Author: Kate Nelson (Kate Nelson)

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Healthy soils can mitigate climate change
November 21, 2018November 21, 2018
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Healthy soils can mitigate climate change

Food production levels can survive at the same pace-or perhaps increase-with best soil management practices.  Climate change models should include soil organic carbon to determine its effects on global food production and sustainability. Research completed by Professor Bruno Basso of Michigan State University is the first of its kind to provide critical insight into the...

NY Times Article: Can Eating Organic Food Lower Your Cancer Risk?
November 14, 2018November 14, 2018
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NY Times Article: Can Eating Organic Food Lower Your Cancer Risk?

A French study published in JAMA Internal Medicine, followed 70,000 adults for five years to gather evidence on whether eating organic foods lowered participant’s risk of developing cancer. Most volunteers where women in their mid-40s who provided information about how frequently they consume 16 different types of organic foods. Those who ate the most organic...

Managing Garden Pests
November 1, 2018November 1, 2018
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Managing Garden Pests

A challenge to all backyard gardeners, managing pest populations helps to ensure a healthy ecosystem and productive yields. There are a number of different ways to manage garden pests without using pesticides. Implement IPM strategies such as identification, monitoring, and intervention.  Always inspect your plants to correctly identify the pest. Monitor vulnerable areas for pests...

Working lands protect biodiversity
October 23, 2018November 20, 2018
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Working lands protect biodiversity

A new paper published in Science by University of California, Berkeley conservation biologists focuses on bio-diversification of forest, farmlands, and ranch lands to combat climate change. The research paper explores how simple diversification provides habitat for a variety of beneficial wildlife including bats, birds, and mammals. Incorporating natural flora into working lands makes the landscape more...

Reminder: Organic Certification Cost-Share Program
October 18, 2018October 18, 2018
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Reminder: Organic Certification Cost-Share Program

Under the USDA, organic handlers and producers may be eligible for reimbursement for a portion of their organic certification costs. Applications are due to the NJDA by Nov. 16, 2018. For more information and application forms click here: https://www.nj.gov/agriculture/grants/organiccostshare.html

Bees attracted to toxic pesticides
September 27, 2018September 27, 2018
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Bees attracted to toxic pesticides

New studies show that bees prefer to forage on untreated or pesticide-laced food sources. Over time, individual bees who have visited treated flowers develop a preference for the taste. This creates a growing risk to their long-term health and colony success. Specifically neonicotinoids have been shown to affect bee nerve receptors triggering addictive behavior. Neonicotinoids...

NJ Senator takes on ‘Foodopoly’
August 30, 2018August 30, 2018
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NJ Senator takes on ‘Foodopoly’

On Wednesday, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced bill S-3404 “The Food and Agribusiness Merger Moratorium and Antitrust Review Act of 2018.” This bill would enact an 18 month merger moratorium on national agribusiness, grocery, and food/beverage manufacturing and establish a federal commission to study ways to strengthen antitrust oversight. According to Booker, consolidation of chemical...

Sequencing of Wheat Genome Complete
August 21, 2018August 21, 2018
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Sequencing of Wheat Genome Complete

It took 200 scientists from 20 countries and $75 million dollars, over 13 years to sequence the genome of bread wheat. The wheat genome was complicated to sequence since genetically it is three species in one. This means that there are three pairs of every chromosome, totaling 16 billion genetic letters or nucleotides. Scientists have...

Monsanto ordered to pay $289 million in cancer trial
August 16, 2018August 16, 2018
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Monsanto ordered to pay $289 million in cancer trial

A recent case in San Francisco made headlines as the world’s first RoundUp cancer trial. The lawsuit was filed in 2016 by Dewayne Johnson. Johnson was a pest control manager for a California school who applied RoundUp over 30 times a year. Johnson, 46 has developed terminal non-Hodgkins lymphoma and claims the weedkiller caused his...

Web Soil Survey
July 31, 2018July 31, 2018
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Web Soil Survey

The NRCS is a great resource for guidance on soils, They have information on all kinds of soils types and classifications as well as information on soil health and research topics. Take some time to explore the Web Soil Survey, an interactive tool to learn about the different soil types we have here in NJ, and...