Munch Crunch Organics Farmer Al

Micro farms and hot cross buns

Comments Off on Micro farms and hot cross buns 11
Nothing in life remains the same.  There is however, often an idealistic and sentimental view in organic agriculture that things must remain the same to keep up with the traditional founders of the organic agriculture movement.  Founders such as Rudolf Steiner, Sir Albert Howard, Lady Eve Balfour and J.I Rodale, who wrote in 1954 "Organics is not a fad.  It has been a long-established practice - much more firmly grounded than the current chemical flair.  Present agricultural practices are leading us downhill".  These forebears of organic agriculture should be held in very high regard, as they had the vision and understanding that farming is a holistic system and encompasses the physical, chemical and biological aspects of the sciences to ensure that the health of the soil is looked after.   Healthy Soil = Healthy Plants = Healthy People/Animals.   Their philosophies and principles remain as close to my heart as they did 20 years ago when I first started studying organic agriculture.  However the landscape around us has changed dramatically over the last 20 years in terms of environment, culture and climate.  80% of people now live in cities in a fast paced environment with little connection to the natural world on which we are so very dependent for our air, water and food.  We have a current population of 7.3 billion people, many living an all consuming and unsustainable, unhealthy lifestyle and many experiencing the polar opposite of the spectrum, who live at or below the poverty line.   Agriculture has a huge role to play in solving some of these problems caused by society, primarily reducing greenhouse gas emissions of which current agricultural practices are generally agreed to be 30% responsible for.  I think the model of producing food on a large scale in open paddocks is becoming outdated and too risky for farmers with not enough return.  Hence the reason, only 3% of farmers are 40 and younger with the average age of a farmer in the Western world being 58.  This leaves a huge gap in food supply in the not too distant future.   In order to address this in-balance we need to look at new solutions.  Having experienced the position of one of those farmers in large open paddocks, losing crops to pests and weather events, not making a return and being in debt I've come to the conclusion that farmers and communities working together in micro-farming situations is the way to go.  This includes embracing some of the technologies available such as polytunnels to reduce crop losses and being situated near population centres on small parcels of land.  This method ticks many boxes and gives a viable entry point into farming for young people that don't have the capital or access to resources needed to buy often overpriced land and expensive tractors and machinery.  Micro-farming through protected cropping structures such as polytunnels means that we can harvest rainwater from the roof and use it to irrigate the crops.  We can prevent the heavy rain events from damaging the crops and prevent soil erosion.  Keep unwanted bugs out and reduce the incidence of disease all the while still growing in soil and compost to ensure that the necessary nutrients are taken up by the plants.  This in turn, gives us healthy, nutrient dense food for our bodies.   The great thing about this model of micro-farming is that it is not only replicable in both poor and wealthy communities on marginal land but can do a huge amount to abate climate change by producing organic food, close to the proximity of consumption.  This leads to reduced food miles, reliance on synthetic chemical inputs (which are very energy intensive to produce) and fresher more nutritious food for the local population.  These micro-farms can produce large amounts of food with a relatively low entry cost that not only offer good employment or career paths for individuals but also have the opportunity to help repair some of the social damage that exists in communities around the world.  This is done by weaving communities back together again with the joint focus and responsibility of growing food thus empowering themselves. Cheers, Al   Hot cross bun time!   No nasty artificial flavourings used in the making of these delicious Sol Breads organic hot cross buns - available in spelt and easy gest grain. So delicious, with just the right amount of sweetness, add some salted butter... Easter deliveries   Deliveries will remain the same the week after Easter, but if you're enjoying the holiday and forget to order your organic box - you can order up till 10am Tuesday 29/3 for deliveries on 29 and 30 March. This week's Seasonal Box:
The likely box contents for this week's Medium Seasonal box are:
  • Oranges - Valencia (500g)
  • Tomatoes - Roma (400g)
  • Apples (750g)
  • Sweet Potato - Gold (750g)
  • Banana - Cavendish (750g)
  • Eggplant - Purple (500g)
  • Zucchini - Small to Medium (500g)
  • Beans - round (250g)
  • Lettuce - Salad Mix (150g)
  • Kale - Black (bunch)
  • Dill (bunch)
And don't forget to add further items
(extra fruit, veg, bread, dairy, pantry items etc) to your box.
Rebecca Mace

View all contributions by Rebecca Mace

Similar articles