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Farmers Footprint — The Grow Network Community
Just because something doesn't do what you planned it to do doesn't mean it's useless.

-Thomas Edison

Farmers Footprint

Ruth Ann ReyesRuth Ann Reyes Managing Director TGNShy of the Chi - Zone 5bPosts: 315 admin

If you haven't heard of Dr. Zach Bush I highly recommend you check him out. His story is pretty intriguing.

I'm especially interested in his non-for-profit called Farmers Footprint whose mission is to regenerate 5 million of acres of farmland by 2025 using sustainable and regenerative practices.

We have a close family friend that's stuck in the chemical agriculture world. It's been interesting to hear from her perspective what it's really like...she wants to get out...but, can't afford it...all the while still regurgitating the "official story"...

Here is a short film that Farmers Footprint created...


  • ines871ines871 zn8APosts: 1,410 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Ruth Reyes-Loiacano Thanks so much for Starting this discussion, which I wanted to along with 20 others. I waited, & here you are :)

    Zach Bush is 1 of about 4 (more like 20, lol) medical docs with their act in gear. Brilliant ! - However, how will the 5 million of acres of farmland deal with the rainFALL containing aluminum & glyphosate by the tons ?? - it falls on us all, every human on the planet. Sure we can Detox it out of our body, but less than a 1000 people are aware of it.

  • LaurieLovesLearningLaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 2,058 admin

    Ruth, that video is so spot on. We know both of those types of farmers well, living in a farming community addicted to chemical farming, with very few farming organically.

    It is a super sore point for us. I have fully decided that I like winter best. Nobody sprays (me, my kids, our little bit of land through drift, nor sprays their lands) in the winter and I can be outside with no worries. We also don’t smell the corn fed, chemical livestock yard nor chemical ridden pig barns in winter either.

    I buy the majority of my garden seed from a small family owned, honest company in Ontario that never pre-treats and offers organic seed. They state their philosophy upfront and I respect that.

    We want to farm holistically, are constantly learning from those who have gone before, and have a plan ready, but even up here, land prices are artificially very high. When a farm sells out/folds, it is usually to the large corporations and it is increasingly foreign as well. Young farmers to be or wannabe dreamers never stand a chance unless they themselves come from big money.

    We are surrounded by spray, increasingly more and more harmful products all the time. My homesteading grandpa (born 1915) called it spreading poison. He recognized it for what it was. It bothered him immensely until his death.

    We talk with area farmers. My husband has worked for a few, including a seed grower, who used minimal spray (he has very interesting insight on it all, being a seed grower). His brother is the same. They see the benefits of farming in a better way, but as your close family friend says...how will they afford it...and these are big generational farmers that seemingly have no shortage of money. It could be done...they are just scared. Those who have made them transition, though, are always happy with the decision.

    My husband sprayed a bit for one farmer, but said never again when he worked for another. He says he never had to mix, but while in the sprayer, even with the most up to date air filters, the spray caused him problems.

    The guy who farms around us says spray is money. 😕 He buys into the propaganda. He monocrops 2 crops, wheat & canola. That's it. We see vast infestations of flea beetles here, less birds (swallows are almost non existent anymore), less beneficial insects. He is stressed and has had a heart attack. Still, he keeps on this path of destruction.

    Even when approached with the idea of implementing a practice that will give them greater yields & reduce spray costs, they are skeptical & are still convinced that the spray will still give them more.

    The farmers push bush where it makes no sense to crop (sloughs & potholes), at the expense of making their soils alkali, losing topsoil to wind, catching less & drawing less moisture & nutrients from deep underground & negatively affecting wildlife...just to possibly squeeze that extra little bit more crop in. These places are sprayed extra. It is money, they say, but they fail to see that it is not their money, but the chemical companies that they are enslaved to.

    Spray creates problem weeds like foxtail. Tilling it (summer-fallow) controls, chem-fallow won't. You get problem weeds through getting rid of a less problematic weed that controlled the problematic weed, and waste the green growth that could be tilled. This is only a small glimpse of how it affects the land. It harms it much, much more.

    Then there is the large dairy system, and all the intensive livestock operations...bad in all aspects.

    As they said on the video, you get big, you create problems that don't exist otherwise.

    I wish more people would listen & be willing to change. Alas, they are few. I hope that this doctor & this group surpass their goal, beyond their wildest dreams.

    Okay. Whew! Here I am preaching to the choir...I need to get some work done today. 😉

  • LaurieLovesLearningLaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 2,058 admin

    My, my. Sorry about all of that. 😕

  • Ruth Ann ReyesRuth Ann Reyes Managing Director TGN Shy of the Chi - Zone 5bPosts: 315 admin

    Yeah, it's a pretty sad state we're in . . . One of the reason's why I love this guy so much is that he's so optimistic and literally has a plan to solve all the worlds problems! I just love it!

    I have our executive assistant, Sarah working on getting him to be a presenter at the next Home Grown Food Summit! He seems to participate in a lot of summits and podcasts to get the word out there... Fingers crossed he says yes to ours!

  • Merin PorterMerin Porter Editorial Director Southwest Colorado (Zone 6a)Posts: 580 admin

    Thanks for posting this, Ruth! We have a young organic farmer living down the road from us; he uses some innovative practices to save on labor costs and says that the old-timer farmers just laugh at him. From everything I've seen, he loves organic farming ... but doesn't deny that it's a very hard way to make a living...

  • bmaverickbmaverick Posts: 177 ✭✭✭

    When we relocated, the property had 3000 pine trees to be a Christmas Tree farm. The retired couple never sold on tree and the pines grew out to over 120ft tall straight up!. Across the street is a state nature preserve, thus nothing is ever sprayed. We have neighbor that both have horses and one with lamas. Neither sprays or uses chemicals. Only down the road are the big commercial farm lands with spraying crap into the soils. They are down slope from us beyond some woods.

    With all that said, it's very sad indeed looking for land to even consider to have as organic. It's more homework than just finding the right house to met your family needs. We knew we couldn't just buy a farm due to decades of chemical uses, even chemicals that have been banned, yet remain in the soil for a generation or two.

    Our land soil has been in a virgin state since 1975. Before that, none of the bad chemicals were used on it. It's a gem amidst all others in the county available at the time we were searching. Now to maintain and keep it that way. :)

  • ines871ines871 zn8APosts: 1,410 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Good for you Sir. And good knowing you will pass this knowledge on to the nest generation.

    Our little sub-division, created in 1944, has also remained pretty clean, & so the 2ndary challenge is just replacing all the ROCKS, lol

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