Presentation on theme: "The Problems of Agribusiness The Solutions for Individuals"— Presentation transcript:
1The Problems of Agribusiness The Solutions for Individuals Sustainable LivingThe Problems of AgribusinessThe Solutions for Individuals
2The Problem: The Monsanto Company The Monsanto Company is a multinational agricultural biotechnology corporationWorld leaders in the production of the herbicide glyphosate, commonly known as RoundupThe leading producer of genetically engineered (GE) seeds with a market share of %Annual revenue of $7.3 billion in 2006
3The ProblemMonsanto has taken out more seed patents than any other company EVER, removing the threat of competitionFarmers that use Monsanto seeds must use Monsanto’s herbicide because it has been chemically engineered to recognize the GE plants only
4Patent InfringementMonsanto has begun highly aggressive pursuit of family owned farms found guilty of patent infringement through use and sale of seeds containing GE DNA without initial purchase of the seeds and the technology.However, this DNA can literally invade a farmer’s field through wind pollination, therefore a farmer may end up with them as well as a law suit.
5GE BansGE crops have been banned in the European Union, Japan and a number of other countries and regions with which the United States has historically tradedTherefore any GE crops domestic farmers produce cannot be sold to these places, reducing the United State’s gross national product
6Why Would the US Agree to This? Former Monsanto employees currently hold positions in US government agencies and offices including the FDA, the EPA and the Supreme CourtDonald Rumsfeld is a major stock owner and made $12 million on a 1985 merger with MonsantoAttorney General John Ashcroft was the top recipient of Monsanto contributions during his reelection campaign for US Senate
7GE Crops are Not Identified Currently there is no system requiring identification of GE foods in grocery storesGE plants are being fed to livestock on massive scalesThe food you and your children eat could be genetically modified, and you will never know
9Pesticides in a nutshell A pesticide is a substance or mixture of substances used for preventing, controlling, or lessening the damage caused by a pest.This may be a chemical substance, a biological agent, antimicrobial or a disinfectant
10Environmental Concerns Associated with Pesticide Use Over 98% of sprayed insecticides and 95% of herbicides reach a destination other than their target species including non-target species, air, water, bottom sediments and food.Some pesticides contribute to global warming and the depletion of the ozone layerIn the US, pesticides were found to pollute every stream and over 90% of wellsPesticides hinder nitrogen fixation which is a major contributor to loss of soil fertility
11Chart Compiled by the Pesticide Data Program of the US Department of Agriculture Fresh Fruit&VegetablesNumber ofSamplesAnalyzedSamples withResiduesDetectedPercentOfSampleWithDetectionsDifferentPesticideResidueTotalDetectionApples7747279833412,619Lettuce7436578847571,985Pears7416438731351,309Orange Juice1869350394
12The Effect of Pesticides and Herbicides on Wildlife
13The Effect of Pesticides on Wildlife Greater in fish-eating birds such as gulls or bald eagles, the use of DDT caused egg shell thinning in many birds of preyExposure to a highly toxic insecticide can cause sickness or death to wildlifeOnce sick, wildlife may neglect their young, abandon their nests, and become more susceptible to predation and disease
14Indirect Effects of Pesticides When herbicides or insecticides are sprayed on field borders and other non-crop habitats, wildlife lose valuable escape cover and foodWildlife are exposed to insecticides when they eat chemical residues on plants or in insects
15Effects of PesticidesWildlife that are in fields or enter fields soon after an insecticide has been sprayed are exposed when they inhale vapor or when insecticides contact their skin or eyes.Granular formulations of insecticides are a real hazard to birds. Birds eat granules exposed on the soil surface, mistaking them for food or grit.
16Health Effects of Pesticides onFarmers, Workers and Consumers
17Farmers & WorkersAccording to the World Health Organization (WHO), 3 million workers in agriculture in the developing world experience severe poisoning from pesticides, about 18,000 of whom dieAccording to one study, as many as 25 million workers in developing countries may suffer mild pesticides poisoning yearly
18Health Effects of Pesticides on Farmers and Workers SHORT TERMAbdominal PainDizzinessHeadachesNauseaVomitingSkin and eye problemsLONG TERMRespiratory ProblemsMemory DisordersDermatologic ConditionsCancerDepressionNeurological deficitsMiscarriagesBirth Defects
19Health Effects of Pesticides on Consumers There are concerns that pesticides used to control pests on food crops are dangerous to people who consume those foodsMany food crops, including fruits and vegetables, contain pesticide residues after being washed or peeled
20Health Effects of Pesticides on Consumers How it works…..In the United States, levels of residues that remain on foods are limited to tolerance levels that are established by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and are considered safeThe EPA sets tolerances based on the toxicity of the pesticide and its breakdown products, the amount and frequency of the pesticide application, and how much of the pesticide remains in or on food by the time it is marketed and prepared
21How it works….. continued Tolerance levels are obtained using the scientific risk assessments that pesticide manufacturers are required to produce by conducting toxicological studies, exposure modeling and residue studies before are particular pesticide can be registeredHOWEVER, the effects are tested for single pesticides, and there is little information on possible synergistic effects of exposure to multiple pesticide traces in the air, food and water
22Health Effects of Pesticides on Consumers In the US, the National Academy of Sciences estimates that between 4,000 and 20,000 cases of cancer are caused per year by pesticide residues in food in allowable amountsPetroleum based chemicals are being found to cause significant attritional effects to the nervous system and immune system after prolonged exposure. Some of the illnesses include adult and child cancers, numerous neurological disorders, immune system weakening, autoimmune weakening, autoimmune disorders, asthma, allergies, infertility, miscarriage, and child and adult learning disabilities, mental retardation, hyperactivity, and attention deficit disorders
23Health Effects of Pesticides on Our Children According to the Natural Resource Defense Council, children have been found especially susceptible to the harmful effects of pesticides. A number of research studies have found higher incidences of brain cancer, leukemia, and birth defects in children with early exposure to pesticidesScientists also think that the exposure to pesticides in the uterus may have negative effects on a fetus that may manifest as problems such as growth and behavioral disorders or reduced resistance to pesticide toxicity later in life
25Organic FoodsOrganic is when organic produce and other ingredients are grown without the use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, genetically modified organisms, or ionizing radiation
26Why Organic?It’s better for the environment – No pesticides means healthier soil, water, and wildlife.Buying organic supports small farmers – Organic farmers can earn a fairer price for organic produce compared to factory farmingOrganic farming is good for biodiversityOrganic Farmers are growing a wide variety of non-genetically modified (non-GMO) fruits and vegetables, resurrecting many heirloom varietiesIt’s healthier for you and your family
27Food to Buy OrganicPeaches- listed as the worst with the highest levels of pesticides of all conventional produceStrawberriesRaspberriesApplesGrapes (& therefore Raisins and Juice! - many kinds of juices have Grape Juice in them)NectarinesApricotsPearsCherriesLemons- especially if zesting, should definitely use organicLimesBananas - heavy chemicals for the trip to America including Thiabendazole which Damages the Brain and Nervous System. KiwisPineappleCantaloupe from MexicoTomatoes
28More Foods to Buy Organic PotatoesCorn & Corn Syrup- most corn is now genetically modified! CeleryCucumbersSpinachLettuceGreen & Red Bell PeppersHot PeppersGreen Beans - Acephate, Benomyl, Chlorothalonil, Methamidophos - Damages Brain and Nervous System, Cause Birth DefectsWinter or Hard SquashCarrots
29More Foods to Buy Organic Rice & Oats - loaded with pesticides!Milk- antibiotics and hormones are forced into America's conventional dairy cow to increase profitsBaby FoodWild SalmonFoods that are GE like Corn - there are more pesticides on genetically engineered foods so avoid GMO FoodsNuts - because of the high fat content, they hold on to pesticides more than othersAnything you or your kids eat a lot of - since pesticides accumulate, if you eat a lot of something that may not be listed here, lets say your kids eat peanut butter every day, then you should certainly avoid an excess of toxins by choosing organic for those items.
30Farmers MarketsFind out about your local farmer’s market and get involved!Speak with your money, buy only locally grown, organic produce
32What is Composting?Compost is the end product of a complex feeding pattern involving hundreds of different organisms, including bacteria, fungi, worms, and insectsWhat remains after these organisms break down organic materials is the rich, earthy substance your garden will loveComposting replicates nature's natural system of breaking down materials on the forest floorConsidered "the organic garbage disposal," composting recycles food waste into rich, dark, earth-smelling soil conditioner
33Benefits of Composting A convenient way to dispose of organic wasteIt saves space in the county landfill, which is good for the environmentHomegrown compost is a great way to feed and nurture plantsComposting does not smell, and it will reduce the smell of the rotting food in your garbage can each week
34Types of CompostingVermiculture – composting with worms in a containerComposting bin in the garden or under the kitchen sinkCompost pileTrench composting in a gardenCompost can be shoveled directly from trenches into gardenCompost pockets throughout yardPlant directly over pocket after one month
35Composting – Tips for Happy Worms You need about 2,000 red wiggler worms for every pound per day of food wasteYou'll want a container with a depth of between 8 and 12 inchesThe bin should be located in areas where the temperatures are between 40 to 80°FWorms do not like a lot of noise or vibrations, keep them away from high traffic areas.Worms want an environment that is about 75 percent water, never let your compost get too wet or too dryIt's best to feed worms once a week in small amounts. If you feed them more than they can process you will end up with a stinking compost bin as the garbage literally backs up
36Composting Do’sThe pile needs a proper ratio of carbon-rich materials, or "browns," and nitrogen-rich materials, or "greens." Among the brown materials are dried leaves, straw, and wood chips. Nitrogen materials are fresh or green, such as grass clippings and kitchen scraps.
37Composting Don’ts Don't Use: Meat Bones Cheese Pet droppings Milk Fats OilsDiseased plantsRubber bandsSpongesDon't use garden soil or mix fresh cow, horse or chicken manure into the bedding. These emit gases and will raise the temperature of your compost bin. You could end up "cooking" your worms to deathDo not dispose of glass, plastic or aluminum foil in your compostAlthough paper can be used as bedding, don't include paper with colored printing on it. Many colored inks are toxic to worms
38Uses for CompostYou can use compost as a mulch protecting the soil and shading out weed seeds. Nutrients are washed out into the soil with each rain to feed the roots of plantsCompost is great for mixing into the soil, it helps a sandy soil hold moisture and nutrients better and improves clay soils tooCompost mixed with some sand makes a super potting soil for growing plants in containers.
40What is square foot gardening? A simple and versatile gardening system that adapts to all levels of experience, physical ability, and geographical location.A great earth friendly way to do your part in helping to protect the environmentAn easy way to grow your own fruits and vegetables and teach your children the importance of eating organic
41Location Pick an area that gets 6-8 hrs of sun daily Avoid trees and shrubs where roots and shade may interfereKeep close to the house for convenience and protectionBeware of areas that puddle after heavy rains
4210 Basics of Square Foot Gardening 1. Layout: Arrange your garden in squares, not rows2. Boxes: Build boxes to hold new soil mix above ground3. Aisles: Space boxes 3 ft apart to form walking aisles4. Soil: Fill boxes with 1/3 compost, 1/3 peat moss, 1/3 coarse vermiculite5. Grid: Make a square foot grid for the top of each box
4310 Basics of Square Foot Gardening 6. Care: Never walk on your growing soil, tend garden from the aisles7. Select: Plant a different flower, vegetable, or crop in each square foot8. Plant: Conserve seeds. Plant only a pinch (2 or 3 seeds) per hole9. Water: Water by hand from a bucket of sun warmed water10. Harvest: When you finish harvesting a square foot, add compost and replant with a new and different crop
44Why garden this way?For home gardening raised bed agriculture means less work, less irrigation, improved soil, higher yields and no poisons.It creates a healthy soil to grow healthy plants to provide healthy food to feed healthy people.People suffer due to very poor diets. Growing our own food provides better nutrition