Posted: 18 July 2012 at 8:07pm | IP Logged
I am finally catching up with several weeks worth of episodes after my silence retreat. The one on Organic farming was wonderful. It was heartening to see the waking up of farmers to the ill effects of pesticides in various parts of the country. The myth that organic farming produces lower yields is busted in many places, including here, in California : http://www.coopfoodstore.coop/content/organic-agriculture-has-high-yields-and-benefits-environment
In the past 2 decades I have seen the rise of the Organic movement in California and came to realize just how important this movement is for India. One of the reasons why California chose organic is because it grows more vegetables and fruits and tree nuts like almonds, pista, walnuts, and pecans than other farming states. None of these products invite government subsidy as only the holy cash crops like cotton, wheat, corn and soybeans attract subsidies. The same phenomenon is unfolding in India- most of the vegetable farmers are moving to organic because their produce does not attract government subsidies.
However, the story is not ended until rice, wheat, sugarcane and other cash crops also move towards the complete "organification" of their farmlands. Vandana Shiva succinctly showed the myth of how the "green revolution" showed "high yields when farms under cultivation of other crops like daals went under wheat and rice cultivation.
As for the nay sayers who proclaim doom for the planet- they are those who are sold to these huge agri biz corporations who are raping millions of hectares of the amazon rainforest as we speak to maintain a false sense of "cheap food". The trouble is- pay the farmer little (per ton of harvest or threaten him by pulling the plug on his harvest laying in the field)- make him increase yield by selling him expensive pesticides and "genetically modified seeds" and then to make him feel better get a subsidy from the government for being a "good boy" (and not asking questions).
Follow the threads on Monsanto, Dow and Lilly the three largest agri biz firms that started out as pure chemical companies during World War 2 but ended up selling their poisons to the fields in the name of "pesticides" as they had no more nazis to kill.