The Noah Project

Rebuilding a sustainable world.

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Arkansas Valley Organic Growers Working to Develop Seed Quality

Hal Walter at the Pueblo Cheiftan introduces us to the Arkansas Valley Organic Growers, who, in addition to providing farm-fresh vegetables, are supporting other behind-the-scenes farming activities, including the development of regionally adapted seed varieties.

With corporations developing genetically modified organisms and patenting plant DNA, the question of seed quality is of utmost importance for all who want to make their own decisions about what they eat. And the development of seeds that are adapted to our regional growing conditions is paramount to food security on a local level.
While AVOG farmers are working to provide farm-fresh food throughout the season, they’re also working with their eyes to the future on various seed projects. 
At Hobbs Family Farm near Avondale, seeds are a focus for Dan Hobbs and Jamie Dunston, who are aiming for 60 varieties of seed offerings. In addition to many other seed crops, a focus this year is on two dry beans — Hopi Black and Bolita — that are regionally adapted to the Southwest, and two varieties of green beans — Provider and Jade. In addition they are developing reliable overwintering leeks and a Crimson Sweet watermelon, as well as Calendula and Zinnia flower seeds.
At Family Roots Farm in Canon City, Beki Javernick-Guion is running trials on 20 types of tomatoes, Provider green beans and German pole beans.
At Venetucci Farm in Colorado Springs and Frost Farm near Fountain, two types of beans are undergoing trials, including a Red Kidney bean and a Jacobs Cattle bean.

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Organic Innovation Award Announced

UKLandandFarms announces new Innovation Award.

Launched by organic sector watchdog the Soil Association, the award is for those who excel in low impact farming and growing.

The winner will receive a cash prize of £3000, with two runner-up prizes of £1000 each.

The Innovation Award, made in association with Nesta, the Innovation Foundation, recognises the achievement of individuals, teams, companies or organisations that are:

– Pioneering practical new approaches to farming and growing;

– Achieving real benefits for people, the planet or animal welfare;

– Promoting sustainable agriculture in line with organic principles.

The award is open to anyone doing these things, including producers, community groups, scientists, IT developers, farming consultants, designers and engineers. Continue reading

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Vancouver Colleges New Program Recycles Organic Waste

Jaqueline Wong reports on a new recycling program at Vancouver Community College’s culinary programs and campus cafes that reduces organic wastes ending up in landfills.

Food scraps and expired products are now being collected and transferred to a ranch near Lytton, 250 kilometers northeast of Vancouver, by the B.C.-owned Northwest Organics, said Wendy Avis, VCC manager, environment and sustainability.
The recycling program started in April.
VCC is now promoting the program at its two campuses.
‘We will collect compost and combine it with the organic wastes.’ Avis said.
Since 2010, VCC has been carbon neutral. No bottled water has been sold at its campuses since 2012 and around 1,300 gallons of organic waste from the schools is diverted from landfills weekly. It has also been exploring ways to grow organic food on campus. Continue reading

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Rosalina Tan – An Inspiration to All

Oliver Samson presents the story of Rosalina S. Tan, a 70 year-old advocate for organic farming.  An inspiring person and an inspiring story:

ROSALINA S. TAN, owner of Nature Wonders Enterprises, a company engaged in making organic cosmetic products, is still active at 70. She is an epitome of a healthy and active septuagenarian. Her day is spoiled if she has nothing to do.

‘There is no life in being idle,” she said. “You will get sick in doing nothing.’

This workaholic Chinese lady is second among 10 children. Their father passed away when her mother was 37, when the youngest in the brood was only four years old. Their mother did everything she could to raise them, which included putting up and running a sari-saristore and driving a trailer truck to deliver goods to Balintawak.

Tan duplicates her mother’s diligence. She has run Nature Wonders Enterprises since 2007, and happy that all her products are organic and laced with pili oil. To her, pili oil parallels olive oil. She produces lipsticks, lip balms, soaps, shampoos, skin lotions and hand sanitizers. Continue reading

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Sno Pac Foods – Organic since 1943

Sno Pac Foods

CALEDONIA, Minn. — The Gengler family and its Sno Pac Foods Inc., founded in 1943, are pioneers in frozen organic food.

In fact, the Caledonia business says it was the world’s first grower/processor of frozen organic vegetables. Today, it also sells frozen fruit and frozen juice concentrate.

This summer, the 70-year-old company is expanding into a new addition to its offices and processing plant at 521 W. Enterprise St. The new 27,000-square-foot structure houses additional freezers and soon will house packaging operations, which are moving from another building in Caledonia. A public open house will be held when the project is completed, company President Pete Gengler said. Continue reading

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Is Organic Better? Ask a Fruitfly.

When Ria Chhabra, a middle school student near Dallas, heard her parents arguing about the value of organic foods, she was inspired to create a science fair project to try to resolve the debate.
Three years later, Ria’s exploration of fruit flies and organic foods has not only raised some provocative questions about the health benefits of organic eating, it has also earned the 16-year-old top honors in a national science competition, publication in a respected scientific journal and university laboratory privileges normally reserved for graduate students.
Photo Researchers
Ria Chhabra stands in front of her project.Courtesy of Ria ChhabraRia Chhabra stands in front of her project.
The research, titled “Organically Grown Food Provides Health Benefits toDrosophila melanogaster,” tracked the effects of organic and conventional dietson the health of fruit flies. By nearly every measure, including fertility, stress resistance and longevity, flies that fed on organic bananas and potatoes fared better than those who dined on conventionally raised produce.