Fun Farming Facts, Part 3
Are you looking for grass fed beef or pork online? Keller Crafted Meats has a great meat selection for a non GMO diet. Check out our farming and harvest prerequisites, and the nutritional value of our meat, here. We are all about responsible, ethical farming methods here; to honor all of the farmers out there, here is the third installment in our Fun Farming Facts series.
Schools of Thought
Agricultural advancement is a big deal. In fact, the lives of our ever expanding population depend on it. It is no wonder, then, that agricultural colleges have popped up around the nation. The College of Agriculture in Iowa State University, for instance, offers many different farming programs, including dairy science, agricultural economics/business, agronomy, biological engineering, horticulture, fruit science, and animal science.
A hectare is a metric system unit equivalent to 10,000 square meters. Globally, there are about 1.5 BILLION hectares of land in use for the purpose of growing crops. Of that land, about 11 percent gets used for genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Biotech crops are crops produced using biotechnology, which can range from the use of selection, hybridization, or induced mutation, to the intentional introduction of genes into a plant or animal with the purpose of achieving a specific result. There are four main biotech crops produced around the world, at least as of 2012; these are soybean, maize, cotton, and canola. Less often, papaya, alfalfa, squash, and sugarbeet are grown using biotechnology.
When we over-prescribe antibiotics, we unintentionally create super germs that gain a resistance to those antibiotics. Similarly, new research is suggesting that our possible overuse of herbicide (which is designed to work in conjunction with GMOs) may be creating super weeds resistant to the herbicides.
Originally, the Amazon Rainforest had extremely sub par soil for farming. That is, until the native people living there created a super dirt, known as Terra Preta. This dirt stays fertile for millennia, propagates by itself, and currently covers an estimated 10 percent or more of the Amazon. This man made dirt is created by combining charcoal, bone, and manure to the infertile soil. The charcoal remains in the soil for thousands of years, binding new minerals and nutrients.
The Hand You Are Dealt
Not every country has usable farmland. But that isn't stopping Qatar from projecting growth of 70 percent of its own vegetables by the year 2023. They are able to do this through a new system of farming, which does not use soil and constantly reuses irrigation water. The pilot experiment of this new system was dubbed a "great success".
Governments and private ventures often conflict. But few people take the conflict as far as the people of what is known today as the Principality of Hutt River. This sovereign micronation exists because, after a dispute regarding production quotas between a farming family and the government of Australia, the family successfully declared themselves a legal independent nation.
After manufacturing jobs were shipped out of Detroit, the state was faced with serious economic hardship. Today, a non profit group has planted over 81,000 trees since 1989. They are taking over vacant factory lots and converting them into green space, while building up urban farming in the state.
Change of Direction
The town of Enterprise in Alabama has a monument erected that thanks the Boll Weevil. The boll weevil decimated cotton crops in the area, destroying the town's livelihood. So why did they erect a monument to it? Because it forced them to switch to peanut farming, which made the townsfolk at the time exceedingly rich.
Not Everyone Needs Farming
Some cultures have virtually no farming in their society, and survive through other means. We can all recognize the Inuits as one such culture, surviving largely off seals and other meager meats they can find. What you may not know is that Vikings in Greenland hunted seals in a similar manner, abandoning farming altogether.
But Most Do
To illustrate just how important it is to have agricultural BEFORE population expansion (as well as to maintain a population), consider China under the rule of Mao. Mao wanted to make China an industrialized society, and shifted away from farming in what he called "The Great Leap Forward". Now, many researchers attribute that change with the famines that killed over 18 million people. One historian referred to it as "one of the most deadly mass killings in human history." While Mao may not have intended for such a loss of human life, it does illustrate the importance of sustainable, long term thinking in agriculture (in regards to the population and the earth).
Hopefully these fun facts proved interesting! If you are looking for grass fed beef online, check out our delectable selection. All of our meats are perfect for the non GMO diet. For more information about our products, please do not hesitate to give us a call at your earliest convenience. One of our friendly and knowledgeable representatives will be happy to answer any questions that you may have. We look forward to hearing from you!