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Sam Vigue

Sam Vigue has 3 articles published.

Potato Research In Peru

in Issue 33 by

Of all the countries in the world, Peru is one of the most interesting in agricultural history. The diversity of plants and climates from rainforests to snowy mountains to hot deserts are all in a place about 1/8 the size of the United States. The origins of many important food crops such as potato, sweet potato, and certain peppers are here. Researchers in Peru and around the world are aware of the great importance of this region and many are devoting their life’s work to improving agriculture for the country’s people. I wanted to learn more about this curious place of so much diversity. The potato, for example: many thousands of varieties grow only in Peru – nowhere else. I…

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Understanding Bacillus Thuringiensis (Bt)

in Issue 32 by

“Do you use chemicals on your vegetables?” is a question that the farmer selling directly to the customer is likely to hear. Often the farmer answers, “Only when necessary” or “No, I am organic”. For questions like this, it is hard to give an accurate answer because most farmers whether organic or not, use some form of chemicals on their farms. Some farmers that are strictly organic must avoid certain chemicals but are still likely using some “natural” forms that are considered non-toxic. The scientific definition of a chemical is any basic substance that is used in or produced by a  reaction involving changes to atoms or molecules.It is evident then, that chemicals include many things which may be harmful…

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Corn That Says “No” To GMO

in Issue 30 by

In the modern world where large agriculture companies are gaining ground with GM (genetically modified) corn seeds, non-GM growers have been in an increasingly difficult situation from GM pollen drift. This pollen can drift over four miles in the wind and once it lands in a non-GM field, that corn becomes tainted with the GM variety. Once contaminated, the farmer typically gets a lower price, and for specialty food grade and organic corn the price can be as little as half what it would have been. However, one bright spot is that a few plant breeders have found a way to develop non-GM corn varieties that “say no” to the GM pollen when it comes blowing its way. Blue River…

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