[Homeroast] GMO Coffee

Edward Bourgeois edbourgeois at gmail.com
Thu Jul 22 16:21:11 CDT 2010


Multi species gazing in best. On the new integrated farms sheep,
goats, cattle and chickens can be managed and rotated to keep pastures
efficient . Animals are gazed on appropriate(non-flat or sensitive to
tilling) land that is covered with grasses all year long so nutrient
replenishment is better. Livestock is also grazed to cleanup crop land
post harvest. A feedlot will use a lot of corn that uses crop land and
lots of energy to produce and process the feed and haul it to the lot
and remove the manure. Manure concentration is high in a lot. And
health issues are much high on a lot. I think I've heard Tom mention
that livestock are often used on coffee farms to manage vegetation and
at the same time add another resource. Farming is very complicated and
often is summed up to far too simple equations.

On Thu, Jul 22, 2010 at 1:51 PM, Kirk Janowiak <janomac at gmail.com> wrote:
> I can comment here as it was a favorite topic of mine back in grad school in
> wildlife ecology (um..."several" years ago).
>
> Simply put: ecologically balanced (i.e., "natural") grazing systems on the
> African Savanna require about 10-15 kilogram of vegetable matter going into
> an ungulate herbivore to produce about 1-kilogram of animal.
>
> In a feedlot, it requires about 8-10 kilograms of feed to produce 1-kilogram
> of animal (beef steer).
>
> Hmmm...looks like feedlots are more "efficient," right?
>
> When teased apart a little further, it can easily be shown that a mixed herd
> of ungulates (kudu, wildebeest, gazalles, zebras, etc.) is as much as 3
> times more efficient! How? Each population (species) feeds on different
> vegetable material; different plants.
> Put cattle on that range and the conversion rate is about 15:1 (feedlot
> 8-10:1); put in the mixed herd and while the 10-15:1 ratio still exists, you
> can support 3-5 times as many pounds of animals standing on the hoof as you
> can cattle alone because of the division of food resources.
>
> The argument, of course, is strongest against grazing cattle on open
> rangeland, but is still a little more efficient than feedlot with almost
> none of the commensurate problems (waste disposal & polluted water
> resources, intra-specific disease, and so on). Managing such a herd is
> tricky, but doable.
>
> But the efficiency argument doesn't seem to sway farmers. Bison on American
> prairies are more efficient (~10:1) than grazing cattle (~15:1), but the
> western farmers still graze cattle, because cattle are easier to manage.
>
> Kirk
>
> On Jul 20, 2010, at 9:25 PM, Ryan M. Ward wrote:
>
>>
>> "I love the story that livestock are inefficient. In a feed lot,
>> absolutely, but when compared to a proper managed graze veggies have way
>> more shortcomings."
>>
>> Interesting, could you elaborate? This is very counter-intuitive to me.
>> --
>> Ryan M. Ward
>>
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>>
>>
>>> Date: Tue, 20 Jul 2010 19:28:20 -0400
>>> From: edbourgeois at gmail.com
>>> To: homeroast at lists.sweetmariascoffee.com
>>> Subject: Re: [Homeroast] GMO Coffee
>>>
>>> We spent way to much time trying to control nature rather than work
>>> with it. Tom probably has some great stories of creative approaches of
>>> fitting coffee into a natural environment to the benefits of the care,
>>> health and taste of the coffee. If we put the same effort in working
>>> with the standard varietals as we did going hybrid and now gm I think
>>> we'd have a better result, But seeds could not be controlled which
>>> loses much of the corporate charm. I love the story that livestock are
>>> inefficient. In a feed lot, absolutely, but when compared to a proper
>>> managed graze veggies have way more shortcomings. Though fruit and
>>> coffee can be done practically invisibly.
>>>
>>> On Sun, Jul 18, 2010 at 2:27 PM, Edward Bourgeois <edbourgeois at gmail.com>
>>> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> There isn't much we eat that doesn't contain some amount of a GMO
>>>> plant crop in it. Personally I have grave concerns with GMO crops.  My
>>>> cuppa Tom and an occasional splash of milk (from a local dairy that is
>>>> grass fed and is able to go non-GMO corn in his area without cross
>>>> pollination) is one of my decreasing havens of enjoying something
>>>> good. I had not thought much about GMO coffee until I googled it last
>>>> night. I guess there are already several to accomplish different
>>>> purposes. Saw one that makes the coffee more soluble and of course
>>>> some with toxins to deal with various pests. I assume there are many
>>>> others to deal with weather conditions, production yields, uniformity
>>>> etc. etc. Since these are all patented and can cross pollinate, small
>>>> farmers using the varietals we enjoy and doing traditional on farm
>>>> selective breeding could lose that ability!  Same as has happened in
>>>> this country with those trying to grow traditional varietals and seed
>>>> save in areas where GMO crops are also grown. I saw that Hawaii has
>>>> tried to keep GMO coffee away for a number of years now but not sure
>>>> if that's still the case? From now on when I'm asked about one of my
>>>> coffees I will add that the beans are non-gmo
>>>>
>>>> --
>>>> Ed Bourgeois aka farmroast
>>>> Amherst MA.
>>>> http://coffee-roasting.blogspot.com/
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> --
>>> Ed Bourgeois aka farmroast
>>> Amherst MA.
>>> http://coffee-roasting.blogspot.com/
>>>
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>
> JanoMac
> janomac at gmail.com
>
>
>
>
>
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-- 
Ed Bourgeois aka farmroast
Amherst MA.
http://coffee-roasting.blogspot.com/



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