"Mother earth is rich in its beauty and compelling for it's immense diversity. It is truly one of a kind, a treasure to be shared by all living creatures. Being at the top of the food chain, mankind has an inherent responsibility to preserve this richness for all generations." -- Mark Brawerman, Founder & President, Turtle Mountain LLC.
Many people have developed a concern not only about the food they eat, but the environmental impact of its food production.
What is sustainable agriculture?
While there is no one universally accepted definition, the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 defines the term sustainable agriculture as: "an integrated system of plant and animal production practices having a site-specific application that will, over the long term:
- Satisfy human food and fiber needs.
- Enhance environmental quality and the natural resource base upon which the agricultural economy depends.
- Make the most efficient use of nonrenewable resources and on-farm resources and integrate, where appropriate, natural biological cycles and controls.
- Sustain the economic viability of farm operations.
- Enhance the quality of life for farmers and society as a whole.
In many ways, sustainable agriculture uses a holistic approach by treating the soil, water, crops and organisms in an area as one entity.
How does sustainable agriculture achieve its goals?
The systems of sustainable agriculture have evolved over time to combine traditional cultural practices of farming with the newest technologies. While it is impossible to list the thousands of practices that make up sustainable agriculture, a few examples are common to many sustainable systems.
- Reduction in water usage through crop/soil selection and means of water delivery.
- Reduction or elimination of chemical biocide applications through the use of resistant plants and beneficial organisms.
- Replacement of chemical fertilizers with recycled organic material.
- Soil conservation through changing tillage technique
Why does Turtle Mountain support sustainable agriculture?
We believe that sustainable agriculture is a system, which provides for an economical and adequate supply of food and fiber to consumers while protecting the water, land and air used to produce the crop. The proliferation of sustainable agriculture is essential to the future well being of our planet and the well being of our families for generations to come.To learn more about sustainable agriculture we recommend you check out the following sites:
USDA Sustainable Agriculture: Definitions and Terms
USDA for kids web site
Tillage Site at North Carolina State University
Cover Crops Site at North Carolina State University
Beneficial Organisms by The University of Georgia College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences Cooperative Extension Service
Sea Turtle Restoration
Sea turtles freely roamed the ocean long before dinosaurs; today they are threatened with extinction. Turtle Mountain has proudly joined forces with the Sea Turtle Restoration Project (STRP) by providing much needed funds and promoting awareness of STRP’s fight to save these gentle creatures.
To learn more about STRP’s efforts to save this ancient legacy, visit STRP’s website at www.seaturtles.org.
Todd Steiner of The Washington Times has written an article, Endangered Oceans. Read it here.
The plight of the Chilean Sea Bass, an all-but-forbidden entree, is detailed in The New York Times on the Web in an article by Paul Greenberg. Read it here.