Healthy To Go® product line.
Uncle Matt’s Organic, best known for their line of premium organic orange juices, announced today the launch of its new 100% organic, not-from-concentrate, orchard-style apple juice. The next best thing to drinking it fresh from the orchard!
Avoid expensive organic fertilizers with these suggestions for lower-cost options.
We're probably on our way to a population-related catastrophe, after all.
Sandy Boyce's sauerkraut was a hit, selling out each week, until her county health department asked her to stop. Across the nation, regulations can prevent small-time home producers from distributing their 'cottage foods' to the public.
Solar Energy International (SEI), the National Wildlife Refuge System, and the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service all offer events to educate participants in varying pursuits. This blog provides links to activity calendars and workshop schedules.
A reader inquires about the best fertilizer to work on anything you might grow.
Sharp-eyed guineas are among the most useful of all farm fowl for control of crop-damaging insects. Essential to the author’s squash bug control project is ElectroNet (electric net fencing), which he uses to make a perimeter around the squash plot. A small moveable pasture shelter is provided inside the net — in which the guineas roost at night, or find shade or shelter from rain.
Annie’s is expanding its line of wholesome comfort food favorites with a new, kid-friendly pasta product: Bernie’s Farm Macaroni & Cheese, made with 100 percent real cheese and certified-organic pasta in a variety of shapes featuring life on the farm. Like all of Annie’s products, Bernie’s Farm Macaroni & Cheese contains no artificial flavors, synthetic colors or preservatives.
Carrington Farms, the creators of delicious 100 percent organic, non-genetically modified health food products, continues to reach outside of the box to provide healthy flax seed blends and cooking oils that are not only good for consumers but are affordable and taste great!
Bastyr University is pleased to announce it has partnered with Seattle-based Choice Organic Teas to develop and launch a new line of flavorful, certified organic Wellness Teas. This marks the first time the University has lent its name on a consumer product.
CRAiLAR, a new fiber made from hemp stalks, could revolutionize the sustainable fabrics industry by bringing down the cost of organic textiles.
Minneapolis public relations firm Haberman & Associates wants everyone to enjoy a company-sponsored organic vegetable garden like theirs.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence is ready to shop for eco-friendly, organic cotton Loomstate clothing at Target this spring.
What is organic cotton and how is it better than regular cotton? Read this article and have your questions answered.
New organic milk contains Omega-3, which is not approved as an additive to certified organic milk. The Cornucopia Institute found this illegal synthetic additive in new organic milk in its latest investigation.
Get expert advice on how long fresh eggs will keep without refrigeration.
Organic seeds have benefits for your garden. Learn what our expert recommends and how to find organic seeds to plant.
Nuts.com, a family-owned business, offers certified organic snacks and superfoods.
When I'm introduced to a new acquaintance, the introduction often ends with, "Bryan farms." Like it's the most interesting thing about me. Well, maybe it is.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is accepting public comment regarding a draft Guidance for Industry #187 — to clarify regulation of genetically altered animals.
It's hard to shop responsibly sometimes, especially for meat. There are so many different label claims that it's hard to remember which are meaningful and which are just fluff. Here's a handy reference card that will give more power to your purchases.
The Center to Expose and Close Animal Factories employs a strong legal background to take on industrial agriculture. Learn about their plan to clean up the business for good.
There are a lot of changes we'd like to see made to our food system this year. Add your own.
Weeding in the summer is all about species maintenance
Managing compost now allows for more productive use the following season.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS interviewed poultry advocate Oprah HenFree at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR.
On Saturday, the G-20 will likely discuss trade policy that affects American farmers.
What is Pesticide Drift? “Pesticide drift” is the movement of a pesticide through the air away from the intended target. You might actually see the drift in the form of a mist. You may smell it. But it can be invisible and odorless. The spray may be applied from the back of a tractor — referred to as a “rig.” Or it may be applied from a spray plane or helicopter.
Incorporating charcoal into the soil helped Amazonian farmers grow better crops, and its new industrial version is promoted as a panacea for both agriculture and the global climate. Those claims are not realistic.
Recently a trend in farming called hydroponics has resurfaced and gained national attention that has grown in popularity with some, but has left others with mixed feelings.
The tall-tale vintage postcard collection consists of turn of the century photomontages depicting the utopian dream of agricultural America.
The Environmental Protection Agency has given the go-ahead to Dow Chemical for its genetically modified 2,4-D resistant corn.
The Rainforest Alliance Certified seal has been popping up on coffee, tea, cocoa and fruit products all over the world. So what exactly does this certification signify? We’ve investigated.
These online tools can help you find the best sources for local food, including local farmers markets and community-supported agriculture programs.
Weather.com now features customizable local weather applications, including an Agriculture Application with great tools for farmers and gardeners.
Support your local food systems while getting the most from your home garden.
Self-dubbed “lunatic farmer” Joel Salatin describes how sustainable living and more conscientious agricultural practices can mend and revive a planet pushed near the brink.
Reynaldo Ochoa, the subject of a new short film, grows with a goal of teaching and practicing permaculture unique to an individual's region, emphasizing sustainable farming as opposed to “slash and burn” agriculture.
Cole responds to a critic.
Cole responds to a critic.
Whole Foods Market commits to verifying it products as free of genetically modified organisms. Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains the grocer's commitment to providing natural and organic products.
Know a chocolate-lover? Here's info on a few of the most delicious chocolate bars, from companies that make organic, fair trade, ethically produced chocolates.
The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service held its 25th conference from Feb. 27 though March 1. Here are the main takeaways about where organic farming has come from and where it's headed.
Toats organic in a class by itself, biscuit manufacturer to lead a trend.
The Aerobin 400 uses a patented aeration core inside an enclosed bin to promote aerobic break down of organic matter. The Aerobin 400 is easy to use - just open, drop in materials, and close.
Organic Pond is pleased to announce that the Organic Materials Research Institute (OMRI) has reviewed the company's PureBacteria+ Biological Pond Muck Reducer and has listed PureBacteria+ for use in organic production.
New businesses are springing up catering to folks who want their food homegrown, but without the mess of tending to the garden themselves.
Cam shares his love affair with garlic and explains the work involved with growing and processing organically-grown garlic.
Cam grows a patch of wheat to see how much work is involved. He will never take a loaf of bread for granted again!
Who needs a TV drama, when, out the back door, we have our own alfresco drama, complete with territory battles, births, deaths, alien invasions, mystery, beauty and fornication, unfolding daily before our very eyes if we care to look.
Cam ponders the wisdom of starting a CSA at the ripe old age of 52.
Cam is exhausted but exhilarated by the early success of his CSA.
Cam is enjoying a bumper crop of onions this year!
It's Week #11 of our CSA and we can't find boxes big enough to fit all of the great produce!!
According to a team from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, organic food is not nutritionally superior to conventional. We know this isn't true, and here's an excellent response from The Organic Center.
Natural Home magazine editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explores the Spirit Ridge Vineyard Resort and Spa in the beautiful Okanagan region of British Columbia. Join her as she tours wineries and feasts on local, organic produce.
The University of California at Davis has released a report that shows how misleading the label "extra virgin olive oil" can be.
It can be very frustrating trying to find horse treats that are safe and healthy for our equine friends. So, why not make your own? In this post, Harper Slusher shares her recipe for natural horse treats.
More than half a billion eggs possibly tainted with salmonella bacteria have been recalled. Avoid the scare by purchasing free-range, cage-free, organic and locally sourced eggs.
Readers share favorite organic wine producers.
Help our readers solve garden pest problems without resorting to the use of chemical pesticides.
See this shot of Swiss chard with strong colors that any gardener can appreciate.
Grow organic fruit trees and harvest bug-free, chemical-free fruit by covering your fruit with homemade bags made from row cover. Use row cover bags as an alternative to plastic bags. Row cover bags are more effective and have fewer issues than plastic bags.
Check out this expert advice for keeping an organic garden pest-free.
Introducing Alpaca-Gold, a new company producing 100% all natural, organic Alpaca fertilizer.
New Clear Door Dehydrators coming from Excalibur Dehydrators.
Some tomato varieties wilt when temperatures get too hot. Find heat-tolerant tomato varieties that can grow robust tomato plants in hot climates.
The Organic Trade Association is vital to the success of the organic industry and I’m thrilled to serve alongside such a talented and well-respected group of industry leaders.
These sources can help you locate organic and other natural options for plants, seeds, and weed and pest control products.
As modern farms increase production using monoculture crops, the nutritional value of the harvests diminishes, along with the economic stability and self-reliance of the farmers and their local communities.
Everyday families can now provide much of their fresh vegetables using Aquaponics. Aquaponics is the production of edible fish and vegetables growing in a drought proof, no weed, back saving growing system.
A problem for older gardeners is finding tools that make gardening easier as getting up and down becomes harder.
“Black” tomatoes still reign with the best of the reds and pinks bi-colored and cherry tomatoes still growing in popularity.
Home gardeners and commercial farmers will find much to be enthusiastic about at this three-day aquaponic event.
This certification confirms that the company’s import, warehousing, and sales processes meet the standards of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Organic Program.
The 20th-Annual Organic Growers School takes place March 8 through March 10 at the University of North Carolina at Asheville (UNCA) in Asheville, N.C. The event, which is open to the public, provides practical, region-appropriate organic growing and permaculture workshops, homesteading and rural living classes, as well as a seed exchange, silent auction and trade show.
Delicious Roasted Grain is Kosher, Naturally Vegan, Made in the USA and Now Certified Organic
Jacobs Farm in Santa Cruz, Calif. was recently awarded $1 million in damages for lost income due to pesticide drift.
Garlic is a very labour-intensive crop to grow but the rewards are worth it!
Cam shares what he has learned about corn smut in his organic garden.
The second post (of three) describing an organic gardener's attempt to grow his own wheat.
The right dog can be a very useful member of the family when you are growing corn!
Cam shares the results of his experiment growing wheat in his vegetable garden.
It's always wonderful to meet someone who is passionate about what they do!
Cam is hoping that the Queen attends his gardening workshop this weekend at the Royal Botanical Gardens....
Our HelpXers Mike and Melissa share their experiences as volunteers here at Sunflower Farm.
Cam battles with scarabs in his raspberry patch.
Cam loves growing and selling food!
Cam has been busy harvesting and sorting potatoes.
Cam appreciates the simple things like rotten hay and beautiful vegetables from his garden.
This summer Cam became a market gardener and actually got paid for something he loves to do - grow vegetables!
Mulch, like compost, plays an important role in organic gardening. To maximize the flavor and nutrition of your produce, learn how to use and balance the characteristics of various organic materials when mulching.
The ACTUAL benefits of weeds in your garden. Use and value diversity! Find the benefit!
The how's and why's we homestead
Know how many seeds you need for your area considering germination rate and extras.
Growing and harvesting hazelnuts (filberts) in your garden.
Experiences getting started gardening in the 1970's and suggestions for beginning your own projects in 2012.
Keep your garden full all season by planting the next crop as soon as the previous crop is harvested. Tips for deciding what to plant next.
Cam finds an new old-fashioned way to keep the wildlife out of his garden.
It's an aromatic time of year at Sunflower Farm - time to clean the garlic!
Cam undertakes an experiment to see how much food he can produce on his one acre of garden space.
Swine flu may or may not be the pandemic that cable newscasters are proclaiming - but why take chances? This most recent health scare is yet another reminder that eating local, organic food - preferably raised by a source you know and trust - is just a smart thing to do.
Pizza Fusion is one of the 10 finalists in Co-op America's People's Choice Award for green business of the year. The company uses only organic ingredients and delivers its pizza with hybrids.
To what extent are manufacturers able to take advantage of the enigmatic nature of the term ‘sustainability’ to effectively green wash their products?
Responsible investment secures land for a young organic farmer in Minnesota.
We're trying it before you buy it! Now Relish, one of our weekly blogs, will feature taste tests on various organic foods and snacks. This week we're featuring Kopali Organics snacks in Goldenberry. Read on to find out what we thought!
We're trying it before you buy it! Every week Relish — one of our weekly blogs — features taste tests on various organic foods and snacks. This week we're featuring Kaia Premium Granola in raison cinnamon, dates & spices and cocoa bliss. Read on to find out what we thought!
Find out how to protect your hives and honeycomb from wax moths without using chemicals.
The dangers of bud nip (Chlorpropham) and the effects of chemical herbicides on the food you're eating come to light in a potato project conducted by a smart, young lady.
Ways to fertilize organically without breaking the bank.
Learn to deal with cabbage worms through organic methods.
Expert advice on best organic fertilizer options for new apple trees and grape vines.
We've been warning you about aminopyralid-containing killer compost for quite some time. Now there's a new deadly herbicide on the market, Imprelis, and it's wreaking havoc in at least seven states.
To make the best use of potato-growing season, use the technique of greensprouting.
Special Lager Beer Crafted by New Belgium Brewing Celebrates Patagonia's 40 Years in Business.
Cover crops protect your soil over the winter and are beneficial for soil building. Learn more about your cover crop options and the time to plant them.
How do folks get from city dwellers to homesteaders? Annie Warmke interviews Carie Starr, owner of Cherokee Valley Bison Ranch in Central Ohio.
Mountain Rose Herbs honored with Social and Fair Trade Certification.
Knowing your average last frost date is key to getting your garden off to a good start.
In July and August, it’s time to start thinking about planting crops for fall. But how do you get good seed germination when the soil is so hot?
What does “Certified Organic” mean? Food labels can be befuddling, but we’re here to help. Learn the standards that guide the “Certified Organic” label.
The first organic inhaler, The Lung Cleaner, hits markets.
Gardeners in certain regions frequently ask about how to improve clay soil. Lighten up your heavy clay soil by using organic matter, sand and other soil conditioners.
Is rotenone organic? The Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) sorts out that complicated question about a pesticide being used on some organic farms.
New Holland Agriculture is unveiling a number of new tractors as well as new haytools and other equipment at the 2012 World Ag Expo in Tulare, California and the 2012 National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville, Kentucky.
Smithfield's hog farms produce a lot of meat and make a lot of money, but at what cost? Can we continue to look the other way as they pollute waters, abuse animals and terrorize their neighbors?
Clearly the NACE considers “useless” degrees to be ones in which pay is low and availability of jobs is scarce. However, shouldn’t measuring the usefulness of an education take into account the actual benefits bestowed upon the person doing the study
Starting flats of seedlings begins this year's growing season.
Transitioning seedlings from indoor starts to outdoor plants
Harvesting abundance in the early spring.
The accumulation and storage of hay is an essential summer task.
Use of a mobile chicken tractors allows us to keep the birds on fresh ground and stay on top of the weeds.
Preserving an abundant basil harvest for the coming winter.
The Ecological Farming Association will host the 33rd annual EcoFarm Conference at the Asilomar Conference Grounds in Pacific Grove, Calif., Jan. 23-26, 2013. The conference will offer more than sixty workshops, as well as the opportunity for eight beginning farmers to win substantial grants.
In this section you will find stories of real farmers across the country that made it work. You'll find their story, how they did it and who helped them. We hope these stories will inspire and educate new farmers, as well as land owners and community members to become involved in the new agrarian movement. A growing trust.
It has been fifteen months since heritage breed hog farmer Mark Baker sued the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to stop the implementation of an invasive species order (ISO). The swine ISO supposedly targeted feral swine but could be applied to any domestic pig not raised in confinement. Baker has yet to have his day in court and it is still not settled when his trial will take place. It is common for lawsuits like this to turn into wars of attrition; the state has virtually unlimited resources while the farmers are bled of theirs over the course of the litigation.
Dairyman Nick Snelgar reflects on the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health certification process and bagging hay for winter on his UK dairy farm.
In this excerpt from Fair presenters Hank and Karen Will’s new book, Plowing With Pigs and Other Creative, Low-budget Homesteading Solutions, they’ll show you how to add small grains to your plot.
FairShare CSA Coalition partners with health insurance groups to offer a rebate for selecting fresh, organic, local produce.
Don't like weeds? Well, maybe this will change your mind. An article in the New York Times, discusses possible ways that weeds could help fight global warming.
Fearing a sugar shortage, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced it would defy a District Court judge's ban on Roundup Ready sugar beets.
Concerned about the U.S. Department of Agriculture's refusal to stop Monsanto? Here are four steps you can take now.
The Department of Natural Resources seeks to fine a family for possession of prohibited swine.
Monsanto, the world’s largest producer of genetically modified seeds and the toxic herbicides used to drench them, is calling itself a supporter of sustainability. You’re kidding, right?
The documentary Urban Roots takes a look at how city farming is transforming the city's vacant lots into community gardens, ultimately changing the community as a whole in the process.
Organic Coconut Sugar is made from sap collected from the freshly cut flower buds of organic coconut palm trees grown on small, sustainable farms.
Explains the benefits of organic fertilizers such as rock phosphate, kelp, fish meal and greensand, and tells you how to get buy these materials at reasonable prices.
University of Florida entomologist Russell Mizell investigated ways to attract stink bugs to trap crops rather than cash crops—with great success. His experience can help you learn how to design trap crop scenarios of your own.
When you say “organic” most people think of elitists that are buying over priced food because they think that they are better than others. What does the “organic” really mean though?
When you ask people if they want chemicals in their garden or on their food, most will say no. They want to limit their exposure to the chemicals and pollutants.
A birdbath in the garden does much more than a birdfeeder. Attract birds to the garden with water, and they will help with pest control, soil aeration, and much more as they get the water they need for drinking and grooming. Wasps love a drink too.
Giving your ornamental and vegetable garden a thorough cleaning in midsummer not only leaves the landscape looking better, but can help prevent damage from diseases and pests by removing the conditions in which they thrive.
At the Mother Earth News Fair, I always enjoy speaking with fellow farmers and gardeners about inputs, organic standards and sound practices in the field. At the OMRI booth, we always provide free OMRI Products Lists of approved input materials, to help you find the right fertilizer or livestock feed additive and keep your farm or garden truly organic .
While it's almost impossible to completely avoid GMOs, you can minimize your exposure by eating organic and knowing which products are the worst offenders.
The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) hosts its 23rd annual Organic Farming Conference, February 23-25, 2012, at the La Crosse Center in La Crosse, Wis.
Learn how bats can be beneficial for organic farmers, dramatically reducing the need for costly and harmful pesticides.
As winter descends a three-season hoop house is weeded, compost spread, and a straw mulch applied. Next spring will be here soon.
Pruning perennials is essential for plant health and vigorous production.
There are various means for developing an edible landscape.
Community food events are an outstanding way to share the abundance of our harvest and strengthen local community ties.
Looking ahead to spring, we're using these long days to plan a rootstock order of perennial trees, shrubs, and herbs.
Docking of dairy cows serves no purpose and causes pain and discomfort for the
A winter thaw inspires starting the first seeds of the season - indoors, of course: kale, chard, and spinach to start.
The place I call home these days is The FarmSchool, a fertile 180-acre strip of ridge top in Athol, where 15 student-farmers are spending a year learning the ins and outs of growing food, managing forests, and raising animals for meat. I arrived at the farm in October, just as the leaves were reaching their peak brilliance. The Farm School — which offers three-day programs for schoolchildren, a summer camp, a full-time middle school, and the apprenticeship program I’m in — takes us through all seasons of farming, weaving together class work and on-farm training.
A few months back I heard a comment on an NPR radio program that really caught my attention. The program was about the local food movement and at one point the guest on the show said, “Now remember - just because it’s local doesn’t necessarily mean it has a smaller carbon footprint. That Argentinian apple that was shipped on a barge with thousands of tons of other apples may actually have required less fuel per apple than the apple than came from a few hundred miles away in the back on a farmer’s pickup.”
Honey bees, the Boston tragedy, and our power to create the world we’ve been waiting for.
When we stayed on an organic farm in Costa Rica, my kids and I experienced the beauty of self-sufficiency and saw how truly sustainable development benefits the local community as well as the global one. Mostly, we miss the homemade butter.
This is a rundown of films that came out in the last few years. These films cover a wide range of environmental topics, from energy, climate, and fuel, to food, farming, and health. Many of the films have won awards or been critically acclaimed.
Once a barren wasteland destroyed-like much of Costa Rica's land--by decades of cattle ranching, Rancho Margot is now a verdant and productive paradise. Find out how the Sostheim family has accomplished this in just seven years.
RADIUS, the leading manufacturer of specialty, natural dental products, announces the launch of the RADIUS Organic Biodegradable Silk Floss, the first 100 percent biodegradable dental floss.
We produce wonderful, organically approved soil products for the independent garden centers.
The UrBin Grower is a unique gardening system that takes place in self-watering containers that can be used on decks, patios, side yards or porches.
The Living Seed Company is creating a platform to inspire gardeners and gardeners to be.
GloryBee Foods announces today that the company adds Aunt Patty's Organic Creamed Coconut to its selection of natural foods.
Mother Nature has a way of filling in the blank spots....
Building a small cordwood cafe in Colorado. A fun project for everyone!
"Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us?" is a new bee documentary that examines the global bee crisis through the eyes of beekeepers, scientists, farmers and philosophers. The film emphasizes the thoughts of biodynamic and organic beekeepers on Colony Collapse Disorder and highlights the impact of industrial agriculture on the relationship between humans and bees.
This spring when the pests arrive in your garden try this radical strategy - Do nothing!
The morning started off with a decent lecture on poultry operation, production, and marketing. After a midday break, lectures resumed, this time being led by a different fellow, on the subject of free-range, humane certified broiler production. I won
Thoughts on growing all your own food. How much space is required and other things to consider.
Tips for keeping your tomato plants healthy.
Cam is trying to extend his growing season with DIY greenhouse structures.
Cam describes the method he used when planting his sweet potatoes this year with hopes that he'll end up with a prettier finished product!
Cam contemplates his place in the universe while weeding his corn patch....
Strategies for controlling voles in the potatoes in your garden.
Here are some ways we use natural materials to improve our garden and orchards.
Replacing paper towels with rags is a super simple step toward sustainable living. Follow these simple tips to get disposable paper towels out of your house. You'll never miss them.
A potential solution to rising food prices, food insecurity and the obesity epidemic may call into play raising farms inside the city limits.
Having little space is not a reason to not be growing your own food. It's just an excuse. I've been apartment gardening since 2009.
If you strive to grow a garden that is beyond-organic, that relies on very few (if any) off-site products, and that saves you both money and work...deep organic gardening is for you!
You want to start your urban garden from seed this year, but you're not sure where to start because you’ve only started from transplants.
A neglected, overgrown, old apple tree does have charm, its gnarled, elbowed branches seemingly ready to reach out for a hug. The fruits, unfortunately, more often than not are too small, too pest-ridden, and too high in the tree. My fear of heights makes the last deficiency most important to me. Large, clean fruits are for nought if I can’t bring myself to climb a ladder or the branches for harvest.
What exactly is hydroponic gardening? Though it may sound complicated, it’s really not. The word "hydroponic" comes from the Greek "hydro," meaning water, and “ponic,” meaning work. The basic concept is this: growing plants in a nutrient rich water solution rather than in soil.
Cole discusses the challenges faced by organic meat raisers, as well as the health benefits of consuming organic meats.
We can create eco-friendly clothing without producing waste. Find out more about zero-waste design and its effect on the fashion industry.
The Organic Materials Review Institute was formed by organic certifiers back in 1997 to focus exclusively on the products and materials used by farmers.
I’m a handmade gardening gal – part eco-friendly, non-traditionalist; part crafty creative with more ideas than money, and an abiding aversion to off-the-shelf shopping. My garden is my canvas, my vision, and my voice.
Jason Akers, The Self-Sufficient Gardener, will present two workshops on gardening at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Ruth Rogers Clausen of Timber Press will present a workshop on how to cope with deer when gardening at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Linda Conroy of Moonwise Herbs and Brooms will present a workshop on bioregional herbalism at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Elsa Sanchez of Penn State University will present two workshops on compost and mulch at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
If I could only pick one season extending structure, it would be a cold frame. Incredibly versatile, a simple cold frame is the key to taking your garden from a two or three-season plot and turning it into a year round vegetable factory.
Let’s put water back into the soil where it belongs. Permeable or porous surfaces, like a gravel path or patio, allow rainfall and irrigation to percolate into the ground rather than spill into the street.
When a vegetable garden doesn’t look like a vegetable garden, what is it? A polyculture, where gardeners strive to address this simple truth: The most effective way to grow healthy plants is to create gardens that replicate nature.
Deciding where to buy seeds can be a perplexing challenge. How does a conscientious gardener choose seeds that will grow well, look lovely and taste great, but also support sustainable seed farmers and healthy environments?
One workshop at the Puyallup, Wa., MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR was on learning how to make butter, hosted by Organic Valley.
Our MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR last weekend was full of great presentations about all facets sustainable living, including on learning how to garden.
David Tracey of New Society Publishing will present two workshops on organic gardening at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
A silent auction at the Mother Earth News Fair featuring hundreds of items raised $5,232 for the Organic Seed Alliance last weekend in Puyallup, Wash.
Candy DeBerry, Ph.D. of Washington & Jefferson College will present a workshop on pollination at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Tammi Hartung of Desert Canyon Farm will present three workshops on growing and using herbs at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival. September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Erin Harwood and Eloyce O'Connor of the Garden Delights CSA and Herb Farm will present a workshop on natural remedies at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Lindsay Lee, nursery owner and Seed Savers Exchange advisor, will present a workshop on grafting fruit trees at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Linda Gilkeson, master gardener, and Jessie Price of EatingWell Magazine will present workshops on gardening and healthy cooking at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Ann Larkin Hansen shows that typically mundane tasks like record keeping and planning can be a satisfying process that can help you reflect on the successes of the year before.
Barbara Pleasant offers a step-by-step plan to starting seeds.
Cam enjoyed a very successful sweet potato harvest!
The creators of Food Inc. make a great effort to teach their audience about where our food comes from and about the effects of our industrial food system. After seeing the documentary, MOTHER EARTH NEWS blogger Jenna Woginrich was inspired to write her own argument about the way we view and consume food - and ask: Will those who most need the education ever see the film?
Support these longtime anti-GMO activists and organic farmers in the construction of a new repair shop for their vintage seed equipment.
Forget pesticides or kerosene. Instead, smother badly placed yellow jacket nests with a translucent cover.
Regardless of how little space you have, you can grow some of your own food. Space is just an excuse. By building a self-watering container or soda bottle planter you can maximize the space that you have. You don't have to have a huge garden - growi
Here are six of my favorite ideas for those of you with small spaces and still want to get your garden on.
To better accommodate the planting schedule of gardeners in the southern United States, California’s Natural Gardening Company will make a dozen varieties of tomato transplants available by mid-August.
Using leaves in the garden will boost the soil’s organic matter.
Growing organic apples isn’t impossible! Follow these tips and methods for avoiding pest damage and growing apples organically.
Growing pine trees from seed will allow you to produce lots of trees very economically. Follow these instructions to propagate pine trees from seed.
Many wood finishes contain toxic solvents or heavy-metal drying agents. Learn which nontoxic wood finishes are best to use on decks, fences and unfinished, wood-sided homes.
Do you know about the magic of milk and molasses in improving your garden? Yes, plain old milk of any kind – whole, 2%, raw, dried, skim or nonfat – is a miracle in the garden for plants, soil and compost. Molasses only boosts the benefits! Let’s see how and why they work.
Harrisons’ Pet Products Recover: A Complete Nutritional Formula is for sick or injured animals.
April's tips for controlling weeds and fertilizing your garden.
We have developed two customized search engines that make it easier to locate companies that offer specific varieties of seeds and plants, as well as organic garden products and tools.
Homegrown vegetables are a lesson for kids in where food comes from.
The process of curing potatoes for winter storage.
D Acres offers alternative economics. We are the 99&: join us.
Leaves are a valuable source of mulch and fertility within the permaculture garden.
Slower growth in crop yields, high oil prices and use of food crops to make biofuels could push food prices higher for the next year and beyond.
When Steve Sikora and Lynette Erickson-Sikora restored Frank Lloyd Wright's first small, affordable home, they discovered how green the iconic architect really was.
With all the recent panic about radiation contamination, our loyal BõKU customers felt safer, and more protected, with BõKU's nutrient dense support.
Groovy Globe will donate 10 percent of its sales from each product sold to non-profit environmental organizations.
Engineer Venkappa Gani leads by example when it comes to sustainable living. His entire backyard is an organic garden, an edible landscape that borders his rainwater harvesting tank collectors overlooked by solar panels that power his home (and more!). Gani is dedicated to sustainability, a word he lives by everyday at his suburban home in Austin, Texas.
Both organic and local food are important if we want to eat nutritious and delicious food. Furthermore, our current food system is in jeapordy because petroleum and water supplies are dwindling and climate change is resulting in more extreme weather.
We may find it overwhelming to know where to begin in teaching others to eat healthily. People attempting to eat healthier find it difficult to know where to begin. "The Dirty Dozen" fruits and vegetables gives us all a place to start.
Growing potatoes in containers allows you to increase your yield in a small amount of space.
This is an excerpt from Christopher Nyerges' "Self-Sufficient Home" book (published by Stackpole) where he talks about some of his early gardening experiences and when he learned that the health of the soil is the most important aspect of gardening.
There are many logical reasons for adding flowers to your vegetable garden: attracting beneficials, crop diversity, companion-planting, barriers and healthy soil. But perhaps their beauty does not need to be rationalized at all!
Cam contemplates the amount of energy that goes into our food production and shows how he prepared corn for freezing the zero carbon way!
Autumn is very busy at Stony Knolls Farm between the Common Ground Fair and Fall Goat School!
One thing I know for sure is that many in the local farm and food scene are working through the same issue. We are numbers people in search of numbers. We aren’t crazy unscientific loons like our industrial brothers and sisters think we are.
Creating your own start-up is full of obstacles, but rewarding. MOTHER EARTH NEWS reader Jessica Vaughan shares advice from her experience as a first-time small business owner who teaches clients how to grow organic produce.
Finca Exotica is ideal for travelers who want to immerse themselves in the Osa Peninsula's bounty and learn about permaculture and sustainable building.
To build Finca Exotica, a sustainable resort on Costa Rica's Osa Peninsula, the owners took advantage of plentiful native bamboo, kept the footprint small and let buildings unfold organically.
In Arizona, an intrepid desert gardener harvests rainwater to grow his own food. A Missouri garden writer feeds his soil to feed himself. In Texas, a garden wall encourages community. These are a few of my favorite gardens.
Save money and keep harsh chemicals out of your kitchen by making your own dishwasher detergent. It takes just seconds to make a powdered or liquid version.
Green & Black’s, an organic chocolate company, takes a two week trip to the Dominican Republic to dig an 11.5 km trench. The trench will supply water to their cocoa farmers, helping product the cocoa which makes Green & Black’s chocolate bars.
Pruning apple trees to a three by three central leader shape for strength against high winds and to prevent fungal infection.
I say compost, you think of rotting food, dirt, flies and a horrible smell. For that reason most people wont' even consider composting at home.
Organic is a phrase that’s tossed around and abused a lot by marketers these days. Not all “organic” products should be treated equally.
Popcorn is easy to grow and makes an attractive and delicious alternative to sweet corn, especially in a small garden. Kids will love the cute little ears, and adults will treasure the superior flavor of homegrown popcorn. Plant in late spring.
Describes a method of protecting tomatoes from excessive heat using a sunscreen, vermicompost tea, pulling blighted leaves.
I’d like to introduce the words farmden and farmdener into the English language. I wonder if there are any other farmdeners out there. And just what is a farmden? It’s more than a garden, less than a farm. That’s my definition, but it also could be described as a site with more plants and/or land than one person can care for sanely. A gardener and garden gone wild, out of control.
It was becoming pretty obvious the crowding and lack of light were real limitations to my mini garden. Then, the idea of a trough on the windowsill came to mind, combining a way to water all the plants uniformly and efficiently all at once. Great, now how to make this trough? Wood? Sheet metal? The choices all seemed expensive, clumsy, prone to leaking...then the light bulb went on in my head: gutters!
Where are we headed, vis a vis our food systems? Can we as individuals make a difference in our food? Yes!
Celebrate a technology-free Sabbath with a jug of organic wine, a loaf of homemade bread and handmade candles. Could you go 24 hours without your smartphone?
Wood Prairie Farm encourages citizens to sign a petition in support of family farmers and to attend the citizens assembly on January 31st, 2012.
Concerned about GMOs in your family's food? Take action.
Diane Ott Whealy of Seed Savers Exchange and Jackie Cleary Dietrich of Auburn Meadow Farm will present workshops on gardening and farming at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, Sept. 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Have you started your tomatoes and peppers yet? 'Tis the season to start seeding long season crops indoors. If you normally buy organic starts from your local nursery, try your hand at seed starting.
Sue J. Morris of Sue's Salves will present two workshops on gardening and creating salves at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Ann Adams and Liz Brensinger of Green Heron Tools will present a workshop on the principles of good body mechanics at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Deborah Niemann of Antiquity Oaks will present two workshops on traditional home dairies and homegrown food at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Jennifer R. Bartley of American Potager will present a workshop on cooking with herbs and vegetables from a kitchen garden at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Although the concepts of fair trade, buying local and buying organic food are used to aid the economies of developing countries, these same three concepts can help our local communities become the healthy communities we can thrive in.
Maddy Harland writes about principles that underpin our understanding and practical application of permaculture. She relates them to designing a green home and garden but also explains how permaculture can help us to create more sustainable lifestyle
are at the vanguard of thoughtful sourcing, choosing local, sustainable farms
and cooking seasonally.
Organic Valley's new Pasture Butter is a standout among cultured butters and organic food products. This is one of the few products available today that respects Mother Nature by paying attention to the seasons, not to mention the needs of our food-producing animal friends.
This blog post describes the MOTHER EARTH NEWS staff's afternoon spent harvesting their homegrown garlic.
Brown rot is a serious disease of peaches, plums, and other stone fruits. For organic gardeners, spraying at-risk fruits with a milk solution can give good control.
Try these organic techniques to help prevent tomato early blight.
Simran Sethi writes about the importance of eco-friendly mattresses, bed frames, and bedding.
An experiment in urban gardening produces a melon miracle.
No matter your level of gardening expertise, our Guide to Organic Gardening app has the advice and how-to you need to dig in and grow a bountiful organic food garden. With articles on composting, beneficial insects, weed control and more, you'll have a wealth of organic gardening know-how at your fingertips after you download this app onto your Apple or Android smartphone or tablet.
The USDA has extended the comment period on agricultural "coexistence," which will determine how much protection organic farmers and seed breeders will have from GM seed contamination, until March 4.
This year at the LA International Olive Oil Competition, only one Best of Show was awarded to a domestic oil – to Apollo Olive Oil’s organic Sierra.
Urban food forests and public gardens provide communities with an edible landscape for everyone to share. These public fruit forests are the new trend in urban agriculture and play an important role as sustainable local food systems in their communities.
For those of us who hate to use chemicals in our gardens, in our homes, or with our livestock and pets, diatomaceous earth may be a safe and efficient substitute. It may worm your animals, rid them of fleas and lice and even handle indoor pests.
USDA-organic personal care line now styled after Dr. Bronner’s iconic castile soap label.
Wendy Albright remembers visiting her grandparent's farm where practicing organic living was the preferred way of life; they exercised natural crop cultivation, gathered fresh chicken eggs, canned both vegetables and meat and the term "eating like a thrasher" became a reality.
Contemplations on what we eat and why we pay close attention to our food.
Summing up the last week of mostly frozen stuff except for a brief thaw.
Rancho Margo in Costa Rica's Arenal district is a self-sufficient farm and intentional community that sends guests home with a new sense of what's possible in sustainable living.
Buying "natural" cereal could get you a bowl full of GMOs. To keep genetically modified ingredients off your family's table, buy organic.
Essentia introduces the world's first memory foam mattress made without chemicals.
Introducing the serviceberry, a beautiful landscape tree or shrub suitable in much of North America, to the edible landscape. Serviceberry -- or sarvis -- comes in many regional forms and produces edible berries.
Choose chemical-free organic bedding to start off the new year with healthy rest in a healthy bedroom.
Concerned about Monsanto's Roundup Ready crops and genetic engineering of our food? Let President Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack know.
Eating only homegrown foods on the Fridays in Lent.
Check out these tips and share your ideas for welcoming 2010 with a green New Year’s Eve party.
So many paint colors to choose from for Simran Sethi’s home, but one standard must be met: no VOCs or harmful chemicals.
Environmental journalist Simran Sethi goes through the process of rejuvenating her hardwood floors, and describes how to avoid harmful ingredients in cleaning products, such as volatile organic compounds, in the process.
Using oil seed radishes to add organic matter to the ground and attracting native pollinators with a nest site. Harvesting sweet potato seeds if we're lucky and admiring the parasitic wasp's ability to lay white egg sacs into the body of a horn worm
Organic Architect's Eric Corey Freed shows designers what green really means during Dining by Design, a charity event featuring tabletop installations in New York.
So, what do you do if you neglected to start your veggies way back in January or February? You had good intentions but there always seemed to be something that stole your attention. Now it’s the planting season and you have nothing to plant...
Growing some of the most delicious and sometimes expensive gourmet vegetables doesn't have to be hard. Artichoke, bronze fennel, kohlrabi, leek, and savoy cabbage are among the vegetables that grow well from seed.
"Organic farmers have the right to raise our organic crops without the threat of invasion by Monsanto's genetic contamination and without harassment by a reckless polluter. Beginning today, America asserts her right to justice and pure food."
Take a visual tour of the events at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Fair in Puyallup, Washington.
Eggs aren't the only things that come from the business end of a chicken. But with a little time and materials, and even less ingenuity, the rest can set you up with a free and steady supply of valuable organic fertilizer.
Growing Local Food is a new book that encompasses all the needed basics to grow plants, keep heritage breed animals and bees. The author is a homesteader and physician who gives the readers the basic information to grow or find nutritious, local food
Simran Sethi discusses how to green your bathroom in easy ways: through your choice of toilet paper, shower curtain, and towels.