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The natural world. Looking pretty for 3.5b years.

Sustainable Farming through Agroecology

Author: Hugh Bollinger/Saturday, April 4, 2015/Categories: video, sustainability, environment

Agroecology is an approach to using the principles of ecology in agricultural production systems. It requires an understanding to plant-pest interactions, nutrient cycling, and working with local environmental conditions to produce long-term and sustainable harvests. The concept is now applied to horticultural crops like strawberries, flowers, and grapes as well as larger commodity grains and oil seed crops. A major goal of this strategy is to reduce the amount of fossil fuel-based agrochemical herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers while still maintaining sustainable crop production. Agroecology also tries to integrate farmers into the food system and has been a moving force behind the growing farmer's market trend that have become common in many states.

One of the leading practitioners of sustainable agriculture is the ecologist Steven Gliessman, who began one of the nation's first programs at the University of California in the 1970s. He was recently asked to produce a lecture for the Edible Education 101 program alongside food writers like Michael Pollan, Mark Bittman, and Alice Waters -- who have all brought attention to more healthy eating, small farms, and environmental concerns from production agriculture. Gliessman's lecture is now available outside the classroom.

Take a listen and the next time you wander, sampling the goodies, at your local farmer's market, you may have a better appreciation of sustainable farming, agroecology, and food sources on a practical level.




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