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View Diary: If you like quinoa, asparagus, or free trade, read this. (207 comments)

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  •  if we were willing to give up some of the (6+ / 0-)

    enormous land use given over to meat production for grazing, and for growing crops for animal grain such as soy,  we could free up some land for growing  healthy crops like quinoa which uses much less water and which would feed more people from it's land use than meat.

    But the US is beholden to it's big agri subsidies and it's killing our food supply and our planet.

    Macca's Meatless Monday

    by VL Baker on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 10:55:29 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Big Ag doesn't rotate. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      maryabein, cailloux

      Crop rotation is key. Moving livestock to previously tilled and cropped areas cuts down on parasites and replenishes the soil. Large farming enterprises generally are concerned with only one crop or type of livestock and do not integrate the two.

      •  70% of agriculture land and 30% of the global land (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cailloux

        area are used for livestock production

        70% of agricultural land and 30% of the global land area are used for livestock production.
        http://www.globalagriculture.org/...

        that's the problem, completely unsustainable and that's accounting for crowded factory farm conditions...just stunning  

        Macca's Meatless Monday

        by VL Baker on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 01:23:14 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That is more about (4+ / 0-)

          commercial agriculture than anything. Animals are a benefit to farming on a small scale and they are very beneficial to the farm ecosystem.

          Most non animal based complete fertilizers contain petro chemicals. I have 50 chickens that have an acre per year of space to eat from. I supliment their bug and grass diet with vegetable scraps and a good layer mix which they eat sparingly. I have three total acres of 80 dedicated to gardening and chickens. One acre is fallow each year, it is followed by spring and summer chicken munching followed by garden the folloing spring. Fall and winter the chickens till the old vegetable garden eating up scrap plants and getting rid of any bugs. In spring we start all over.

          They also provide me with enough compost for my winter garden which I keep closer to the house in raised beds and under glass.

          The milk cows are much smaller than most, slightly larger than a german shepard. They hang out with the fruit trees on 5 acres.

          My fertilizer bill each year is $20 for rock phosphate and lime.

          Our agriculture system is built on using a piece o land for one thing and nothing else.

          It is the heart that makes a man rich. He is rich according to what he is not what he has -Henry Ward Beecher

          by PSWaterspirit on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 01:49:30 PM PST

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          •  wish all farms were like yours PS There (0+ / 0-)

            simply isn't enough land to raise meat sustainably given current consumption not to mention water use.  Problem is too much of our land and water is used for livestock production.  Simply unsustainable now and going into the future.  We must reduce our meat consumption to gain land for growing food that will feed more people and use less water and not create the massive release of greenhouse gases that livestock production emits.  It's  one of our greatest challenges moving forward.

            Macca's Meatless Monday

            by VL Baker on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 03:40:27 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

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