No. 12 EAAA | November 2012

Taranaki Farm in Woodend Victoria

Taranaki takes farming beyond organic practices & promotes ethical animal husbandry, regenerative landscape stewardship and stands for local community renewal. By the time you read this newsletter, Taranaki will be savouring the visit and tours held on farm of Joel Salatin, the lunatic farmer. Joel says himself that Taranaki Farm is the best overseas example of Polyface type farming he has seen, that is no small observation! The farm produces (seasonally) beyond organic pastured eggs, chickens, beef & pork where you can see chickeness of chickens through to pigs expressing their pigness. EAAA has followed the recent Joel Salatin tour at Taranaki and definitely encourages you to keep an eye on this Farm through their website and Facebook page, especially if you can’t plant your feet on a farm tour in the near future. From Adrianna Marchand.

Taranaki Farm

EAAA Visits Tamburlaine Near Orange NSW

Tamburlaine is a 90 hectare vineyard near Orange and is situated next door to the Australian National Field Day site at Borenore. Tamburlaine is an off-shoot of the Hunter Valley Tamburlaine which also specialises in organic wines. The manager of the Orange vineyard is Clayton Kiely who has been working on the property for a period of 10 years. When he joined, Tamburlaine hadn’t gone wholeheartedly into organics on the Borenore property but there were indications that organics would be their future. Given that focus Clayton began the journey of becoming informed about organic production techniques. This involved studying organics at Charles Sturt University’s degree/diploma program in horticulture. Today Clayton is not only conversant with organics but is becoming enamoured with biodynamics and speaks glowingly of the impact biodynamics has had on his vineyard and on the sheep that graze between the vines over winter.  From Kerry Cochrane.

Read more about Tambourlaine …

Wanted:  EAAA Newsletter Editor Volunteer Position

EAAA are seeking an enthusiastic Newsletter Editor to head the production of the bimonthly newsletter received by our Membership. An opportunity exists to join a collaborative volunteer team in bringing about dialogue and change through Ecological Agriculture, an approach that encompasses many forms of farming and community. If you have an interest in writing, or have existing collaborative networks of bloggers and writers, have a passion for spreading the ecological word then this position is ideal for you. We have observed, through our editorial activities, EAAA contributing writers with maturity to absorb paradoxes facing agriculture, a love of the written word, numerous interconnections of networks and collaborations originating from diverse backgrounds, empathy for our readership as much as challenging the status quo, an array of news worthy material and some strong organisational skills to tie all this together. EAAA and our Membership encourage you to apply via email to the president or the editorial team and will welcome you in your new role with any training you require.  Members, don’t forget to check out our new Blog too!

A Holistic Life

Bruce Ward sadly passed away on the 24th September and with respect to his family and the legacy Bruce leaves for us, we want to tell you about his very positive ecological footprint, left for the farming community to follow through holistic practices. His bastion for Holistic Management is a wonderful gift to farming.  To use Bruces’ words his “presence on earth physically enhances the one and only planet we all share.” Bruce’s approach to redesigning family farming towards holistic management took innovation, passion, observation, complexity, life and learning experiences and turned this into healthy landscapes and content farmers. You can read more from Bruce by following the Read More link on his Holisitc Management practices.  With respects, Adrianna Marchand and EAAA.

Read more …

John Priestley on Weeds in Farming

Farmer John Priestley talks on weeds. The presence of weeds can be looked at as an indicator of a problem in a farming system says John. Do look in on this short video via the Read More link, where farmers talk to farmers about production. From Adrianna Marchand.

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Safe Food Foundation & Institute: “Safe” Levels of GM Corn & Roundup Can Cause Tumors and Multiple Organ Damage

The first animal feeding trial studying the lifetime effects of exposure to Roundup tolerant GM corn, and Roundup, the world’s best-selling weedkiller, shows that levels currently considered safe can cause tumours and multiple organ damage and lead to premature death in laboratory rats, according to research published online today by the scientific journal Food and Chemical Toxicology.  From Adrianna Marchand.

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Sustainable Diets and Biodiversity

Directions, solutions and future for policy are the discussions being had in this lengthy publication on sustainable diets and biodiversity. There is currently no definition of ‘sustainable diet’ but it is a question being asked and responded to by actions such as the turn from large scale to local food systems, flourishing home food gardens and co-operative and farmer-consumer relationship growth. The question of our food in Australia has of late been the topic of conversation, with the National Food Plan of the federal govenment and the response of the People’s Food Plan gaining on this dialogue. Following the Read More link will take you to a 2010 document covering sustainable diets. Food for thought for each of us. From Adrianna Marchand.

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A Consciousness Based Science

Quote: “The greatest mystery of existence is existence itself. There is the existence of the universe and there is the existence of the awareness of existence of the universe. Were it not for this awareness, even if the universe existed as an external reality, we would not be aware of its existence, so it would for all practical purpose not exist. Traditional science assumes, for the most part, that an objective observer independent reality exists; the universe, stars, galaxies, sun, moon and earth would still be there if no one was looking. However, modern quantum theory, the most successful of all scientific creations of the human mind, disagrees.” quote by Deepak Chopra and Others, you can follow the Read More link for the rest of the article.

Read more …

What is the Worst That Can Happen?

A thought provoking YouTube presentation of future scenario and the implication of ‘doing nothing’. Click on the Read More link to see the video presentation.

Social Ecology Integration to Environmentalism

We at EAAA have maintained a focus on human ecology (or social ecology) as being an integral part of natural ecology and natural systems. We will be bringing you more information about this so do watch this space and view our EAAA website for more information on human ecology. In the meantime, see the growing awareness of the need to include a social systems world view in looking at the environment from the EPA in the US. They aim to “take a systems view and integrate the social sciences [in]…[tackling] an increasingly complex set of issues in the coming decades. From Adrianna Marchand.

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Silent Spring Turns 50

The 50 year anniversary of the publication of Rachel Carson’s must read “Silent Spring” brings about reflection on distortion of facts in environmental debates. Substituting pesticide use for GMclimate change, coal seam gas fracking or food democratisation, the debate still plays out in much the same way. For Carson and the content of “Silent Spring”, the claims were validated. Read this piece by William Souder, a terrific reflection on Carson’s work and our current place by following the Read More link.  There is also a great ABC Article you can read at this link by the same author. To fellow voices, in their action and words, to pursue the truth and the right to be informed, we applaud you!  From Adrianna Marchand.

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The Complexity Imperative for a Sustainable Food System

John Crawford on some home truth’s, on sustainable food and moving toward solutions surrounding food through systems approach. A great TedX presentaion is available through this link.  From Adrianna Marchand.

World Food Day Report: “Fed Up with FSANZ* allowing GM in our food”: unlabelled and virtually untested. *Food Standards Australia New Zealand

Almost all processed foods contain GM ingredients but shoppers are in the dark as most GM-derived ingredients escape labelling,[i] a report by Mothers Are Demystifying Genetic Engineering (MADGE) being launched today highlights. “We are fed up with FSANZ assuming GM is safe on the basis of patchy data provided by the GM companies. Regulators appear to have a double standard of passing GM company science without comment but fiercely attacking independent science that is published in peer-reviewed journals,” Ms Murrell concludes. The MADGE Report: “”Fed Up with FSANZ” is being launched in Australia in Melbourne, Perth and in Wellington, New Zealand.  From MADGE.

Permaculture Beyond Ecological Design

Maddy Harland explains that permaculture design principles can be applied on many scales – from upcycling materials, building DIY solar dryers to designing whole farm systems and cleaning up water courses – enabling us to restore ecosystems, heal social divides and create more harmonious, low carbon societies.  By Maddy Harland.

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A History of Ecological Sciences

A vast collection of written word on the history of ecological sciences for those who are also exploring ecology through the lens of the past.  This list is updated as literature is published.  We might encourage you to follow this through the Read More link below?  From Adrianna Marchand

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Man Made Hunger

“Hunger and malnutrition are man-made. They are hardwired in the design of the industrial, chemical model of agriculture. But just as hunger is created by design, healthy and nutritious food for all can also be designed, through food democracy.” ~ by Dr Shiva. From Adrianna Marchand.

Gregory Bateson: An Ecology of Mind

An Ecology of Mind is a film portrait of Gregory Bateson, celebrated anthropologist, philosopher, author, naturalist, systems theorist, and filmmaker, produced and directed by his daughter, Nora Bateson.  You can view the trailer at this link or read more about the fild from the Gaia Foundation at this link.  The thoughts, actions and teachings of Gregory Bateson remind us that learning is never ending and that purposeful learning about learning is a tremendous daily occurrence.  Bateson’s ability to embrace complexity evident in ecology; interconnectedness, interdependence, perceptual acuity have a great deal to teach us about our connection to food systems and farming by their very approach.  From Adrianna Marchand.

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Bill Mollison Permaculture Lecture Series, On-Line

These videos are documents from two design courses taught by Bill Mollison at the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose Texas in 1994 and 1995. They are a definitive selection from an original 16 part series found in the Read More link. From Adrianna Marchand.

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ClimateWatch App

A new ClimateWatch Application has been released for observers of species change.  With the App, you can choose from a set menu of plants, birds, flogs, insects, jellies, mammals, reptiles, spiders and whales and record or report sightings.  There is a bit of information about each species that is being monitored including bird calls.  The App is ideal for citizen scientists who want to participate in observation of species and poulation changes of Australian Flora and Fauna.  Go to the Read More link below to find out more about the Application.  Only for folk with an iPhone it appears at this stage.  From Adrianna Marchand.

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