Organic Farming on the Rise in Minnesota

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Article from MN Daily:

An article in the Minnesota Daily was recently posted about the U and other partners helping organic farmers change their standard farm to organic farms. The article discusses that a new grant will be given to help farmers with the transition to organic farming. They have decided that $1.2 million dollars will be sufficient to provide farmers with the right resources to begin the change. This is a positive change and a step in the right direction for Minnesota.
This grant is something that raises a large awareness for the positive effects of organic faming. Many farmers wish to be organic farmers but are unsure how to and what all the restrictions are. Farms are also required to wait three years after pesticides have been used on the land to consider it an organic farm. These restrictions make it difficult for many farmers to get started. The grant and public representation will make it easier for farmers to get started. This will also make generating a profit more successful.
There are some negatives to switching to organic farming as well. When farmers switch they are faced with new challenges that they have never had to deal with before. Many farmers are required to plant new types of crops to be considered an organic farm. When planting these many farmers need to buy new machinery to accommodate them. Also many farmers do not know how to deal with getting rid of weeds. Hiring more help for hand picking of weeds is expensive and takes more time.
Overall organic farming has its positive and negative side effects. Once the farms are in place though there is an increase in overall health for the farms. Organic farming has proved to improve the health of the animals, families and soil of the farm. A new change to organic farming will not only improve the health of Minnesota but it will also hopefully spark a new trend across the United States.

1 Comment

While a grant like this is certainly a step in the right direction for an increase in support for organic, these restrictions seem to severely limit farmers who want to start or make the switch to organic. First of all, the waiting period would be difficult for farmers to start growing organic, since 3 years is a lot of money lost, especially in a job field that does not have the most stable of incomes to begin with. And starting organic can be very expensive, from the new equipment to additional farm hands, when the farmers are not seeing that income come back to them quickly then it hardly seems possible to expect them to make the switch.

But for me, the most troubling part is the relatively small amount of money that this grant entails. While we all know that the economy is tough, and I certainly don't blame anyone or any agency for not having much money to spare, a grant this small hardly seems enough to start a large impact movement that is really needed to make organic a viable and profitable solution that farmers actually want to take part in.

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This page contains a single entry by suthe128 published on October 26, 2010 10:05 PM.

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