Belize's most complete independent agricultural publication

Issue 40

Hierba Mora

Hierba mora, Solanum nigrum (night shade), is a species in the Solanum genus that refers collectively to a wide-ranging group of plants, including poisonous, medicinal, and edible species such as three major crops of global importance: tomato, potato, and eggplant. Hierba mora is not native to Belize but has been in the Americas long enough that it is now naturalized. It is native to Eurasia and was introduced in the Americas, Australasia, and South Africa. Keep Reading

Issue 39

Energy Production
from Organic Waste

Reliable energy is critical to all world governments and available renewable energy production has become a focus of industry worldwide.  Belize purchases about 46% of the country’s power from Mexico at a cost of $137 million USD per year, 38% from Belize Electric Company Ltd., 2% from Hydro Maya, and 10% from Belize Aquaculture Ltd. Belize Electric Company Ltd., and Hydro Maya produce power from dams that supply hydro power generation. Keep Reading

Issue 39

From the Editors

Since the re-classification of industrial hemp in November 2017, several people have asked us for more information about it. Larger Belizean farmers ask, ‘Is this a good economic opportunity?” Others wonder how to differentiate this fibrous industrial plant from the more well-known marijuana (aka ganja). Both are in the genus Cannabis; page 32 of this issue is an article by Karin Westdyk that might help clarify things for you. Keep Reading

Featured/Issue 39

The Sweet and Sour of Sugar

The latest export figures for 2017 highlight the significance of the sugar industry to the country; 35% ($157.8 Million) of the total national export revenues of $445.6 Million is derived from the exports of sugar (and molasses). The figure in 2016 was only $110 Million, reflecting a substantial 43% increase. With the addition of Santander entering the production phase, the volume of sugarcane production and processing has significantly pushed national output levels. Cumulatively in 2016, the national sugarcane deliveries rose by 24.6% to 1,455,053 long tons, of which the North and Santander accounted for 1,292,515 long tons and 162,538 long tons, respectively. Keep Reading

Featured/Issue 39

Beyond the Backyard

By Jenny Wildman -- Driving from north to south one can find tall droopy berry trees following the paths of our inhabitants. Considering that the berry tree grows so profusely it is surprising that there is very little information on its taxonomy and uses. In fact, even its name is in question as there are plants of similarity and several varieties within that species.  Perhaps we can pull them out of the woodwork and take a closer look. Keep Reading

Issue 39

SOS: Save our Soils

Dr. Christine Jones Explains the Life-Giving Link Between Carbon and Healthy Topsoil. To the pressing worldwide challenge of restoring soil carbon and rebuilding topsoil, the Australian soil ecologist Dr. Christine Jones offers an accessible, revolutionary perspective for improving landscape health and farm productivity. For several decades Jones has helped innovative farmers and ranchers implement regenerative agricultural systems that provide remarkable benefits for biodiversity, carbon sequestration, nutrient cycling, water management and productivity. After a highly respected career in public sector research and extension, in 2001 Jones received a Community Fellowship Award from Land and Water Australia for “mobilizing the community to better manage their land, water and vegetation.” Three years later she launched Amazing Carbon as a means to widely share her vision and inspire change. Keep Reading

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