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Jon
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Ten years of slight cooling continuing through an El Nino period, acknowlegment by the head and many lead authors of the UN IPCC. Close to or perhaps the coldest December in "history" as defined by the UN IPCC. Projections by almost all climate scientists on earth that cooling will continue for another 10 to 20 years or more. Climategate which showed the leading provider of temperature data showing warming has for at least 13 years coruupted data and models to enhance warming and hide the decline in temperatures. Ice area in the Artic, Greenland and Antarctica increasing. Cold temperature and snow records all over the earth. The man made warming myth has imploded, but it seems there are still some dead-enders that live in some sort of cocoon isolated from reality still clinging to the cause. Happy New Year and please stay warm. Jon PS- Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. It is a gas essential for life. Real measurements of carbon dioxide have shown that there has been no increase in the CO2 fraction in 160 years http://bristol.ac.uk/news/2009/6649.html despite 17 times more CO2 being emmited than was 160 years ago. I think it is a travesty to waste billions on trying to limit a necessary gas that is doing no harm and taking money away from fighting real pollution.
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Jimmy Carter was the last president to have a White House vegetable garden. I feel that the White House garden is a suggestion that there is no special interest group too small to pander to. Hiring two profesional gardeners to care for a 100 x 10 foot garden along with the security necessary must put the cost of this at at least a quarter of a million dollars. These, without doubt, are the most expensive vegetables on the planet. This even exceeds the huge cost per tomato that it cost me when in the spirit of organic gardening I bought a pot and put it on my deck and raised a tomato plant. The tomatoes were delicious, but a great extravagance. Surely there are far greater wastes of money in the governemnt, but it does set a poor example.
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Zephyr, Thank you for the compliment, it is nice of you to suggest that my discourse is worthy of financial reward. You seem to be pre-occupied with gender. Personally I don't see the relevance, so instead of clarifying this for you I think that I will leave you to your conspiracies. You're not one of those people wearing tin hats that blame the government for blowing up the World Trade Center are you? PS- How much do you think this is worth. I am thinking of approaching Monsanto or some other company but I have no idea what to propose. Is six figures being to greedy? ;)
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Sorry Della, mixed you up with Jamie, must have been the pesticides in that organic organic apple juice I had today. I apologize for the mixup. Jon
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Della, you did post studies that showed higher synthetic pesticides in crops grown "normally". You did not and no study by the FDA or any other organization shown these are close to allowable levels and each showed that these same pesticides are in "organically" grown produce at one third the occurrence. Your claim that you showed that these crops were unsafe is simply not true. Also, as I stated there are non-synthetic pesticides that are used by "organic" farmers that are not tested for and assuming that natural pesticides and bactericides used in organic farming are harmless is unwise. Actually since modern pesticides are tested and levels of allowable exposure are estimated and "natural" chemicals are not it could be argued that commercial produce is safer. I think there are two common misconceptions; 1- "Organic" farming uses no pesticides or bactericides. This is simply not true. They are used regularly in compliance with the FDA definition of organic. 2- The second misconception is that allowable organic pesticides are safer than synthetics or even safe. Not so, for example: Pyrethrums- Basically, a powder made from Chrysanthemums. What could be more natural, right? Well, it’s a neurotoxin, so be careful. Dust the plants with it, and the bugs are history. Unfortunately, that’s especially true for honey bees, who’s numbers are diminishing worldwide at a disturbing rate. There are also synthetic forms of Pyrethrums, just to keep you on your toes, if you’re trying to stay dedicated to ‘organic only’ gardening/farming. Sabadilla- It comes from the a lily with the same name. It too, is a powder that is dusted or sprayed on plants and consequently ingested by a variety of insects. The powder then poisons them via their stomachs as well as by contact, and kills them. It acts as a paralytic, therefore, in certain level doses, it is also dangerous to humans. Over-exposure to humans will slow heart and respiratory activity with cumulative effects which disappear very slowly. Despite the health risk, it is regularly used in homeopathic medicine, (in smaller doses, of course) for among other things, hay fever. It is also destructive to mucous membranes in mammals. As a pesticidal dust, it is usually blended with lime or sulfur mixtures. That means you and your pets are especially susceptible to eye and skin irritation. Did I mention that that it too, is an extremely effective bee exterminator? Rotenone- sometimes a powder, sometimes an emulsion, Rotenone is made from the roots and stems of some legumes and vines. (Now c’mon… THAT sounds organic and safe, right?) It is used to kill mites in chickens, but is also used to kill snails in fisheries, as well as fish in general, in various application of regional water management. Humans can consume those fish safely because Rotenone is not absorbed by the human gastrointestinal system. However, recent as well as current research is trying to connect regular exposure to rotenone with Parkinson’s Disease. As of yet, that research is inconclusive, but studies are ongoing. Organic growers, if they want to, can use environmentally insensitive organic pesticides irresponsibly, warns Jeff Gillman, an associate professor in the department of horticultural science at the University of Minnesota, where he teaches courses on nursery management and pesticide use. (More Toxic, you may recognize Gillman’s name—he’s the expert from the podcast you listened to). Gillman said that when he goes to a large grocery store such as Wal-Mart, he chooses conventionally grown stuff over the big organics. To explain why, he used apples as an example. Apples, he says, are a high-maintenance crop prone to pest problems and difficult to control without sprays. http://www.thefarmguide.com/article_organic_vs_chemical.html “Most of the time the large organic orchards are going to need to apply organic pesticides,” he says. “These organic pesticides need to be applied more frequently than the synthetics, in most cases.” The repeated applications of these different organic compounds, contends Gillman, can have a worse environmental impact than synthetic compounds. Note that Gillman’s assessment applies to large orchards. On small, diversified farms, apple pests are much less likely to gain enough of a foothold to cause big problems. Gillman also believes that some of the organically sanctioned pesticides are just as bad as the synthetic ones in terms of environmental impacts. “Copper Sulfate ... is one that builds up over the years, and you have copper building up in the soil,” he told me. “It’s a bad player and one that you don’t want to see used a whole lot.” Then there’s Spinosad, which is toxic to bees, those vital pollinators that are already imperiled http://www.grist.org/article/Checkout-Line-Organic-chemistry You see pesticides are used to kill whether they are natural or synthetic. Myself I use the least toxic method possible. I use horticultural oil or insecticidal soap, I use cow manure and most of the time use organic fertilizer on the lawn, I compost. i do however use modern chemicals when necessary, always according to directions and the most environmentally friendly I can find. I have no qualms about buying produce from normal farms and no one has shown me that this is any more or less dangerous than buying organic. One thing I would never do is buy anything imported that is labeled organic. It is great to buy at local markets and stands, and I do. If people want to spend extra for "organic" produce, it is their money to waste as far as I can see, but please, you will need to provide evidence that it is any safer. This just does not exist. the fact that one farmer uses natural poison and applies many times more of it to get less satisfactory results is not a selling point to me. As Lyndon Johnson said once "The Russians have the ability to kill us three times over and we have the ability to kill them twenty times over. Unfortunately the average person cannot tell the difference". This is how I look at organic pesticides. Misused they can be just as dangerous as synthetic pesticides and based on the lesser controls on "natural" poisons and the non-existent testing for them I don't think they are any safer and I have yet to see any proof. Sure you can make the choice that some very low level of pesticides are in non-organic baby food and buy organic baby food thinking there are no pesticides in this food, but there could very well be and logically are natural pesticides and you don't know because they are not tested for. So go ahead and waste your hard-earned money on naturally poisoned food if you want to, just don't try to impose them on me.
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Christopher, once again you exhibit the same behavior. You start by being offensive and accusatory with zero input. You somehow expect that ignorant remarks are an acceptable substitution for for discussion of ideas. You have no tolerance for anyone who disagrees with you and seemingly no capability to argue your point of view. I am never insulting to anyone with a different viewpoint than myself simply because we disagree. Christopher, I wonder why I just seem to be picking on you. Do you think that I just don't like to insulted? Do you think that I should absorb your irritating and seemingly uninformed outbursts and continue to treat you civily and not expose your shortcomings? The purpose of having reader responses to share thoughts and exchange ideas. You either don't have any thoughts or are unable to politely express them. You start off being obnoxious, continue to escalate your rage until you disintegrate into babble. This is not how civilized people communicate.
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Well, when pesticides are used there are more residuals shown on the produce. i would suggest you listen to what your grandmother used to tell you and rinse them off before eating. I did note the mention of pesticides in baby food. No levels were given, but I would agree that no risk is acceptable with babies. However I do agree with the Mayo clinic when they say "Pesticides. Conventional growers use pesticides to protect their crops from molds, insects and diseases. When farmers spray pesticides, this can leave residue on produce. Some people buy organic food to limit their exposure to these residues. Most experts agree, however, that the amount of pesticides found on fruits and vegetables poses a very small health risk." http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/organic-food/NU00255 ...and to my point about natural chemicals versus synthetic, Berkely has this to say "A recent study compared the effectiveness of a rotenone-pyrethrin mixture versus a synthetic pesticide, imidan. Rotenone and pyrethrin are two common organic pesticides; imidan is considered a "soft" synthetic pesticide (i.e., designed to have a brief lifetime after application, and other traits that minimize unwanted effects). It was found that up to 7 applications of the rotenone- pyrethrin mixture were required to obtain the level of protection provided by 2 applications of imidan. It seems unlikely that 7 applications of rotenone and pyrethrin are really better for the environment than 2 applications of imidan, especially when rotenone is extremely toxic to fish and other aquatic life. It should be noted, however, that we don't know for certain which system is more harmful. This is because we do not look at organic pesticides the same way that we look at conventional pesticides. We don't know how long these organic pesticides persist in the environment, or the full extent of their effects. When you look at lists of pesticides allowed in organic agriculture, you find warnings such as, "Use with caution. The toxicological effects of [organic pesticide X] are largely unknown," or "Its persistence in the soil is unknown." Again, researchers haven't bothered to study the effects of organic pesticides because it is assumed that "natural" chemicals are automatically safe." http://www.ocf.berkeley.edu/~lhom/organictext.html Indeed the effects of synthetic pesticides are better known and better controlled simply because they are newer are contrary to what many may believe organic produce is treated with bacterial and other pesticides. These would be from natural sources but very few people can distinguish whether they are being poisoned naturally or synthetically. Christiopher, please do not assume that because I have better arguements than you that I am paid to express them. You are the benificiary of my wisdom at no charge. Oh, and that's right you don't have any arguements as you have stated in previous posts and your only purpose in life is to be an irritant. The only question is, should we use a natural or synthetic pesticide to silence you. Hmmmm. Pam, I dare say that Susan could not bring herself to type the comments I make, even to boost interest. PS, I am not "lathered up", just simply giving my point of view. PSS, did you know that fully 1/3 of all products labeled "organic" are not. The only thing organic about them are the higher price tags.
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I did a little research and it is not arsenic but cyanide contained in apples. It is impossible to eat enough apples to get a fatal dose from eating the whole apple as it would be tooo dilute to be fatal. Also, according to Snopes they are safe if not chewed. Please do not try this athome.
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The concept that "organic" farming is safer or better is false. To say so denies reality. There is zero proof of any study or scientific test that shows any difference betwen thesafety or in fact the composition of food grown "organically" or with modern methods. None, zero, nada. It is a dangerous assumption to believe organically grown means safer and it is a disproved theory that there is a difference in taste. Sure it great to grow your own fruits and vegetables and nothing can match the taste of picking and then eating, no arguement. Assuming that the taste of organically grown produce can be distinguished from the same age produce grown "non-organically" has been disproven time and time again. The amount of heath related problems is as high or higher when organic methods are used. Also, pretending that naturally occuring chemicals are any less dangerous than engineered chemicals is a dangerous suposition. Pushing for all food to be "organic" is foolish. Food would cost more affecting everyone in the world with higher prices. Supplies would be less affecting those the most that spend the greatest proportion of their income on food. There would be zero improvement of the taste, nutrisional value or safety of the food supply; there would simply be less food at higher prices. If there is one scientific study that shows otherwise please advise, where it is hiding. If there is one case of someone getting sick or suffering any ill effects from properly applied chemical fertilizers or pesticides please show it to me, I have not seen it. Commercial fertilizers and pesticides along with modern hybrid crops are the reason we have such an abundance of safe affordable foods. These techniques have been utilized in many developing countries and revolutionized agriculture and helped feed milions. Hybrid rice is improving food supplies in China and India, India is using hybrid cotton to improve yields and the income of poor cotton farmers, hybrid corn harvests with dramatically increased yields are feeding hundreds of millions worldwide. It is fine to grow what you want, any way that you like; it is quite another thing to try and impose lower yields, higher prices and poorer crops on the rest of the world. There is zero upside and a great downside which is why these efforts will fail and rightly so. Chemicals engineered or natural can be abused and each can kill. Intelligent use of any type is the answer. I remeber a story from many years ago about a guy who saved, dried out and salted apple seeds from the apples he ate. He ied from arsenic poisoning as apples seeds contain arsenic. The fact that he died of natural poisoning may be of some consolation to "organic" growers; it was no consolation to the deceased.
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I recieved an unsolicited email from: Terra Brockman Coordinator, www.whitehousefarmer.com, and Founder of The Land Connectionm, www.thelandconnection.org I have never contacted them and wonder how they got my email.
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Sorry I don't have any fictional story but: When I built my house my mother brought me a sapling from her beloved Lilac tree. I planted it in the back of my property. Over the years the area became overgrown and the tree grew but never had any flowers. Several years ago I cleared out the area and installed a shed where the lilac stood. The clearing of the trees and brush allowed it to get more sun and it flourished. My mother suffered for years with Alzheimer’s and finally succumbed on one year ago January 25th 2008 on my grandson’s second birthday. Last spring her lilac bloomed.
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I think producing scratchy old recycled toilet paper is a crappy idea.
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Goodbye Christopher. At first I enjoyed popping your pompous balloons but alas the continual ease of verbally defeating such an intellectually defenseless person as yourself has become tedious and the degradation you continually and seemingly unashamedly heap upon yourself with comments such as that above is sad, very sad.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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So you entered into the discussion about hormones in milk and hybrid seeds and thought that since you know absolutely nothing about this you would personally attack me? You didn't want to enter the discussion and you somehow just wanted to express your opinion that you think I have problems with reading comprehension? You didn't want to intellectually engage me after your previous experience where you exhibited the same distasteful habit of resorting to personal attacks when your knowledge of a subject fails you? You thought that lacking any arguement you felt you would jump in and attempt to cover your shortcomings in intellect by being ignorant and abusive? This is a stunning admission. I do appreciate your honesty however, it is a refreshing change
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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I'm no victim. A victim is someone that is told an untruth and doesn't have the intelligence to question.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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I have no hope of educating you. You are not a thinking person. You exhibit this with your angry responses when you are unable to formulate any logical response. To recap; I have simply stated facts backed up by hundreds of studies by the FDA, the American Dietetic Association, the UN World Health Orgainization, the European Union, hundreds of other tests by states and countries and none of these tests have shown anything other than the fact that milk from cows treated with the recombinant bovine growth hormone produce milk that is indistinguishable from cows that are not treated. Not one hint of any proof otherwise has been offered. Having no knowledge of the facts and being incapable of mounting any comeback based on fact your predictable response is to personally attack me. This shows an absolute inability to discuss the subject intelligently. Your supposition is that these personal attacks are a good substitute for your ignorance. It is not. Let me leave you with my previously submitted and now twice ignored advice; It is far better to be silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt. The Immortal Bard Here are your sole contributions to the discussion with me: "Exhibit A of that close minded pathology. Why is it that they can never bother to use a spell check?" "The comntent becomes rather irrelevant when the tone and style of delivery over powers it. A smarter person would recognize that." "I like clever Mr. Dog. Maybe you can teach that to some people." "Be sure to read a handful of the comments to Jackie Avner's article. There Great! It seems Ms. Avner is in the biotech business looking to breed allergen free cats using Transgenics. "Transgenic refers to the process of introducing new genetic material into a cell. A transfected cell is a cell with new DNA material in it." "They're might be. Your the expert at spurious claims and arguments. Let me know. Just curious, can you spell pompous?" "As I suspected, no you can’t spell pompous. If you had looked up the meaning of the word that might have helped." "I hope you are not being paid to litter the internet with your knowledge. Your benefactors aren’t getting their money’s worth. Your approach turns off more people than it attracts. A big giant gas bag that causes the level of CO2 in the atmosphere to rise with every breath is a real turn off. The dearth of comments in the posts in which you pontificate other than from those who find you objectionable just might be an indication of your level of success in educating the ignorant masses." Looking over your comments to me there is zero discussion, zero input of information, zero rebuttal with fact to any of the information I supplied. Your "contribution", once again, is a big fat zero. You started with and continued with nothing but lame insults. If you want anyone to respect your opinion (if you have any) you should re-evaluate your methods. A very good start would be to do some research and try to educate yourself before I reach the obvious conclusion you don't know what you are talking about.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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There is no relavence. Pompous that would be; C-H-R-I-S-T-O-P-H-E-R
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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Interesting, is "they're" some relevance to the article?
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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As you should know it takes years of studies and millions and sometimes billions of dollars to get FDA approval. Your suggesting that this is not peer reviewed is nonsensical. I am also quite sure that the claims made by Monsanto of the other approvals would not be published if not true. You have gold-plated studies, could there be some hidden side affects; maybe, anything is possible, although 15 years of studies have not surfaced anything. If you wanted to study it further and educate yourself some more and question it of others you should not have been so obnoxious and you should never accuse me of being intellectually dishonest as the only person being dishonest is you. To put it sustincly, I simply stated a well documented fact with a very solid source. You impuned the source simply because it was referenced by the manufacturer. You then accused me of not understanding what you said. You then continued to be biligerent by saying I could have pulled things out of context, with no suggestion as to how you arrived at this conclusion. You make claims that this is something new when it has a 71 year history. When your incorrect assertions are confronted you say you need time to study it and imply I have somehow pressured you into confronting me. Please study things before you make assertions that are simply not true. Sincerely, "Sparky"
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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the use of BGH was discovered and has been used since 1937. In 1994 it was synthesized and the use greww. Before it could be used it was subjected to over 150 studies, as I noted. These are relevant. If you want to see the studies I would suggest you get a freedom of information request and get them. There is zero evidence that milk from treated and non-treated cows is any different. The substance used is identical to the natural hormone, BGH. No one anywhere denies this. the 1995 study does not mention impacts on humans because there is none. You want me to provide the 150 studies done before acceptance in 1995 of the rBGH or you discount the studies as unreliable and you will avoid milk from cows treated withrBGH. I don't care. It is an unreasonable fear, but you can live in fear if you choose to. In my opinion and every scientific organization in the world it is unrealistic and unfounded, but your perception is your reality and you have every right to your own peculiar way of looking at things, no matter how wrong and unfounded your assumptions and fears are. When you get a chance you will find the reference to waste is because each treated cow produces, on average ten pounds more milk a day. the decrease in waste by utilizing less cows would be scalable for any size farm. It seems that in this case as in others you somehow never have time to study things that will enlighten you. You have all the time in the world to argue and no time to put up an arguement and fall back on suggesting I am not convincing you. My position is to state facts according to my understanding and document my positions. If you disagree you should present an arguement against my position. Simply saying you are not convinced is nonsense. If you think I'm wrong, prove it. After much study and amid some controversy, the FDA approved the use of bST in dairy cows in November 1993. Commercial sales were delayed for 90 days, however, because of a Congressional act (1). FDA based its rulings on findings that (a) bST is species-specific for cows, (b) bST is a protein that is digested in the intestinal tract of human beings and cows, (c) milk contains bST naturally and supplementation does not increase the amount of bST to levels outside the normal ranges, (d) bST supplementation does not change milk composition, and (e) bST has not been found to cause growth-promoting activity in a variety of species http://www.eatright.org/cps/rde/xchg/ada/hs.xsl/advocacy_3793_ENU_HTML.htm
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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Another perspective on "Organic" farming; "perspective Reasons you should buy regular goods By Jackie Avner Posted: 07/29/2007 01:00:00 AM MDT I don't like to buy organic food products, and avoid them at all cost. It is a principled decision reached through careful consideration of effects of organic production practices on animal welfare and the environment. I buy regular food, rather than organic, for the benefit of my family. I care deeply about food being plentiful, affordable and safe. I grew up on a dairy farm, where my chores included caring for the calves and scrubbing the milking facilities. As a teenager, I was active in Future Farmers of America, and after college I took a job in Washington, D.C., on the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee staff. But America no longer has an agrarian economy, and now it is rare for people to have firsthand experience with agricultural production and regulation. This makes the general public highly susceptible to rumors and myths about food, and vulnerable to misleading marketing tactics designed not to improve the safety of the food supply, but to increase retail profits. Companies marketing organic products, and your local grocery chain, want you to think organic food is safer and healthier, because their profit margins are vastly higher on organic foods. The USDA Organic label does not mean that there is any difference between organic and regular food products. Organic farms simply employ different methods of food production. For example, organic dairy farms are not permitted to administer antibiotics to their sick or injured cows, and do not give them milk-stimulating hormone supplements (also known as rbGH or rBST). The end product is exactly the same - all milk, regular and organic, is completely antibiotic-free, and all milk, regular and organic, has the same trace amounts of rbGH (since rbGH is a protein naturally present in all cows, including organic herds). Try as they may, proponents of organic foods have not been able to produce evidence that the food produced by conventional farms is anything but safe. Do organic production practices benefit animals? Dr. Chuck Guard, professor of veterinary medicine at Cornell University, told me that it pains him that many technological advancements in animal medicine are prohibited for use on organic farms. He described how organic farms don't use drugs to control parasites, worms, infections and illness in their herds. "Drugs take away pain and suffering," he said. "Proponents of organic food production have thrown away these medical tools, and the result is unnecessary pain and suffering for the animals." In order for milk and meat to qualify as USDA Organic, the animals must never be given antibiotics when they are sick or injured. On organic farms, animals with treatable illnesses such as infections and pneumonia are left to suffer, or given ineffective homeopathic treatments, in the hope that they will eventually get better on their own. If recovery without medication seems unlikely, a dairy cow with a simple respiratory infection will be slaughtered for its meat, or sold to a traditional farm where she can get the medicine she needs. I don't buy organic milk because this system is cruel to animals, and I know that every load of regular milk is tested for antibiotics to ensure that it is antibiotic-free. Organic milk certainly is not fresher than regular milk. Regular milk is pasteurized and has a shelf life of about 20 days. Organic milk is ultrapasteurized, a process that is more forgiving of poor quality milk, and that increases the shelf life of milk to about 90 days. Some of the Horizon organic milk boxes I've seen at Costco have expiration dates in 2008! There is a powerful incentive for retailers to put the ultrapasteurized organic milk on the shelf just before the expiration date, so consumers will think the organic milk is as fresh as the regular milk. After all, consumers are paying twice as much for the organic product. Do organic production practices benefit the environment? In many cases, they do the opposite. Recently, Starbucks proudly informed their customers that they would no longer be buying milk from farms that use rbGH, the supplemental hormone administered to cows to increase milk production (even though the extra hormones stay in the cow, and the resulting milk is the same). The problem with this policy is that Starbucks will now be buying milk from farms that are far less efficient at making milk. Without the use of the latest technology for making milk, many more cows must be milked to produce the same number of café lattes for Starbucks' customers. More cows being milked means more cows to feed, and therefore more land must be cultivated with fossil-fuel-burning tractors. More cows means many more tons of manure produced, and more methane, a greenhouse gas, released into the atmosphere. I see Starbucks' policy as environmentally irresponsible. When a farmer gives a cow a shot of rbGH, the only environmental cost is the disposal of the small plastic container it came in. But the environmental benefits of using this technology are enormous. Attention all shoppers: Safeway is adopting the same misdirected policy as Starbucks, judging from the prominent labeling of milk at my local Safeway store: "Milk from cows not treated with rBST." When I'm feeling particularly green, I drive past Safeway and shop at another grocery store in protest. Consumers assume that organic crops are environmentally friendly. However, organic production methods are far less efficient than the modern methods used by conventional farmers, so organic farmers must consume more natural and man-made resources (such as land and fuel) to produce their crops. Cornell Professor Guard told me about neighboring wheat farms he observed during a visit to Alberta, Canada: one organic and one conventional. The organic farm consumes six times as much diesel fuel per bushel of wheat produced. Socially conscious consumers have a right to know that "organic" doesn't mean what it did 20 years ago. According to the Oct. 16, 2006, cover story in Business Week, when you eat Stonyfield Farms yogurt, you are often consuming dried organic milk flown all the way from New Zealand and reconstituted here in the U.S. The apple puree used to sweeten the yogurt sometimes comes from Turkey, and the strawberries from China. Importation of organic products raises troubling questions about food safety, labor standards, and the fossil fuels burned in the transportation of these foods. Does buying organic really benefit your family? Remember, there is no real difference in the food itself. At my local Safeway store, organic milk is 85 percent more expensive, eggs 138 percent higher, yogurt 50 percent, chicken thighs 80 percent, and broccoli 20 percent. If the only organic product you buy for your family is milk, then you are spending an extra $200 on milk each year. If you buy 5-10 other organic products each week, such as fruits, vegetables, eggs, yogurt and meat, then you could easily approach $1,000 in extra food costs per year. Families would receive a more direct health benefit from spending that money on a gym membership, a treadmill, or new bikes. When I share this information with friends who buy organic, I get one of two responses: they either stop buying it, or they continue to buy organic based on a strong gut feeling that food grown without the assistance of man- made technology has to be healthier. I don't push it, but I wonder: Why do people apply that logic to agricultural products, but not to every other product we use in our daily lives? There are either no chemicals, or the minutest trace of chemicals in some of our foods. But other everyday products are full of chemical ingredients. Read the label on your artificial sweetener, antiperspirant, sun lotion, toothpaste, household cleaning products, soda, shampoo, and disposable diapers, for example. The medicines we administer to our children when they are sick are man-made substances. Chemicals aren't just used to make these products; they are still in these products in significant amounts. It just doesn't make sense to focus fear of technology on milk and fresh produce. I say, bypass the expensive organic products in the grocery store. Buy the regular milk, meat and fresh produce. It is the right choice for the family, animal welfare and the environment. Jackie Avner (jackie.avner@gmail.com) lives in Highlands Ranch." http://www.denverpost.com/search/ci_6474474
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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I would rspond in kind but my third grade rants are a little rusty.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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You have all the time in the world to post irellevant little ditties and no time to study the facts.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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Thank you Dr Dog, I appreciate the correction and your insights.
Toggle Commented Feb 21, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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If you want to require dairies to label their milk if it contains rBHG then every dairy would have to do this as ALL milk contains rBHG. If you want to require that they label the amount then they will ALL have the same amount. Organic or not rBHG is a natural hormone in all milk at exactly the same concentrations, according to the FDA, the AMA, the American Dietetic Association. There is no repudable organization that refutes this, not one. It is simply a natural hormone that is given in higher than natural doses to increase milk production. Higher levels of it do not show up in the milk, never did. It has been used for 15 or 20 years and no difference has been shown between treated cow's milk and non-treated cow's milk. Dairies that say their milk has none are lying. Dairies that suggest only dairies that use rBGH have it in their milk are lying. Dairies that say they have less are lying. If truth in labeling is what you want all milk will be labeled as containing rBGH in exactly the same amounts. People who believe that there is a difference are at odds with every scientific study ever done and every scientific organization of any credibility. This is not a matter of this being my opinion, it is not my opinion, it is fact. If some adiry doesn't want to use it and you want to pay more for this milk, fine. If you think it is a different product or that the extra rBGH shows up as a greater percentage in the milk you are wrong. I urge you not to trust the industry. I urge you not to trust me. I urge you to do your own research and you will find the facts, just as I did.
Toggle Commented Feb 20, 2009 on Keep 'Em In The Dark at Garden Rant
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