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How Do You Respond to This Situation?

How Do You Respond to This Situation?   Touch the Soil News #1009 (Feature photo – Urbanization – photo Public Domain) The American Farmland Trust recently released a new report called “Farms Under Threat”. Here are some of the highlights: 175 acres of farm and ranchland are lost every hour (that’s a farm 10 miles wide and 240 miles long each year). Over 70 percent of the farmland lost is due to urbanization. 91 % of fruits and 77 % of vegetables are grown in the path of development. Every year, America loses 1.7 billion tons of topsoil (5 tons for every person).   The moral of these statistics is…

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Catching Up With the Numbers

Touch the Soil News #964 (Feature photo – Urbanization – public domain) Depending upon the source, the loss of farmland in the context of population growth is a scary proposition. Essentially the numbers are like this. Every hour, 50 acres of farmland are lost to urban development in the U.S. Every hour, the U.S. population grows by 240 people. Estimates are that it takes 1 acre to produce the fruit, vegetables, grains and meat to sustain 1 person. In short, food security is heightened every day by 5,760 more people relying on the American farm which is shrinking by 1,200 acres the same day. Over the course of a year,…

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Time to Think About Farmland Again

Touch the Soil News #605 (Feature photo – Shanghai, China with a metro population of over 35 million is consuming farmland on its outer edges). We all understand that civilization began in the most fertile areas and then expands out. Accordingly, a large sector of the world’s best farmland has been urbanized. Estimates are that the best farmland that has been urbanized and is about to be urbanized around mega-cities is almost twice as productive as farmland farther out. Recently, a group of scientists from Yale, Texas A&M, the University of Maryland and research institutions in Germany, New Zealand, Sweden and Austria gathered to study the loss of farmland mega-trend.…

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Checking In With American Farmland Trust

Touch the Soil News #481 The American Farmland Trust (AFT) seeks to protect farmland, promote sound farming practices and keep farmers on the land. At the leading edge of farmland conservation, the AFT posts some interesting facts about farmland in America: Every hour, over 40 acres of U.S. farm and ranch land are lost (960 acres a day). This loss permanently eliminates land necessary to sustain roughly 1,920 people at low meat diets. Due to wind and water erosion, the nation loses 1.7 billion tons of topsoil each year. That is equivalent to watching a train with 1,700,000 rail cars (21 thousand miles long) containing topsoil leaving the farms. Seventy…

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