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Sample records for organic farming development

  1. Agriculture: Organic Farming

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Organic Farming - Organically grown food is food grown and processed using no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. Pesticides derived from natural sources (such as biological pesticides) may be used in producing organically grown food.

  2. The impact of organic farming on quality of tomatoes is associated to increased oxidative stress during fruit development.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Aurelice B; Moura, Carlos F H; Gomes-Filho, Enéas; Marco, Claudia A; Urban, Laurent; Miranda, Maria Raquel A

    2013-01-01

    This study was conducted with the objective of testing the hypothesis that tomato fruits from organic farming accumulate more nutritional compounds, such as phenolics and vitamin C as a consequence of the stressing conditions associated with farming system. Growth was reduced in fruits from organic farming while titratable acidity, the soluble solids content and the concentrations in vitamin C were respectively +29%, +57% and +55% higher at the stage of commercial maturity. At that time, the total phenolic content was +139% higher than in the fruits from conventional farming which seems consistent with the more than two times higher activity of phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) we observed throughout fruit development in fruits from organic farming. Cell membrane lipid peroxidation (LPO) degree was 60% higher in organic tomatoes. SOD activity was also dramatically higher in the fruits from organic farming. Taken together, our observations suggest that tomato fruits from organic farming experienced stressing conditions that resulted in oxidative stress and the accumulation of higher concentrations of soluble solids as sugars and other compounds contributing to fruit nutritional quality such as vitamin C and phenolic compounds.

  3. The Impact of Organic Farming on Quality of Tomatoes Is Associated to Increased Oxidative Stress during Fruit Development

    PubMed Central

    Oliveira, Aurelice B.; Moura, Carlos F. H.; Gomes-Filho, Enéas; Marco, Claudia A.; Urban, Laurent; Miranda, Maria Raquel A.

    2013-01-01

    This study was conducted with the objective of testing the hypothesis that tomato fruits from organic farming accumulate more nutritional compounds, such as phenolics and vitamin C as a consequence of the stressing conditions associated with farming system. Growth was reduced in fruits from organic farming while titratable acidity, the soluble solids content and the concentrations in vitamin C were respectively +29%, +57% and +55% higher at the stage of commercial maturity. At that time, the total phenolic content was +139% higher than in the fruits from conventional farming which seems consistent with the more than two times higher activity of phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) we observed throughout fruit development in fruits from organic farming. Cell membrane lipid peroxidation (LPO) degree was 60% higher in organic tomatoes. SOD activity was also dramatically higher in the fruits from organic farming. Taken together, our observations suggest that tomato fruits from organic farming experienced stressing conditions that resulted in oxidative stress and the accumulation of higher concentrations of soluble solids as sugars and other compounds contributing to fruit nutritional quality such as vitamin C and phenolic compounds. PMID:23437115

  4. To what extent does organic farming rely on nutrient inflows from conventional farming?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nowak, Benjamin; Nesme, Thomas; David, Christophe; Pellerin, Sylvain

    2013-12-01

    Organic farming is increasingly recognized as a prototype for sustainable agriculture. Its guidelines ban the use of artificial fertilizers. However, organic farms may import nutrients from conventional farming through material exchanges. In this study, we aimed at estimating the magnitude of these flows through the quantification of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium inflows from conventional farming to organic farming. Material inflows and outflows were collected for two cropping years on 63 farms. The farms were located in three French agricultural districts distributed over a gradient of farming activity defined by both the stocking rate and the ratio of the farm area under arable crops. Our results showed that on average, inflows from conventional farming were 23%, 73% and 53% for nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, respectively. These inflows were strongly determined by the farm production systems. However, for farms similar in terms of production systems, the inflows also depended on the local context, such as the proximity of organic livestock farms: the reliance of organic farming on conventional farming was lower in mixed than in specialized districts. These results highlight the necessity to quantify the contribution of nutrient inflows from conventional farming when assessing organic farming and development scenarios.

  5. Acting discursively: the development of UK organic food and farming policy networks.

    PubMed

    TOMLINSON, Isobel Jane

    2010-01-01

    This paper documents the early evolution of UK organic food and farming policy networks and locates this empirical focus in a theoretical context concerned with understanding the contemporary policy-making process. While policy networks have emerged as a widely acknowledged empirical manifestation of governance, debate continues as to the concept's explanatory utility and usefulness in situations of network and policy transformation since, historically, policy networks have been applied to "static" circumstances. Recognizing this criticism, and in drawing on an interpretivist perspective, this paper sees policy networks as enacted by individual actors whose beliefs and actions construct the nature of the network. It seeks to make links between the characteristics of the policy network and the policy outcomes through the identification of discursively constructed "storylines" that form a tool for consensus building in networks. This study analyses the functioning of the organic policy networks through the discursive actions of policy-network actors.

  6. Organic farming improves pollination success in strawberries.

    PubMed

    Andersson, Georg K S; Rundlöf, Maj; Smith, Henrik G

    2012-01-01

    Pollination of insect pollinated crops has been found to be correlated to pollinator abundance and diversity. Since organic farming has the potential to mitigate negative effects of agricultural intensification on biodiversity, it may also benefit crop pollination, but direct evidence of this is scant. We evaluated the effect of organic farming on pollination of strawberry plants focusing on (1) if pollination success was higher on organic farms compared to conventional farms, and (2) if there was a time lag from conversion to organic farming until an effect was manifested. We found that pollination success and the proportion of fully pollinated berries were higher on organic compared to conventional farms and this difference was already evident 2-4 years after conversion to organic farming. Our results suggest that conversion to organic farming may rapidly increase pollination success and hence benefit the ecosystem service of crop pollination regarding both yield quantity and quality.

  7. Organic Farming, Gender, and the Labor Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hall, Alan; Mogyorody, Veronika

    2007-01-01

    This paper seeks to explain variations in gender participation in farm production and decision-making through an analysis of organic farm types, sizes, and orientations. Based on both survey and case study data, the analysis shows that female farmers on vegetable farms and mixed livestock/cash crop farms are more likely to be involved in farm…

  8. Organic Farming, Gender, and the Labor Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hall, Alan; Mogyorody, Veronika

    2007-01-01

    This paper seeks to explain variations in gender participation in farm production and decision-making through an analysis of organic farm types, sizes, and orientations. Based on both survey and case study data, the analysis shows that female farmers on vegetable farms and mixed livestock/cash crop farms are more likely to be involved in farm…

  9. FARM LABOR MARKET DEVELOPMENT.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Labor, Washington, DC.

    PART ONE OF THE REPORT CONSISTED OF AN ANALYSIS OF TRENDS BETWEEN 1960 AND 1961 IN WAGES OF UNITED STATES FARM WORKERS IN MAJOR AREAS USING MEXICAN NATIONALS. THE DATA WERE DERIVED FROM PREVAILING-WAGE REPORTS RECEIVED BY THE BUREAU OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY FROM AFFILIATED STATE EMPLOYMENT SECURITY AGENCIES. THE SURVEY RATES WERE USED BY THE…

  10. FARM LABOR MARKET DEVELOPMENT.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Labor, Washington, DC.

    PART ONE OF THE REPORT CONSISTED OF AN ANALYSIS OF TRENDS BETWEEN 1960 AND 1961 IN WAGES OF UNITED STATES FARM WORKERS IN MAJOR AREAS USING MEXICAN NATIONALS. THE DATA WERE DERIVED FROM PREVAILING-WAGE REPORTS RECEIVED BY THE BUREAU OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY FROM AFFILIATED STATE EMPLOYMENT SECURITY AGENCIES. THE SURVEY RATES WERE USED BY THE…

  11. Soil fertility and biodiversity in organic farming.

    PubMed

    Mäder, Paul; Fliessbach, Andreas; Dubois, David; Gunst, Lucie; Fried, Padruot; Niggli, Urs

    2002-05-31

    An understanding of agroecosystems is key to determining effective farming systems. Here we report results from a 21-year study of agronomic and ecological performance of biodynamic, bioorganic, and conventional farming systems in Central Europe. We found crop yields to be 20% lower in the organic systems, although input of fertilizer and energy was reduced by 34 to 53% and pesticide input by 97%. Enhanced soil fertility and higher biodiversity found in organic plots may render these systems less dependent on external inputs.

  12. Energy balance in olive oil farms: comparison of organic and conventional farming systems.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno, Marta M.; Meco, Ramón; Moreno, Carmen

    2013-04-01

    The viability of an agricultural production system not only depends on the crop yields, but especially on the efficient use of available resources. However, the current agricultural systems depend heavily on non-renewable energy consumption in the form of fertilizers, fossil fuels, pesticides and machinery. In developed countries, the economic profitability of different productive systems is dependent on the granting of subsidies of diverse origin that affect both production factors (or inputs) and the final product (or output). Leaving such external aids, energy balance analysis reveals the real and most efficient form of management for each agroclimatic region, and is also directly related to the economic activity and the environmental state. In this work we compare the energy balance resulting from organic and conventional olive oil farms under the semi-arid conditions of Central Spain. The results indicate that the mean energy supplied to the organic farms was sensitively lower (about 30%) in comparison with the conventional management, and these differences were more pronounced for the biggest farms (> 15 ha). Mean energy outputs were about 20% lower in the organic system, although organic small farms (< 15 ha) resulted more productive than the conventional small ones. However, these lower outputs were compensated by the major market value obtained from the organic products. Chemical fertilizers and pesticides reached about 60% of the total energy inputs in conventional farming; in the organic farms, however, this ratio scarcely reached 25%. Human labor item only represented a very small amount of the total energy input in both cases (less than 1%). As conclusions, both management systems were efficient from an energy point of view. The value of the organic production should be focused on the environmental benefits it provides, which are not usually considered in the conventional management on not valuing the damage it produces to the environment. Organic

  13. Managing helminths of ruminants in organic farming.

    PubMed

    Cabaret, Jacques; Bouilhol, Michel; Mage, Christian

    2002-01-01

    The use of anthelmintics is strongly limited in organic farming. This may induce a change in the intensity (no of worms) and diversity (proportions of species) of helminth infection. Helminths remain a major preoccupation in organic sheep farming: high levels of infection have been recorded on several farms and helminth diversity is always higher. The helminth infection in milk cattle of northern Europe is controlled and diversity is higher in organic farms, as recorded in sheep. The role of helminth diversity on intensity is still unclear. Grazing management is one of the means to controlling helminths. The use of safe pastures for calves and sheep after weaning is one of the major components of control. The use of alternate or mixed grazing is common for cattle in northern countries but is uncommon for sheep in France. Grazing management is not sufficient to controlling infection in sheep and conventional anthelmintic treatments are performed. Additionally, alternative treatments are used. The alternative therapies based on phytotherapy or homeopathy are largely recommended in organic farming but do not have any demonstrated efficacy. More research is needed to evaluate such therapies.

  14. Soil management practices under organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aly, Adel; Chami Ziad, Al; Hamdy, Atef

    2015-04-01

    Organic farming methods combine scientific knowledge of ecology and modern technology with traditional farming practices based on naturally occurring biological processes. Soil building practices such as crop rotations, intercropping, symbiotic associations, cover crops, organic fertilizers and minimum tillage are central to organic practices. Those practices encourage soil formation and structure and creating more stable systems. In farm nutrient and energy cycling is increased and the retentive abilities of the soil for nutrients and water are enhanced. Such management techniques also play an important role in soil erosion control. The length of time that the soil is exposed to erosive forces is decreased, soil biodiversity is increased, and nutrient losses are reduced, helping to maintain and enhance soil productivity. Organic farming as systematized and certifiable approach for agriculture, there is no surprise that it faces some challenges among both farmers and public sector. This can be clearly demonstrated particularly in the absence of the essential conditions needed to implement successfully the soil management practices like green manure and composting to improve soil fertility including crop rotation, cover cropping and reduced tillage. Those issues beside others will be fully discussed highlighting their beneficial impact on the environmental soil characteristics. Keywords: soil fertility, organic matter, plant nutrition

  15. Organic Wheat Farming Improves Grain Zinc Concentration.

    PubMed

    Helfenstein, Julian; Müller, Isabel; Grüter, Roman; Bhullar, Gurbir; Mandloi, Lokendra; Papritz, Andreas; Siegrist, Michael; Schulin, Rainer; Frossard, Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    Zinc (Zn) nutrition is of key relevance in India, as a large fraction of the population suffers from Zn malnutrition and many soils contain little plant available Zn. In this study we compared organic and conventional wheat cropping systems with respect to DTPA (diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid)-extractable Zn as a proxy for plant available Zn, yield, and grain Zn concentration. We analyzed soil and wheat grain samples from 30 organic and 30 conventional farms in Madhya Pradesh (central India), and conducted farmer interviews to elucidate sociological and management variables. Total and DTPA-extractable soil Zn concentrations and grain yield (3400 kg ha-1) did not differ between the two farming systems, but with 32 and 28 mg kg-1 respectively, grain Zn concentrations were higher on organic than conventional farms (t = -2.2, p = 0.03). Furthermore, multiple linear regression analyses revealed that (a) total soil zinc and sulfur concentrations were the best predictors of DTPA-extractable soil Zn, (b) Olsen phosphate taken as a proxy for available soil phosphorus, exchangeable soil potassium, harvest date, training of farmers in nutrient management, and soil silt content were the best predictors of yield, and (c) yield, Olsen phosphate, grain nitrogen, farmyard manure availability, and the type of cropping system were the best predictors of grain Zn concentration. Results suggested that organic wheat contained more Zn despite same yield level due to higher nutrient efficiency. Higher nutrient efficiency was also seen in organic wheat for P, N and S. The study thus suggests that appropriate farm management can lead to competitive yield and improved Zn concentration in wheat grains on organic farms.

  16. Organic Wheat Farming Improves Grain Zinc Concentration

    PubMed Central

    Helfenstein, Julian; Müller, Isabel; Grüter, Roman; Bhullar, Gurbir; Mandloi, Lokendra; Papritz, Andreas; Siegrist, Michael; Schulin, Rainer; Frossard, Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    Zinc (Zn) nutrition is of key relevance in India, as a large fraction of the population suffers from Zn malnutrition and many soils contain little plant available Zn. In this study we compared organic and conventional wheat cropping systems with respect to DTPA (diethylene triamine pentaacetic acid)-extractable Zn as a proxy for plant available Zn, yield, and grain Zn concentration. We analyzed soil and wheat grain samples from 30 organic and 30 conventional farms in Madhya Pradesh (central India), and conducted farmer interviews to elucidate sociological and management variables. Total and DTPA-extractable soil Zn concentrations and grain yield (3400 kg ha-1) did not differ between the two farming systems, but with 32 and 28 mg kg-1 respectively, grain Zn concentrations were higher on organic than conventional farms (t = -2.2, p = 0.03). Furthermore, multiple linear regression analyses revealed that (a) total soil zinc and sulfur concentrations were the best predictors of DTPA-extractable soil Zn, (b) Olsen phosphate taken as a proxy for available soil phosphorus, exchangeable soil potassium, harvest date, training of farmers in nutrient management, and soil silt content were the best predictors of yield, and (c) yield, Olsen phosphate, grain nitrogen, farmyard manure availability, and the type of cropping system were the best predictors of grain Zn concentration. Results suggested that organic wheat contained more Zn despite same yield level due to higher nutrient efficiency. Higher nutrient efficiency was also seen in organic wheat for P, N and S. The study thus suggests that appropriate farm management can lead to competitive yield and improved Zn concentration in wheat grains on organic farms. PMID:27537548

  17. Soil biota and agriculture production in conventional and organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schrama, Maarten; de Haan, Joj; Carvalho, Sabrina; Kroonen, Mark; Verstegen, Harry; Van der Putten, Wim

    2015-04-01

    Sustainable food production for a growing world population requires a healthy soil that can buffer environmental extremes and minimize its losses. There are currently two views on how to achieve this: by intensifying conventional agriculture or by developing organically based agriculture. It has been established that yields of conventional agriculture can be 20% higher than of organic agriculture. However, high yields of intensified conventional agriculture trade off with loss of soil biodiversity, leaching of nutrients, and other unwanted ecosystem dis-services. One of the key explanations for the loss of nutrients and GHG from intensive agriculture is that it results in high dynamics of nutrient losses, and policy has aimed at reducing temporal variation. However, little is known about how different agricultural practices affect spatial variation, and it is unknown how soil fauna acts this. In this study we compare the spatial and temporal variation of physical, chemical and biological parameters in a long term (13-year) field experiment with two conventional farming systems (low and medium organic matter input) and one organic farming system (high organic matter input) and we evaluate the impact on ecosystem services that these farming systems provide. Soil chemical (N availability, N mineralization, pH) and soil biological parameters (nematode abundance, bacterial and fungal biomass) show considerably higher spatial variation under conventional farming than under organic farming. Higher variation in soil chemical and biological parameters coincides with the presence of 'leaky' spots (high nitrate leaching) in conventional farming systems, which shift unpredictably over the course of one season. Although variation in soil physical factors (soil organic matter, soil aggregation, soil moisture) was similar between treatments, but averages were higher under organic farming, indicating more buffered conditions for nutrient cycling. All these changes coincide with

  18. A Framework for the Comparative Analysis of Farm Organizations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Molnar, Joseph J.

    Presenting a model for the comparative analysis of farm organizations, this paper analyzes the farm firm as a complex organization; identifies key structural dimensions of an agricultural production unit; and reviews various organizational perspectives for their utility in understanding and explaining the behavior of farm operations and farm…

  19. A Framework for the Comparative Analysis of Farm Organizations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Molnar, Joseph J.

    Presenting a model for the comparative analysis of farm organizations, this paper analyzes the farm firm as a complex organization; identifies key structural dimensions of an agricultural production unit; and reviews various organizational perspectives for their utility in understanding and explaining the behavior of farm operations and farm…

  20. The usability of digestate in organic farming.

    PubMed

    Clements, L J; Salter, A M; Banks, C J; Poppy, G M

    2012-01-01

    As organic farming prohibits the use of synthetic fertilisers, animal slurries and manures must be used. Digestate offers an alternative to these and this study reports on three experiments conducted to determine its usability in terms of: (1) the effect on earthworm populations, (2) its fertilising effects on Italian Ryegrass and wild Creeping Thistle, and (3) the suppression effects digestate has on weed emergence. The results for digestate application to field plots were intermediate between slurry and no treatment for earthworm attraction and wild thistle suppression. In glasshouse trials it led to increased ryegrass growth compared with undigested slurry. Analysis showed that the digestate had improved nitrogen availability, leading to increased plant growth, but a reduced organic matter content compared with the slurry, leading to a positive though less beneficial impact on the earthworms. Digestate therefore provides a suitable fertiliser for organic farming. This suitability could be improved by drying or separation to increase the OM content making its properties closer to those of slurry whilst still retaining the higher content of plant available nitrogen.

  1. The economic value of organic dairy farms in Vermont and Minnesota.

    PubMed

    O'Hara, J K; Parsons, R L

    2013-09-01

    This study quantifies the overall economic values of organic dairy farms in Vermont and Minnesota and estimates the economic impacts of organic dairy farm sales relative to an equivalent level of sales from conventional dairy farms in those states. This question is of interest because the development of the organic dairy sector has allowed some farms that likely would not have remained in the conventional dairy business to continue being economically viable as organic dairy farms. Thus, these sales provide an economic impact in regions when this milk is exported to nonproducing regions. Organic and conventional dairy farm financial data in Vermont and Minnesota were collected and assembled to develop dairy farm production functions by region and dairy type. These production functions were then used in state-level input-output models to calculate economic impacts. The opportunity costs of organic dairy farm production were also estimated by comparing the relative statewide economic impacts of organic and conventional dairy farms if both experience a hypothetical 5-million-dollar increase in sales. Between 2008 and 2010, Vermont's 180 organic dairy farms annually contributed $76.3 million in output (the value of an industry's production within the state), 808 jobs, $34.1 million in gross state product, and $26.3 million in labor income to Vermont's economy. Between 2009 and 2011, Minnesota's 114 organic dairy farms annually contributed $77.7 million in output, 552 jobs, $32.1 million in gross state product, and $21 million in labor income to Minnesota's economy. In Vermont, organic dairy farm sales revenue would result in greater state-wide impacts of 3% in output, 39% in labor income, 33% in gross state product, and 46% in employment relative to the impacts from an equivalent level of sales revenue to conventional dairy farms. In Minnesota, these economic impacts are 4, 9, 11, and 12% greater, respectively, for organic dairy farms relative to conventional dairy

  2. Organization Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huse, Edgar F.

    1978-01-01

    Organization Development (OD) is the application of behavioral-science knowledge to enhance an organization's effectiveness and efficiency. This article discusses the evolution of organization development, the basic components of an OD program, typologies of OD interventions, problems with organization development, and organization development in…

  3. Plant disease management in organic farming systems.

    PubMed

    van Bruggen, Ariena H C; Gamliel, Abraham; Finckh, Maria R

    2016-01-01

    Organic farming (OF) has significantly increased in importance in recent decades. Disease management in OF is largely based on the maintenance of biological diversity and soil health by balanced crop rotations, including nitrogen-fixing and cover crops, intercrops, additions of manure and compost and reductions in soil tillage. Most soil-borne diseases are naturally suppressed, while foliar diseases can sometimes be problematic. Only when a severe disease outbreak is expected are pesticides used that are approved for OF. A detailed overview is given of cultural and biological control measures. Attention is also given to regulated pesticides. We conclude that a systems approach to disease management is required, and that interdisciplinary research is needed to solve lingering disease problems, especially for OF in the tropics. Some of the organic regulations are in need of revision in close collaboration with various stakeholders.

  4. Organic farming benefits local plant diversity in vineyard farms located in intensive agricultural landscapes.

    PubMed

    Nascimbene, Juri; Marini, Lorenzo; Paoletti, Maurizio G

    2012-05-01

    The majority of research on organic farming has considered arable and grassland farming systems in Central and Northern Europe, whilst only a few studies have been carried out in Mediterranean agro-systems, such as vineyards, despite their economic importance. The main aim of the study was to test whether organic farming enhances local plant species richness in both crop and non-crop areas of vineyard farms located in intensive conventional landscapes. Nine conventional and nine organic farms were selected in an intensively cultivated region (i.e. no gradient in landscape composition) in northern Italy. In each farm, vascular plants were sampled in one vineyard and in two non-crop linear habitats, grass strips and hedgerows, adjacent to vineyards and therefore potentially influenced by farming. We used linear mixed models to test the effect of farming, and species longevity (annual vs. perennial) separately for the three habitat types. In our intensive agricultural landscapes organic farming promoted local plant species richness in vineyard fields, and grassland strips while we found no effect for linear hedgerows. Differences in species richness were not associated to differences in species composition, indicating that similar plant communities were hosted in vineyard farms independently of the management type. This negative effect of conventional farming was probably due to the use of herbicides, while mechanical operations and mowing regime did not differ between organic and conventional farms. In grassland strips, and only marginally in vineyards, we found that the positive effect of organic farming was more pronounced for perennial than annual species.

  5. Does organic farming benefit farmland birds in winter?

    PubMed

    Chamberlain, D E; Joys, A; Johnson, P J; Norton, L; Feber, R E; Fuller, R J

    2010-02-23

    The generally higher biodiversity on organic farms may be influenced by management features such as no synthetic pesticide and fertilizer inputs and/or by differences in uncropped habitat at the site and landscape scale. We analysed bird and habitat data collected on 48 paired organic and conventional farms over two winters to determine the extent to which broad-scale habitat differences between systems could explain overall differences in farmland bird abundance. Density was significantly higher on organic farms for six out of 16 species, and none on conventional. Total abundance of all species combined was higher on organic farms in both years. Analyses using an information-theoretic approach suggested that both habitat extent and farm type were important predictors only for starling and greenfinch. Organic farming as currently practised may not provide significant benefits to those bird species that are limited by winter food resources, in particular, several declining granivores.

  6. Work organization on smallholder dairy farms: a process unique to each farm.

    PubMed

    Hostiou, Nathalie; Cialdella, Nathalie; Vazquez, Vincent; Müller, Artur Gustavo; Le Gal, Pierre-Yves

    2015-10-01

    The way smallholder farms organize and carry out work impacts their ability to secure their livelihoods and meet growing demand for agricultural products. This study investigates the way dairy family farms in Brazil manage their workforce to achieve their objectives of production and income. Fifteen smallholder farms were surveyed using the QuaeWork method to understand the work organization on each farm. A high diversity of workloads was found, but these do not appear to be strictly related to the farms' production systems. The high variability of workloads is linked to the available workforce, technical choices, and the delegation of tasks to an external workforce. Farmers can decrease their workload by adopting milking mechanization, silage, hiring labor, and increasing the duration of the work day. Work organization depends on a farmer's personal choices, rendering the whole issue of workforce management a process unique to each farm.

  7. Reduced medication in organic farming with emphasis on organic dairy production.

    PubMed

    Vaarst, M; Bennedsgaard, T W

    2001-01-01

    Medication is an important focus area in organic animal husbandry. The combination of goals relating to improved animal welfare and reduced use of chemicals in general creates a common wish to reduce medication. Based on data from current Danish research projects in organic dairy farming, one specific organic medication pattern or policy cannot be described. The disease treatment pattern is influenced by many factors, e.g. the interaction with colleagues, veterinarians and agricultural advisors. No significant difference could be found with regard to incidence of mastitis treatments or somatic cell counts in 27 organic and 57 conventional herds. A marked tendency to shorter treatment periods in relation to mastitis treatments was described for organic farms in comparison with conventional farms (1.9 days versus 3.2 days (5 organic and 7 conventional herds)). In a study of development of health advisory service in organic herds, the dialogue between farmer, veterinarian and agricultural cattle advisor changed the treatment pattern markedly during a period of 6 months. Among important future challenges for veterinarians in organic farming is pointed at the constructive, open, and critical interaction with the single organic farmer as well as the organic animal husbandry system in general.

  8. Wind Farm Power System Model Development: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Muljadi, E.; Butterfield, C. P.

    2004-07-01

    In some areas, wind power has reached a level where it begins to impact grid operation and the stability of local utilities. In this paper, the model development for a large wind farm will be presented. Wind farm dynamic behavior and contribution to stability during transmission system faults will be examined.

  9. Benefits of organic farming to biodiversity vary among taxa.

    PubMed

    Fuller, R J; Norton, L R; Feber, R E; Johnson, P J; Chamberlain, D E; Joys, A C; Mathews, F; Stuart, R C; Townsend, M C; Manley, W J; Wolfe, M S; Macdonald, D W; Firbank, L G

    2005-12-22

    Habitat and biodiversity differences between matched pairs of organic and non-organic farms containing cereal crops in lowland England were assessed by a large-scale study of plants, invertebrates, birds and bats. Habitat extent, composition and management on organic farms was likely to favour higher levels of biodiversity and indeed organic farms tended to support higher numbers of species and overall abundance across most taxa. However, the magnitude of the response varied; plants showed larger and more consistent responses than other taxa. Variation in response across taxa may be partly a consequence of the small size and isolated context of many organic farms. Extension of organic farming could contribute to the restoration of biodiversity in agricultural landscapes.

  10. Benefits of organic farming to biodiversity vary among taxa

    PubMed Central

    Fuller, R.J; Norton, L.R; Feber, R.E; Johnson, P.J; Chamberlain, D.E; Joys, A.C; Mathews, F; Stuart, R.C; Townsend, M.C; Manley, W.J; Wolfe, M.S; Macdonald, D.W; Firbank, L.G

    2005-01-01

    Habitat and biodiversity differences between matched pairs of organic and non-organic farms containing cereal crops in lowland England were assessed by a large-scale study of plants, invertebrates, birds and bats. Habitat extent, composition and management on organic farms was likely to favour higher levels of biodiversity and indeed organic farms tended to support higher numbers of species and overall abundance across most taxa. However, the magnitude of the response varied; plants showed larger and more consistent responses than other taxa. Variation in response across taxa may be partly a consequence of the small size and isolated context of many organic farms. Extension of organic farming could contribute to the restoration of biodiversity in agricultural landscapes. PMID:17148225

  11. Does organic farming reduce environmental impacts?--a meta-analysis of European research.

    PubMed

    Tuomisto, H L; Hodge, I D; Riordan, P; Macdonald, D W

    2012-12-15

    Organic farming practices have been promoted as, inter alia, reducing the environmental impacts of agriculture. This meta-analysis systematically analyses published studies that compare environmental impacts of organic and conventional farming in Europe. The results show that organic farming practices generally have positive impacts on the environment per unit of area, but not necessarily per product unit. Organic farms tend to have higher soil organic matter content and lower nutrient losses (nitrogen leaching, nitrous oxide emissions and ammonia emissions) per unit of field area. However, ammonia emissions, nitrogen leaching and nitrous oxide emissions per product unit were higher from organic systems. Organic systems had lower energy requirements, but higher land use, eutrophication potential and acidification potential per product unit. The variation within the results across different studies was wide due to differences in the systems compared and research methods used. The only impacts that were found to differ significantly between the systems were soil organic matter content, nitrogen leaching, nitrous oxide emissions per unit of field area, energy use and land use. Most of the studies that compared biodiversity in organic and conventional farming demonstrated lower environmental impacts from organic farming. The key challenges in conventional farming are to improve soil quality (by versatile crop rotations and additions of organic material), recycle nutrients and enhance and protect biodiversity. In organic farming, the main challenges are to improve the nutrient management and increase yields. In order to reduce the environmental impacts of farming in Europe, research efforts and policies should be targeted to developing farming systems that produce high yields with low negative environmental impacts drawing on techniques from both organic and conventional systems.

  12. Assessing the association between pesticide exposure and cognitive development in rural Costa Rican children living in organic and conventional coffee farms.

    PubMed

    Lu, Chensheng; Essig, Christa; Root, Christa; Rohlman, Diane S; McDonald, Tom; Sulzbacher, Stephen

    2009-01-01

    We examined the association between pesticide exposure and cognitive development among rural Costa Rican children in a cross-sectional study. Study participants aged 4-10 years included 17 children whose parents worked in La Amistad organic coffee plantation and 18 Las Mellizas children whose parents worked in their own small conventional coffee farms. Two spot-urine samples were collected from each participant and analyzed for organophosphorus and pyrethroids pesticide metabolites. We administered the computerized Behavioral Assessment and Research System (BARS), a figure-drawing task, and a long-term memory test to evaluate study participant's cognitive development. Although urinary pesticide metabolite levels did not vary considerably between these two groups of children, we found that Las Mellizas children performed better in BARS and the figure drawing tests than did La Amistad. The results from the linear mixed-effects models suggested that family socioeconomic status (SES) might be a significant contributor to the variation of the outcomes of the neurobehavioral tests. The effect of pesticide exposure, however, as measured in a snapshot fashion, did not play a significant role to the performance of the cognitive development evaluation. Regardless of the study limitations, needed effort should be devoted to the improvement of the SES on the La Amistad families so that their children's cognitive development would not be compromised further. Additionally, future studies should focus on addressing the limitations imposed on the snapshot assessment of pesticide exposure and on conducting cognitive development evaluation so the link between childhood pesticide exposure and their cognitive development can be thoroughly investigated.

  13. Effects of organic farming on biodiversity and ecosystem services: taking landscape complexity into account.

    PubMed

    Winqvist, Camilla; Ahnström, Johan; Bengtsson, Jan

    2012-02-01

    The recent intensification of the arable landscape by modern agriculture has had negative effects on biodiversity. Organic farming has been introduced to mitigate negative effects, but is organic farming beneficial to biodiversity? In this review, we summarize recent research on the effects of organic farming on arable biodiversity of plants, arthropods, soil biota, birds, and mammals. The ecosystem services of pollination, biological control, seed predation, and decomposition are also included in this review. So far, organic farming seems to enhance the species richness and abundance of many common taxa, but its effects are often species specific and trait or context dependant. The landscape surrounding the focal field or farm also seems to be important. Landscape either enhances or reduces the positive effects of organic farming or acts via interactions where the surrounding landscape affects biodiversity or ecosystem services differently on organic and conventional farms. Finally, we discuss some of the potential mechanisms behind these results and how organic farming may develop in the future to increase its potential for sustaining biodiversity and associated ecosystem services.

  14. Orchid bees as bio-indicators for organic coffee farms in Costa Rica: does farm size affect their abundance?

    PubMed

    Hedström, Ingemar; Denzel, Andrew; Owens, Gareth

    2006-09-01

    The potential of Euglossini bees, especially Euglossa, as biological indicators of organic vs nonorganic coffee farms was studied in Atenas and San Isidro, Alajuela, Costa Rica using 1.8-cineole as lure. Observations were made for three days at each of four farms and complemented with data from a year of observations. Orchid bees were in greater abundance in the organic farms (t-Student test). However, lower abundances suggest that an organic farm may be negatively affected by the proximity of non-organic farms, depending on its size and distance. Orchid bees may be indicators of organic coffee farms.

  15. Amplified recruitment pressure of biofouling organisms in commercial salmon farms: potential causes and implications for farm management.

    PubMed

    Bloecher, Nina; Floerl, Oliver; Sunde, Leif Magne

    2015-01-01

    The development of biofouling on finfish aquaculture farms presents challenges for the industry, but the factors underlying nuisance growths are still not well understood. Artificial settlement surfaces were used to examine two possible explanations for high rates of biofouling in Norwegian salmon farms: (1) increased propagule release during net cleaning operations, resulting in elevated recruitment rates; and (2) potential reservoir effects of farm surfaces. The presence of salmon farms was associated with consistently and substantially (up to 49-fold) elevated recruitment rates. Temporal patterns of recruitment were not driven by net cleaning. Resident populations of biofouling organisms were encountered on all submerged farm surfaces. Calculations indicate that a resident population of the hydroid Ectopleura larynx, a major biofouling species, could release between 0.3 × 10(9) and 4.7 × 10(9) larvae per farm annually. Such resident populations could form propagule reservoirs and be one explanation for the elevated recruitment pressure at salmon farms.

  16. Is organic farming safer to farmers’ health? A comparison between organic and traditional farming

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Carla; García-Lestón, Julia; Costa, Solange; Coelho, Patrícia; Silva, Susana; Valdiglesias, Vanessa; Mattei, Francesca; Dall’Armi, Valentina; Bonassi, Stefano; Laffon, Blanca; Snawder, John; Teixeira, João Paulo

    2015-01-01

    Background Exposure to pesticides is a major public health concern, because of the widespread distribution of these compounds and their possible long term effects. Recently, organic farming has been introduced as a consumer and environmental friendly agricultural system, although little is known about the effects on workers’ health. Objectives To evaluate genetic damage and immunological alterations in workers of both traditional and organic farming. Methods Eighty-five farmers exposed to several pesticides, thirty–six organic farmers and sixty-one controls took part in the study. Biomarkers of exposure (pyrethroids, organophosphates, carbamates, and thioethers in urine and butyrylcholinesterase activity in plasma), early effect (micronuclei in lymphocytes and reticulocytes, T-cell receptor mutation assay, chromosomal aberrations, comet assay and lymphocytes subpopulations) and susceptibility (genetic polymorphisms related to metabolism - EPHX1, GSTM1, GSTT1 and GSTP1 - and DNA repair – XRCC1 and XRCC2) were evaluated. Results When compared to controls and organic farmers, pesticide farmers presented a significant increase of micronuclei in lymphocytes (frequency ratio, FR=2.80) and reticulocytes (FR=1.89), chromosomal aberrations (FR=2.19), DNA damage assessed by comet assay (mean ratio, MR=1.71), and a significant decrease in the proportion of B lymphocytes (MR=0.88). Overall, organic farmers presented similar levels of genetic damage as controls, in some cases modulated by GSTT1 and GSTM1, GSTP1 105Ile/Ile and XRCC1 399Gln/Gln genotypes. Conclusions Results confirmed the increased presence of DNA damage in farmers exposed to pesticides, and showed as exposure conditions and genetic background influence observed effects. Findings from this study indicate that no evident genetic or immunologic damage can be observed in organic farmers. PMID:24576785

  17. Evaluation of ecofriendly management practices of french beanrust (Uromyces appendiculatus) in organic farming system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chhetry, G. K. N.; Mangang, H. C.

    2012-09-01

    Organic farming system emphasises on sustainable development of agriculture. The traditional agriculture system was much akin to the organic system but modernization of agriculture made a shift to this trend. The north east region of India is potential organic farming sites. Most of the farming systems are traditional and are organic by default; however crops in organic farming are prone to many fungal diseases. Hence for validation of the impact of organic practices on the disease development of plants, a study has been conducted for three years under natural environmental conditions on bean rust (Uromyces appendiculatus). Study includes ecofriendly practices like: plant extract treatment, intercropping of beans with maize, organic manure application, influence of cropping season and Trichoderma treatment. Rust is a major prevalent disease in the cultivation of beans as in other parts of the world. Detailed study of the disease in the organic environment and the impact of various treatments and agricultural agronomic practices would help in validation of the practices for the management of the disease in the organic farming system. In our study for three consecutive years it has been revealed that the practices of the traditional farmers likeplant extract application, intercropping, and manure application were found to have significant positive effects in reducing rust development in the bean fields. The treatment of farm yard manure resulted in development of lesser area under disease progress curve. The plant extract of Artemisia vulgaris has marked positive impact on reducing rust disease parameters. Foliar application of Trichoderma reduces the disease parameters of rust. This study would enhance information in understanding the impact of organic farming system on bean rust and would help in validitation of sustainable agricultural practices for use in organic farming system.

  18. Orgenic plants: gene-manipulated plants compatible with organic farming.

    PubMed

    Ryffel, Gerhart U

    2012-11-01

    Based on recent advances in plant gene technology, I propose to develop a new category of GM plants, orgenic plants, that are compatible with organic farming. These orgenic plants do not contain herbicide resistance genes to avoid herbicide application in agriculture. Furthermore, they either contain genes that are naturally exchanged between species, or are sterile to avoid outcrossing if they received a transgene from a different species. These GM plants are likely to be acceptable to most skeptics of GM plants and facilitate the use of innovative new crops.

  19. Is organic farming safer to farmers' health? A comparison between organic and traditional farming.

    PubMed

    Costa, Carla; García-Lestón, Julia; Costa, Solange; Coelho, Patrícia; Silva, Susana; Pingarilho, Marta; Valdiglesias, Vanessa; Mattei, Francesca; Dall'Armi, Valentina; Bonassi, Stefano; Laffon, Blanca; Snawder, John; Teixeira, João Paulo

    2014-10-15

    Exposure to pesticides is a major public health concern, because of the widespread distribution of these compounds and their possible long term effects. Recently, organic farming has been introduced as a consumer and environmental friendly agricultural system, although little is known about the effects on workers' health. The aim of this work was to evaluate genetic damage and immunological alterations in workers of both traditional and organic farming. Eighty-five farmers exposed to several pesticides, thirty-six organic farmers and sixty-one controls took part in the study. Biomarkers of exposure (pyrethroids, organophosphates, carbamates, and thioethers in urine and butyrylcholinesterase activity in plasma), early effect (micronuclei in lymphocytes and reticulocytes, T-cell receptor mutation assay, chromosomal aberrations, comet assay and lymphocytes subpopulations) and susceptibility (genetic polymorphisms related to metabolism - EPHX1, GSTM1, GSTT1 and GSTP1 - and DNA repair-XRCC1 and XRCC2) were evaluated. When compared to controls and organic farmers, pesticide farmers presented a significant increase of micronuclei in lymphocytes (frequency ratio, FR=2.80) and reticulocytes (FR=1.89), chromosomal aberrations (FR=2.19), DNA damage assessed by comet assay (mean ratio, MR=1.71), and a significant decrease in the proportion of B lymphocytes (MR=0.88). Results were not consistent for organic farmers when compared to controls, with a 48% increase of micronuclei in lumphocytes frequency (p=0.016) contrasted by the significant decreases of TCR-Mf (p=0.001) and %T (p=0.001). Our data confirm the increased presence of DNA damage in farmers exposed to pesticides, and show as exposure conditions may influence observed effects. These results must be interpreted with caution due to the small size of the sample and the unbalanced distribution of individuals in the three study groups.

  20. Use of homeopathy in organic dairy farming in Spain.

    PubMed

    Orjales, Inmaculada; López-Alonso, Marta; Rodríguez-Bermúdez, Ruth; Rey-Crespo, Francisco; Villar, Ana; Miranda, Marta

    2016-02-01

    Organic farming principles promote the use of unconventional therapies as an alternative to chemical substances (which are limited by organic regulations), with homeopathy being the most extensive. Traditionally, Spain has had little faith in homeopathy but its use in organic farming is growing. Fifty-six Spanish organic dairy farmers were interviewed to obtain what we believe to be the first data on the use of homeopathy in organic dairy cattle in Spain. Only 32% of farms use some sort of alternative therapy (16.1% homeopathy, 10.7% phytotherapy and 5.3% using both therapies) and interestingly, a clear geographical pattern showing a higher use towards the East (similar to that in the human population) was observed. The main motivation to use homeopathy was the need to reduce chemical substances promoted by organic regulations, and the treatment of clinical mastitis being the principle reason. The number of total treatments was lower in farms using homeopathy compared with those applying allopathic therapies (0.13 and 0.54 treatments/cow/year respectively) and although the bulk SCC was significantly higher (p < 0.001) in these farms (161,826 and 111,218 cel/ml, respectively) it did not have any negative economical penalty for the farmer and milk quality was not affected complying with the required standards; on the contrary homeopathic therapies seems to be an alternative for reducing antibiotic treatments, allowing farmers to meet the organic farming principles.

  1. Antimicrobial susceptibility of Salmonella from organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Ray, K A; Warnick, L D; Mitchell, R M; Kaneene, J B; Ruegg, P L; Wells, S J; Fossler, C P; Halbert, L W; May, K

    2006-06-01

    The objective of this study was to compare antimicrobial susceptibility of Salmonella isolated from conventional and organic dairy farms in the Midwest and Northeast United States. Environmental and fecal samples were collected from organic (n = 26) and conventional (n = 69) farms in Michigan, Minnesota, New York, and Wisconsin every 2 mo from August 2000 to October 2001. Salmonella isolates (n = 1,243) were tested using a broth microdilution method for susceptibility to amoxicillin-clavulanic acid, ampicillin, ceftiofur, ceftriaxone, cephalothin, chloramphenicol, ciprofloxacin, gentamicin, kanamycin, nalidixic acid, streptomycin, sulfamethoxazole, tetracycline, and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Herd-level logistic regression and logistic proportional hazards multivariable models were used to examine the association between farm management type and susceptibility to antimicrobial agents. For most antimicrobial agents tested, susceptibility of Salmonella isolates was similar on organic and conventional herds when controlling for herd size and state. Conventional farms were more likely to have at least one Salmonella isolate resistant to streptomycin using logistic regression (odds ratio = 7.5; 95% confidence interval = 1.7-5.4). Conventional farms were more likely to have Salmonella isolates with greater resistance to streptomycin (odds ratio = 5.4; 95% confidence interval = 1.5-19.0) and sulfamethoxazole (odds ratio = 4.2; 95% confidence interval = 1.2-14.1) using logistic proportional hazards models. Although not statistically significant, conventional farms tended to be more likely to have at least one Salmonella isolate resistant to 5 or more antimicrobial agents when compared with organic farms.

  2. Organic Farming: Biodiversity Impacts Can Depend on Dispersal Characteristics and Landscape Context

    PubMed Central

    Feber, Ruth E.; Johnson, Paul J.; Bell, James R.; Chamberlain, Dan E.; Firbank, Leslie G.; Fuller, Robert J.; Manley, Will; Mathews, Fiona; Norton, Lisa R.; Townsend, Martin; Macdonald, David W.

    2015-01-01

    Organic farming, a low intensity system, may offer benefits for a range of taxa, but what affects the extent of those benefits is imperfectly understood. We explored the effects of organic farming and landscape on the activity density and species density of spiders and carabid beetles, using a large sample of paired organic and conventional farms in the UK. Spider activity density and species density were influenced by both farming system and surrounding landscape. Hunting spiders, which tend to have lower dispersal capabilities, had higher activity density, and more species were captured, on organic compared to conventional farms. There was also evidence for an interaction, as the farming system effect was particularly marked in the cropped area before harvest and was more pronounced in complex landscapes (those with little arable land). There was no evidence for any effect of farming system or landscape on web-building spiders (which include the linyphiids, many of which have high dispersal capabilities). For carabid beetles, the farming system effects were inconsistent. Before harvest, higher activity densities were observed in the crops on organic farms compared with conventional farms. After harvest, no difference was detected in the cropped area, but more carabids were captured on conventional compared to organic boundaries. Carabids were more species-dense in complex landscapes, and farming system did not affect this. There was little evidence that non-cropped habitat differences explained the farming system effects for either spiders or carabid beetles. For spiders, the farming system effects in the cropped area were probably largely attributable to differences in crop management; reduced inputs of pesticides (herbicides and insecticides) and fertilisers are possible influences, and there was some evidence for an effect of non-crop plant species richness on hunting spider activity density. The benefits of organic farming may be greatest for taxa with lower

  3. Organic Farming: Biodiversity Impacts Can Depend on Dispersal Characteristics and Landscape Context.

    PubMed

    Feber, Ruth E; Johnson, Paul J; Bell, James R; Chamberlain, Dan E; Firbank, Leslie G; Fuller, Robert J; Manley, Will; Mathews, Fiona; Norton, Lisa R; Townsend, Martin; Macdonald, David W

    2015-01-01

    Organic farming, a low intensity system, may offer benefits for a range of taxa, but what affects the extent of those benefits is imperfectly understood. We explored the effects of organic farming and landscape on the activity density and species density of spiders and carabid beetles, using a large sample of paired organic and conventional farms in the UK. Spider activity density and species density were influenced by both farming system and surrounding landscape. Hunting spiders, which tend to have lower dispersal capabilities, had higher activity density, and more species were captured, on organic compared to conventional farms. There was also evidence for an interaction, as the farming system effect was particularly marked in the cropped area before harvest and was more pronounced in complex landscapes (those with little arable land). There was no evidence for any effect of farming system or landscape on web-building spiders (which include the linyphiids, many of which have high dispersal capabilities). For carabid beetles, the farming system effects were inconsistent. Before harvest, higher activity densities were observed in the crops on organic farms compared with conventional farms. After harvest, no difference was detected in the cropped area, but more carabids were captured on conventional compared to organic boundaries. Carabids were more species-dense in complex landscapes, and farming system did not affect this. There was little evidence that non-cropped habitat differences explained the farming system effects for either spiders or carabid beetles. For spiders, the farming system effects in the cropped area were probably largely attributable to differences in crop management; reduced inputs of pesticides (herbicides and insecticides) and fertilisers are possible influences, and there was some evidence for an effect of non-crop plant species richness on hunting spider activity density. The benefits of organic farming may be greatest for taxa with lower

  4. Feasibility of new breeding techniques for organic farming.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Martin Marchman; Landes, Xavier; Xiang, Wen; Anyshchenko, Artem; Falhof, Janus; Østerberg, Jeppe Thulin; Olsen, Lene Irene; Edenbrandt, Anna Kristina; Vedel, Suzanne Elizabeth; Thorsen, Bo Jellesmark; Sandøe, Peter; Gamborg, Christian; Kappel, Klemens; Palmgren, Michael G

    2015-07-01

    Organic farming is based on the concept of working 'with nature' instead of against it; however, compared with conventional farming, organic farming reportedly has lower productivity. Ideally, the goal should be to narrow this yield gap. In this review, we specifically discuss the feasibility of new breeding techniques (NBTs) for rewilding, a process involving the reintroduction of properties from the wild relatives of crops, as a method to close the productivity gap. The most efficient methods of rewilding are based on modern biotechnology techniques, which have yet to be embraced by the organic farming movement. Thus, the question arises of whether the adoption of such methods is feasible, not only from a technological perspective, but also from conceptual, socioeconomic, ethical, and regulatory perspectives.

  5. Quantifying the linkages among soil health, organic farming, and food

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic farming systems utilize organic amendments, diverse crop rotations and cover crops to promote soil fertility and enhance soil health. These practices increase biologically available forms of soil organic matter, and increase the activities of beneficial soil microbes and invertebrates. Physi...

  6. A New Farming Systems Development Initiative

    SciTech Connect

    Hanlon, Edward; Capece, John

    2010-01-10

    Hendry County Sustainable Bio-Fuels Center (HCSBC) is introduced and its main components are explained. These primarily include (1) farming systems, (2) sustainability analysis, (3) economic analysis and (4) educational components. Each of these components is discussed in further details, main researchers and their responsibility areas and introduced. The main focus of this presentation is a new farming concept. The proposed new farming concept is an alternative to the current "two sides of the ditch" model, in which on one side are yield-maximizing, input-intensive, commodity price-dependent farms, while on the other side are publicly-financed, nutrient-removing treatment areas and water reservoirs trying to mitigate the externalized costs of food production systems and other human-induced problems. The proposed approach is rental of the land back to agriculture corporations during the restoration transition period in order to increase water storage (allowing for greater water flow-through and/or water storage on farms), preventing issues such as nutrients removal, using flood-tolerant crops and reducing soil subsidence. Various pros and cons of the proposed agricultural eco-services are discussed - the advantages include flexibility for participating farmers to achieve environmental outcomes with reduced costs and using innovative incentives; the minuses include the fact that the potential markets are not developed yet or that existing regulations may prevent agricultural producers from selling their services.

  7. Integrated farming: why organic farmers should use transgenic crops.

    PubMed

    Ammann, Klaus

    2008-01-01

    The concept of organic farming is summarised and compared as an example to farming with biotechnology-derived crops. If done within an ecological concept, both methods can be seen as environmentally acceptable. Organic farming does not offer consistent arguments for the rejection of transgenic crops. Some arguments (from genomics to biodiversity) are discussed in order to demonstrate that the contrast between both farming systems is rated too high and that it is possible to overcome the divide. In this way the ground is prepared for a proposal on how to merge those otherwise incompatible agricultural management systems, a proposal that also will have to build on a new concept of sustainability. It will be dealt with in the second part of the article in the next issue of New Biotechnology.

  8. The Farm as an Educative Tool in the Development of Place Attachments among Irish Farm Youth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cassidy, Anne

    2017-01-01

    This paper focuses on the educative role of the farm in the development of relationships between young people and the homeplace they grew up on. The paper is based on qualitative interviews with a cohort of 30 Irish university students (15 men and 15 women) brought up on Irish family farms who would not become full-time farmers. The farm acts as…

  9. Impacts of Organic Farming on Soil Aggregate Stability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petticrew, E. L.; Williams, N. D.

    2009-04-01

    Organic farming has expanded rapidly in the UK in recent years, amid increasing concerns for long term environmental and economic sustainability in agricultural systems. Much of the motivation for the shift away from conventional intensive agricultural practices has focused on soil nutrient management. Little attention has been directed toward the relative merits of organic farming for the physical structure of soils, despite aggregate structure and stability being of particular importance to soil erosion potential and sustainable soil quality. In this study, soil samples were collected from four arable sites within a small geographical area, in order to represent (1) an organic farm; (2) a conventional farm that only used artificial fertilizers; (3) a conventional farm that used artificial and cattle slurry fertilizers; and (4) a non-cultivated control site. Samples were analysed for living biomass and total organic content, bulk aggregate size and density distributions, bulk fragmentation fractal dimensions (which represent indices of soil erodibility), aggregate stability under simulated rainfall, and the stability of micro-aggregates that were mobilized in surface runoff generated by simulated rainfall. The relationships between the different soil properties were found to be complex. However, there were some significant differences between the samples, which were related to the different methods (or absence) of agriculture. The non-cultivated soil was determined to have the lowest erodibility and greatest aggregate stability. The conventional soil that was only fertilized by artificial means exhibited the lowest aggregate stability. There were few apparent differences between the organic soil and the conventional soil that received an input of organic fertilizer. The results of the physical analysis reflect the mining and replenishment of organic matter to each soil by the different management practices. This leads to the conclusion that the addition of organic

  10. Organic farming: Impacts on soil, food, and human health

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The importance of responsible stewardship in managing soil is a central tenet of organic farming. Organic farmers believe that practices which stimulate biology and overall quality of soil enhance production of healthy and nutritious crops. Few involved in agriculture would argue this point. Neverth...

  11. Evidence of varietal adaptation to organic farming systems

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Consumer demand regarding the impacts of conventional agriculture on the environment and human health have spurred the growth of organic farming systems; however, organic agriculture is often criticized as low-yielding and unable to produce enough food to supply the world’s population. Using wheat a...

  12. Development of a Scaled Smart Wind Farm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pol, Suhas; Taylor, Amelia; McKeon, Dalton; Castillo, Luciano; Perez, Isaias; Beibei, Ren; Sheng, Jian; Westergaard, Carsten; Burak, Aksak; Araya, Guillermo; Hussain, Fazle

    2013-11-01

    A model wind farm consisting of 3X5 horizontal axis turbines with a rotor diameter of 4 m (to be expanded to 5X20 turbines of 2 m diameter) is being developed on TTU campus. Real field turbine wake evolution and interactions will be studied by employing particle image velocimetry. A 10 m tower upstream of the wind farm as well as a 200 m tower located 500 m from the site will be used to characterize the atmospheric condition and its influence on the wake evolution. Of particular interest is the role of coherent structures in the atmosphere and the wake on the downward transport of overhead momentum--hence the effectiveness of the wind farm. From the recorded data episodes of stable, unstable and neutral atmosphere will be conditionally sampled to understand the effect of atmospheric stability on wind farm dynamics. The effect of various turbine-turbine separation and orientation on the downward momentum transport will be studied - quite feasible since the turbine models are portable. In addition to aerodynamic studies the facility we will also test control algorithms.

  13. Determination of pesticide residues in Turkey's table grapes: the effect of integrated pest management, organic farming, and conventional farming.

    PubMed

    Turgut, Cafer; Ornek, Hakan; Cutright, Teresa J

    2011-02-01

    Turkey is one of the world's largest producers and exporters of table grapes. Growing social concerns over excessive pesticide use have led to farming to move from conventional to organic practices. Table grapes were collected from 99 different farms in three Aegean regions. Pesticide residues were only detected in farms using conventional agriculture practices while no pesticides were detected in grapes from farms using organic or integrated pest management. A risk assessment model indicated that lambda-cyhalothrin posed the most significant risk at conventional farms.

  14. The effects of farm size and organic farming on diversity of birds, pollinators, and plants in a Swedish landscape.

    PubMed

    Belfrage, Kristina; Björklund, Johanna; Salomonsson, Lennart

    2005-12-01

    This study compares diversity and abundance of birds plus abundance of butterflies, bumblebees and herbaceous plants between six small farms (<52 ha arable land) and six large farms (>135 ha arable land) in Roslagen in southeastern Sweden. Two of the large and four of the small farms were organic. Large-scale landscape mosaic and underlying bedrock were similar for all farms. Statistical analysis was performed using box-plots on medians and analysis of variance on mean values. More than twice as many bird species and territories, butterflies, and herbaceous plant species, and five times more bumblebees were found on the small compared to the large farms. The largest differences were found between small organic and large conventional farms. Differences were also noted between small and large organic farms: 56% more bird species were found on small organic than on large organic farms, although none of the farms used any pesticides. We therefore argue that the consideration of organic agriculture's effect on biodiversity should include factors affected by farm size.

  15. N-losses and energy use in a scenario for conversion to organic farming.

    PubMed

    Dalgaard, T; Kjeldsen, C; Hutchings, N J; Hansen, J F

    2001-11-16

    The aims of organic farming include the recycling of nutrients and organic matter and the minimisation of the environmental impact of agriculture. Reduced nitrogen (N)-losses and energy (E)-use are therefore fundamental objectives of conversion to organic farming. However, the case is not straightforward, and different scenarios for conversion to organic farming might lead to reduced or increased N-losses and E-use. This paper presents a scenario tool that uses a Geographical Information System in association with models for crop rotations, fertilisation practices, N-losses, and E-uses. The scenario tool has been developed within the multidisciplinary research project Land Use and Landscape Development Illustrated with Scenarios (ARLAS). A pilot scenario was carried out, where predicted changes in N-losses and E-uses following conversion to organic farming in areas with special interests in clean groundwater were compared. The N-surplus and E-use were on average reduced by 10 and 54%, respectively. However, these reductions following the predicted changes in crop rotations, livestock densities, and fertilisation practices were not large enough to ensure a statistically significant reduction at the 95% level. We therefore recommend further research in how conversion to organic farming or other changes in the agricultural practice might help to reduce N-surpluses and E-uses. In that context, the presented scenario tool would be useful.

  16. Enhanced top soil carbon stocks under organic farming.

    PubMed

    Gattinger, Andreas; Muller, Adrian; Haeni, Matthias; Skinner, Colin; Fliessbach, Andreas; Buchmann, Nina; Mäder, Paul; Stolze, Matthias; Smith, Pete; Scialabba, Nadia El-Hage; Niggli, Urs

    2012-10-30

    It has been suggested that conversion to organic farming contributes to soil carbon sequestration, but until now a comprehensive quantitative assessment has been lacking. Therefore, datasets from 74 studies from pairwise comparisons of organic vs. nonorganic farming systems were subjected to metaanalysis to identify differences in soil organic carbon (SOC). We found significant differences and higher values for organically farmed soils of 0.18 ± 0.06% points (mean ± 95% confidence interval) for SOC concentrations, 3.50 ± 1.08 Mg C ha(-1) for stocks, and 0.45 ± 0.21 Mg C ha(-1) y(-1) for sequestration rates compared with nonorganic management. Metaregression did not deliver clear results on drivers, but differences in external C inputs and crop rotations seemed important. Restricting the analysis to zero net input organic systems and retaining only the datasets with highest data quality (measured soil bulk densities and external C and N inputs), the mean difference in SOC stocks between the farming systems was still significant (1.98 ± 1.50 Mg C ha(-1)), whereas the difference in sequestration rates became insignificant (0.07 ± 0.08 Mg C ha(-1) y(-1)). Analyzing zero net input systems for all data without this quality requirement revealed significant, positive differences in SOC concentrations and stocks (0.13 ± 0.09% points and 2.16 ± 1.65 Mg C ha(-1), respectively) and insignificant differences for sequestration rates (0.27 ± 0.37 Mg C ha(-1) y(-1)). The data mainly cover top soil and temperate zones, whereas only few data from tropical regions and subsoil horizons exist. Summarizing, this study shows that organic farming has the potential to accumulate soil carbon.

  17. Enhanced top soil carbon stocks under organic farming

    PubMed Central

    Gattinger, Andreas; Muller, Adrian; Haeni, Matthias; Skinner, Colin; Fliessbach, Andreas; Buchmann, Nina; Mäder, Paul; Stolze, Matthias; Smith, Pete; Scialabba, Nadia El-Hage; Niggli, Urs

    2012-01-01

    It has been suggested that conversion to organic farming contributes to soil carbon sequestration, but until now a comprehensive quantitative assessment has been lacking. Therefore, datasets from 74 studies from pairwise comparisons of organic vs. nonorganic farming systems were subjected to metaanalysis to identify differences in soil organic carbon (SOC). We found significant differences and higher values for organically farmed soils of 0.18 ± 0.06% points (mean ± 95% confidence interval) for SOC concentrations, 3.50 ± 1.08 Mg C ha−1 for stocks, and 0.45 ± 0.21 Mg C ha−1 y−1 for sequestration rates compared with nonorganic management. Metaregression did not deliver clear results on drivers, but differences in external C inputs and crop rotations seemed important. Restricting the analysis to zero net input organic systems and retaining only the datasets with highest data quality (measured soil bulk densities and external C and N inputs), the mean difference in SOC stocks between the farming systems was still significant (1.98 ± 1.50 Mg C ha−1), whereas the difference in sequestration rates became insignificant (0.07 ± 0.08 Mg C ha−1 y−1). Analyzing zero net input systems for all data without this quality requirement revealed significant, positive differences in SOC concentrations and stocks (0.13 ± 0.09% points and 2.16 ± 1.65 Mg C ha−1, respectively) and insignificant differences for sequestration rates (0.27 ± 0.37 Mg C ha−1 y−1). The data mainly cover top soil and temperate zones, whereas only few data from tropical regions and subsoil horizons exist. Summarizing, this study shows that organic farming has the potential to accumulate soil carbon. PMID:23071312

  18. Biodiversity management of organic farming enhances agricultural sustainability.

    PubMed

    Liu, Haitao; Meng, Jie; Bo, Wenjing; Cheng, Da; Li, Yong; Guo, Liyue; Li, Caihong; Zheng, Yanhai; Liu, Meizhen; Ning, Tangyuan; Wu, Guanglei; Yu, Xiaofan; Feng, Sufei; Wuyun, Tana; Li, Jing; Li, Lijun; Zeng, Yan; Liu, Shi V; Jiang, Gaoming

    2016-04-01

    Organic farming (OF) has been believed to be capable of curtailing some hazardous effects associated with chemical farming (CF). However, debates also exist on whether OF can feed a world with increasing human population. We hypothesized that some improvements on OF may produce adequate crops and reduce environmental pollutions from CF. This paper makes comparative analysis of crop yield, soil organic matter and economic benefits within the practice on Biodiversity Management of Organic Farming (BMOF) at Hongyi Organic Farm (HOF) over eight years and between BMOF and CF. Linking crop production with livestock to maximal uses of by-products from each production and avoid xenobiotic chemicals, we have achieved beneficial improvement in soil properties, effective pest and weed control, and increased crop yields. After eight years experiment, we have obtained a gradual but stable increase in crop yields with a 9.6-fold increase of net income. The net income of HOF was 258,827 dollars and 24,423 dollars in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Thus, BMOF can not only feed more population, but also increase adaptive capacity of agriculture ecosystems and gain much higher economic benefits.

  19. Biodiversity management of organic farming enhances agricultural sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Haitao; Meng, Jie; Bo, Wenjing; Cheng, Da; Li, Yong; Guo, Liyue; Li, Caihong; Zheng, Yanhai; Liu, Meizhen; Ning, Tangyuan; Wu, Guanglei; Yu, Xiaofan; Feng, Sufei; Wuyun, Tana; Li, Jing; Li, Lijun; Zeng, Yan; Liu, Shi V.; Jiang, Gaoming

    2016-04-01

    Organic farming (OF) has been believed to be capable of curtailing some hazardous effects associated with chemical farming (CF). However, debates also exist on whether OF can feed a world with increasing human population. We hypothesized that some improvements on OF may produce adequate crops and reduce environmental pollutions from CF. This paper makes comparative analysis of crop yield, soil organic matter and economic benefits within the practice on Biodiversity Management of Organic Farming (BMOF) at Hongyi Organic Farm (HOF) over eight years and between BMOF and CF. Linking crop production with livestock to maximal uses of by-products from each production and avoid xenobiotic chemicals, we have achieved beneficial improvement in soil properties, effective pest and weed control, and increased crop yields. After eight years experiment, we have obtained a gradual but stable increase in crop yields with a 9.6-fold increase of net income. The net income of HOF was 258,827 dollars and 24,423 dollars in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Thus, BMOF can not only feed more population, but also increase adaptive capacity of agriculture ecosystems and gain much higher economic benefits.

  20. Biodiversity management of organic farming enhances agricultural sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Haitao; Meng, Jie; Bo, Wenjing; Cheng, Da; Li, Yong; Guo, Liyue; Li, Caihong; Zheng, Yanhai; Liu, Meizhen; Ning, Tangyuan; Wu, Guanglei; Yu, Xiaofan; Feng, Sufei; Wuyun, Tana; Li, Jing; Li, Lijun; Zeng, Yan; Liu, Shi V.; Jiang, Gaoming

    2016-01-01

    Organic farming (OF) has been believed to be capable of curtailing some hazardous effects associated with chemical farming (CF). However, debates also exist on whether OF can feed a world with increasing human population. We hypothesized that some improvements on OF may produce adequate crops and reduce environmental pollutions from CF. This paper makes comparative analysis of crop yield, soil organic matter and economic benefits within the practice on Biodiversity Management of Organic Farming (BMOF) at Hongyi Organic Farm (HOF) over eight years and between BMOF and CF. Linking crop production with livestock to maximal uses of by-products from each production and avoid xenobiotic chemicals, we have achieved beneficial improvement in soil properties, effective pest and weed control, and increased crop yields. After eight years experiment, we have obtained a gradual but stable increase in crop yields with a 9.6-fold increase of net income. The net income of HOF was 258,827 dollars and 24,423 dollars in 2014 and 2007 respectively. Thus, BMOF can not only feed more population, but also increase adaptive capacity of agriculture ecosystems and gain much higher economic benefits. PMID:27032369

  1. [Emergy value evaluation on rice-duck organic farming mode].

    PubMed

    Xi, Yunguan; Qin, Pei

    2006-02-01

    Employing emergy value evaluation method, this paper compared the ecological and economic benefits of rice-duck organic farming system (mode I) and conventional rice-wheat rotation system (mode II) in Shanghai suburb. The results showed that mode I had better emergy benefits, higher self-organizing ability and sustainability, and higher product safety. The net emergy yield ratio (EYR), feedback ratio of yield emergy (FYE), and emergy sustainable index (ESI) of mode I were respectively 1.57, 14.1, and 8.71 times as much as those of mode II, and the emergy index of product safety (EIPS) was 0 in mode I but -0.66 in mode II. The emergy investment ratio (EIR) and environmental loading ratio (ELR) of mode I were 40.1% and 18.3% of mode II, respectively, suggesting that mode I had less environmental pressure than mode II. Mode I had lower economic benefits than mode II. The economic output, gross income, and net income of mode I were 15.7%, 9.6%, and 29.6% less than those of mode II , respectively. As for Em dollars, the output, gross income, and net income of mode I were respectively 50%, 102.6%, and 136.4% higher than those of mode II. With the system optimization and the development of organic food market, mode I had the potential to improve its economic benefits.

  2. Verification of fresh grass feeding, pasture grazing and organic farming by cows farm milk fatty acid profile.

    PubMed

    Capuano, Edoardo; van der Veer, Grishja; Boerrigter-Eenling, Rita; Elgersma, Anjo; Rademaker, Jan; Sterian, Adriana; van Ruth, Saskia M

    2014-12-01

    The present study investigated the use of fatty acid (FA) profiling in combination with chemometric modelling to verify claims for cow milk in terms of fresh grass feeding, pasture grazing and organic/biodynamic farming. The FA profile was determined for 113 tank milk samples collected in the Netherlands from 30 farms over four different months, and used to develop classification models based on the PLS-DA algorithm. Milk from cows with daily rations of fresh grass could be successfully distinguished from milk from cows with no fresh grass in their diet. Milk from cows at pasture could easily be distinguished from milk from stabled cows without fresh grass in the diet, but the correct prediction of milk from stabled cows fed fresh grass indoors proved difficult. The FA profile of organic/biodynamic milk was different compared to conventional milk but an unequivocal discrimination was not possible either in summer or in winter.

  3. Land-use intensity and the effects of organic farming on biodiversity: a hierarchical meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Tuck, Sean L; Winqvist, Camilla; Mota, Flávia; Ahnström, Johan; Turnbull, Lindsay A; Bengtsson, Janne

    2014-06-01

    The benefits of organic farming to biodiversity in agricultural landscapes continue to be hotly debated, emphasizing the importance of precisely quantifying the effect of organic vs. conventional farming. We conducted an updated hierarchical meta-analysis of studies that compared biodiversity under organic and conventional farming methods, measured as species richness. We calculated effect sizes for 184 observations garnered from 94 studies, and for each study, we obtained three standardized measures reflecting land-use intensity. We investigated the stability of effect sizes through time, publication bias due to the 'file drawer' problem, and consider whether the current literature is representative of global organic farming patterns. On average, organic farming increased species richness by about 30%. This result has been robust over the last 30 years of published studies and shows no sign of diminishing. Organic farming had a greater effect on biodiversity as the percentage of the landscape consisting of arable fields increased, that is, it is higher in intensively farmed regions. The average effect size and the response to agricultural intensification depend on taxonomic group, functional group and crop type. There is some evidence for publication bias in the literature; however, our results are robust to its impact. Current studies are heavily biased towards northern and western Europe and North America, while other regions with large areas of organic farming remain poorly investigated. Synthesis and applications. Our analysis affirms that organic farming has large positive effects on biodiversity compared with conventional farming, but that the effect size varies with the organism group and crop studied, and is greater in landscapes with higher land-use intensity. Decisions about where to site organic farms to maximize biodiversity will, however, depend on the costs as well as the potential benefits. Current studies have been heavily biased towards

  4. Francisella infections in farmed and wild aquatic organisms

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Over the last 10 years or so, infections caused by bacteria belonging to a particular branch of the genus Francisella have become increasingly recognised in farmed fish and molluscs worldwide. While the increasing incidence of diagnoses may in part be due to the development and widespread availability of molecular detection techniques, the domestication of new organisms has undoubtedly instigated emergence of clinical disease in some species. Francisellosis in fish develops in a similar fashion independent of host species and is commonly characterised by the presence of multi-organ granuloma and high morbidity, with varying associated mortality levels. A number of fish species are affected including Atlantic cod, Gadus morhua; tilapia, Oreochromis sp.; Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar; hybrid striped bass, Morone chrysops × M. saxatilis and three-lined grunt, Parapristipoma trilinineatum. The disease is highly infectious and often prevalent in affected stocks. Most, if not all strains isolated from teleost fish belong to either F. noatunensis subsp. orientalis in warm water fish species or Francisella noatunensis subsp. noatunensis in coldwater fish species. The disease is quite readily diagnosed following histological examination and identification of the aetiological bacterium by culture on cysteine rich media or PCR. The available evidence may indicate a degree of host specificity for the various Francisella strains, although this area requires further study. No effective vaccine is currently available. Investigation of the virulence mechanisms and host response shows similarity to those known from Francisella tularensis infection in mammals. However, no evidence exists for zoonotic potential amongst the fish pathogenic Francisella. PMID:21385413

  5. Grapevine downy mildew control in organic farming.

    PubMed

    La Torre, A; Spera, G; Lolletti, D

    2005-01-01

    Cupric products at low dose and alternative compounds have been tested to control the downy mildew in an organic vineyard. It has found that copper compounds control downy mildew in a satisfactory way, reducing, at the same time, the dose of copper metal. The alternative products were not satisfactory to control Plasmopara viticola.

  6. Management of mastitis on organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Ruegg, P L

    2009-04-01

    This paper compares management of mastitis on organic dairy farms with that on conventional dairy farms. National standards for organic production vary by country. In the United States, usage of antimicrobials to treat dairy cattle results in permanent loss of organic status of the animal, effectively limiting treatment choices for animals experiencing bacterial diseases. There are no products approved by the US Food and Drug Administration that can be used for treatment of mastitis on organic dairy farms, and usage of unapproved products is contrary to Food and Drug Administration guidelines. In general, organic dairy farms tend to be smaller, produce less, and more likely to be housed and milked in traditional barns as compared with conventionally managed herds. It is difficult to compare disease rates between herds managed conventionally or organically because perception and detection of disease is influenced by management system. To date, no studies have been published with the defined objective of comparing animal health on organic dairy herds with that on conventional dairy herds in the United States. European studies have not documented significant differences in animal health based on adoption of organic management. Few differences in bulk tank somatic cell counts have been identified between organic and conventional herds. Farmers that have adopted organic management consistently report fewer cases of clinical mastitis, but organic farmers do not use the same criteria to detect clinical mastitis. European dairy farmers that adopt organic management report use of a variety of conventional and alternative therapies for treatment and control of mastitis. In the United States, organic farmers treat clinical mastitis using a variety of alternative therapies including whey-based products, botanicals, vitamin supplements, and homeopathy. Organic farmers in the United States use a variety of alternative products to treat cows at dry-off. Virtually no data are

  7. Treatment practices and quantification of antimicrobial drug usage in conventional and organic dairy farms in Wisconsin.

    PubMed

    Pol, M; Ruegg, P L

    2007-01-01

    The objective of this study was to develop a method to quantify antimicrobial drug usage and treatment practices on conventional and organic dairy farms that had been recruited to represent a broad spectrum of potential exposure to antimicrobial drugs. Data on disease prevalence and treatment practices of organic (n = 20) and conventional (n = 20) farms were obtained during a farm visit using a survey instrument. A standardized estimate of antimicrobial drug usage was developed using a defined daily dose (DDD) of selected compounds. Density of antimicrobial drug usage was expressed as the number of DDD per adult cow per year. Differences in prevalence and management of selected diseases between conventional and organic farms were identified. The overall estimated prevalence of selected diseases was greater for conventional farms compared with organic farms. Organic farmers reported use of a variety of nonantimicrobial compounds for treatment and prevention of disease. Conventional farmers reported that penicillin was the compound most commonly used for dry cow therapy and cephapirin was most commonly used for treatment of clinical mastitis. On conventional farms, the estimated overall exposure to antimicrobial drugs was 5.43 DDD per cow per year composed of 3.58 and 1.85 DDD of intramammary and parenteral antimicrobial drugs, respectively. Of total intramammary antimicrobial drug usage, treatment of clinical mastitis contributed 2.02 DDD compared with 1.56 DDD attributed to the use of dry cow therapy. Of total parenteral treatments, the distribution of exposure was 0.52 (dry cow therapy), 1.43 (clinical mastitis treatment), 0.39 (treatment of foot disease), 0.14 (treatment of respiratory disease), and 0.32 (treatment of metritis) DDD. For treatments of foot infections (0.33 DDD), respiratory infections (0.07 DDD), and metritis (0.19 DDD), the mean density of ceftiofur usage was significantly greater compared with other compounds.

  8. Soil and water losses on citrus orchards under Mediterranean Type Ecosystems. Organic against chemical farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerdà, A.; Bodí, M. B.; García-Orenes, F.

    2012-04-01

    Soil erosion in Mediterranean Type Ecosystems is highly dependent on the land use and land management (Cerdà et al., 2010). This is due mainly to the impact of agriculture (Cerdà et al., 2009) as a consequence of tillage and the use of herbicides. Both strategies contribute to a reduction in the vegetation cover and the soil biological activities (García-Orenes et al., 2009). The impact of soil erosion on agronomic productivity and environmental quality is widely known (Lal, 1998), although little has been researched in the Mediterranean. The impact of agriculture on soil erosion and water losses in the Mediterranean basin has been studied in olive orchards (Gómez, 2004); vineyards (Ramos and Martínez Casasnovas, 2004), citrus (Cerdà et al., 2009), cereals (De Santisteban et al., (2005), and the high erosion rates were found to be related to the land management and land use (García Ruiz, 2010). The current Mediterranean agriculture is based on tillage and herbicides, which contribute to high soil and water losses. The development of sustainable agriculture practices is a challenge for farmers, technicians and politicians. Organic farming use strategies to reduce the soil losses and develop new strategies of soil conservation. Moreover organic farming recover the soil fertility and biodiversity (Maeder et al., 2002). Organic farming is growing in the Mediterranean but little is know about his effect on soil conservation. There is a lack in the knowledge of how organic farming affect the soil properties and, there is no information on his effect on soil and water losses. This paper aims to measure the impact of organic farming on soil and water losses. 10 plots of 1 x 0,5 m were selected in a chemically managed farm in Montesa (Eastern Spain) and 10 plots in a nearby organic farming managed farm. Both of them were cultivated with citrus. The ten paired plots were monitored. After earch rainfall event the sediment and water collected were measured and analized

  9. Impact of long-term conventional and organic farming on the diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.

    PubMed

    Oehl, Fritz; Sieverding, Ewald; Mäder, Paul; Dubois, David; Ineichen, Kurt; Boller, Thomas; Wiemken, Andres

    2004-03-01

    Previous work has shown considerably enhanced soil fertility in agroecosystems managed by organic farming as compared to conventional farming. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) play a crucial role in nutrient acquisition and soil fertility. The objective of this study was to investigate the diversity of AMF in the context of a long-term study in which replicated field plots, at a single site in Central Europe, had been cultivated for 22 years according to two "organic" and two "conventional" farming systems. In the 23rd year, the field plots, carrying an 18-month-old grass-clover stand, were examined in two ways with respect to AMF diversity. Firstly, AMF spores were isolated and morphologically identified from soil samples. The study revealed that the AMF spore abundance and species diversity was significantly higher in the organic than in the conventional systems. Furthermore, the AMF community differed in the conventional and organic systems: Glomus species were similarly abundant in all systems but spores of Acaulospora and Scutellospora species were more abundant in the organic systems. Secondly, the soils were used to establish AMF-trap cultures using a consortium of Plantago lanceolata, Trifolium pratense and Lolium perenne as host plants. The AMF spore community developing in the trap cultures differed: after 12 months, two species of the Acaulosporaceae (A. paulinae and A. longula) were consistently found to account for a large part of the spore community in the trap cultures from the organic systems but were found rarely in the ones from the conventional systems. The findings show that some AMF species present in natural ecosystems are maintained under organic farming but severely depressed under conventional farming, indicating a potentially severe loss of ecosystem function under conventional farming.

  10. Managing soil nutrients with compost in organic farms of East Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghambashidze, Giorgi

    2013-04-01

    Soil Fertility management in organic farming relies on a long-term integrated approach rather than the more short-term very targeted solutions common in conventional agriculture. Increasing soil organic matter content through the addition of organic amendments has proven to be a valuable practice for maintaining or restoring soil quality. Organic agriculture relies greatly on building soil organic matter with compost typically replacing inorganic fertilizers and animal manure as the fertility source of choice. In Georgia, more and more attention is paid to the development of organic farming, occupying less than 1% of total agricultural land of the country. Due to increased interest towards organic production the question about soil amendments is arising with special focus on organic fertilizers as basic nutrient supply sources under organic management practice. In the frame of current research two different types of compost was prepared and their nutritional value was studied. The one was prepared from organic fraction municipal solid waste and another one using fruit processing residues. In addition to main nutritional properties both composts were tested on heavy metals content, as one of the main quality parameter. The results have shown that concentration of main nutrient is higher in municipal solid waste compost, but it contains also more heavy metals, which is not allowed in organic farming system. Fruit processing residue compost also has lower pH value and is lower in total salt content being is more acceptable for soil in lowlands of East Georgia, mainly characterised by alkaline reaction. .

  11. Improvement of tomato local varieties by grafting in organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno, Marta M.; Villena, Jaime; Moreno, Carmen; García, Arántzazu M.; Mancebo, Ignacio; Meco, Ramón

    2015-04-01

    Grafting is the union of two or more pieces of living plant tissue that grow as a single plant. The early use of grafted vegetables was associated with protected cultivation which involves successive cropping (Lee et al., 2010). For this reason, in the past, grafting was used with vegetable crops to limit the effects of soil-borne diseases. However, the reasons for grafting as well as the kinds of vegetable grafted have increased considerably over the years. In tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.), one of the most important horticultural crops in the world, the effect of grafting has also been widely studied. These effects on commercial tomato varieties can be summarized in increasing plant vigor and crop yield or inducing tolerance to abiotic stresses, although the effects on tomato fruit quality or on the sensory properties are not so patent (David et al., 2008). However, a few studies about the effect of grafting on local tomato varieties, which are especially recommended for organic production in spite of their lower yields in many cases, have been developed. In this work we evaluated the effect of grafting on tomato local varieties under organic management using vigorous commercial rootstocks, and aspects related to vigor, yield and tomato fruit composition were analyzed. In general terms, grafting increased the plant vigor, the crop yield and the fruit antioxidant content, although no modification of morphological fruit attributes was observed. Keywords: grafting, Solanum lycopersicum L., local varieties, organic farming. References: Davis A.R., Perkins-Veazie P., Hassell R., Levi A., King S.R., Zhang X. 2008. Grafting effects on vegetable quality. HortScience 43(6): 1670-1671. Lee J.M., Kubota C., Tsao S.J., Bie Z., Hoyos-Echevarría P., Morra L., Oda M. 2010. Current status of vegetable grafting: Diffusion, grafting techniques, automation. Scientia Horticulturae 127: 93-105.

  12. Comparing organic farming and land sparing: optimizing yield and butterfly populations at a landscape scale.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Jenny A; Kunin, William E; Thomas, Chris D; Benton, Tim G; Gabriel, Doreen

    2010-11-01

    Organic farming aims to be wildlife-friendly, but it may not benefit wildlife overall if much greater areas are needed to produce a given quantity of food. We measured the density and species richness of butterflies on organic farms, conventional farms and grassland nature reserves in 16 landscapes. Organic farms supported a higher density of butterflies than conventional farms, but a lower density than reserves. Using our data, we predict the optimal land-use strategy to maintain yield whilst maximizing butterfly abundance under different scenarios. Farming conventionally and sparing land as nature reserves is better for butterflies when the organic yield per hectare falls below 87% of conventional yield. However, if the spared land is simply extra field margins, organic farming is optimal whenever organic yields are over 35% of conventional yields. The optimal balance of land sparing and wildlife-friendly farming to maintain production and biodiversity will differ between landscapes.

  13. Effects of organic farming on communities of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.

    PubMed

    Lee, Si-Woo; Lee, Eun-Hwa; Eom, Ahn-Heum

    2008-03-01

    Red pepper (Capsicum annum L.) roots and soils representing different agricultural management practices such as conventional (CON), no-chemical (NOC), and organic farming systems (ORG) were collected from 32 farm field sites in Kyunggi, Korea to investigate the effects of these agricultural practices on arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis. ORG inoculum significantly increased plant growth compared to inoculum from CON and NOC. A community analysis of AM fungi (AMF) using morphological features of spores revealed that AMF spore abundance and species diversity were significantly higher in ORG than in CON. Additionally, a community analysis of AMF colonizing roots using a molecular technique revealed higher AMF diversity in ORG than in CON. These results suggest that agricultural practices significantly influence AM fungal community structure and mycorrhizal inoculum potential.

  14. Effects of Organic Farming on Communities of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Si-Woo; Lee, Eun-Hwa

    2008-01-01

    Red pepper (Capsicum annum L.) roots and soils representing different agricultural management practices such as conventional (CON), no-chemical (NOC), and organic farming systems (ORG) were collected from 32 farm field sites in Kyunggi, Korea to investigate the effects of these agricultural practices on arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbiosis. ORG inoculum significantly increased plant growth compared to inoculum from CON and NOC. A community analysis of AM fungi (AMF) using morphological features of spores revealed that AMF spore abundance and species diversity were significantly higher in ORG than in CON. Additionally, a community analysis of AMF colonizing roots using a molecular technique revealed higher AMF diversity in ORG than in CON. These results suggest that agricultural practices significantly influence AM fungal community structure and mycorrhizal inoculum potential. PMID:23997602

  15. Hanford Technology Development (Tank Farms) - 12509

    SciTech Connect

    Fletcher, Thomas; Charboneau, Stacy; Olds, Erik

    2012-07-01

    soil between the ground surface and the water table 200-to-300 feet below. The project tracks and monitors contamination in the soil. Technologies are being developed and deployed to detect and monitor contaminants. Interim surface barriers, which are barriers put over the single-shell tanks, prevent rain and snow from soaking into the ground and spreading contamination. The impermeable barrier placed over T Farm, which was the site of the largest tank waste leak in Hanford's history, is 60,000 square feet and sloped to drain moisture outside the tank farm. The barrier over TY Farm is constructed of asphalt and drains moisture to a nearby evaporation basin. Our discussion of technology will address the incredible challenge of removing waste from Hanford's single-shell tanks. Under the terms of the Tri-Party Agreement, ORP is required to remove 99 percent of the tank waste, or until the limits of technology have been reached. All pumpable liquids have been removed from the single-shell tanks, and work now focuses on removing the non-pumpable liquids. Waste retrieval was completed from the first single-shell tank in late 2003. Since then, another six single-shell tanks have been retrieved to regulatory standards. (authors)

  16. Nitrate leaching from intensive organic farms to groundwater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahan, O.; Babad, A.; Lazarovitch, N.; Russak, E. E.; Kurtzman, D.

    2013-07-01

    It is commonly presumed that organic agriculture causes only minimal environmental pollution. In this study, we measured the quality of percolating water in the vadose zone, underlying both organic and conventional intensive greenhouses. Our study was conducted in newly established farms where the subsurface underlying the greenhouses has been monitored continuously from their establishment. Surprisingly, intensive organic agriculture relying on solid organic matter, such as composted manure that is implemented in the soil prior to planting as the sole fertilizer, resulted in significant down leaching of nitrate through the vadose zone to the groundwater. On the other hand, similar intensive agriculture that implemented liquid fertilizer through drip irrigation, as commonly practiced in conventional agriculture, resulted in much lower rates of pollution of the vadose zone and groundwater. It has been shown that accurate fertilization methods that distribute the fertilizers through the irrigation system, according to plant demand, during the growing season dramatically reduce the potential for groundwater contamination.

  17. Health and safety in organic farming: a qualitative study.

    PubMed

    Soto Mas, Francisco; Handal, Alexis J; Rohrer, Rose E; Tomalá Viteri, Eric

    2017-09-22

    To explore health and safety issues in organic farming, specifically among small farmers in central New Mexico. Participants included 10 certified organic producers and 20 workers. Data were collected through semi-structured interviews and observations. The sample consisted of a young, educated, low experienced population which may differ from conventional farmers. Both producers and workers seemed to be aware of the health risks involved with small-scale farming. Producers presented mixed attitudes towards health and safety, while workers' attitudes were more systematically negative. Perception of risk was generally lower among workers compared to producers. Although health and safety training was not specifically mentioned, most participants seemed to understand the relevance of the work environment for health and safety. Regarding ergonomics, the physical demands of working long hours and having to perform a multitude of tasks that contribute to physical stress were issues of concern. This is one of few studies in the United States exploring health and safety among organic farmers. Although participants reported very few actual incidents, the study identified relevant intrapersonal and behavioral factors that may increase or reduce the risk for disease and injury. Results also point to the need for research that focuses on the psychosocial and contextual factors that may contribute to injury and disease among organic farmers.

  18. Effects of stored feed cropping systems and farm size on the profitability of Maine organic dairy farm simulations.

    PubMed

    Hoshide, A K; Halloran, J M; Kersbergen, R J; Griffin, T S; DeFauw, S L; LaGasse, B J; Jain, S

    2011-11-01

    United States organic dairy production has increased to meet the growing demand for organic milk. Despite higher prices received for milk, organic dairy farmers have come under increasing financial stress due to increases in concentrated feed prices over the past few years, which can make up one-third of variable costs. Market demand for milk has also leveled in the last year, resulting in some downward pressure on prices paid to dairy farmers. Organic dairy farmers in the Northeast United States have experimented with growing different forage and grain crops to maximize on-farm production of protein and energy to improve profitability. Three representative organic feed systems were simulated using the integrated farm system model for farms with 30, 120, and 220 milk cows. Increasing intensity of equipment use was represented by organic dairy farms growing only perennial sod (low) to those with corn-based forage systems, which purchase supplemental grain (medium) or which produce and feed soybeans (high). The relative profitability of these 3 organic feed systems was strongly dependent on dairy farm size. From results, we suggest smaller organic dairy farms can be more profitable with perennial sod-based rather than corn-based forage systems due to lower fixed costs from using only equipment associated with perennial forage harvest and storage. The largest farm size was more profitable using a corn-based system due to greater economies of scale for growing soybeans, corn grain, winter cereals, and corn silages. At an intermediate farm size of 120 cows, corn-based forage systems were more profitable if perennial sod was not harvested at optimum quality, corn was grown on better soils, or if milk yield was 10% higher. Delayed harvest decreased the protein and energy content of perennial sod crops, requiring more purchased grain to balance the ration and resulting in lower profits. Corn-based systems were less affected by lower perennial forage quality, as corn silage

  19. Assessment of herd management on organic and conventional dairy farms in the United States.

    PubMed

    Stiglbauer, K E; Cicconi-Hogan, K M; Richert, R; Schukken, Y H; Ruegg, P L; Gamroth, M

    2013-02-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate management characteristics on organic and similarly sized conventional dairy farms located in New York, Wisconsin, and Oregon. Data from 192 organic farms (ORG), 64 conventional nongrazing farms (CON-NG), and 36 conventional grazing farms (CON-GR) were collected during farm visits and were size-matched and analyzed. The average lactation number of animals on ORG and CON-GR farms was 2.6 lactations, which was greater than that on CON-NG farms (2.3 lactations). A greater percentage of first-lactation heifers were found on conventional farms than on ORG farms. Facilities used by adult animals, including housing and milking facilities, did not differ among the grazing systems. Cattle on conventional farms were fed approximately twice as much grain as cattle on ORG farms and had greater milk production. Little difference was found for the average reported somatic cell count and standard plate count, suggesting that milk quality is not dependent on grazing system. Milking procedures were similar across all 3 grazing systems, indicating that an industry standard now exists for milking and that milk quality problems will need to be addressed with other management problems in mind. Although some disease prevention measures were commonly utilized on ORG farms, such as keeping a closed herd and having a written record of treatments administered to the animals, the use of outside support and vaccinations were found to be less prevalent on organic farms than on conventional farms.

  20. Evaluation of organic, conventional and intensive beef farm systems: health, management and animal production.

    PubMed

    Blanco-Penedo, I; López-Alonso, M; Shore, R F; Miranda, M; Castillo, C; Hernández, J; Benedito, J L

    2012-09-01

    The overall aim of the present study was to analyse and compare organic beef cattle farming in Spain with intensive and conventional systems. An on-farm study comparing farm management practices and animal health was carried out. The study also focussed on a slaughterhouse analysis by comparing impacts on the safety and quality of the cattle products. Twenty-four organic and 26 conventional farms were inspected, and farmers responded to a questionnaire that covered all basic data on their husbandry practices, farm management, veterinary treatments and reproductive performance during 2007. Furthermore, data on the hygiene and quality of 244, 2596 and 3021 carcasses of calves from organic, intensive and conventional farms, respectively, were retrieved from the official yearbook (2007) of a slaughterhouse. Differences found between organic and conventional farms across the farm analysis did not substantially reflect differences between both farm types in the predominant diseases that usually occur on beef cattle farms. However, calves reared organically presented fewer condemnations at slaughter compared with intensive and to a lesser extent with conventionally reared calves. Carcass performance also reflected differences between farm type and breed and was not necessarily better in organic farms.

  1. Reduced soil cultivation and organic fertilization on organic farms: effects on crop yield and soil physical traits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Surböck, Andreas; Gollner, Gabriele; Klik, Andreas; Freyer, Bernhard; Friedel, Jürgen K.

    2017-04-01

    A continuous investment in soil fertility is necessary to achieve sustainable yields in organic arable farming. Crucial factors here besides the crop rotation are organic fertilization and the soil tillage system. On this topic, an operational group (Project BIOBO*) was established in the frame of an European Innovation Partnership in 2016 consisting of organic farmers, consultants and scientists in the farming region of eastern Austria. The aim of this group is the development and testing of innovative, reduced soil cultivation, green manure and organic fertilization systems under on-farm and on-station conditions to facilitate the sharing and transfer of experience and knowledge within and outside the group. Possibilities for optimization of the farm-specific reduced soil tillage system in combination with green manuring are being studied in field trials on six organic farms. The aim is to determine, how these measures contribute to an increase in soil organic matter contents, yields and income, to an improved nitrogen and nutrient supply to the crops, as well as support soil fertility in general. Within a long-term monitoring project (MUBIL), the effects of different organic fertilization systems on plant and soil traits have been investigated since 2003, when the farm was converted to organic management. The examined organic fertilization systems, i.e. four treatments representing stockless and livestock keeping systems, differ in lucerne management and the supply of organic manure (communal compost, farmyard manure, digestate from a biogas plant). Previous results of this on-station experiment have shown an improvement of some soil properties, especially soil physical properties, since 2003 in all fertilization systems and without differences between them. The infiltration rate of rainwater has increased because of higher hydraulic conductivity. The aggregate stability has shown also positive trends, which reduces the susceptibility to soil erosion by wind and

  2. How organic farming of wheat may affect the sourdough and the nutritional and technological features of leavened baked goods.

    PubMed

    Pontonio, Erica; Rizzello, Carlo G; Di Cagno, Raffaella; Dousset, Xavier; Clément, Héliciane; Filannino, Pasquale; Onno, Bernard; Gobbetti, Marco

    2016-12-19

    Organic farming is gaining broad recognition as a system that complies well with sustainability, an overarching principle that should drive agriculture now and in the coming year. Different cultivars and products can harbour different abundances of specific bacterial groups, farming system may influence the composition and abundances of microbial communities found on food product. Despite the growing interest towards organic foods, we still have a limited understanding of the diversity of food-associated microbial communities and the factors that influence the composition of these communities. Consumers in developed nations are commonly exposed to differences in farming practices through their choice between organic and conventionally farmed foods. Organic farming practices can differ from conventional farming practices in a variety of ways, including the types of fertilizer and pesticides that are used. This review aiming to gather current knowledge on chemical, technological, toxicological and functional properties and microbiota composition of wheat flours originating from organic and conventional farming systems and how the use of these may affect the sourdough fermentation and breadmaking. Sourdough fermentation is the most natural and best-performing process to ensure optimal sensory and functional characteristics. It fits perfectly into the processing chain that starts with the organic farming, especially for old wheat varieties with weaker technological properties. Recently, organic and sourdough microbiota diversity was investigated and in some case a comparison between organic and conventional microbial ecosystem was also carried out. Opposites evidences arise. Once a higher diversity of lactic acid bacteria species was found in conventional wheat sourdoughs, while when the diversity of Firmicutes was investigated, organic sourdoughs showed the highest complexity. When occurring, the differences between conventional and organic sourdough microbiota and

  3. Influence of farm resource endowment on possibilities for sustainable development: a case study for vegetable farms in South Uruguay.

    PubMed

    Dogliotti, S; van Ittersum, M K; Rossing, W A H

    2006-02-01

    In different parts of the world, there is an urgent need for redesigning and innovating farming systems. Such a process may be supported by model-based explorations that enable ex-ante evaluation of a broad range of alternatives. Since a variety of viable patterns of farm development exists related to farm resource endowment and farmer's strategy, model-based explorations should be able to capture the existing variation in resource endowment and strategies in order to have impact on strategic farm management. In this paper, we present an overview of the model-based explorative method based on the MILP model Farm Images, applied to explore options for sustainable development of vegetable farms in Canelón Grande, Uruguay. The method is used to gain insight into the impact of current farm resource endowment on the possibilities for sustainable development and on the resource use efficiency at farm scale. We maximized farm income for 128 different farm types in an environment-oriented scenario and in an income-oriented scenario. Farm types were defined by combining 4 farm sizes, 2 labor endowments, 4 irrigation endowments, 2 soil quality combinations and 2 mechanization levels. The results demonstrate a strong impact of farm resource endowment on possibilities for sustainable development, as well as synergy between labor, land and irrigated area on resource-use efficiency at farm scale. Farms with 10ha of land or less, representing 47% of the farms in the Canelón Grande region, could only achieve a family income higher than the average income of Uruguayan families when the irrigated area was ca. 40% of the farm area. The achievement of environmental targets was less costly in terms of income on farms with a low rather than high labor availability per unit area and on farms with irrigation facilities.

  4. Helminth infections on organic dairy farms in Spain.

    PubMed

    Orjales, I; Mezo, M; Miranda, M; González-Warleta, M; Rey-Crespo, F; Vaarst, M; Thamsborg, S; Diéguez, F J; Castro-Hermida, J A; López-Alonso, M

    2017-08-30

    The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of the major helminth infections affecting organic dairy cattle in northern Spain. Milk and faecal samples were obtained from 443 milking cows. Ostertagia ostertargi and Fasciola hepatica exposure was assessed by detection of specific antibodies in milk samples and F. hepatica infection was diagnosed by the detection of coproantigens in faecal samples. Dictyocaulus viviparus and Calicophoron daubneyi infections were diagnosed by conventional coprological techniques. The prevalence of infections caused by F. hepatica was considerable low, but similar to data reported from conventional farming in the same area. The prevalence rate of C. daubneyi infection was higher than previous data mirroring an increase of the prevalence that was also reported in other European countries in recent years. Specific antibodies against O. ostertargi were detected in all herds and the median levels of antibodies, determined by ELISA, exceeded the thresholds indicating milk production losses. The prevalence of D. viviparus was almost negligible. For each parasite, an ordinal logistic-regression analysis was used to assess the risk of infection by taking into account the administration of effective anthelmintics and the number of lactations. Treatment of cows with fasciolicides decreased the risk of F. hepatica infection in multiparous cows, whereas treatment with oxiclozanide or albendazol did not decrease the risk of C. daubneyi infection or O. ostertargi exposure, respectively. The study findings demonstrate that helminth infection in organic dairy farming is similar or even lower than previous data reported from conventional farming. Special attention should be paid to the impact of these infections on milk production. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Organic farming in the Nordic countries--animal health and production.

    PubMed

    Thamsborg, S M

    2001-01-01

    Organic farming (or ecological agriculture) is of growing importance in the agricultural sector worldwide. In the Nordic countries, 1-10% of the arable land was in organic production in 1999. Organic farming can be seen as an approach to agriculture where the aim is to create integrated, humane, environmentally and economically sustainable agricultural production systems. Principles like nutrient recycling, prevention rather than treatment and the precautionary principle are included in aims and standards. Animal welfare is another hallmark of organic livestock production but despite this, several studies have indicated severe health problems e.g. in organic poultry production in Denmark. Also the quality of animal food products in relation to human health, particularly the risk of zoonotic infections, has been debated. For these reasons there is a need for improvement of production methods and animal health status. Vets play an important role in this development through work in clinical practice and in research. On-farm consultancy should be tailored to the individual farmers needs, and the practitioner should be willing to take up new ideas and when needed, to enter a critical dialogue in relation to animal welfare. Better base line data on animal health and food safety in organic food systems are needed.

  6. Long-term citrus organic farming strategy results in soil organic matter recovery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novara, Agata; Pereira, Paulo; Barone, Ettore; Giménez Morera, Antonio; Keesstra, Saskia; Gristina, Luciano; Jordán, Antonio; Parras-Alcantara, Luis; Cerdà, Artemi

    2017-04-01

    ABSTRACT Soils play a key role in the Earth System (Keesstra et al., 2012; Brevick et al., 2015). Soils are a key resource for the human societies (Mol and Keesstra, 2012) and they are relevant to achieve the sustainability such as the United Nations Goals highlight (Keesstra et al., 2016). Agriculture soils, especially those under conventional tillage, are prone to organic matter mineralization, soil erosion, compaction and increase of greenhouse gases emission (Novara et al., 2011; Bruun et al., 2015; de Moraes et al., 2015; Choudhury et al., 2016; del Mar et al., 2016). The adoption of organic farming and sustainable management practices may provide a sustainable crop productivity, and in the meanwhile mitigate the negative impact of agriculture on ecosystem services benefits (Laudicina et al., 2015; Parras-Alcantara et al., 2015; 2016). The aim of this study was to examine, under field conditions, the long-term changes of soil organic matter under organic farming management in citrus orchards in Mediterranean environment and evaluate the ecosystem service on C sequestration in terms of economic benefits. The research was carried out at the Alcoleja Experimental Station located in the Cànyoles river watershed in the Eastern Spain on 45year old citrus plantation. Soil Organic Matter (SOM) content was monitored for 20 years at 6 different soil depth. The profitability of citrus plantation was estimated under conventional and organic management. Results showed that SOM in the 0-30 cm soil depth was the double after 20 years of organic farming management, ranging from 0.8 g kg-1 in 1995 to 1.5 g kg-1 in 2006. The highest SOM increase was in the top soil layer (368% of SOM increase in comparison to the initial SOM content) and decreased with soil depth. The effect of organic farming was relevant after 5 years since land management change, indicating that in Mediterranean environment the duration of long term studies should be higher than five years and proper policy

  7. Chlorinated pesticides in stream sediments from organic, integrated and conventional farms.

    PubMed

    Shahpoury, Pourya; Hageman, Kimberly J; Matthaei, Christoph D; Magbanua, Francis S

    2013-10-01

    To determine if current sheep/beef farming practices affect pesticide residues in streams, current-use and legacy chlorinated pesticides were quantified in 100 sediment samples from 15 streams on the South Island of New Zealand. The study involved five blocks of three neighboring farms, with each block containing farms managed by organic, integrated and conventional farming practices. Significantly higher concentrations of dieldrin, ∑ endosulfans, ∑ current-use pesticides, and ∑ chlorinated pesticides were measured in sediments from conventional farms compared to organic and integrated farms. However, streams in the latter two farming categories were not pesticide-free and sometimes contained relatively high concentrations of legacy pesticides. Comparison of measured pesticide concentrations with sediment quality guidelines showed that, regardless of farming practice, mean pesticide concentrations were below the recommended toxicity thresholds. However, up to 23% of individual samples contained chlorpyrifos, endosulfan sulfate, ∑ DDT, dieldrin, or ∑ chlordane concentrations above these thresholds.

  8. The effect of feed demand on greenhouse gas emissions and farm profitability for organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Kiefer, Lukas; Menzel, Friederike; Bahrs, Enno

    2014-12-01

    The reduction of product-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in milk production appears to be necessary. The reduction of emissions on an individual farm might be highly accepted by farm owners if it were accompanied by an increase in profitability. Using life cycle assessments to determine the product carbon footprints (PCF) and farm-level evaluations to record profitability, we explored opportunities for optimization based on analysis of 81 organic and conventional pasture-based dairy farms in southern Germany. The objective of the present study was to detect common determining factors for low PCF and high management incomes (MI) to achieve GHG reductions at the lowest possible operational cost. In our sample, organic farms, which performed economically better than conventional farms, produced PCF that were significantly higher than those produced by conventional farms [1.61 ± 0.29 vs. 1.45 ± 0.28 kg of CO₂ equivalents (CO₂eq) per kg of milk; means ± SD)]. A multiple linear regression analysis of the sample demonstrated that low feed demand per kilogram of milk, high grassland yield, and low forage area requirements per cow are the main factors that decrease PCF. These factors are also useful for improving a farm's profitability in principle. For organic farms, a reduction of feed demand of 100 g/kg of milk resulted in a PCF reduction of 105 g of CO₂eq/kg of milk and an increase in MI of approximately 2.1 euro cents (c)/kg of milk. For conventional farms, a decrease of feed demand of 100 g/kg of milk corresponded to a reduction in PCF of 117 g of CO₂eq/kg of milk and an increase in MI of approximately 3.1 c/kg of milk. Accordingly, farmers could achieve higher profits while reducing GHG emissions. Improved education and training of farmers and consultants regarding GHG mitigation and farm profitability appear to be the best methods of improving efficiency under traditional and organic farming practices.

  9. Influence of antibiotic selection on genetic composition of Escherichia coli populations from conventional and organic dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Walk, Seth T; Mladonicky, Janice M; Middleton, Jaclyn A; Heidt, Anthony J; Cunningham, Julie R; Bartlett, Paul; Sato, Kenji; Whittam, Thomas S

    2007-10-01

    The widespread agricultural use of antimicrobials has long been considered a crucial influence on the prevalence of resistant genes and bacterial strains. It has been suggested that antibiotic applications in agricultural settings are a driving force for the development of antimicrobial resistance, and epidemiologic evidence supports the view that there is a direct link between resistant human pathogens, retail produce, farm animals, and farm environments. Despite such concerns, little is understood about the population processes underlying the emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance and the reversibility of resistance when antibiotic selective pressure is removed. In this study, hierarchical log-linear modeling was used to assess the association between farm type (conventional versus organic), age of cattle (calf versus cow), bacterial phenotype (resistant versus susceptible), and the genetic composition of Escherichia coli populations (E. coli Reference Collection [ECOR] phylogroup A, B1, B2, or D) among 678 susceptible and resistant strains from a previously published study of 60 matched dairy farms (30 conventional and 30 organic) in Wisconsin. The analysis provides evidence for clonal resistance (ampicillin resistance) and genetic hitchhiking (tetracycline resistance [Tet(r)]), estimated the rate of compositional change from conventional farming to organic farming (mean, 8 years; range, 3 to 15 years), and discovered a significant association between low multidrug resistance, organic farms, and strains of the numerically dominant phylogroup B1. These data suggest that organic farming practices not only change the frequency of resistant strains but also impact the overall population genetic composition of the resident E. coli flora. In addition, the results support the hypothesis that the current prevalence of Tet(r) loci on dairy farms has little to do with the use of this antibiotic.

  10. Nitrate leaching from intensive organic farms to groundwater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dahan, O.; Babad, A.; Lazarovitch, N.; Russak, E. E.; Kurtzman, D.

    2014-01-01

    It is commonly presumed that organic agriculture causes only minimal environmental pollution. In this study, we measured the quality of percolating water in the vadose zone, underlying both organic and conventional intensive greenhouses. Our study was conducted in newly established farms where the subsurface underlying the greenhouses has been monitored continuously from their establishment. Surprisingly, intensive organic agriculture relying on solid organic matter, such as composted manure that is implemented in the soil prior to planting as the sole fertilizer, resulted in significant down-leaching of nitrate through the vadose zone to the groundwater. On the other hand, similar intensive agriculture that implemented liquid fertilizer through drip irrigation, as commonly practiced in conventional agriculture, resulted in much lower rates of pollution of the vadose zone and groundwater. It has been shown that accurate fertilization methods that distribute the fertilizers through the irrigation system, according to plant demand, during the growing season dramatically reduce the potential for groundwater contamination from both organic and conventional greenhouses.

  11. Closing the natural cycles - using biowaste compost in organic farming in Vienna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erhart, Eva; Rogalski, Wojciech; Maurer, Ludwig; Hartl, Wilfried

    2014-05-01

    One of the basic principles of organic farming - that organic management should fit the cycles and ecological balances in nature - is put into practice in Vienna on a large scale. In Vienna, compost produced from separately collected biowaste and greenwaste is used on more than 1000 ha of organic farmland. These municipally owned farms are managed organically, but are stockless, like the vast majority of farms in the region. The apparent need for a substitute for animal manure triggered the development of an innovative biowaste management. Together with the Municipal Department 48 responsible for waste management, which was keen for the reduction of residual waste, the Municipal Department 49 - Forestry Office and Urban Agriculture and Bio Forschung Austria developed Vienna's biowaste management model. Organic household wastes and greenwastes are source-separated by the urban population and collected in a closely monitored system to ensure high compost quality. A composting plant was constructed which today produces a total of 43000 t compost per year in a monitored open windrow process. The quality of the compost produced conforms to the EU regulation 834/2007. A large part of the compost is used as organic fertilizer on the organic farmland in Vienna, and the remainder is used in arable farming and in viticulture in the region around Vienna and for substrate production. Vienna`s biowaste management-model is operating successfully since the 1980s and has gained international recognition in form of the Best Practice-Award of the United Nations Development Programme. In order to assess the effects of biowaste compost fertilization on crop yield and on the environment, a field experiment was set up near Vienna in 1992, which is now one of the longest standing compost experiments in Europe. The results showed, that the yields increased for 7 - 10 % with compost fertilization compared to the unfertilized control and the nitrogen recovery by crops was between 4 and 6

  12. Land-use intensity and the effects of organic farming on biodiversity: a hierarchical meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Tuck, Sean L; Winqvist, Camilla; Mota, Flávia; Ahnström, Johan; Turnbull, Lindsay A; Bengtsson, Janne

    2014-01-01

    The benefits of organic farming to biodiversity in agricultural landscapes continue to be hotly debated, emphasizing the importance of precisely quantifying the effect of organic vs. conventional farming. We conducted an updated hierarchical meta-analysis of studies that compared biodiversity under organic and conventional farming methods, measured as species richness. We calculated effect sizes for 184 observations garnered from 94 studies, and for each study, we obtained three standardized measures reflecting land-use intensity. We investigated the stability of effect sizes through time, publication bias due to the ‘file drawer’ problem, and consider whether the current literature is representative of global organic farming patterns. On average, organic farming increased species richness by about 30%. This result has been robust over the last 30 years of published studies and shows no sign of diminishing. Organic farming had a greater effect on biodiversity as the percentage of the landscape consisting of arable fields increased, that is, it is higher in intensively farmed regions. The average effect size and the response to agricultural intensification depend on taxonomic group, functional group and crop type. There is some evidence for publication bias in the literature; however, our results are robust to its impact. Current studies are heavily biased towards northern and western Europe and North America, while other regions with large areas of organic farming remain poorly investigated. Synthesis and applications. Our analysis affirms that organic farming has large positive effects on biodiversity compared with conventional farming, but that the effect size varies with the organism group and crop studied, and is greater in landscapes with higher land-use intensity. Decisions about where to site organic farms to maximize biodiversity will, however, depend on the costs as well as the potential benefits. Current studies have been heavily biased towards

  13. A process-based emission model of volatile organic compounds from silage sources on farms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonifacio, H. F.; Rotz, C. A.; Hafner, S. D.; Montes, F.; Cohen, M.; Mitloehner, F. M.

    2017-03-01

    Silage on dairy farms can emit large amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), a precursor in the formation of tropospheric ozone. Because of the challenges associated with direct measurements, process-based modeling is another approach for estimating emissions of air pollutants from sources such as those from dairy farms. A process-based model for predicting VOC emissions from silage was developed and incorporated into the Integrated Farm System Model (IFSM, v. 4.3), a whole-farm simulation of crop, dairy, and beef production systems. The performance of the IFSM silage VOC emission model was evaluated using ethanol and methanol emissions measured from conventional silage piles (CSP), silage bags (SB), total mixed rations (TMR), and loose corn silage (LCS) at a commercial dairy farm in central California. With transport coefficients for ethanol refined using experimental data from our previous studies, the model performed well in simulating ethanol emission from CSP, TMR, and LCS; its lower performance for SB could be attributed to possible changes in face conditions of SB after silage removal that are not represented in the current model. For methanol emission, lack of experimental data for refinement likely caused the underprediction for CSP and SB whereas the overprediction observed for TMR can be explained as uncertainty in measurements. Despite these limitations, the model is a valuable tool for comparing silage management options and evaluating their relative effects on the overall performance, economics, and environmental impacts of farm production. As a component of IFSM, the silage VOC emission model was used to simulate a representative dairy farm in central California. The simulation showed most silage VOC emissions were from feed lying in feed lanes and not from the exposed face of silage storages. This suggests that mitigation efforts, particularly in areas prone to ozone non-attainment status, should focus on reducing emissions during feeding. For

  14. The effect of organic status and management practices on somatic cell counts on UK dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Haskell, M J; Langford, F M; Jack, M C; Sherwood, L; Lawrence, A B; Rutherford, K M D

    2009-08-01

    The numbers of organic dairy farms are increasing in the United Kingdom and in other parts of the world. On organic farms, the use of veterinary medicines is restricted. Because of this, there is concern that cow health is poorer on these farms. As udder health is primarily maintained by the use of antimicrobials, the effect of organic status on mastitis and somatic cell counts (SCC) is important to investigate. The aim of this study was therefore to determine whether the organic status and other management factors affect SCC. A group of 80 dairy farms was used in the study: 40 organic farms and 40 nonorganic farms. The farms were recruited in pairs, and each organic:nonorganic pair was matched for herd size, housing type, genetic merit for milk production and geographical location. Somatic cell count data were extracted from national databases for a standard year (2004), and analyzed using stepwise logistic regression models. The organic status of the farm did not appear in the final model, indicating no major influence of organic status on SCC. There were, however, several effects of management on SCC. Somatic cell counts were lower on farms where the udders were not cleaned or cleaned only when dirty. Somatic cell counts were also lower on farms that kept cows in larger management groups and where the majority, but not all cases of mastitis are treated with antimicrobials. It can be concluded that the control measures used on the organic farms in this study are at least as effective as those used on nonorganic farms in controlling SCC. Other management factors are influential and attention to these factors will allow farmers to reduce SCC.

  15. Cattle management practices and milk production on mixed smallholder organic pineapple farms in Central Uganda.

    PubMed

    Nalubwama, S; Kabi, F; Vaarst, M; Smolders, G; Kiggundu, M

    2016-12-01

    A longitudinal study to assess animal management practices and milk production was conducted for a period of 12 months on 30 smallholder farms keeping dairy cattle and certified organic pineapple production in Luwero and Kayunga districts, based on questionnaire and on-farm collected data. Farm sizes were 9.3 ± 6.7 acres in tethering system and 4.3 ± 2.6 acres in zero-grazing. Fifty-four percent of the zero-grazing herds had animal housing facilities. All farmers in tethering system kept cows on earthen floors and calves without bedding. Hygiene level in existing farms was low. Majority of calves were fed once a day by restricted suckling (77 %). Seventy-four percent of tethered cows were only fed on natural grass, while cows under zero-grazing system had a more diversified diet but with 82 % feeding mainly Napier grass. Most farms (87 %) used bulls for breeding. Milk production was higher (P < 0.05) in zero-grazing (6.5 L/cow/day) than tethering system, and higher (P < 0.05) for Holstein-Friesian crossbred cows (5.2 L/cow/day) than local breed cows (2.6 L/cow/day). Less than 1 L of milk per farm per day on average was sold. Disease treatments were exclusively for helminths, East Coast fever, and trypanasomiasis. Spraying of ticks and deworming were important control measures of vector-borne diseases. There is potential to develop alternative feed resources for dairy cattle and biorational pesticides for control and treatment of vector-borne diseases.

  16. Management factors associated with veterinary usage by organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Richert, Roxann M; Cicconi, Kellie M; Gamroth, Mike J; Schukken, Ynte H; Stiglbauer, Katie E; Ruegg, Pamela L

    2013-06-15

    To identify management factors associated with veterinary usage by organic and conventional dairy farms. Prospective case-control study. 292 farms. Organic farms in New York, Oregon, and Wisconsin were matched to conventional farms on the basis of location and herd size. During a single herd visit, a questionnaire was administered, information about animal disease incidence and number of veterinarian visits in the preceding 60 days was collected, and forms to record similar information during the 60 days after the visit were left for the herd manager to complete. For analysis, conventional herds were classified as either grazing or nongrazing. Multiple correspondence analysis was used to assess relationships among management factors and selected outcomes for frequency of veterinary usage. Intensive management practices were closely associated with frequent veterinary usage. Generally, organic management practices were associated with less frequent veterinary usage than were conventional management practices. Conventional grazing practices were associated with intermediate veterinary usage (more than organic practices but less than intensive practices), whereas conventional nongrazing practices were associated with frequent veterinary usage. Cost of routinely scheduled veterinarian visits/45 kg (100 lb) of milk produced/y was greater for small farms than that for large farms. Results suggested that management intensiveness was more closely associated with frequency of veterinary usage than was organic status; therefore, veterinarians should characterize farms by factors other than organic status when investigating which farms are most likely to use their services. Economic factors substantially affected routine veterinary usage on small farms.

  17. Differences in sheep and goats milk microbiological profile between conventional and organic farming systems in Greece.

    PubMed

    Malissiova, Eleni; Papadopoulos, Theofilos; Kyriazi, Aikaterini; Mparda, Maria; Sakorafa, Christina; Katsioulis, Antonios; Katsiaflaka, Anna; Kyritsi, Maria; Zdragas, Antonios; Hadjichristodoulou, Christos

    2017-05-01

    The aim of this study was to examine differences in the microbiological profile and antimicrobial resistance of bacteria isolated from milk from organic and conventional sheep and goat farms. Twenty-five organic and 25 conventional sheep and goat farms in the region of Thessaly, Greece participated in this study. A standardised detailed questionnaire was used to describe farming practices. A total of 50 samples were collected and analysed for total viable count (TVC), total coliform count (TCC) and somatic cell count (SCC), while Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli were isolated using standard methods. Isolates were identified at species level by Api-test and Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption/Ionisation-Time of Flight Mass Spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). Susceptibility to a panel of 20 for E. coli and 16 for S. aureus antimicrobials was determined by the agar dilution method. Pulsed Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE) was performed for S. aureus and E. coli isolates to determine predominant clones. Lower counts of TVC, TCC and SCC were identified in milk from the organic farms, possibly due to differences in the hygienic farming practices found on those farms. API-tests and MALDI-TOF MS showed no significant differences in the S. aureus and E. coli isolates. Overall, antimicrobial resistance rates were low, while a statistically higher percentage was estimated among strains originating from conventional farms in comparison with organic farms, possibly due to the restriction of antibiotic use in organic farming. PFGE revealed diversity among S. aureus and E. coli populations in both organic and conventional farms indicating circulation of 2-3 main clones changing slightly during their evolution. Consequently, there is evidence that milk from the organic farms presents a better microbiological profile when compared with milk from conventional farms.

  18. Pyrosequencing assessment of soil microbial communities in organic and conventional potato farms

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic farming is a growing field of agriculture that is benign on the environment but there are contradictory reports about the impact of these practices on the soil microbial community, i.e. some studies showed higher microbial diversity in organic farms but others showed no differences in divers...

  19. The New England Farm Workers' Council: Case Study of a Community Service Organization.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Young, Bruce

    The study described the development of the New England Farm Workers' Council, Inc., and documented significant interactions among selected elements of the Puerto Rican migrant farm labor system in the Connecticut Valley. These elements were the migrant farmworker community, the farm labor employers, and agencies of the federal government and of…

  20. Allelopathy relationship between plants and their use in organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marian, M.; Voşgan, Z.; Mare Roşca, O.; Mihalescu, L.

    2017-05-01

    Allelopathy is a process still little studied in the plant world, if we refer to the diversity of biochemical compounds, through which plants can interact with each other, with fungi or bacteria. Biochemical "dialogue" between organisms may have stimulatory or inhibitory effects, contributing to numerical setting of the populations, the assertion of some species over others, the establishment and strengthen of plant communities. Practically, the allelopathy can be exploited in organic farming in understanding and identifying compatibility between species, to finding natural substances with herbicide potential. In experiments conducted, diluted extracts of Taraxacum officinale and Cirsium vulgare strongly inhibited the germination and growth of corn and beans, while Hedera helix produced the same effect, but at higher concentrations of the extract. Humulus lupulus extract has a stimulating effect on the two species and it is possible to use as natural fertilizer. Extracts of Chenopodium album works as stimulator for Beta vulgaris, and potent inhibitor for Triticum aestivum. Agropyron repens is an aggressive competitor for Lycopersicon esculentum and Capsicum annuum, producing a strong inhibition. Juglans regia extracts and especially those of Satureja hortensis, can be used as natural herbicides for up delay germination and growth suppression for the species: Echinochloa crus-galli and Setaria glauca.

  1. Effect of supplementing different concentrations of organic trace minerals on performance, antioxidant activity, and bone mineralization in Vanaraja chickens developed for free range farming.

    PubMed

    Rao, Savaram Venkata Rama; Prakash, Bhukya; Kumari, Kanya; Raju, Mantena Venkata Laxmi Narasimha; Panda, Arun Kumar

    2013-08-01

    An experiment was conducted to determine the performance, antioxidation activity, and bone mineral content in Vanaraja chickens fed diet supplemented with organic trace minerals (oTM) at reduced levels. A total of 360 day-old chicks were selected and distributed randomly into 60 battery brooder pens. A maize-soybean meal-based control diet was supplemented with inorganic trace minerals (iTM), i.e., Mn, Zn, Fe, and Cu at 50, 45, 40, and 7.5 mg/kg, respectively, and varying concentration of oTM, i.e., Zn, Mn, Cu, Fe, I, Se, and Cr at 45, 50, 7.5, 40, 2, 0.30, and 0.25 mg/kg (diet II); 33.75, 37.50, 5.63, 30.0, 1.50, 0.23, and 0.19 mg/kg (diet III); 22.5, 25.0, 3.75, 20.0, 1.0, 0.15, and 0.13 mg/kg (diet IV); 18.0, 20.0, 3.0, 16.0, 0.80, 0.12, and 0.10 mg/kg (diet V); and 13.5, 15.0, 2.25, 12.0, 0.60, 0.09, and 0.08 mg/kg (diet VI), respectively. Each diet was allotted randomly to ten replicates and fed ad libitum from 1 to 42 days of age. The body weight at 14, 28, and 42 days was not affected by reducing the supplementation of oTM concentration in the diets. Similarly, feed intake at 14 days of age was not affected but reduced significantly (P < 0.05) in the group fed diet IV (50% oTM) compared to that in the other groups. The higher feed conversion ratio and increased concentration of Ca, P, and trace minerals in tibia were evident in the group fed oTM-supplemented diets compared to the diet containing iTM. Activities of glutathione peroxidase and ferric reducing ability in plasma did not differ in the groups fed on lower concentration of oTM compared to those fed on diet I (control diet). Therefore, it is concluded that the dietary supplementation of trace minerals can be reduced greatly when supplemented as organic form without affecting growth and antioxidant status in Vanaraja chickens.

  2. Comparing risk in conventional and organic dairy farming in the Netherlands: an empirical analysis.

    PubMed

    Berentsen, P B M; Kovacs, K; van Asseldonk, M A P M

    2012-07-01

    This study was undertaken to contribute to the understanding of why most dairy farmers do not convert to organic farming. Therefore, the objective of this research was to assess and compare risks for conventional and organic farming in the Netherlands with respect to gross margin and the underlying price and production variables. To investigate the risk factors a farm accountancy database was used containing panel data from both conventional and organic representative Dutch dairy farms (2001-2007). Variables with regard to price and production risk were identified using a gross margin analysis scheme. Price risk variables were milk price and concentrate price. The main production risk variables were milk yield per cow, roughage yield per hectare, and veterinary costs per cow. To assess risk, an error component implicit detrending method was applied and the resulting detrended standard deviations were compared between conventional and organic farms. Results indicate that the risk included in the gross margin per cow is significantly higher in organic farming. This is caused by both higher price and production risks. Price risks are significantly higher in organic farming for both milk price and concentrate price. With regard to production risk, only milk yield per cow poses a significantly higher risk in organic farming.

  3. Development of farmed fish: a nutritionally necessary alternative to meat.

    PubMed

    Sargent, J R; Tacon, A G

    1999-05-01

    The projected stagnation in the catch from global fisheries and the continuing expansion of aquaculture is considered against the background that fishmeal and fish oil are major feed stocks for farmed salmon and trout, and also for marine fish. The dietary requirement of these farmed fish for high-quality protein, rich in essential amino acids, can be met by sources other than fishmeal. However, the highly-polyunsaturated fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (22:6n-3) present in high concentrations in fish oil are essential dietary constituents for marine fish and highly-desirable dietary constituents for salmonids. Currently, there is no feasible alternative source to fish oil for these nutrients in fish feeds. Vegetable oils rich in linoleic acid (18:2n-6) can partially substitute for 20:5n-3 and 22:6n-3 in salmonid and marine-fish feeds. However, this is nutritionally undesirable for human nutrition because the health-promoting effects of fish-derived 20:5n-3 and 22:6n-3 reflect a very high intake of 18:2n-6 relative to linolenic acid (18:3n-3) in Western diets. If partial replacement of fish oils in fish feeds with vegetable oils becomes necessary in future, it is argued that 18:3n-3-rich oils, such as linseed oil, are the oils of choice because they are much more acceptable from a human nutritional perspective, especially given the innate ability of freshwater fish, including salmonids, to convert dietary 18:3n-3 to 20:5n-3 and 22:6n-3. In the meantime, a more judicious use of increasingly-expensive fish oil in aquaculture is recommended. High priorities in the future development of aquaculture are considered to be genetic improvement of farmed fish stocks with enhanced abilities to convert C18 to C20 and C22 n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, enhanced development of primary production of 20:5n-3 and 22:6n-3 by single-cell marine organisms, and continuing development of new species.

  4. Plant Diseases and Management Approaches in Organic Farming Systems.

    PubMed

    van Bruggen, A H C; Finckh, M R

    2016-08-04

    Organic agriculture has expanded worldwide. Numerous papers were published in the past 20 years comparing plant diseases in organic and conventional crops. Root diseases are generally less severe owing to greater soil health, whereas some foliar diseases can be problematic in organic agriculture. The soil microbial community and nitrogen availability play an important role in disease development and yield. Recently, the focus has shifted to optimizing organic crop production by improving plant nutrition, weed control, and plant health. Crop-loss assessment relating productivity to all yield-forming and -reducing factors would benefit organic production and sustainability evaluation.

  5. Assessing the effect of the time since transition to organic farming on plants and butterflies.

    PubMed

    Jonason, Dennis; Andersson, Georg K S; Ockinger, Erik; Rundlöf, Maj; Smith, Henrik G; Bengtsson, Jan

    2011-06-01

    1.Environmental changes may not always result in rapid changes in species distributions, abundances or diversity. In order to estimate the effects of, for example, land-use changes caused by agri-environment schemes (AES) on biodiversity and ecosystem services, information on the time-lag between the application of the scheme and the responses of organisms is essential.2.We examined the effects of time since transition (TST) to organic farming on plant species richness and butterfly species richness and abundance. Surveys were conducted in cereal fields and adjacent field margins on 60 farms, 20 conventional and 40 organic, in two regions in Sweden. The organic farms were transferred from conventional management between 1 and 25 years before the survey took place. The farms were selected along a gradient of landscape complexity, indicated by the proportion of arable land, so that farms with similar TST were represented in all landscape types. Organism responses were assessed using model averaging.3.Plant and butterfly species richness was c.20% higher on organic farms and butterfly abundance was about 60% higher, compared with conventional farms. Time since transition affected butterfly abundance gradually over the 25-year period, resulting in a 100% increase. In contrast, no TST effect on plant or butterfly species richness was found, indicating that the main effect took place immediately after the transition to organic farming.4.Increasing landscape complexity had a positive effect on butterfly species richness, but not on butterfly abundance or plant species richness. There was no indication that the speed of response to organic farming was affected by landscape complexity.5.Synthesis and applications. The effect of organic farming on diversity was rapid for plant and butterfly species richness, whereas butterfly abundance increased gradually with time since transition. If time-lags in responses to AESs turn out to be common, long-term effects would need to be

  6. Assessing the effect of the time since transition to organic farming on plants and butterflies

    PubMed Central

    Jonason, Dennis; Andersson, Georg K S; Öckinger, Erik; Rundlöf, Maj; Smith, Henrik G; Bengtsson, Jan

    2011-01-01

    1.Environmental changes may not always result in rapid changes in species distributions, abundances or diversity. In order to estimate the effects of, for example, land-use changes caused by agri-environment schemes (AES) on biodiversity and ecosystem services, information on the time-lag between the application of the scheme and the responses of organisms is essential. 2.We examined the effects of time since transition (TST) to organic farming on plant species richness and butterfly species richness and abundance. Surveys were conducted in cereal fields and adjacent field margins on 60 farms, 20 conventional and 40 organic, in two regions in Sweden. The organic farms were transferred from conventional management between 1 and 25 years before the survey took place. The farms were selected along a gradient of landscape complexity, indicated by the proportion of arable land, so that farms with similar TST were represented in all landscape types. Organism responses were assessed using model averaging. 3.Plant and butterfly species richness was c.20% higher on organic farms and butterfly abundance was about 60% higher, compared with conventional farms. Time since transition affected butterfly abundance gradually over the 25-year period, resulting in a 100% increase. In contrast, no TST effect on plant or butterfly species richness was found, indicating that the main effect took place immediately after the transition to organic farming. 4.Increasing landscape complexity had a positive effect on butterfly species richness, but not on butterfly abundance or plant species richness. There was no indication that the speed of response to organic farming was affected by landscape complexity. 5.Synthesis and applications. The effect of organic farming on diversity was rapid for plant and butterfly species richness, whereas butterfly abundance increased gradually with time since transition. If time-lags in responses to AESs turn out to be common, long-term effects would need to

  7. Environmental contamination and transmission of Ascaris suum in Danish organic pig farms.

    PubMed

    Katakam, Kiran K; Thamsborg, Stig M; Dalsgaard, Anders; Kyvsgaard, Niels C; Mejer, Helena

    2016-02-09

    Although Ascaris suum is the most common pig nematode, the on-farm transmission dynamics are not well described. We performed a 1-year field study on five organic pig farms, mapping egg contamination levels in pens and pasture soil as well as faecal egg counts in starter pigs, finisher pigs, dry and lactating sows. The uppermost bedding material was sampled from three pen areas (resting, intermediate and latrine) of shallow and deep litter pens. Ascaris suum was found on all farms. Averaged across farm and season, the prevalence of A. suum was 48, 64, 28 and 15% in starters, finishers, dry and lactating sows, respectively. For starters and finishers, the prevalence varied with season increasing towards the end of the year when 83-96% of finishing pigs from each farm had fresh liver white spots. Farrowing pastures were contaminated with a mean of 78-171 larvated eggs/kg dry soil depending on farm, while pastures for starter pigs contained 290-5397 larvated eggs/kg dry soil. The concentration of eggs in soil was highest in the autumn. Indoors, all pen areas were contaminated with A. suum eggs at comparable levels for shallow and deep litter. Overall there were 106, 445 and 1331 eggs/g dry straw in the resting, intermediate and latrine areas, respectively. However, more eggs were undergoing development in resting areas (44%) compared to intermediate (33%) and latrine areas (13%). Irrespective of area, more eggs were undergoing development in the autumn, but overall there were very few fully developed (i.e., infective) eggs in the bedding material. Laboratory embryonation of eggs from the bedding material nevertheless revealed that an overall mean of 79% of the eggs were viable. The organic pigs of all ages were continuously exposed to A. suum, but mainly younger animals were infected. Deep litter appeared to be a less important source of A. suum eggs than previously believed compared to shallow litter. Long-term pasture rotation to eliminate pasture contamination was

  8. Perceptions and risk factors for lameness on organic and small conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Richert, R M; Cicconi, K M; Gamroth, M J; Schukken, Y H; Stiglbauer, K E; Ruegg, P L

    2013-08-01

    Lameness is an important multifactorial disease that affects dairy cattle on both organic (ORG) and conventional (CON) farms. The objective of this study was to characterize perception of lameness and identify risk factors for lameness prevalence on ORG and similarly-sized CON farms. Dairy herds (n=292) were enrolled across 3 states (NY, OR, WI), with CON herds enrolled based on similar herd size and location of ORG herds. During a single herd visit, information was collected about management practices and lameness events occurring in the previous 60 d, and paperwork was left to record lameness events during the 60 d after the visit. During the herd visit, study personnel scored cows for body condition, lameness, and hock condition. For analysis, CON herds were further divided into CON grazing and CON nongrazing. A Poisson regression model was used to assess risk factors for prevalence of cows scored lame. On these relatively small, lower producing farms, the prevalence of lameness in cows scored by study personnel was less than previously reported for larger, higher producing dairy herds located in the United States. Prevalence of lameness was weakly and positively correlated with the rate of lameness calculated using farmer records. Researchers observed lame cows on some farms where farmers perceived that lameness never occurred. An increased prevalence of cows scored lame by study personnel was associated with an increased prevalence of hock lesions, use of CON nongrazing management, and routine use of a footbath. Multiple strategies may be used to manage lameness on farms, including increasing farmer perception of lameness and reduction in exposure of cows to risk factors that contribute to development of lameness.

  9. Effect of organic farming on spore diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and glomalin in soil.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ji-Eun; Eom, Ahn-Heum

    2009-12-01

    In this study, eight soil samples were collected from organic and conventional farms in a central area of South Korea. Spore communities of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and glomalin, a glycoprotein produced by AMF, were analyzed. Spores of Glomus clarum, G. etunicatum, G. mosseae, G. sp., Acaulospora longula, A. spinosa, Gigaspora margarita, and Paraglomus occultum were identified at the study sites, based on morphological and molecular characteristics. While Acaulospora longula was the most dominant species in soils at organic farms, Paraglomus occultum was the most dominant species in soils at conventional farms. Species diversity and species number in AMF communities found in soils from organic farms were significantly higher than in soils from conventional farms. Glomalin was also extracted from soil samples collected at organic and conventional farms and was analyzed using both Bradford and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. The glomalin content in soils from organic farms was significantly higher than in soils from conventional farms. These results indicate that agricultural practices significantly affect AMF abundance and community structure.

  10. Effect of Organic Farming on Spore Diversity of Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi and Glomalin in Soil

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Ji-Eun

    2009-01-01

    In this study, eight soil samples were collected from organic and conventional farms in a central area of South Korea. Spore communities of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and glomalin, a glycoprotein produced by AMF, were analyzed. Spores of Glomus clarum, G. etunicatum, G. mosseae, G. sp., Acaulospora longula, A. spinosa, Gigaspora margarita, and Paraglomus occultum were identified at the study sites, based on morphological and molecular characteristics. While Acaulospora longula was the most dominant species in soils at organic farms, Paraglomus occultum was the most dominant species in soils at conventional farms. Species diversity and species number in AMF communities found in soils from organic farms were significantly higher than in soils from conventional farms. Glomalin was also extracted from soil samples collected at organic and conventional farms and was analyzed using both Bradford and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. The glomalin content in soils from organic farms was significantly higher than in soils from conventional farms. These results indicate that agricultural practices significantly affect AMF abundance and community structure. PMID:23983547

  11. Heavy metals and other elements in serum of cattle from organic and conventional farms.

    PubMed

    Tomza-Marciniak, Agnieszka; Pilarczyk, Bogumiła; Bąkowska, Małgorzata; Pilarczyk, Renata; Wójcik, Jerzy

    2011-11-01

    Concentrations of cadmium, lead, iron, zinc, copper, chromium, nickel, aluminium and arsenium were analysed in blood serum of cattle from organic (n=20) and conventional (n=21) farms. The elements were determined by inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry using an Optima 2000 DV instrument (Perkin Elmer Inc.). Animals from the organic farm were characterised by significantly lower (P<0.01) serum concentrations of Pb, Zn, Fe, Cu, Cr, Ni, As and Al compared to animals from the conventional farm. The concentration of Cd was similar in animals from both organic and conventional farms. The concentration of toxic elements in cattle from organic and conventional farms studied was very low. The trace essential elements were generally within the adequate ranges except Zn and Cu, which were deficient. In organically reared animals, also serum Fe content was below the critical level for diagnosing iron deficiency. Pb was significantly correlated with Cd, Zn, Fe, Cu and Ni. A significant positive correlation between the concentration of Cd and Zn, Cu and Ni concentrations was only observed in cows from the organic farm. The present results suggest that organically raised animals are less exposed to harmful environmental influences such as the environmental pollution with heavy metals. On the other hand, these animals are at a greater risk of mineral deficiency compared to animals kept on conventional farms.

  12. Care Farms in the Netherlands: An Underexplored Example of Multifunctional Agriculture--Toward an Empirically Grounded, Organization-Theory-Based Typology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hassink, Jan; Hulsink, Willem; Grin, John

    2012-01-01

    For agricultural and rural development in Europe, multifunctionality is a leading concept that raises many questions. Care farming is a promising example of multifunctional agriculture that has so far received little attention. An issue that has not been examined thoroughly is the strategic mapping of different care farm organizations in this…

  13. Care Farms in the Netherlands: An Underexplored Example of Multifunctional Agriculture--Toward an Empirically Grounded, Organization-Theory-Based Typology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hassink, Jan; Hulsink, Willem; Grin, John

    2012-01-01

    For agricultural and rural development in Europe, multifunctionality is a leading concept that raises many questions. Care farming is a promising example of multifunctional agriculture that has so far received little attention. An issue that has not been examined thoroughly is the strategic mapping of different care farm organizations in this…

  14. Residents' Perceptions toward Utility-Scale Wind Farm Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Joseph; Romich, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Increased development of wind farms in the U.S. has fostered debates surrounding the siting and support for the projects. Prior research demonstrates the importance of understanding the attitudes and opinions of community members when developing projects. This article reviews a case study of an Ohio community that integrated a local survey to…

  15. Residents' Perceptions toward Utility-Scale Wind Farm Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Joseph; Romich, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Increased development of wind farms in the U.S. has fostered debates surrounding the siting and support for the projects. Prior research demonstrates the importance of understanding the attitudes and opinions of community members when developing projects. This article reviews a case study of an Ohio community that integrated a local survey to…

  16. Student Outcomes from Experiential Learning on a Student-Run Certified Organic Farm

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reeve, Jennifer R.; Hall, Kelsey; Kalkman, Carol

    2014-01-01

    The USU Student Organic Farm was initiated in April 2008 on 1 acre (0.4 ha) of land at Utah State University (USU). Students plant, weed, harvest, and market the produce on campus. Proceeds support the student farm in terms of operating expenses, equipment purchases, and modest student stipends. Since 2009, the students have operated a community…

  17. Student Outcomes from Experiential Learning on a Student-Run Certified Organic Farm

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reeve, Jennifer R.; Hall, Kelsey; Kalkman, Carol

    2014-01-01

    The USU Student Organic Farm was initiated in April 2008 on 1 acre (0.4 ha) of land at Utah State University (USU). Students plant, weed, harvest, and market the produce on campus. Proceeds support the student farm in terms of operating expenses, equipment purchases, and modest student stipends. Since 2009, the students have operated a community…

  18. Consequences of organic farming and landscape heterogeneity for species richness and abundance of farmland birds.

    PubMed

    Smith, Henrik G; Dänhardt, Juliana; Lindström, Ake; Rundlöf, Maj

    2010-04-01

    It has been suggested that organic farming may benefit farmland biodiversity more in landscapes that have lost a significant part of its former landscape heterogeneity. We tested this hypothesis by comparing bird species richness and abundance during the breeding season in organic and conventional farms, matched to eliminate all differences not directly linked to the farming practice, situated in either homogeneous plains with only a little semi-natural habitat or in heterogeneous farmland landscapes with abundant field borders and semi-natural grasslands. The effect of farm management on species richness interacted with landscape structure, such that there was a positive relationship between organic farming and diversity only in homogeneous landscapes. This pattern was mainly dependent on the species richness of passerine birds, in particular those that were invertebrate feeders. Species richness of non-passerines was positively related to organic farming independent of the landscape context. Bird abundance was positively related to landscape heterogeneity but not to farm management. This was mainly because the abundance of passerines, particularly invertebrate feeders, was positively related to landscape heterogeneity. We suggest that invertebrate feeders particularly benefit from organic farming because of improved foraging conditions through increased invertebrate abundances in otherwise depauperate homogeneous landscapes. Although many seed-eaters also benefit from increased insect abundance, they may also utilize crop seed resources in homogeneous landscapes and conventional farms. The occurrence of an interactive effect of organic farming and landscape heterogeneity on bird diversity will have consequences for the optimal allocation of resources to restore the diversity of farmland birds.

  19. Lessons Learned Developing an Extension-Based Training Program for Farm Labor Supervisors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roka, Fritz M.; Thissen, Carlene A.; Monaghan, Paul F.; Morera, Maria C.; Galindo-Gonzalez, Sebastian; Tovar-Aguilar, Jose Antonio

    This article outlines a four-step model for developing a training program for farm labor supervisors. The model draws on key lessons learned during the development of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Farm Labor Supervisor Training program. The program is designed to educate farm supervisors on farm labor laws…

  20. Co-development of climate smart flooded rice farming systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Neergaard, Andreas; Stoumann Jensen, Lars; Ly, Proyuth; Pandey, Arjun; Duong Vu, Quynh; Tariq, Azeem; Islam, Syed; van Groenigen, Jan Willem; Sander, Bjoern Ole; de Tourdonnet, Stephane; Van Mai, Trinh; Wassmann, Reiner

    2017-04-01

    Mid-season drainage in flooded rice is known to reduce CH4 emission, while effects on N2O emission are more variable. Banning of crop-residue burning, and growing markets for organically fertilized rice, are resulting in systems with larger reactive C input, and potentially larger methane emissions. Tight farming systems with 2 or 3 annual crops are effective in mitigating emissions, in that the land sparing value is high, but put serious constraints on mitigation options under increased C input scenarios. In a series of field (Cambodia, Philippines and Vietnam) and greenhouse experiments, we investigated the effect of a variety of organic amendments and wetting and drying cycles on yield and GHG emissions. Specifically we have tested the effect of inserting very early, or even-pre-planting drainage, as a means to accelerate turnover of straw or other C sources, and reduce methane emission later in the season. Overall, our results showed that drying periods had minimal impact on yields, while reducing overall GHG emission. Methane emission was strongly controlled by C availability in the substrate (on equal total C-input basis), increasing in the order: biochar-composts-animal manure-fresh material. Nitrous oxide emissions generally increased with draining cycles, but did not lead to overall increase in GHG emissions as its contribution was balanced by lowered CH4 emissions. Growth chamber experiments showed that methane emission was significantly reduced for extended periods after re-flooding, hence the idea of early drainage was developed. Meanwhile, Cambodian farmers expressed concerns over re-supply of water after drainage. In response to that, we tested if early-season drainage could replace mid-season drainage. With addition of labile carbon substrates (straw) duration of early season drainage was more important for reducing GHG emissions, than duration of mid-season drainage, and had the highest potential for total emission reduction. In a farmers

  1. [Chile's experience with developing abalone (Haliotis spp.) farming: opportunities and challenges].

    PubMed

    Enríquez, R; Villagrán, R

    2008-04-01

    Intensive abalone farming--specifically of the red abalone (Haliotis rufescens) and the green (or Japanese) abalone (Haliotis discus hannai)--has expanded rapidly in Chile since the late 1990s, and this article presents an overview of the challenges facing the industry and the factors which favour its development. At present, 100% of Chile's abalone enterprises farm the H. rufescens species, owing to its suitability for full-cycle culture. In the analysis of factors that facilitate the development of abalone farming in Chile, those that stand out include the characteristics of the aquatic ecosystem, existing entrepreneurial and professional skills, decisive government support in co-financing scientific and technological projects, infrastructure and associated services to support these development initiatives and a market where prices have remained stable and demand for abalone products has been steady. The greatest challenges facing intensive abalone farming in Chile are providing a constant supply of macroalgae for abalone feed and developing complementary feed, as well as updating current legislation on intensive abalone farming, strengthening producer associations and establishing health certification. The article discusses examples of the impact that native organisms can have on animals introduced into an aquatic ecosystem and the international transmission of agents such as withering syndrome and sabellid polychaete infestation disease, associated with the movement of abalone seeds and broodstock. The article also emphasises the importance of implementing the recommendations of the World Organisation for Animal Health.

  2. Organic farming and soil carbon sequestration: what do we really know about the benefits?

    PubMed

    Leifeld, Jens; Fuhrer, Jürg

    2010-12-01

    Organic farming is believed to improve soil fertility by enhancing soil organic matter (SOM) contents. An important co-benefit would be the sequestration of carbon from atmospheric CO2. Such a positive effect has been suggested based on data from field experiments though many studies were not designed to address the issue of carbon sequestration. The aim of our study was to examine published data in order to identify possible flaws such as missing a proper baseline, carbon mass measurements, or lack of a clear distinction between conventional and organic farming practices, thereby attributing effects of specific practices to organic farming, which are not uniquely organic. A total of 68 data sets were analyzed from 32 peer-reviewed publications aiming to compare conventional with organic farming. The analysis revealed that after conversion, soil C content (SOC) in organic systems increased annually by 2.2% on average, whereas in conventional systems SOC did not change significantly. The majority of publications reported SOC concentrations rather than amounts thus neglecting possible changes in soil bulk density. 34 out of 68 data sets missed a true control with well-defined starting conditions. In 37 out of 50 cases, the amount of organic fertilizer in the organic system exceeded that applied in the compared conventional system, and in half of the cases crop rotations differed between systems. In the few studies where crop rotation and organic fertilization were comparable in both systems no consistent difference in SOC was found. From this data analysis, we conclude that the claim for beneficial effects of organic farming on SOC is premature and that reported advantages of organic farming for SOC are largely determined by higher and often disproportionate application of organic fertilizer compared to conventional farming.

  3. Soil Decomposition of Added Organic C in an Organic Farming System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kpomblekou-A, Kokoasse; Sissoko, Alassane; McElhenney, Wendell

    2015-04-01

    In the United States, large quantities of poultry waste are added every year to soil under organic management. Decomposition of the added organic C releases plant nutrients, promotes soil structure, and plays a vital role in the soil food web. In organic agriculture the added C serves as the only source of nutrients for plant growth. Thus understanding the decomposition rates of such C in organic farming systems are critical in making recommendations of organic inputs to organic producers. We investigated and compared relative accumulation and decomposition of organic C in an organic farming system trial at the George Washington Carver Agricultural Experiment Station at Tuskegee, Alabama on a Marvyn sandy loam (fine-loamy, kaolinitic, thermic, Typic Kanhapludults) soil. The experimental design was a randomized complete block with four replicates and four treatments. The main plot (54' × 20') was split into three equal subplots to plant three sweet potato cultivars. The treatments included a weed (control with no cover crop, no fertilizer), crimson clover alone (CC), crimson clover plus broiler litter (BL), and crimson clover plus NPK mineral fertilizers (NPK). For five years, late in fall, the field was planted with crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum L) that was cut with a mower and incorporated into soil the following spring. Moreover, broiler litter (4.65 Mg ha-1) or ammonium nitrate (150 kg N ha-1), triple super phosphate (120 kg P2O5 ha-1), and potassium chloride (160 kg K2O ha-1) were applied to the BL or the NPK plot and planted with sweet potato. Just before harvest, six soil samples were collected within the two middle rows of each sweet potato plot with an auger at incremental depths of 0-1, 1-2, 2-3, 3-5, 5-10, and 10-15 cm. Samples from each subplot and depth were composited and mixed in a plastic bag. The samples were sieved moist through a

  4. Differences in sheep and goats milk fatty acid profile between conventional and organic farming systems.

    PubMed

    Tsiplakou, Eleni; Kotrotsios, Vaios; Hadjigeorgiou, Ioannis; Zervas, George

    2010-08-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate whether there is a difference in chemical composition and particularly in fatty acid (FA) profile, with emphasis on cis-9, trans-11 CLA, of milk obtained from conventional and organic dairy sheep and goats farms under the farming conditions practiced in Greece. Four dairy sheep and four dairy goat farms, representing common conventional production systems and another four dairy sheep and four dairy goat farms, organically certified, representing organic production and feeding systems were selected from all over Greece. One hundred and sixty two individual milk samples were collected from those farms in January-February 2009, about three months after parturition. The milk samples were analyzed for their main chemical constituents and their FA profile. The results showed that the production system affected milk chemical composition: in particular fat content was lower in the organic sheep and goats milk compared with the corresponding conventional. Milk from organic sheep had higher content in MUFA, PUFA, alpha-LNA, cis-9, trans-11 CLA, and omega-3 FA, whereas in milk from organic goats alpha-LNA and omega-3 FA content was higher than that in conventional one. These differences are, mainly, attributed to different feeding practices used by the two production systems. The results of this study show that the organic milk produced under the farming conditions practiced in Greece has higher nutritional value, due to its FA profile, compared with the respective conventional milk.

  5. Durum Wheat in Conventional and Organic Farming: Yield Amount and Pasta Quality in Southern Italy

    PubMed Central

    Fagnano, Massimo; Fiorentino, Nunzio; D'Egidio, Maria Grazia; Quaranta, Fabrizio; Ritieni, Alberto; Ferracane, Rosalia; Raimondi, Giampaolo

    2012-01-01

    Five durum wheat cultivars were grown in a Mediterranean area (Southern Italy) under conventional and organic farming with the aim to evaluate agronomic, technological, sensory, and sanitary quality of grains and pasta. The cultivar Matt produced the best pasta quality under conventional cropping system, while the quality parameters evaluated were unsatisfactory under organic farming. The cultivar Saragolla showed the best yield amount and pasta quality in all the experimental conditions, thus proving to be the cultivar more adapt to organic farming. In all the tested experimental conditions, nivalenol (NIV) and deoxynivalenol (DON) occurrence was very low and the other mycotoxins evaluated were completely absent. These data confirm the low risk of mycotoxin contamination in the Mediterranean climate conditions. Finally, it has been possible to produce high-quality pasta in Southern Italy from durum wheat grown both in conventional and organic farming. PMID:22701377

  6. Durum wheat in conventional and organic farming: yield amount and pasta quality in Southern Italy.

    PubMed

    Fagnano, Massimo; Fiorentino, Nunzio; D'Egidio, Maria Grazia; Quaranta, Fabrizio; Ritieni, Alberto; Ferracane, Rosalia; Raimondi, Giampaolo

    2012-01-01

    Five durum wheat cultivars were grown in a Mediterranean area (Southern Italy) under conventional and organic farming with the aim to evaluate agronomic, technological, sensory, and sanitary quality of grains and pasta. The cultivar Matt produced the best pasta quality under conventional cropping system, while the quality parameters evaluated were unsatisfactory under organic farming. The cultivar Saragolla showed the best yield amount and pasta quality in all the experimental conditions, thus proving to be the cultivar more adapt to organic farming. In all the tested experimental conditions, nivalenol (NIV) and deoxynivalenol (DON) occurrence was very low and the other mycotoxins evaluated were completely absent. These data confirm the low risk of mycotoxin contamination in the Mediterranean climate conditions. Finally, it has been possible to produce high-quality pasta in Southern Italy from durum wheat grown both in conventional and organic farming.

  7. An ecosystem approach to assess soil quality in organically and conventionally managed farms in Iceland and Austria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Leeuwen, J. P.; Lehtinen, T.; Lair, G. J.; Bloem, J.; Hemerik, L.; Ragnarsdóttir, K. V.; Gísladóttir, G.; Newton, J. S.; de Ruiter, P. C.

    2014-06-01

    Intensive agricultural production can be an important driver for the loss of long-term soil quality. For this reason, the European Critical Zone Observatory (CZO) network adopted four pairs of agricultural CZO sites that differ in their management: conventional or organic. The CZO sites include two pairs of grassland farms in Iceland and two pairs of arable farms in Austria. Conventional fields differed from the organic fields in the use of artificial fertilizers and pesticides. Soils of these eight farms were analysed in terms of their physical, chemical, and biological properties, including soil aggregate size distribution, soil organic matter contents, abundance of soil microbes and soil fauna, and taxonomic diversity of soil microarthropods. In Icelandic grasslands, organically farmed soils had larger mean weight diameters than the conventional farms, while there were no differences in the Austrian farms. Organic farming did neither systematically influence organic matter contents or composition, nor soil carbon and nitrogen contents. Also soil food web structures, in terms of presence of trophic groups of soil organisms, were highly similar among all farms, indicating a low sensitivity of trophic structure to land use or climate. However, soil organism biomass, especially of bacteria and nematodes, was consistently higher in organic farms than in conventional farms. Within the microarthropods, also taxonomic diversity was systematically higher in the organic farms compared to the conventional farms. This difference was found across countries, farm-, crop- and soil-types. The results do not show systematic differences in physical and chemical properties between organic and conventional farms, but confirm that organic farming can enhance soil organism biomass, and that microarthropod diversity is a sensitive and consistent indicator for land management.

  8. Constraints under organic farming on French sheepmeat production: a legal and economic point of view with an emphasis on farming systems and veterinary aspects.

    PubMed

    Benoit, Marc; Laignel, Gabriel

    2002-01-01

    Ovine meat production in France, which is continually regressing due to economic difficulties, is based on two main production systems. The first system is located in plains in which one part of the lambs born in the spring are fed grass, and the other part of the lambs are from out of the season parturitions following hormonal treatments and are fattened in sheep houses. The second system is represented by farms in the mountains using hardy breeds which have a natural faculty for out of the season breeding and whose lambs are fattened indoors, whatever the season of birth. Amongst the sanitary problems encountered, parasitism in particular of young animals, is crucial, especially for farms on plains practising grass fattening. These farmers systematically use conventional anthelmintic treatments, in particular against Moniezia and Strongyles. With organic farming, the limited number of conventional anthelmintic treatments is a strong constraint, especially for the management of young grass-fed animals. A study of 10 organic farming farms or farms converting to organic farming (six in the mountains and four in the plains) showed that the size of these farms is inferior to that of conventional ones and have technical performances which are comparable to the average with 20 to 30% extra over-prices on lamb sales. Despite this, the gross margins per ewe in organic farming are equal to the average of those for conventional farms. This is due to the high consumption of concentrate at a high cost (50 to 100% greater than that for conventional farms). Finally, to prevent sanitary risks, certain organic farmers use important amounts of feed supplements containing phytotherapy products whose costs burden a part of the financial results of the farm. On the contrary, other organic farmers are able, by adapting breeding and grazing managements, to significantly decrease animal health costs without increasing feed supplements nor decreasing zootechnical performances.

  9. An ecosystem approach to assess soil quality in organically and conventionally managed farms in Iceland and Austria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Leeuwen, J. P.; Lehtinen, T.; Lair, G. J.; Bloem, J.; Hemerik, L.; Ragnarsdóttir, K. V.; Gísladóttir, G.; Newton, J. S.; de Ruiter, P. C.

    2015-01-01

    Intensive agricultural production can be an important driver for the loss of long-term soil quality. For this reason, the European Critical Zone Observatory (CZO) network adopted four pairs of agricultural CZO sites that differ in their management: conventional or organic. The CZO sites include two pairs of grassland farms in Iceland and two pairs of arable farms in Austria. Conventional fields differed from the organic fields in the use of artificial fertilisers and pesticides. Soils of these eight farms were analysed in terms of their physical, chemical, and biological properties, including soil aggregate size distribution, soil organic matter contents, abundance of soil microbes and soil fauna, and taxonomic diversity of soil microarthropods. In Icelandic grasslands, organically farmed soils had larger mean weight diameters of soil aggregates than the conventional farms, while there were no differences on the Austrian farms. Organic farming did not systematically influence organic matter contents or composition, nor soil carbon and nitrogen contents. Also, soil food web structures, in terms of presence of trophic groups of soil organisms, were highly similar among all farms, indicating a low sensitivity of trophic structure to land use or climate. However, soil organism biomass, especially of bacteria and nematodes, was consistently higher on organic farms than on conventional farms. Within the microarthropods, taxonomic diversity was systematically higher in the organic farms compared to the conventional farms. This difference was found across countries and farm, crop, and soil types. The results do not show systematic differences in physical and chemical properties between organic and conventional farms, but confirm that organic farming can enhance soil biomass and that microarthropod diversity is a sensitive and consistent indicator for land management.

  10. Why farming with high tech methods should integrate elements of organic agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ammann, Klaus

    2009-09-01

    In the previous article [Ammann, K. (2008) Feature: integrated farming: why organic farmers should use transgenic crops. New Biotechnol. 25, 101-107], in a plea for the introduction of transgenic crops into organic and integrated farming, it was announced that the complementary topic, namely that high tech farmers should integrate elements of organic agriculture, will be a follow up. Some selected arguments for such a view are summarised here. Basically, they comprise a differentiated view on agro-biodiversity outside the field of production; landscape management methods to enhance biodiversity levels. Both elements are compatible with basic ideas of organic farming. First, Precision Farming is given as one example of the many ways to support agricultural production through high technology, with the aim of reducing energy input, maintaining excellent soil conditions and enhancing yield. It is clear from this analysis that modern agriculture and certain elements of organic-integrated agriculture are compatible. There are sectors of high tech farming, such as the introduction of a better recycling scheme and also a better focus on socio-economic aspects, which need to be taken up seriously from organic-integrated farming, a system which puts a lot of emphasis on those elements and for which important research data are available. In the final part a new concept of dynamic sustainability is presented.

  11. Yield and economic performance of organic and conventional cotton-based farming systems--results from a field trial in India.

    PubMed

    Forster, Dionys; Andres, Christian; Verma, Rajeev; Zundel, Christine; Messmer, Monika M; Mäder, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The debate on the relative benefits of conventional and organic farming systems has in recent time gained significant interest. So far, global agricultural development has focused on increased productivity rather than on a holistic natural resource management for food security. Thus, developing more sustainable farming practices on a large scale is of utmost importance. However, information concerning the performance of farming systems under organic and conventional management in tropical and subtropical regions is scarce. This study presents agronomic and economic data from the conversion phase (2007-2010) of a farming systems comparison trial on a Vertisol soil in Madhya Pradesh, central India. A cotton-soybean-wheat crop rotation under biodynamic, organic and conventional (with and without Bt cotton) management was investigated. We observed a significant yield gap between organic and conventional farming systems in the 1(st) crop cycle (cycle 1: 2007-2008) for cotton (-29%) and wheat (-27%), whereas in the 2(nd) crop cycle (cycle 2: 2009-2010) cotton and wheat yields were similar in all farming systems due to lower yields in the conventional systems. In contrast, organic soybean (a nitrogen fixing leguminous plant) yields were marginally lower than conventional yields (-1% in cycle 1, -11% in cycle 2). Averaged across all crops, conventional farming systems achieved significantly higher gross margins in cycle 1 (+29%), whereas in cycle 2 gross margins in organic farming systems were significantly higher (+25%) due to lower variable production costs but similar yields. Soybean gross margin was significantly higher in the organic system (+11%) across the four harvest years compared to the conventional systems. Our results suggest that organic soybean production is a viable option for smallholder farmers under the prevailing semi-arid conditions in India. Future research needs to elucidate the long-term productivity and profitability, particularly of cotton and

  12. Yield and Economic Performance of Organic and Conventional Cotton-Based Farming Systems – Results from a Field Trial in India

    PubMed Central

    Forster, Dionys; Andres, Christian; Verma, Rajeev; Zundel, Christine; Messmer, Monika M.; Mäder, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The debate on the relative benefits of conventional and organic farming systems has in recent time gained significant interest. So far, global agricultural development has focused on increased productivity rather than on a holistic natural resource management for food security. Thus, developing more sustainable farming practices on a large scale is of utmost importance. However, information concerning the performance of farming systems under organic and conventional management in tropical and subtropical regions is scarce. This study presents agronomic and economic data from the conversion phase (2007–2010) of a farming systems comparison trial on a Vertisol soil in Madhya Pradesh, central India. A cotton-soybean-wheat crop rotation under biodynamic, organic and conventional (with and without Bt cotton) management was investigated. We observed a significant yield gap between organic and conventional farming systems in the 1st crop cycle (cycle 1: 2007–2008) for cotton (−29%) and wheat (−27%), whereas in the 2nd crop cycle (cycle 2: 2009–2010) cotton and wheat yields were similar in all farming systems due to lower yields in the conventional systems. In contrast, organic soybean (a nitrogen fixing leguminous plant) yields were marginally lower than conventional yields (−1% in cycle 1, −11% in cycle 2). Averaged across all crops, conventional farming systems achieved significantly higher gross margins in cycle 1 (+29%), whereas in cycle 2 gross margins in organic farming systems were significantly higher (+25%) due to lower variable production costs but similar yields. Soybean gross margin was significantly higher in the organic system (+11%) across the four harvest years compared to the conventional systems. Our results suggest that organic soybean production is a viable option for smallholder farmers under the prevailing semi-arid conditions in India. Future research needs to elucidate the long-term productivity and profitability, particularly of

  13. Effects of organic matter input from a fish farming facility on a Posidonia oceanica meadow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cancemi, Gianluigi; Falco, Giovanni De; Pergent, Gérard

    2003-04-01

    In the Mediterranean, the development of aquaculture along the coasts appears as a source of disturbance to the littoral ecosystems, and in particular to Posidonia oceanica seagrass meadows. Although the impact of fish farms in Northern Europe has been studied over the last few years, the data are more scarce in the Mediterranean. Thus, a number of physico-chemical and biological parameters have been examined here in order to evaluate the impact of a fish farm in a littoral bay of Corsica. The following values that were recorded in the vicinity of the fish farm are much higher than those at the reference station: organic content of the sediment (24-21 versus 2%), nitrogen concentrations (ammonium: 19.5-8.4 versus 1.8 μM) and phosphorous levels in the pore water (orthophosphates: 5.2-1.3 versus 1.7 μM). The seagrass meadow vitality also seems to be affected in the vicinity of cages, with densities that drop from 466 (reference station) to 108 shoots m -2 (20 m from cages). Total primary production also varies from 1070.6 to 87.9 g m -2 year -1. The main impact factors seem to be the input of organic matter originating from the cages and the high epiphyte biomass caused by the nutrient enrichment. The high level of organic matter and the presence of mud seem to alter the physico-chemical characteristics of the bottom sediment; moreover, the plant/epiphyte competition seems to lead to a leaf fragility and, more importantly, to a decrease in available light.

  14. Prokaryotic Diversity in the Rhizosphere of Organic, Intensive, and Transitional Coffee Farms in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Caldwell, Adam Collins; Silva, Lívia Carneiro Fidéles; da Silva, Cynthia Canêdo; Ouverney, Cleber Costa

    2015-01-01

    Despite a continuous rise in consumption of coffee over the past 60 years and recent studies showing positive benefits linked to human health, intensive coffee farming practices have been associated with environmental damage, risks to human health, and reductions in biodiversity. In contrast, organic farming has become an increasingly popular alternative, with both environmental and health benefits. This study aimed to characterize and determine the differences in the prokaryotic soil microbiology of three Brazilian coffee farms: one practicing intensive farming, one practicing organic farming, and one undergoing a transition from intensive to organic practices. Soil samples were collected from 20 coffee plant rhizospheres (soil directly influenced by the plant root exudates) and 10 control sites (soil 5 m away from the coffee plantation) at each of the three farms for a total of 90 samples. Profiling of 16S rRNA gene V4 regions revealed high levels of prokaryotic diversity in all three farms, with thousands of species level operational taxonomic units identified in each farm. Additionally, a statistically significant difference was found between each farm's coffee rhizosphere microbiome, as well as between coffee rhizosphere soils and control soils. Two groups of prokaryotes associated with the nitrogen cycle, the archaeal genus Candidatus Nitrososphaera and the bacterial order Rhizobiales were found to be abundant and statistically different in composition between the three farms and in inverse relationship to each other. Many of the nitrogen-fixing genera known to enhance plant growth were found in low numbers (e.g. Rhizobium, Agrobacter, Acetobacter, Rhodospirillum, Azospirillum), but the families in which they belong had some of the highest relative abundance in the dataset, suggesting many new groups may exist in these samples that can be further studied as potential plant growth-promoting bacteria to improve coffee production while diminishing negative

  15. Incidence rate of pathogen-specific clinical mastitis on conventional and organic Canadian dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Levison, L J; Miller-Cushon, E K; Tucker, A L; Bergeron, R; Leslie, K E; Barkema, H W; DeVries, T J

    2016-02-01

    Mastitis is a common and costly production disease on dairy farms. In Canada, the incidence rate of clinical mastitis (IRCM) has been determined for conventionally managed dairy farms; however, no studies to date have assessed rates in organically managed systems. The objectives of this observational study were (1) to determine the producer-reported IRCM and predominant pathogen types on conventional and organic dairy farms in Southern Ontario, Canada, and (2) to evaluate the association of both mean overall IRCM and pathogen-specific IRCM with management system, housing type, and pasture access. Data from 59 dairy farms in Southern Ontario, Canada, distributed across conventional (n=41) and organic management (n=18) systems, were collected from April 2011 to May 2012. In addition to management system, farms were categorized by housing method (loose or tie-stall) and pasture access for lactating cows. Participating producers identified and collected samples from 936 cases of clinical mastitis. The most frequently isolated mastitis pathogens were coagulase-negative staphylococci, Bacillus spp., Streptococcus spp., Staphylococcus aureus, and Escherichia coli. The IRCM was higher on conventional farms than organic (23.7 vs. 13.2 cases per 100 cow-years) and was not associated with housing type (loose or tie-stall), pasture access, or herd-average milk yield. Bulk tank somatic cell count tended to be lower on conventional farms than organic (222,000 vs. 272,000 cells/mL). Pathogen-specific IRCM attributed to Staph. aureus, Bacillus spp., and E. coli was greater on conventional than organic farms, but was not associated with housing or any other factors. In conclusion, organic management was associated with reduced overall and pathogen-specific IRCM.

  16. Environmental risk perception, environmental concern and propensity to participate in organic farming programmes.

    PubMed

    Toma, Luiza; Mathijs, Erik

    2007-04-01

    This paper aims to identify the factors underlying farmers' propensity to participate in organic farming programmes in a Romanian rural region that confronts non-point source pollution. For this, we employ structural equation modelling with latent variables using a specific data set collected through an agri-environmental farm survey in 2001. The model includes one 'behavioural intention' latent variable ('propensity to participate in organic farming programmes') and five 'attitude' and 'socio-economic' latent variables ('socio-demographic characteristics', 'economic characteristics', 'agri-environmental information access', 'environmental risk perception' and 'general environmental concern'). The results indicate that, overall, the model has an adequate fit to the data. All loadings are statistically significant, supporting the theoretical basis for assignment of indicators for each latent variable. The significance tests for the structural model parameters show 'environmental risk perception' as the strongest determinant of farmers' propensity to participate in organic farming programmes.

  17. Organic farming, soil health, and food quality: considering possible links

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    That the health of soils, plants, animals and people are linked is an ancient idea that still resonates. It is well known that soil nutrient deficiencies and toxicities can adversely impact plant and animal health. Growing evidence also supports the idea of positive links between farm management, so...

  18. [Organic agriculture and sustainable development].

    PubMed

    Li, Yu; Wang, Gang

    2004-12-01

    Basing on the research and practice of organic agriculture at home and abroad, this paper discussed the objectives of developing green food and the principles that must be persisted in the practice in China. In the light of the arguments concerning with sustainable agriculture, we also discussed the significance of "alternative agriculture" in theory and practice. Compared with conventional high-intensity agriculture, the production approaches of organic alternatives can improve soil fertility and have fewer detrimental effects on the environment. It is unclear whether conventional agriculture can be sustained because of the shortcomings presented in this paper, and it has taken scientists approximately one century to research and practice organic farming as a representative of alternative agriculture. The development of green food in China has only gone through more than ten years, and there would be some practical and theoretical effects on the development of China's green food if we exploit an environment-friendly production pattern of organic agriculture which majors in keeping human health and maintaining sustainable agriculture.

  19. Methods for assessing phosphorus overfeeding on organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Nordqvist, M; Holtenius, K; Spörndly, R

    2014-02-01

    Phosphorus (P) losses from dairy farms can severely damage aquatic ecosystems, so it is important to have tools to assess overfeeding of P. This study screened P intake and faecal excretion of different P fractions in dairy cows on conventional and organic farms, compared the P feeding level of the herds against the recommendations and analysed different sampling and analysis methods for assessing the general status of P feeding on the farms. The organic (n=14) and conventional farms (n=15) were of comparable size and were located in southern Sweden. On each farm, feed intake was registered for 10 cows representing four different lactation stages and their P intake was calculated and related to current recommendations. Faecal samples taken from the same cows were analysed for total P (TP) and soluble P. Milk production data for the cows were obtained from the Swedish official milk recording scheme. TP was determined in one slurry sample per farm. More than 70% of the cows studied, representing both conventional and organic herds, consumed P in excess of the recommendations. Conventional herds had higher P content in the ration than organic herds, and lactating cows in conventional herds had higher faecal concentrations of total and soluble P than those in organic herds. However in dry cows, the P content of the ration and soluble P and TP in faeces did not differ between the two management systems. Soluble P was well correlated to TP in faeces, and both were good indicators of P overfeeding.

  20. INSTRUCTION IN FARM MECHANICS, SUGGESTIONS FOR DEVELOPING TRAINING PROGRAMS IN FARM MECHANICS IN VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    HOLLENBERG, A.H.; JOHNSON, E.J.

    THE PURPOSE OF THE PROGRAM GUIDE IS TO ASSIST TEACHERS IN TRAINING YOUNG FARMERS AND FARM WORKERS IN THE SELECTION, OPERATION, UTILIZATION, AND MAINTENANCE OF FARM TOOLS, MACHINERY, AND MECHANICAL EQUIPMENT. DESIGNED BY NATIONAL AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION SPECIALISTS, THE DOCUMENT INCLUDES CHAPTERS ON THE CHANGING FARM, SETTING UP PROGRAMS, FARM…

  1. Farm Viability: Results of the USDA Family Farm Surveys. Rural Development Research Report No. 60.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salant, Priscilla; And Others

    The financial well-being of farm households in 29 Mississippi and Tennessee counties in 1980 and 8 Wisconsin counties in 1982 were analyzed. More than 90 percent of families planning to leave farming were viable under economic conditions at survey time. Almost half of Wisconsin dairy farm households were not viable. Higher debt, younger operator…

  2. Contamination of vegetables, fruits and soil with geohelmints eggs on organic farms in Poland.

    PubMed

    Kłapeć, Teresa; Borecka, Anna

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the contamination of vegetables, fruits and soil with zoonotic parasite eggs on organic and conventional farms in south-eastern Poland. To evaluate the contamination with eggs of zoonotic parasites, examinations were conducted on 8 conventional and 11 organic farms in south-eastern Poland from May-October in 2008 and 2009. The following fruit and vegetables were selected for the experiment: strawberry, leek, onion, carrot, zucchini, beetroot, parsley, potatoes, celery, rhubarb, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, pumpkin, young beetroot leaves, cauliflower, French beans, turnip, fennel and sorrel. A total of 187 samples of vegetables, fruits and soil were examined by means of a modified flotation method according to Quinn et al. (1980). Contamination with Ascaris, Trichuris and Toxocara eggs was found, with a higher number of positive samples revealed on conventional (34.7%), compared to organic farms (18.9%). The level of contamination in soil samples from conventional farms was higher (88.5% positive samples), than of those from organic farms (32.8%). Of the 15 geohelmints eggs, positive samples were found in vegetables: 9 Toxocara eggs, 4 Ascaris eggs and 2 Trichuris eggs. No geohelmints eggs were observed in the strawberry samples. The consumption of vegetables and fruits contaminated with the eggs of parasites may be the cause of parasitoses in humans. Stricter sanitary standards on farms of all types may limit the incidence of parasitic zoonoses.

  3. Prokaryotic Diversity in the Rhizosphere of Organic, Intensive, and Transitional Coffee Farms in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Caldwell, Adam Collins; Silva, Lívia Carneiro Fidéles; da Silva, Cynthia Canêdo; Ouverney, Cleber Costa

    2015-01-01

    Despite a continuous rise in consumption of coffee over the past 60 years and recent studies showing positive benefits linked to human health, intensive coffee farming practices have been associated with environmental damage, risks to human health, and reductions in biodiversity. In contrast, organic farming has become an increasingly popular alternative, with both environmental and health benefits. This study aimed to characterize and determine the differences in the prokaryotic soil microbiology of three Brazilian coffee farms: one practicing intensive farming, one practicing organic farming, and one undergoing a transition from intensive to organic practices. Soil samples were collected from 20 coffee plant rhizospheres (soil directly influenced by the plant root exudates) and 10 control sites (soil 5 m away from the coffee plantation) at each of the three farms for a total of 90 samples. Profiling of 16S rRNA gene V4 regions revealed high levels of prokaryotic diversity in all three farms, with thousands of species level operational taxonomic units identified in each farm. Additionally, a statistically significant difference was found between each farm’s coffee rhizosphere microbiome, as well as between coffee rhizosphere soils and control soils. Two groups of prokaryotes associated with the nitrogen cycle, the archaeal genus Candidatus Nitrososphaera and the bacterial order Rhizobiales were found to be abundant and statistically different in composition between the three farms and in inverse relationship to each other. Many of the nitrogen-fixing genera known to enhance plant growth were found in low numbers (e.g. Rhizobium, Agrobacter, Acetobacter, Rhodospirillum, Azospirillum), but the families in which they belong had some of the highest relative abundance in the dataset, suggesting many new groups may exist in these samples that can be further studied as potential plant growth-promoting bacteria to improve coffee production while diminishing negative

  4. Pyrosequencing reveals the influence of organic and conventional farming systems on bacterial communities.

    PubMed

    Li, Ru; Khafipour, Ehsan; Krause, Denis O; Entz, Martin H; de Kievit, Teresa R; Fernando, W G Dilantha

    2012-01-01

    It has been debated how different farming systems influence the composition of soil bacterial communities, which are crucial for maintaining soil health. In this research, we applied high-throughput pyrosequencing of V1 to V3 regions of bacterial 16S rRNA genes to gain further insight into how organic and conventional farming systems and crop rotation influence bulk soil bacterial communities. A 2×2 factorial experiment consisted of two agriculture management systems (organic versus conventional) and two crop rotations (flax-oat-fababean-wheat versus flax-alfalfa-alfalfa-wheat) was conducted at the Glenlea Long-Term Crop Rotation and Management Station, which is Canada's oldest organic-conventional management study field. Results revealed that there is a significant difference in the composition of bacterial genera between organic and conventional management systems but crop rotation was not a discriminator factor. Organic farming was associated with higher relative abundance of Proteobacteria, while Actinobacteria and Chloroflexi were more abundant in conventional farming. The dominant genera including Blastococcus, Microlunatus, Pseudonocardia, Solirubrobacter, Brevundimonas, Pseudomonas, and Stenotrophomonas exhibited significant variation between the organic and conventional farming systems. The relative abundance of bacterial communities at the phylum and class level was correlated to soil pH rather than other edaphic properties. In addition, it was found that Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria were more sensitive to pH variation.

  5. Pyrosequencing Reveals the Influence of Organic and Conventional Farming Systems on Bacterial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ru; Khafipour, Ehsan; Krause, Denis O.; Entz, Martin H.; de Kievit, Teresa R.; Fernando, W. G. Dilantha

    2012-01-01

    It has been debated how different farming systems influence the composition of soil bacterial communities, which are crucial for maintaining soil health. In this research, we applied high-throughput pyrosequencing of V1 to V3 regions of bacterial 16S rRNA genes to gain further insight into how organic and conventional farming systems and crop rotation influence bulk soil bacterial communities. A 2×2 factorial experiment consisted of two agriculture management systems (organic versus conventional) and two crop rotations (flax-oat-fababean-wheat versus flax-alfalfa-alfalfa-wheat) was conducted at the Glenlea Long-Term Crop Rotation and Management Station, which is Canada’s oldest organic-conventional management study field. Results revealed that there is a significant difference in the composition of bacterial genera between organic and conventional management systems but crop rotation was not a discriminator factor. Organic farming was associated with higher relative abundance of Proteobacteria, while Actinobacteria and Chloroflexi were more abundant in conventional farming. The dominant genera including Blastococcus, Microlunatus, Pseudonocardia, Solirubrobacter, Brevundimonas, Pseudomonas, and Stenotrophomonas exhibited significant variation between the organic and conventional farming systems. The relative abundance of bacterial communities at the phylum and class level was correlated to soil pH rather than other edaphic properties. In addition, it was found that Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria were more sensitive to pH variation. PMID:23284808

  6. Digital soil mapping in assessment of land suitability for organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghambashidze, Giorgi; Kentchiashvili, Naira; Tarkhnishvili, Maia; Jolokhava, Tamar; Meskhi, Tea

    2017-04-01

    Digital soil mapping (DSM) is a fast-developing sub discipline of soil science which gets more importance along with increased availability of spatial data. DSM is based on three main components: the input in the form of field and laboratory observational methods, the process used in terms of spatial and non-spatial soil inference systems, and the output in the form of spatial soil information systems, which includes outputs in the form of rasters of prediction along with the uncertainty of prediction. Georgia is one of the countries who are under the way of spatial data infrastructure development, which includes soil related spatial data also. Therefore, it is important to demonstrate the capacity of DSM technics for planning and decision making process, in which assessment of land suitability is a major interest for those willing to grow agricultural crops. In that term land suitability assessment for establishing organic farms is in high demand as market for organically produced commodities is still increasing. It is the first attempt in Georgia to use DSM to predict areas with potential for organic farming development. Current approach is based on risk assessment of soil pollution with toxic elements (As, Hg, Pb, Cd, Cr) and prediction of bio-availability of those elements to plants on example of the region of Western Georgia, where detailed soil survey was conducted and spatial database of soil was created. The results of the study show the advantages of DSM at early stage assessment and depending on availability and quality of the input data, it can achieve acceptable accuracy.

  7. Conventional, organic and biodynamic farming: differences in polyphenol content and antioxidant activity of Batavia lettuce.

    PubMed

    Heimler, Daniela; Vignolini, Pamela; Arfaioli, Paola; Isolani, Laura; Romani, Annalisa

    2012-02-01

    Lactuca sativa L. ssp. acephala L., cv. Batavia red Mohican plants were cultivated under intensive conventional, organic and biodynamic farming and were analyzed for their polyphenol content and antiradical activity in order to demonstrate the influence of farming on yield, polyphenol content and antiradical activity. The yield of plants from conventional farming was the highest (2.89 kg m⁻²), while polyphenol content, measured by spectrophotometry, of these plants was lower at P < 0.05 (1.36 mg g⁻¹) than the content of plants from organic and biodynamic farming (1.74 and 1.85 mg g⁻¹, respectively). The antiradical activity, measured by DPPH · assay, was positively correlated to flavonoid and hydroxycinnamic acid contents. Flavonoid, hydroxycinnamic acid and anthocyan patterns were not affected by the type of cultivation, while quantitative differences were demonstrated and some differences were found between conventional farming and organic or biodynamic farming. The yield of conventionally grown salads was the highest. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry.

  8. A comparison of management practices, farmer-perceived disease incidence and winter housing on organic and non-organic dairy farms in the UK.

    PubMed

    Langford, Fritha M; Rutherford, Kenneth Md; Jack, Mhairi C; Sherwood, Lorna; Lawrence, Alistair B; Haskell, Marie J

    2009-02-01

    There have been increases in the number of organic dairy farms in the UK in recent years. However, there is little information on the impact of organic regulations on cow welfare. As part of a larger study, we aimed to investigate differences between organic and non-organic farms in management practices and winter housing quality. Forty organic and 40 non-organic farms throughout the UK were visited. Organic and non-organic farms were paired for housing type, and as far as possible for herd size, genetic merit and location. A detailed questionnaire covering key aspects of dairy management was carried out with each farmer. On a subset of twenty pairs, an assessment of the quality of the winter housing for both lactating and dry cows was undertaken, covering the parlour, bedding, loafing and feeding areas. Management practices and building conditions varied greatly within farm types and there was considerable overlap between organic and non-organic farms. Milk yield, level and composition of concentrate feed, management of heifers and calving, and use of 'alternative treatments' to prevent and treat mastitis differed between organic and non-organic farms. In all other respects there were no differences between farm types. Building dimensions per cow did not differ, even though organic recommendations advise greater space per cow than recommended for non-organic farms. The similarity between organic and non-organic farms in most respects indicates that cow housing and health, based on both the described management regimes and the farmers' perceptions of disease incidence, on organic dairy farms is neither compromised by the regulations, nor considerably better than on non-organic farms.

  9. [Veterinary medicine and organic animal husbandry. III. Animal health in organic dairy farms].

    PubMed

    van Klink, E G; de Ruyter, W G; Sijpkens, C D; van Ham, P W

    1995-03-01

    Animal health is dealt with differently on biological farms then on conventional farms. On biological farms, stockmen see their animals not only as individual animals, but also as part of a herd in a balanced ecosystem. Disease prevention is therefore given much thought. The use of medicines is selective and subjected to strict regulations. This paper presents a summary of disease incidence in dairy cattle on biological farms and highlights specific problems and problem prevention in biological animal husbandry.

  10. Integrated physical-chemical procedure for soil organic carbon frationation and characterization during transition to organic farming

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Two field experiments in the South of Italy were established in 2009 to study and characterize SOM during transition to organic farming. Experiments included a cereal/leguminous rotation fertilized with permitted organic amendments with three replications. A sequential fractionation procedure was us...

  11. Teaching Diversified Organic Crop Production Using the Community Supported Agriculture Farming System Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Falk, Constance L.; Pao, Pauline; Cramer, Christopher S.

    2005-01-01

    An organic garden operated as a community supported agriculture (CSA) venture on the New Mexico State University (NMSU) main campus was begun in January 2002. Students enroll in an organic vegetable production class during spring and fall semesters to help manage and work on the project. The CSA model of farming involves the sale of shares to…

  12. Teaching Diversified Organic Crop Production Using the Community Supported Agriculture Farming System Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Falk, Constance L.; Pao, Pauline; Cramer, Christopher S.

    2005-01-01

    An organic garden operated as a community supported agriculture (CSA) venture on the New Mexico State University (NMSU) main campus was begun in January 2002. Students enroll in an organic vegetable production class during spring and fall semesters to help manage and work on the project. The CSA model of farming involves the sale of shares to…

  13. Case study: molasses as the primary energy supplement on an organic grazing dairy farm

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic dairies face many challenges, one of which is the high cost of purchasing organic feed grains. Many of these farms are seeking lower-cost feed ingredients that can be reasonably fed to lactating dairy cows. Molasses seems to be a viable, less expensive source of supplemental energy and vit...

  14. MOLASSES AS THE PRIMARY ENERGY SUPPLEMENT ON AN ORGANIC GRAZING DAIRY FARM

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic dairies in New York face challenges, including the high cost of purchasing organic feed grains. Many of these farms are looking for alternative ingredients to use that can be reasonably fed to lactating dairy cows, and that are less costly. Molasses seems to be a viable, less expensive, so...

  15. Management practices and reported antimicrobial usage on conventional and organic dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Zwald, A G; Ruegg, P L; Kaneene, J B; Warnick, L D; Wells, S J; Fossler, C; Halbert, L W

    2004-01-01

    The primary objective was to compare reported antimicrobial usage between conventional and organic dairy farms. A secondary objective was to contrast selected management characteristics of conventional and organic dairy herds. A questionnaire was administered on site to selected dairy farmers located in Michigan, Minnesota, New York, and Wisconsin. Organic herds (n = 32) were smaller and produced less milk than conventional herds (n = 99). Lactating cows in organic dairies were more likely to be housed in tie stalls, whereas most conventional dairies housed cows in free stalls and milked in a parlor. Total mixed rations and purchased feeds were used on more conventional dairy farms compared with organic dairy farms. Conventional dairy producers were more likely to use advice from veterinarians for recommendations of treatment, and organic dairy producers were more likely to rely on advice from other farmers. Based on recall of antibiotic usage in the previous 60 d, 5.1, 84.9, 9.1, and 0.9% of farmers with conventional herds reported treatment of none, 1 to 10%, 11 to 25%, and >25% of milk cows, respectively. Most organic farmers (90.6%) reported no antibiotic treatments of milk cows, whereas 9.4% reported treating 1 to 10% of milk cows. Ceftiofur was the most commonly reported antibiotic for both farm types. Milk replacer containing antibiotics was reportedly used on 49.5% of conventional herds but only on one organic herd (3.1%). Antibiotics were used in heifer calves on 74.7% of conventional herds versus 21.9% of organic herds. Antibiotics to treat mastitis were used on 79.8% of conventional herds but on none of the organic herds. Most organic farms were in compliance with standards in advance of implementation of regulations.

  16. Development of FAST.Farm: A New Multiphysics Engineering Tool for Wind Farm Design and Analysis: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Jonkman, Jason; Annoni, Jennifer; Hayman, Greg; Jonkman, Bonnie; Purkayastha, Avi

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents the development of FAST.Farm, a new multiphysics tool applicable to engineering problems in research and industry involving wind farm performance and cost optimization that is needed to address the current underperformance, failures, and expenses plaguing the wind industry. Achieving wind cost-of-energy targets - which requires improvements in wind farm performance and reliability, together with reduced uncertainty and expenditures - has been eluded by the complicated nature of the wind farm design problem, especially the sophisticated interaction between atmospheric phenomena and wake dynamics and array effects. FAST.Farm aims to balance the need for accurate modeling of the relevant physics for predicting power performance and loads while maintaining low computational cost to support a highly iterative and probabilistic design process and system-wide optimization. FAST.Farm makes use of FAST to model the aero-hydro-servo-elastics of distinct turbines in the wind farm, and it is based on some of the principles of the Dynamic Wake Meandering (DWM) model, but avoids many of the limitations of existing DWM implementations.

  17. Prevalence and distribution of Salmonella in organic and conventional broiler poultry farms.

    PubMed

    Alali, Walid Q; Thakur, Siddhartha; Berghaus, Roy D; Martin, Michael P; Gebreyes, Wondwossen A

    2010-11-01

    The objective of this cross-sectional study was to compare the prevalence of Salmonella and antimicrobial-resistant Salmonella, as well as investigate the distribution of this pathogen in organic and conventional broiler poultry farms. Fecal (n = 420), feed (n = 140), and drinking water (n = 140) samples were collected from birds at 3 and 8 weeks of age for 2-flock cycles. One house was sampled per farm at three organic and four conventional broiler farms from the same company in North Carolina. All samples were analyzed for the presence of Salmonella using selective enrichment techniques. Further phenotypic (antimicrobial susceptibility) and genotypic (pulsed-field gel electrophoresis [PFGE]) testing were performed. Salmonella prevalences in fecal samples were 5.6% (10/180) and 38.8% (93/240) from organic and conventional farms, respectively. From feed, 5.0% (3/60) and 27.5% (22/80) of the samples were positive for Salmonella from organic and conventional farms, respectively. None of the water samples were positive for Salmonella. Seventy isolates were characterized by antimicrobial susceptibility and PFGE types. The two most common resistance phenotypes were single resistance to streptomycin (36.2% [25/58]: conventional; 25% [3/12] organic), and multidrug resistance to six antimicrobial agents: ampicillin-streptomycin-amoxicillin/clavulanic acid-cephalothin-ceftiofur-cefoxitin (AmStAxChCfFx; 39.7%: conventional only). Genotypic analysis using PFGE showed clonality among isolates within and between the two types of farms. The results of our study suggest that within this poultry company, the prevalence of fecal Salmonella was lower in certified-organic birds than in conventionally raised birds, and the prevalence of antimicrobial-resistant Salmonella was also higher in conventionally raised birds than in certified-organic birds.

  18. Measuring the environmental effects of organic farming: A meta-analysis of structural variables in empirical research.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ki Song; Choe, Young Chan; Park, Sung Hee

    2015-10-01

    This study examined the structural variables affecting the environmental effects of organic farming compared to those of conventional farming. A meta-analysis based on 107 studies and 360 observations published from 1977 to 2012 compared energy efficiency (EE) and greenhouse gas emissions (GHGE) for organic and conventional farming. The meta-analysis systematically analyzed the results of earlier comparative studies and used logistic regression to identify the structural variables that contributed to differences in the effects of organic and conventional farming on the environment. The statistical evidence identified characteristics that differentiated the environmental effects of organic and conventional farming, which is controversial. The results indicated that data sources, sample size and product type significantly affected EE, whereas product type, cropping pattern and measurement unit significantly affected the GHGE of organic farming compared to conventional farming. Superior effects of organic farming on the environment were more likely to appear for larger samples, primary data rather than secondary data, monocropping rather than multicropping, and crops other than fruits and vegetables. The environmental effects of organic farming were not affected by the study period, geographic location, farm size, cropping pattern, or measurement method.

  19. Antimicrobial susceptibilities of Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli recovered from organic turkey farms in Germany.

    PubMed

    El-Adawy, Hosny; Ahmed, Marwa F E; Hotzel, Helmut; Tomaso, Herbert; Tenhagen, Bernd-Alois; Hartung, Joerg; Neubauer, Heinrich; Hafez, Hafez M

    2015-11-01

    The popularity of food produced from animals kept under an organic regimen has increased in recent years. In Germany, turkey meat consumption has increased. Despite several studies assessing the susceptibility of campylobacters to various antibiotics in poultry, no sufficient data exists regarding the antimicrobial resistance of campylobacters in organic-reared turkeys. This study provides information about antibiotic resistance in Campylobacter isolated from turkeys reared on organic farms in Germany. Ninety-six Campylobacter strains (41 C. jejuni and 55 C. coli) were isolated from different free-range turkey flocks. In vitro antimicrobial sensitivity testing was done using a broth microdilution test, and the presence of resistance genes to antibiotics (ciprofloxacin, tetracycline) was investigated. All Campylobacter isolates from organic turkeys (n = 96) were phenotypically sensitive to gentamicin, erythromycin, streptomycin, and chloramphenicol. In this study, the antibiotic susceptibilities of C. jejuni to ciprofloxacin, tetracycline, and naladixic acid were 56.0%, 51.3%, and 56.0%, respectively. In contrast, 44.0%, 73.0%, and 74.6% of C. coli isolates were resistant to tetracycline, ciprofloxacin, and nalidixic acid, respectively. Replacement of the Thr-86→Ile in the gyrA gene, and the presence of the tet(O) gene were the mainly identified resistance mechanisms against fluoroquinolones and tetracycline, respectively.These results also reinforce the need to develop strategies and implement specific control procedures to reduce the development of antimicrobial resistance.

  20. Dairy cow cleanliness and milk quality on organic and conventional farms in the UK.

    PubMed

    Ellis, Kathryn A; Innocent, Giles T; Mihm, Monika; Cripps, Peter; McLean, W Graham; Howard, C Vyvyan; Grove-White, Dai

    2007-08-01

    A subjective cow cleanliness scoring system was validated and used to assess the cleanliness score of dairy cows at different times in the year. A longitudinal study followed a number of farms from summer to winter, and a larger, cross-sectional study assessed a greater number of farms during the housed winter period. The scoring system was demonstrated to be both a repeatable and practical technique to use on-farm and showed that cows become dirtier in the transition from summer grazing to winter housing. Although farming system (organic or conventional) had no effect on cow cleanliness when cows were at grass, when housed in the winter, organic cows were significantly more likely to be cleaner. There was a link between cow cleanliness scores and milk quality, with herds having lower bulk tank somatic cell counts (BTSCC) tending to have a lower (cleaner) median cow cleanliness score; with this relationship strongest for the organic herds. There was no significant link between cleanliness score and Bactoscan (BS) count or clinical mastitis incidence. No major mastitis pathogens were cultured from bulk tank milk samples from the quartile of herds with the cleanest cows in contrast to the quartile of herds with the dirtiest cows, where significant mastitis pathogens were cultured. Based on this study, all farms, especially organic systems, should attempt to keep cows clean as part of subclinical mastitis control.

  1. Soil Microbiome Is More Heterogeneous in Organic Than in Conventional Farming System.

    PubMed

    Lupatini, Manoeli; Korthals, Gerard W; de Hollander, Mattias; Janssens, Thierry K S; Kuramae, Eiko E

    2016-01-01

    Organic farming system and sustainable management of soil pathogens aim at reducing the use of agricultural chemicals in order to improve ecosystem health. Despite the essential role of microbial communities in agro-ecosystems, we still have limited understanding of the complex response of microbial diversity and composition to organic and conventional farming systems and to alternative methods for controlling plant pathogens. In this study we assessed the microbial community structure, diversity and richness using 16S rRNA gene next generation sequences and report that conventional and organic farming systems had major influence on soil microbial diversity and community composition while the effects of the soil health treatments (sustainable alternatives for chemical control) in both farming systems were of smaller magnitude. Organically managed system increased taxonomic and phylogenetic richness, diversity and heterogeneity of the soil microbiota when compared with conventional farming system. The composition of microbial communities, but not the diversity nor heterogeneity, were altered by soil health treatments. Soil health treatments exhibited an overrepresentation of specific microbial taxa which are known to be involved in soil suppressiveness to pathogens (plant-parasitic nematodes and soil-borne fungi). Our results provide a comprehensive survey on the response of microbial communities to different agricultural systems and to soil treatments for controlling plant pathogens and give novel insights to improve the sustainability of agro-ecosystems by means of beneficial microorganisms.

  2. Soil Microbiome Is More Heterogeneous in Organic Than in Conventional Farming System

    PubMed Central

    Lupatini, Manoeli; Korthals, Gerard W.; de Hollander, Mattias; Janssens, Thierry K. S.; Kuramae, Eiko E.

    2017-01-01

    Organic farming system and sustainable management of soil pathogens aim at reducing the use of agricultural chemicals in order to improve ecosystem health. Despite the essential role of microbial communities in agro-ecosystems, we still have limited understanding of the complex response of microbial diversity and composition to organic and conventional farming systems and to alternative methods for controlling plant pathogens. In this study we assessed the microbial community structure, diversity and richness using 16S rRNA gene next generation sequences and report that conventional and organic farming systems had major influence on soil microbial diversity and community composition while the effects of the soil health treatments (sustainable alternatives for chemical control) in both farming systems were of smaller magnitude. Organically managed system increased taxonomic and phylogenetic richness, diversity and heterogeneity of the soil microbiota when compared with conventional farming system. The composition of microbial communities, but not the diversity nor heterogeneity, were altered by soil health treatments. Soil health treatments exhibited an overrepresentation of specific microbial taxa which are known to be involved in soil suppressiveness to pathogens (plant-parasitic nematodes and soil-borne fungi). Our results provide a comprehensive survey on the response of microbial communities to different agricultural systems and to soil treatments for controlling plant pathogens and give novel insights to improve the sustainability of agro-ecosystems by means of beneficial microorganisms. PMID:28101080

  3. Identifying sources of metal exposure in organic and conventional dairy farming.

    PubMed

    López-Alonso, M; Rey-Crespo, F; Herrero-Latorre, C; Miranda, M

    2017-10-01

    In humans the main route of exposure to toxic metals is through the diet, and there is therefore a clear need for this source of contamination to be minimized, particularly in food of animal origin. For this purpose, the various sources of toxic metals in livestock farming (which vary depending on the production system) must be taken into account. The objectives of the present study were to establish the profile of metal exposure in dairy cattle in Spain and to determine, by chemometric (multivariate statistical) analysis, any differences between organic and conventional systems. Blood samples from 522 cows (341 from organic farms and 181 from conventional farms) were analysed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry to determine the concentrations of 14 elements: As, Cd, Co, Cr, Cu, Fe, Hg, I, Mn, Mo, Ni, Pb, Se and Zn. In conventional systems the generally high and balanced trace element concentrations in the mineral-supplemented concentrate feed strongly determined the metal status of the cattle. However, in organic systems, soil ingestion was an important contributing factor. Our results demonstrate that general information about the effects of mineral supplementation in conventional farming cannot be directly extrapolated to organic farming and special attention should be given to the contribution of ingestion of soil during grazing and/or ingestion of soil contaminated forage. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Organization Development. Symposium.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2002

    This document contains four papers on organization development and human resources. "Identification of Key Predictors of Rapid Change Adaptation in a Service Organization" (Constantine Kontoghiorghes, Carol Hansen) reports on the results of an exploratory study, which suggests that rapid change adaptation will be more likely to occur in…

  5. FARM LABOR ORGANIZING 1905-1967, A BRIEF HISTORY.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    TOONI, LINDA LEWIS; AND OTHERS

    AGRICULTURAL LABORERS HAVE BEEN INEFFECTIVE IN ORGANIZING A LABOR UNION. THE NATIONAL LABOR RELATIONS ACT WRITTEN IN 1935 ORIGINALLY HAD PROVISIONS FOR AGRICULTURAL LABORERS, BUT IT WAS DELETED BEFORE FINAL PASSAGE. EARLY ORGANIZING ATTEMPTS OCCURRED IN THE LATE YEARS OF THE 19TH CENTURY WHEN CHINESE IMMIGRANTS ORGANIZED PROTECTIVE ASSOCIATIONS…

  6. Estrogenic contamination by manure fertilizer in organic farming: a case study with the lizard Podarcis sicula.

    PubMed

    Verderame, Mariailaria; Limatola, Ermelinda; Scudiero, Rosaria

    2016-01-01

    In the last years, worldwide organic farming has grown exponentially; as a consequence, the use of animal manure as a soil fertility source has become the principal agricultural choice. However, the use of manure as fertilizer can increase the amount of steroid hormone metabolites in the soil. In southern Italy, lacertidae lizards are the most abundant vertebrate group in agroecosystems and have been identified as potential model species for ecotoxicological studies. The aim of this study was to understand if the manure applied in organic farming has estrogen-like effects in the lizard Podarcis sicula. Adult male lizards were captured in two organic agricultural fields (manure-treated sites) and in an uncultivated field (control site). Lizards from the two organic farms displayed hepatic biosynthetic alterations typical of an estrogenic contamination; hepatocytes contained both vitellogenin and estrogen receptor alpha transcripts and proteins, detected by in situ hybridization and immunocytochemistry. The same cells did not show cadmium, lead and metallothionein accumulation, indicative of the lack of inorganic contamination. These findings suggest that exogenous estrogens, arising from the use of manure, could affect the welfare of wild animals and animal breeding, leading to bioaccumulation of estrogens in food chain, with possible risk for human consumers. For this reason, organic farming should implement the use of sustainable practices such as crop rotation to preserve the soil biological activity, rather than organic manure as fertilizer.

  7. Physical attributes of Ultisol of Brazil's northeastern semiarid under organic farming of wine grapes.

    PubMed

    Feitosa, Jardenia R; Mendes, Alessandra M S; Olszevski, Nelci; Cunha, Tony J F; Cortez, Jorge W; Giongo, Vanderlise

    2015-03-01

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of organic farming of wine grapes under physical and chemical characteristics of Ultisol Brazil's northeastern semiarid region. The samples of soil were collected from the row and interrow of the farming and from the fallow area, at the depths of 0.0-0.10, 0.10-0.20, 0.20-0.30 and 0.30-0.60 m. The samples were collected at six and twelve months after the culture implementation to evaluate the state of aggregation, bulk density and total soil porosity, flocculation index and organic matter contents, calcium, magnesium, and sodium. The results were submitted to statistical analysis. The adoption of organic farming contributed to the soil aggregation process. The bulk density and total soil porosity did not differ significantly between the evaluations, but were within the critical limits for sandy soils. The index flocculation did not have a great influence on the aggregates formation, being this process influenced by organic matter. The period of one year was considered short to obtain conclusive results in improving the soil quality by organic farming, since there are difficulties in tropical soils in promoting significant increases in organic matter content in short time.

  8. Stakeholder co-development of farm level nutrient management software

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buckley, Cathal; Mechan, Sarah; Macken-Walsh, Aine; Heanue, Kevin

    2013-04-01

    Over the last number of decades intensification in the use nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) in agricultural production has lead to excessive accumulations of these nutrients in soils, groundwaters and surface water bodies (Sutton et al., 2011). According to the European Environment Agency (2012) despite some progress diffuse pollution from agriculture is still significant in more than 40% of Europe's water bodies in rivers and coastal waters, and in one third of the water bodies in lakes and transitional waters. Recently it was estimated that approximately 29% of monitored river channel length is polluted to some degree across the Republic of Ireland. Agricultural sources were suspected in 47 per cent of cases (EPA, 2012). Farm level management practices to reduce nutrient transfers from agricultural land to watercourses can be divided into source reduction and source interception approaches (Ribaudo et al., 2001). Source interception approaches involve capturing nutrients post mobilisation through policy instruments such as riparian buffer zones or wetlands. Conversely, the source reduction approach is preventative in nature and promotes strict management of nutrient at farm and field level to reduce risk of mobilisation in the first instance. This has the potential to deliver a double dividend of reduced nutrient loss to the wider ecosystem while maximising economic return to agricultural production at the field and farm levels. Adoption and use of nutrient management plans among farmers is far from the norm. This research engages key farmer and extension stakeholders to explore how current nutrient management planning software and outputs should be developed to make it more user friendly and usable in a practical way. An open innovation technology co-development approach was adopted to investigate what is demanded by the end users - farm advisors and farmers. Open innovation is a knowledge management strategy that uses the input of stakeholders to improve

  9. Organic pollution of rivers: Combined threats of urbanization, livestock farming and global climate change.

    PubMed

    Wen, Yingrong; Schoups, Gerrit; van de Giesen, Nick

    2017-02-23

    Organic pollution of rivers by wastewater discharge from human activities negatively impacts people and ecosystems. Without treatment, pollution control relies on a combination of natural degradation and dilution by natural runoff to reduce downstream effects. We quantify here for the first time the global sanitation crisis through its impact on organic river pollution from the threats of (1) increasing wastewater discharge due to urbanization and intensification of livestock farming, and (2) reductions in river dilution capacity due to climate change and water extractions. Using in-stream Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) as an overall indicator of organic river pollution, we calculate historical (2000) and future (2050) BOD concentrations in global river networks. Despite significant self-cleaning capacities of rivers, the number of people affected by organic pollution (BOD >5 mg/l) is projected to increase from 1.1 billion in 2000 to 2.5 billion in 2050. With developing countries disproportionately affected, our results point to a growing need for affordable wastewater solutions.

  10. Organic pollution of rivers: Combined threats of urbanization, livestock farming and global climate change

    PubMed Central

    Wen, Yingrong; Schoups, Gerrit; van de Giesen, Nick

    2017-01-01

    Organic pollution of rivers by wastewater discharge from human activities negatively impacts people and ecosystems. Without treatment, pollution control relies on a combination of natural degradation and dilution by natural runoff to reduce downstream effects. We quantify here for the first time the global sanitation crisis through its impact on organic river pollution from the threats of (1) increasing wastewater discharge due to urbanization and intensification of livestock farming, and (2) reductions in river dilution capacity due to climate change and water extractions. Using in-stream Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) as an overall indicator of organic river pollution, we calculate historical (2000) and future (2050) BOD concentrations in global river networks. Despite significant self-cleaning capacities of rivers, the number of people affected by organic pollution (BOD >5 mg/l) is projected to increase from 1.1 billion in 2000 to 2.5 billion in 2050. With developing countries disproportionately affected, our results point to a growing need for affordable wastewater solutions. PMID:28230079

  11. Organic pollution of rivers: Combined threats of urbanization, livestock farming and global climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wen, Yingrong; Schoups, Gerrit; van de Giesen, Nick

    2017-02-01

    Organic pollution of rivers by wastewater discharge from human activities negatively impacts people and ecosystems. Without treatment, pollution control relies on a combination of natural degradation and dilution by natural runoff to reduce downstream effects. We quantify here for the first time the global sanitation crisis through its impact on organic river pollution from the threats of (1) increasing wastewater discharge due to urbanization and intensification of livestock farming, and (2) reductions in river dilution capacity due to climate change and water extractions. Using in-stream Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) as an overall indicator of organic river pollution, we calculate historical (2000) and future (2050) BOD concentrations in global river networks. Despite significant self-cleaning capacities of rivers, the number of people affected by organic pollution (BOD >5 mg/l) is projected to increase from 1.1 billion in 2000 to 2.5 billion in 2050. With developing countries disproportionately affected, our results point to a growing need for affordable wastewater solutions.

  12. The Development of a Virtual Farm for Applications in Elementary Science Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tarng, Wernhuar; Chang, Mei-Yu; Ou, Kuo-Liang; Yu, Kein-Fu; Hsieh, Kuen-Rong

    2012-01-01

    The goal of this study is to develop a virtual farm for educational applications. Users can play the role of a farmer by planting vegetables and raising poultry on the virtual farm to observe their growth through online learning activities. The virtual farm possesses educational and entertaining functions, and it is designed by simulating the real…

  13. The Development of a Virtual Farm for Applications in Elementary Science Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tarng, Wernhuar; Chang, Mei-Yu; Ou, Kuo-Liang; Yu, Kein-Fu; Hsieh, Kuen-Rong

    2012-01-01

    The goal of this study is to develop a virtual farm for educational applications. Users can play the role of a farmer by planting vegetables and raising poultry on the virtual farm to observe their growth through online learning activities. The virtual farm possesses educational and entertaining functions, and it is designed by simulating the real…

  14. Whole farm quantification of GHG emissions within smallholder farms in developing countries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seebauer, Matthias

    2014-03-01

    The IPCC has compiled the best available scientific methods into published guidelines for estimating greenhouse gas emissions and emission removals from the land-use sector. In order to evaluate existing GHG quantification tools to comprehensively quantify GHG emissions and removals in smallholder conditions, farm scale quantification was tested with farm data from Western Kenya. After conducting a cluster analysis to identify different farm typologies GHG quantification was exercised using the VCS SALM methodology complemented with IPCC livestock emission factors and the cool farm tool. The emission profiles of four farm clusters representing the baseline conditions in the year 2009 are compared with 2011 where farmers adopted sustainable land management practices (SALM). The results demonstrate the variation in both the magnitude of the estimated GHG emissions per ha between different smallholder farm typologies and the emissions estimated by applying two different accounting tools. The farm scale quantification further shows that the adoption of SALM has a significant impact on emission reduction and removals and the mitigation benefits range between 4 and 6.5 tCO2 ha-1 yr-1 with significantly different mitigation benefits depending on typologies of the crop-livestock systems, their different agricultural practices, as well as adoption rates of improved practices. However, the inherent uncertainty related to the emission factors applied by accounting tools has substantial implications for reported agricultural emissions. With regard to uncertainty related to activity data, the assessment confirms the high variability within different farm types as well as between different parameters surveyed to comprehensively quantify GHG emissions within smallholder farms.

  15. Management, feeding, production, reproduction and udder health on organic and conventional Swiss dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Roesch, M; Doherr, M G; Blum, J W

    2006-08-01

    Organic dairy farms (OP; n=60) and conventional dairy farms (integrated production, IP; n=60), matched in size, location, and agricultural zone (altitude), were studied for possible differences in management, feeding, production, reproduction and udder health. OP and IP farms were similar in size (17.7 and 16.9 ha), milk quota (65900 and 70,000 kg/year), cow number (14 and 15), cow age (5.3 and 5.2 years), housing of cows of the Simmental x Red Holstein or Holstein breeds (87 and 75%; 45 and 60%), but differed significantly with respect to loose housing systems (18 and 7%), outside paddocks (98 and 75%), energy-corrected 305-d milk yield (5,695 and 6,059 kg), milk protein content (31.8 and 32.7 g/kg), use of bucket milking systems (73 and 33%), observance of regular (12-h) milking intervals (47 and 68%), routine application of the California-Mastitis-Test (10 and 28%), teat dipping after milking (25 and 43%) and blanket dry cow treatments (0 and 45%). Milk somatic cell counts on OP and IP farms (119 000 and 117,000/mL) and reproduction data were similar and there were no significant differences between OP and IP farms as concerns available feeds, planning and management of feeding. Alternative veterinary treatments were used more often on OP than IP farms (55 and 17%). Main causes for cow replacements on OP and IP farms were fertility disorders (both 45%), age (40 and 42%), sale (30 and 37%) and udder health (35 and 13%). Between OP and IP Swiss dairy farms thus relatively few larger differences were found.

  16. Comparison of antibiotic resistance of udder pathogens in dairy cows kept on organic and on conventional farms.

    PubMed

    Roesch, M; Perreten, V; Doherr, M G; Schaeren, W; Schällibaum, M; Blum, J W

    2006-03-01

    There has been a rapid rise in the emergence of multi-drug-resistant pathogens in the past 10 to 15 yr and some bacteria are now resistant to most antimicrobial agents. Antibiotic use is very restricted on Swiss organic dairy farms, and a purely prophylactic use, such as for dry cow mastitis prevention, is forbidden. A low prevalence of antibiotic resistance in organic farms can be expected compared with conventional farms because the bacteria are infrequently or not exposed to antibiotics. The occurrence of antibiotic resistance was compared between mastitis pathogens (Staphylococcus aureus, nonaureus staphylococci, Streptococcus dysgalactiae, Streptococcus uberis) from farms with organic and conventional dairy production. Clear differences in the percentage of antibiotic resistance were mainly species-related, but did not differ significantly between isolates from cows kept on organic and conventional farms, except for Streptococcus uberis, which exhibited significantly more single resistances (compared with no resistance) when isolated from cows kept on organic farms (6/10 isolates) than on conventional farms (0/5 isolates). Different percentages were found (albeit not statistically significant) in resistance to ceftiofur, erythromycin, clindamycin, enrofloxacin, chloramphenicol, penicillin, oxacillin, gentamicin, tetracycline, and quinupristin-dalfopristin, but, importantly, none of the strains was resistant to amoxicillin-clavulanic acid or vancomycin. Multidrug resistance was rarely encountered. The frequency of antibiotic resistance in organic farms, in which the use of antibiotics must be very restricted, was not different from conventional farms, and was contrary to expectation. The antibiotic resistance status needs to be monitored in organic farms as well as conventional farms and production factors related to the absence of reduced antibiotic resistance in organic farms need to be evaluated.

  17. The influence of wind farm development on the hydrochemistry and ecology of an upland stream.

    PubMed

    Millidine, K J; Malcolm, I A; McCartney, A; Laughton, R; Gibbins, C N; Fryer, R J

    2015-08-01

    Despite perceptions of pristine condition, upland environments are increasingly subject to a range of anthropogenic pressures including air pollution, climate change, land-use change and evolving land management strategies. Although they have received little attention to date, the large-scale development of upland wind farms also has the potential to disturb vegetation and soils, alter hydrology and water quality and, thus, impact freshwater ecosystems. This paper presents the findings of a 5-year study of the impacts of wind farm construction on the freshwater environment. Data on water quality, invertebrate and fish populations were collected for 2 years before construction and for the following 3 years covering the construction period and the initial period of the farm's operation. In contrast to previous studies, the impacts of the wind farm development were assessed for a suite of potentially affected hydrochemical variables using a before-after-control-impact (BACI) analysis that allowed separation of construction effects from spatial and temporal variability in hydroclimatological conditions, thereby providing an improved, more robust evidence base. There was a small but significant negative effect of construction on pH, alkalinity (Alk) and acid neutralising capacity (ANC) in the upper part of the treatment catchment, which was where the wind farm was situated. The effects were more marked under higher flow conditions. It is hypothesised that this reflects changes in hydrological processes with increased near-surface runoff or organic acid mobilisation. There was no indication that either invertebrate community structure or fish densities were impacted by construction and the resulting effects on water quality.

  18. [Contamination of soil with geohelminth eggs on vegetable organic farms in the Lublin voivodeship, Poland].

    PubMed

    Kłapeć, Teresa

    2009-01-01

    Organic farming, despite being more difficult and labour consuming than traditional farming, gains increasingly more followers among farmers. Currently in Poland there are approximately 10 000 organic farms. Pure, uncontaminated soil in the Lublin voivodeship makes this area an ideal location for organic agriculture production. In 2006-2007, 102 soil samples were examined from 40 organic farms specializing in vegetables and berries. Farms for the study were selected by ecology- and food-production specialists from the Lublin Agriculture Advisory Centre in Końskowola. The following plants were cultivated on the farms examined: berry-bearing plants, carrots, parsley, zucchini, cabbage, lettuce, cucumbers, cauliflowers, leeks, onions, kidney beans, beetroots, potatoes, pumpkins, broad beans, rhubarb and herbs. The presently reported parasitological survey was performed on 102 soil samples. Each sample consisted of 100 g of soil and the methodology followed that of the Polish Standard PN-Z-19000-4 (flotation method by Quinn et al.). The survey yielded eggs of parasites representing genera: Ascaris, Trichuris and Toxocara. Contamination with eggs of intestinal parasites was noted in 43 (42.16%) soil samples. Toxocara spp. eggs were found in 24 samples (55.81%). Eggs of Ascaris spp. were detected in 18 samples (41.86%) while eggs of Trichuris spp were present in one sample (2.32%). In total, 29 eggs of Toxocara spp., 19 eggs of Ascaris spp., and 1 egg of Trichuris spp. were found. The largest amount of soil for examination was taken across the plantations of berry-bearing plants - 57 samples. In the group examined, plantations of raspberries and strawberries dominated. The soil was contaminated with the eggs of Toxocara spp. and Ascaris spp. No eggs of Trichuris spp. were detected. The presence of eggs of intestinal parasites in soil poses a threat of geohelminthoses to people who eat contaminated fresh fruits and vegetables.

  19. Behavior of cows during and after peak feeding time on organic and conventional dairy farms in the United Kingdom.

    PubMed

    Langford, F M; Rutherford, K M D; Sherwood, L; Jack, M C; Lawrence, A B; Haskell, M J

    2011-02-01

    The behavior of groups of housed, lactating dairy cattle was observed over 2 winter housing periods on 20 organic farms and 20 conventional farms in the United Kingdom. Three methods were used: (1) 6 video-clips of 10 min duration were captured of cows feeding at sections of the feed-bunk face during the peak feeding period (0 to 90 min) and continuously observed for aggressive interactions among cows; (2) the proportion of cows at the feed-bunk face was scanned every 15 min for 4.5h to include the peak feeding period (0 to 255 min); and (3) all nonfeeding behaviors were scanned every 15 min for 2.5h after the peak feeding period (120 to 255 min). The latter scans were analyzed post hoc for measures of cow comfort (freestall farms only). Management and health data were collected on each farm. On farms with open-fronted feed-bunk faces, a greater number of aggressive interactions occurred at the feed-bunk face at peak feeding time on organic farms than on conventional farms (organic = 36.3 ± 4.4; conventional = 29.1 ± 3.0). Higher proportions of cows were at the feed-bunk face at peak feeding on organic farms than on conventional farms (organic=0.58 ± 0.04; conventional=0.48 ± 0.03). Housing type (freestall versus straw pen) explained most differences in postfeeding behavior (proportion of ruminating cow in alleyways: freestalls=0.16±0.06 vs. straw-pen=0.08 ± 0.03), with few differences between organic and conventional herds. On freestall farms, the proportions of cows on organic farms lying down postfeeding was smaller than in conventional herds (organic=0.38 ± 0.09 vs. conventional=0.43 ± 0.07). Differences in behavior around peak feeding time could be associated with the reduction in food "quality" on organic farms compared with the energy requirement of the cows, with cows on organic farms being highly motivated to feed. A correlation was observed between farms that had high amounts of lying and farms that had high lameness prevalence (R(2

  20. [Dynamics of active organic carbon in a paddy soil under different rice farming modes].

    PubMed

    Zhan, Ming; Cao, Cou-Gui; Jiang, Yang; Wang, Jin-Ping; Yue, Li-Xin; Cai, Ming-Li

    2010-08-01

    A field experiment was conducted to study the dynamics of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), readily oxidizable organic carbon (ROC), and microbial biomass carbon (MBC) in a paddy soil under integrated rice-duck farming (RD), intermittent irrigation (RW), and conventional flooded irrigation (CK), the three rice farming modes typical in southern China. Under these three farming modes, the soil DOC and MBC contents reached the highest during the period from rice booting to heading, while the soil ROC content had less change during the whole rice growth period. Two-factor variance analysis showed that soil MBC was greatly affected by rice growth stage, soil DOC was greatly affected by rice growth stage and farming mode, and soil ROC was mainly affected by farming mode. Comparing with CK, RD significantly increased the soil DOC and ROC contents and their availability, while RW significantly decreased the soil DOC content and its availability but increased the soil ROC content and its availability. No significant differences were observed in the soil MBC and microbial quotient among RD, RW, and CK.

  1. Do differences in food web structure between organic and conventional farms affect the ecosystem service of pest control?

    PubMed

    Macfadyen, Sarina; Gibson, Rachel; Polaszek, Andrew; Morris, Rebecca J; Craze, Paul G; Planqué, Robert; Symondson, William O C; Memmott, Jane

    2009-03-01

    While many studies have demonstrated that organic farms support greater levels of biodiversity, it is not known whether this translates into better provision of ecosystem services. Here we use a food-web approach to analyse the community structure and function at the whole-farm scale. Quantitative food webs from 10 replicate pairs of organic and conventional farms showed that organic farms have significantly more species at three trophic levels (plant, herbivore and parasitoid) and significantly different network structure. Herbivores on organic farms were attacked by more parasitoid species on organic farms than on conventional farms. However, differences in network structure did not translate into differences in robustness to simulated species loss and we found no difference in percentage parasitism (natural pest control) across a variety of host species. Furthermore, a manipulative field experiment demonstrated that the higher species richness of parasitoids on the organic farms did not increase mortality of a novel herbivore used to bioassay ecosystem service. The explanation for these differences is likely to include inherent differences in management strategies and landscape structure between the two farming systems.

  2. Comparative assessment of migrant farm worker health in conventional and organic horticultural systems in the United Kingdom.

    PubMed

    Cross, Paul; Edwards, Rhiannon T; Hounsome, Barry; Edwards-Jones, Gareth

    2008-02-25

    This study describes the self-reported health and well-being status of field and packhouse workers in UK vegetable horticulture, and tests the null hypothesis that there is no difference in the self-reported health of workers on organic and conventional horticultural farms. The majority of those sampled were migrant workers (93%) from Bulgaria, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and the Ukraine. More than 95% of the respondents were aged 18-34 and recruited through university agricultural faculties in East European or employed via UK agencies. The health of 605 farm workers (395 males and 210 females) was measured through the use of four standard health instruments. Farm workers' health was significantly poorer than published national norms for three different health instruments (Short Form 36, EuroQol EQ-5D and the Visual Analogue Scale). There were no significant differences in the health status of farm workers between conventional and organic farms for any of these three instruments. However, organic farm workers scored higher on a fourth health instrument the Short Depression Happiness Scale (SDHS) indicating that workers on organic farms were happier than their counterparts working on conventional farms. Multiple regression analysis suggested that the difference in the SDHS score for organic and conventional farms is closely related to the range and number of tasks the workers performed each day. These findings suggest that a great deal of improvement in the self-reported health of farmers will need to occur before organic farms meet the requirements of the 'Principle of Health' as described by IFOAM. Ensuring that farm workers have a varied range of tasks could be a cost effective means of improving self-reported health status in both organic and conventional farming systems.

  3. Case study: Comparison of milk composition from adjacent organic and conventional farms

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    A study of two adjacent dairy farms, one using conventional confined herd management and the other organic management with averages of 53 percent dry matter from pasture during the grazing season, revealed significant differences in the fatty acid composition of the milk. Compared with conventional...

  4. Seed banks and land-use history of pastures and hayfields on an organic dairy farm

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Knowing how land-use history affects the seed bank in pastures would be useful in anticipating potential weed management needs. We characterized the seed bank in pastures and hayfields with different management histories on an organic dairy farm in New Hampshire. Three hay fields [two alfalfa (Medic...

  5. A process-based emission model for volatile organic compounds from silage sources on farms

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Silage on dairy farms can emit large amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), a precursor in the formation of tropospheric ozone. Because of the challenges associated with direct measurements, process-based modeling is another approach for estimating emissions of air pollutants from sources suc...

  6. A Critical Race and Class Analysis of Learning in the Organic Farming Movement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Etmanski, Catherine

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to add to a growing body of literature that critiques the whiteness of the organic farming movement and analyse potential ramifications of this if farmers are to be understood as educators. Given that farmers do not necessarily self-identify as educators, it is important to understand that in raising this critique,…

  7. Collagen in organ development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hardman, P.; Spooner, B. S.

    1992-01-01

    It is important to know whether microgravity will adversely affect developmental processes. Collagens are macromolecular structural components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) which may be altered by perturbations in gravity. Interstitial collagens have been shown to be necessary for normal growth and morphogenesis in some embryonic organs, and in the mouse salivary gland, the biosynthetic pattern of these molecules changes during development. Determination of the effects of microgravity on epithelial organ development must be preceded by crucial ground-based studies. These will define control of normal synthesis, secretion, and deposition of ECM macromolecules and the relationship of these processes to morphogenesis.

  8. Collagen in organ development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hardman, P.; Spooner, B. S.

    1992-01-01

    It is important to know whether microgravity will adversely affect developmental processes. Collagens are macromolecular structural components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) which may be altered by perturbations in gravity. Interstitial collagens have been shown to be necessary for normal growth and morphogenesis in some embryonic organs, and in the mouse salivary gland, the biosynthetic pattern of these molecules changes during development. Determination of the effects of microgravity on epithelial organ development must be preceded by crucial ground-based studies. These will define control of normal synthesis, secretion, and deposition of ECM macromolecules and the relationship of these processes to morphogenesis.

  9. Soil Organic Matter Erosion by Interrill Processes from Organically and Conventionally farmed Devon Soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armstrong, E.; Ling, A.; Kuhn, N. J.

    2012-04-01

    that the net P export from organically farmed soils is not reduced by a similar degree than soil erosion compared to conventional soil management. The enrichment of P and C in the interrill sediment was not directly related to SOC, P content of the soil and soil interrill erodibility. A comparison of soil and sediment properties indicates that crusting, P and C content as well as density and size of eroded aggregate fragments control P and C enrichment. Due to complex and dynamic interactions between P, SOC and interrill erosional processes, the nutrient and C status of sediments cannot be predicted based on soil P content, SOC or interrill erodibility alone. Clearly, further research on crust formation and the composition of fragments generated by aggregate breakdown and their transport in raindrop impacted flow under different rainfall conditions is required. Attaining this critical missing knowledge would enable a comprehensive assessment of the benefits of organic farming on nutrient budgets, off-site effects of interrill erosion and its role in the global C cycle.

  10. A preliminary study of the effects of organic farming on oocyte quality in ewe lambs.

    PubMed

    Casao, A; María, G A; Abecia, J A

    2017-02-01

    This study tested whether feeding Rasa Aragonesa ewes certified organic feed, from 15 days before mating until lamb weaning, improved oocyte quality and in vitro maturation (IVM) and fertilization (IVF) performances of the offspring. In a second experiment, ovaries from ewe lambs that were bred on an organic farm and were of the same breed were compared with those from conventionally bred animals. The number (± standard error of the mean) of healthy oocytes per ewe lamb did not differ significantly between organic (12.2 ± 3.3) and conventionally (13.6 ± 4.0) fed ewes. Ovaries from ewe lambs born on an organic farm had significantly (P < 0.0001) more healthy oocytes per ewe lamb (39.6 ± 5.2) than did those born on a conventional farm (25.0 ± 4.2), and higher IVM (76.5% vs. 53.1%, P < 0.0001) and IVF (97.3 vs. 91%, P < 0.05) rates. In conclusion, this preliminary approach to the study of the effect of organic procedures on the sheep oocyte quality indicates that the total integration in the complete organic system improved the oocyte quality of ewe lambs, although organic feeding alone was insufficient to improve quality.

  11. Smallholder Participation and Certification of Organic Farm Products in Mexico

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gonzalez, Alma Amalia; Nigh, Ronald

    2005-01-01

    Organic and other environmental and social marketing devices seek to connect producers and consumers more directly and reward environmentally and socially superior production systems. Some researchers have observed that these schemes may introduce mechanisms of exclusion, creating an elite group of certified smallholders while putting…

  12. Smallholder Participation and Certification of Organic Farm Products in Mexico

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gonzalez, Alma Amalia; Nigh, Ronald

    2005-01-01

    Organic and other environmental and social marketing devices seek to connect producers and consumers more directly and reward environmentally and socially superior production systems. Some researchers have observed that these schemes may introduce mechanisms of exclusion, creating an elite group of certified smallholders while putting…

  13. Organic farming increases richness of fungal taxa in the wheat phyllosphere.

    PubMed

    Karlsson, Ida; Friberg, Hanna; Kolseth, Anna-Karin; Steinberg, Christian; Persson, Paula

    2017-04-01

    Organic farming is often advocated as an approach to mitigate biodiversity loss on agricultural land. The phyllosphere provides a habitat for diverse fungal communities that are important for plant health and productivity. However, it is still unknown how organic farming affects the diversity of phyllosphere fungi in major crops. We sampled wheat leaves from 22 organically and conventionally cultivated fields in Sweden, paired based on their geographical location and wheat cultivar. Fungal communities were described using amplicon sequencing and real-time PCR. Species richness was higher on wheat leaves from organically managed fields, with a mean of 54 OTUs compared with 40 OTUs for conventionally managed fields. The main components of the fungal community were similar throughout the 350 km long sampling area and seven operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were present in all fields: Zymoseptoria, Dioszegia fristingensis, Cladosporium, Dioszegia hungarica, Cryptococcus, Ascochyta and Dioszegia. Fungal abundance was highly variable between fields, 10(3) -10(5) internal transcribed spacer (ITS) copies per ng wheat DNA, but did not differ between cropping systems. Further analyses showed that weed biomass was the strongest explanatory variable for fungal community composition and OTU richness. These findings help provide a more comprehensive understanding of the effect of organic farming on the diversity of organism groups in different habitats within the agroecosystem. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  14. Scale matters: the impact of organic farming on biodiversity at different spatial scales.

    PubMed

    Gabriel, Doreen; Sait, Steven M; Hodgson, Jenny A; Schmutz, Ulrich; Kunin, William E; Benton, Tim G

    2010-07-01

    There is increasing recognition that ecosystems and their services need to be managed in the face of environmental change. However, there is little consensus as to the optimum scale for management. This is particularly acute in the agricultural environment given the level of public investment in agri-environment schemes (AES). Using a novel multiscale hierarchical sampling design, we assess the effect of land use at multiple spatial scales (from location-within-field to regions) on farmland biodiversity. We show that on-farm biodiversity components depend on farming practices (organic vs. conventional) at farm and landscape scales, but this strongly interacts with fine- and coarse-scale variables. Different taxa respond to agricultural practice at different spatial scales and often at multiple spatial scales. Hence, AES need to target multiple spatial scales to maximize effectiveness. Novel policy levers may be needed to encourage multiple land managers within a landscape to adopt schemes that create landscape-level benefits.

  15. A participatory approach to design monitoring indicators of production diseases in organic dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Duval, J E; Fourichon, C; Madouasse, A; Sjöström, K; Emanuelson, U; Bareille, N

    2016-06-01

    Production diseases have an important negative effect on the health and welfare of dairy cows. Although organic animal production systems aim for high animal health levels, compliance with European organic farming regulations does not guarantee that this is achieved. Herd health and production management (HHPM) programs aim at optimizing herd health by preventing disease and production problems, but as yet they have not been consistently implemented by farmers. We hypothesize that one reason is the mismatch between what scientists propose as indicators for herd health monitoring and what farmers would like to use. Herd health monitoring is a key element in HHPM programs as it permits a regular assessment of the functioning of the different components of the production process. Planned observations or measurements of these components are indispensable for this monitoring. In this study, a participatory approach was used to create an environment in which farmers could adapt the indicators proposed by scientists for monitoring the five main production diseases on dairy cattle farms. The adaptations of the indicators were characterized and the farmers' explanations for the changes made were described. The study was conducted in France and Sweden, which differ in terms of their national organic regulations and existing advisory services. In both countries, twenty certified organic dairy farmers and their animal health management advisors participated in the study. All of the farmers adapted the initial monitoring plan proposed by scientists to specific production and animal health situation on their farm. This resulted in forty unique and farm-specific combinations of indicators for herd health monitoring. All but three farmers intended to monitor five health topics simultaneously using the constructed indicators. The qualitative analysis of the explanations given by farmers for their choices enabled an understanding of farmers' reasons for selecting and adapting

  16. Tightly-Coupled Plant-Soil Nitrogen Cycling: Comparison of Organic Farms across an Agricultural Landscape.

    PubMed

    Bowles, Timothy M; Hollander, Allan D; Steenwerth, Kerri; Jackson, Louise E

    2015-01-01

    How farming systems supply sufficient nitrogen (N) for high yields but with reduced N losses is a central challenge for reducing the tradeoffs often associated with N cycling in agriculture. Variability in soil organic matter and management of organic farms across an agricultural landscape may yield insights for improving N cycling and for evaluating novel indicators of N availability. We assessed yields, plant-soil N cycling, and root expression of N metabolism genes across a representative set of organic fields growing Roma-type tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum L.) in an intensively-managed agricultural landscape in California, USA. The fields spanned a three-fold range of soil carbon (C) and N but had similar soil types, texture, and pH. Organic tomato yields ranged from 22.9 to 120.1 Mg ha-1 with a mean similar to the county average (86.1 Mg ha-1), which included mostly conventionally-grown tomatoes. Substantial variability in soil inorganic N concentrations, tomato N, and root gene expression indicated a range of possible tradeoffs between yields and potential for N losses across the fields. Fields showing evidence of tightly-coupled plant-soil N cycling, a desirable scenario in which high crop yields are supported by adequate N availability but low potential for N loss, had the highest total and labile soil C and N and received organic matter inputs with a range of N availability. In these fields, elevated expression of a key gene involved in root N assimilation, cytosolic glutamine synthetase GS1, confirmed that plant N assimilation was high even when inorganic N pools were low. Thus tightly-coupled N cycling occurred on several working organic farms. Novel combinations of N cycling indicators (i.e. inorganic N along with soil microbial activity and root gene expression for N assimilation) would support adaptive management for improved N cycling on organic as well as conventional farms, especially when plant-soil N cycling is rapid.

  17. Feeding strategies on certified organic dairy farms in Wisconsin and their effect on milk production and income over feed costs.

    PubMed

    Hardie, C A; Wattiaux, M; Dutreuil, M; Gildersleeve, R; Keuler, N S; Cabrera, V E

    2014-07-01

    The purposes of this study were (1) to analyze and categorize certified organic Wisconsin dairy farms based on general farm characteristics and feeding strategies during the course of 2010, and (2) to evaluate herd milk production and income over feed costs (IOFC). An on-site survey containing sections on farm demographics, feeding, grazing, and economics was conducted on 69 farms (12.6% survey response rate). A nonhierarchical clustering method using 9 variables related to general farm characteristics, feed supplementation, and grazing was applied to partition the farms into clusters. A scree plot was used to determine the most appropriate number of clusters. Dry matter intake was approximated based on farmer-reported total amounts of feed consumed (feed offered less refusals). Milk production was evaluated using reported milk rolling herd averages (RHA). Income over feed costs was calculated as milk sales minus feed expenses. The farms in clusters 1 (n=8) and 3 (n=32), the large and small high-input farms, respectively, included more feed ingredients in their lactating cow diets and relied more heavily on concentrates than farms in other clusters. Cows on these farms were predominantly Holstein. Clusters 1 and 3 had the highest RHA (6,878 and 7,457 kg/cow per year, respectively) and IOFC ($10.17 and $8.59/lactating cow per day, respectively). The farms in cluster 2 (n=5) were completely seasonal, extremely low-input farms that relied much more heavily on pasture as a source of feed, with 4 out of the 5 farms having all of their operated land in pasture. Farms in cluster 2 relied on fewer feeds during both the grazing and nongrazing seasons compared with farms in the other clusters. These farms had the lowest RHA and IOFC at 3,632 kg/cow per year and $5.76/lactating cow per day, respectively. Cluster 4 (n=24), the partly seasonal, moderate-input, pasture-based cluster, ranked third for RHA and IOFC (5,417 kg/cow per year and $5.92/lactating cow per day

  18. Rice farming in Bali: organic production and marketing challenges.

    PubMed

    MacRae, Graeme

    2011-01-01

    All is not well with agriculture in Southeast Asia. The productivity gains of the Green Revolution have slowed and even reversed and environmental problems and shortages of water and land are evident. At the same time changing world markets are shifting the dynamics of national agricultural economies. But from the point of view of farmers themselves, it is their season-to-season economic survival that is at stake. Bali is in some ways typical of other agricultural areas in the region, but it is also a special case because of its distinctive economic and cultural environment dominated by tourism. In this environment, farmers are doubly marginalized. At the same time the island offers them unique market opportunities for premium and organic produce. This article examines the ways in which these opportunities have been approached and describes their varying degrees of success. It focuses especially on one project that has been successful in reducing production costs by conversion to organic production, but less so in marketing its produce. It argues finally for the need for integrated studies of the entire rice production/marketing complex, especially from the bottom-up point of view of farmers.

  19. Spatial organization of agricultural landscape, farming activities and hydrological risk assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viaud, V.; Merot, P.

    2003-04-01

    Agriculture intensification is considered as a major cause of water pollution since it has gone both with an increasing use of fertilisers and significant changes in land-use patterns. Among the prescriptions for pollution control, the management of buffer zones at the landscape scale is supported by the environmental policies, but often without consideration of the systems of human activities they are aimed at. Agricultural landscapes, with fields potentially source of pollution and buffer zones, are spatially organized and managed by farming activities. In a perspective of sustainable management, an integrating approach of environmental issues and farming activities is thus required. This approach was applied to bocage landscapes (landscapes with cultivated fields surrounded by hedgerow systems) in Brittany (Western France). Bocage landscapes are frequently encountered, especially in Europe, and many studies put forward their hydrological and hydrochemical buffer functions. Those results provide informations on the link between spatial organization of hedgerow systems and their environmental effectiveness. They enable to design models of functional bocage landscapes. The objective of this work was to pick out, among those theoretical models, the models compatible with the farming activities. The results will be presented and the additional constraints for the farming systems created by a functional landscape, from a hydrological and hydrochemical perspective, will be discussed.

  20. Prioritisation of farm scale remediation efforts for reducing losses of nutrients and faecal indicator organisms to waterways: a case study of New Zealand dairy farming.

    PubMed

    Monaghan, R M; de Klein, C A M; Muirhead, R W

    2008-06-01

    The international competitiveness of the New Zealand (NZ) dairy industry is built on low cost clover-based systems and a favourable temperate climate that enables cows to graze pastures mostly all year round. Whilst this grazed pasture farming system is very efficient at producing milk, it has also been identified as a significant source of nutrients (N and P) and faecal bacteria which have contributed to water quality degradation in some rivers and lakes. In response to these concerns, a tool-box of mitigation measures that farmers can apply on farm to reduce environmental emissions has been developed. Here we report the potential reduction in nutrient losses and costs to farm businesses arising from the implementation of individual best management practices (BMPs) within this tool-box. Modelling analysis was carried out for a range of BMPs targeting pollutant source reduction on case-study dairy farms, located in four contrasting catchments. Due to the contrasting physical resources and management systems present in the four dairy catchments evaluated, the effectiveness and costs of BMPs varied. Farm managements that optimised soil Olsen P levels or used nitrification inhibitors were observed to result in win-win outcomes whereby nutrient losses were consistently reduced and farm profitability was increased in three of the four case study farming systems. Other BMPs generally reduced nutrient and faecal bacteria losses but at a small cost to the farm business. Our analysis indicates that there are a range of technological measures that can deliver substantial reductions in nutrient losses to waterways from dairy farms, whilst not increasing or even reducing other environmental impacts (e.g. greenhouse gas emissions and energy use). Their implementation will first require clearly defined environmental goals for the catchment/water body that is to be protected. Secondly, given that the major sources of water pollutants often differed between catchments, it is

  1. 7 CFR 761.104 - Developing the farm operating plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ...) The per-acre actual production history of the crops produced by the farming operation used to determine Federal crop insurance payments, if available; (iii) FSA Farm Program actual yield records; (iv... consideration when arriving at reasonable projections. (3) Projected yields will be calculated according to the...

  2. 7 CFR 761.104 - Developing the farm operating plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ...) The per-acre actual production history of the crops produced by the farming operation used to determine Federal crop insurance payments, if available; (iii) FSA Farm Program actual yield records; (iv... consideration when arriving at reasonable projections. (3) Projected yields will be calculated according to the...

  3. Ecologically sustainable development in dairy farms II: Nutrient cycling

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    In Mexico, there is not a specific regulation dealing with manure and wastewater in confined livestock farms. In the case of dairy farms that have agricultural areas for the production of forage crops, there are some "Good Management Practices", focused on the use of manure as a source of nitrogen a...

  4. Organochlorine pesticide residues in strawberries from integrated pest management and organic farming.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Virginia C; Domingues, Valentina F; Mateus, Nuno; Delerue-Matos, Cristina

    2011-07-27

    A rapid, specific, and sensitive method based on the Quick Easy Cheap Effective Rugged and Safe (QuEChERS) method and a cleanup using dispersive solid-phase extraction with MgSO(4), PSA, and C18 sorbents has been developed for the routine analysis of 14 pesticides in strawberries. The analyses were performed by three different analytical methodologies: gas chromatography (GC) with electron capture detection (ECD), mass spectrometry (MS), and tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS). The recoveries for all the pesticides studied were from 46 to 128%, with relative standard deviation of <15% in the concentration range of 0.005-0.250 mg/kg. The limit of detection (LOD) for all compounds met maximum residue limits (MRL) accepted in Portugal for organochlorine pesticides (OCP). A survey study of strawberries produced in Portugal in the years 2009-2010 obtained from organic farming (OF) and integrated pest management (IPM) was developed. Lindane and β-endosulfan were detected above the MRL in OF and IPM. Other OCP (aldrin, o,p'-DDT and their metabolites, and methoxychlor) were found below the MRL. The OCP residues detected decreased from 2009 to 2010. The QuEChERS method was successfully applied to the analysis of strawberry samples.

  5. Isotopic discrimination as a tool for organic farming certification in sweet pepper.

    PubMed

    del Amor, Francisco M; Navarro, Joaquín; Aparicio, Pedro M

    2008-01-01

    Organic farming is a form of agriculture that excludes the use of synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, and genetically modified organisms. These fertilizers have been traditionally overused in conventional farming to avoid lost revenue, but this often not does not take into account the potential contamination of aquifers and river due to nitrate leaching. Transition to organic farming practices could provide an instrument to reduce contamination and increase potential income. It is difficult to determine to what extent those fertilizers could have been used within a complete traceability of the production process. In this experiment, we evaluated the use of (15)N/(14)N isotopic discrimination in sweet pepper plants to test the hypothesis that synthetic fertilizers significantly reduce (15)N/(14)N compared with exclusively organic practices. Therefore, three common types of organic manures (sheep, hen, or horse) were applied at a rate of 8 kg m(-2) with or without synthetic fertilizer amendments under fully controlled environmental and irrigation conditions. Results indicate that (i) use of synthetic fertilizers significantly reduced (15/14)N(2)vsN(2)atm compared with treatments that only received water; (ii) with respect to the plant organs, old leaves and fruits were more sensitive to the synthetic fertilizer additions with reductions in (15/14)N(2)vsN(2)atm of 24.1 and 27.8%, respectively; and (iii) independently of the organic manure used, no additional fertilization (synthetic or organic) is required before 106 days after transplanting at that dosage because plant fresh weight was not reduced.

  6. Winter supplementation of ground whole flaxseed impacts milk fatty acid composition on organic dairy farms in the northeastern United States

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Fourteen organic dairy farms were used to 1) evaluate seasonal variation of bioactive fatty acids in milk from 2012 to 2015, and 2) evaluate supplementation of ground whole flaxseed to maintain levels of bioactive fatty acids during the non-grazing season. During regular farm visits, milk, feed, and...

  7. Tackling pollution by organic farming is capable of increasing fortified foods.

    PubMed

    Navarro-Aviñó, J P; Navarro, J J Fernández; Castro, V Vargas; Ripoll, I Ilzarbe; Sahuquillo, M J Márquez

    2016-01-01

    The global pollution stage is poisoning the biosphere and causing global temperatures to rise, necessitating a drastic change in the way man is dealing with nature. One change that may produce many beneficial effects on the biosphere and human health is the use of specific organic farming to produce food in a more integrated way in nature and to increase the capacity of man's own response. Despite many experts' opinion another way to deal with environmental contamination is possible: organic farming, which can increase man's ability to fortify foods. After more than 20 years working under this discipline, Bodegas Dagon is able to achieve the highest stilbenes concentrations (as resveratrol). Versus 14.3 mg/l, "Bodegas Dagón" wines contain resveratrol (HPLC and UV-spectroscopy) up to 1611.73 ± 72.66 mg/l, standing as world's potentially healthiest wine reported to date.

  8. Organochlorine pesticide residues in bovine milk from organic farms in Chiapas, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez, Rey; Ruíz, Jorge Luis; Ortiz, Rutilio; Vega, Salvador; Schettino, Beatriz; Yamazaki, Alberto; de Lourdes Ramírez, María

    2012-10-01

    Thirty six samples of bovine milk were collected from Chiapas State, Mexico between January 2011 and December 2011 with the intention of identifying and quantifying organochlorine pesticide residues in organic farms. The analyses were done using gas chromatography with an electron capture detector (Ni(63)). In general the values found in raw milk were lower than the permissible limit proposed by FAO/WHO/Codex Alimentarius 2006. Average concentrations for alpha + beta HCH were 3.62 ng/g, gamma HCH 0.34 ng/g, heptachlor + epoxide 0.67 ng/g, DDT and isomers 1.53 ng/g, aldrin + dieldrin 0.77 ng/g, and endrin 0.66 ng/g (only present in samples from farm 2). The organic milk from Chiapas has shown low concentrations of pesticide residues in recent years and satisfies international and national regulations for commercialization.

  9. Interrill Erodibility of P and C on conventially and organically farmed Devon soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuhn, N. J.

    2012-04-01

    Soil erosion can have significant off-site effects on water quality and thus human and habitat health. Apart from sedimentation, the transfer of nutrients, both dissolved and particulate, is a major concern. The particulate transfer of nutrients from agricultural land can occur either by rill or interrill erosion. Rill erosion is non-selective and affects only a limited extent of agricultural land. Interrill processes such as crusting, splash and raindrop-impacted wash, on the other hand, act on all cropland and affect the quality of the water from all areas generating runoff. A significant amount of phosphorus (P) is contained in the surface soil layer transformed by interrill processes annually. In the EU, the P content of a crusted (2 mm) surface layer corresponds to 4 to 40 kg ha-1 of P on arable land (1.094 mil km2). Therefore, the role of interrill processes and erosion for regional nutrient cycling requires close attention. Interrill erosion is a complex phenomenon, involving the detachment, transport and deposition of soil particles by raindrop impacted flow. Resistance to interrill erosion varies between soils depending on their physical, chemical and mineralogical properties. In addition, significant changes in soil resistance to interrill erosion occur during storms as a result of changes in surface roughness, cohesion and particle size. As a consequence, erosion on interrill areas is selective, moving the most easily detached small and/or light soil particles which are often enriched in clay, P and organic C. Commonly, the risk of erosion associated with organically farmed soils is lower than those farmed in a conventional way. This is attributed to greater aggregate stability and thus greater infiltration and lower erodibility. Erosion of nutrients on organically farmed soils is therefore considered to be reduced by the same order of magnitude than the amount of eroded soil compared to conventionally farmed soils. However, the selective nature of

  10. Consistent responses of the microbial community structure to organic farming along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wenhui; Wang, Hui; Feng, Youzhi; Wang, Lei; Xiao, Xingji; Xi, Yunguan; Luo, Xue; Sun, Ruibo; Ye, Xianfeng; Huang, Yan; Zhang, Zhengguang; Cui, Zhongli

    2016-01-01

    Soil microorganisms play a crucial role in the biogeochemical cycling of nutrient elements and maintaining soil health. We aimed to investigate the response of bacteria communities to organic farming over different crops (rice, tea and vegetable) along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River of China. Compared with conventional farming, organic farming significantly increased soil nutrients, soil enzyme activities, and bacterial richness and diversity. A Venn diagram and principal component analysis revealed that the soils with 3 different crops under organic farming have more number and percent of shared OTUs (operational taxonomic units), and shared a highly similar microbial community structure. Under organic farming, several predominant guilds and major bacterial lineages (Rhizobiales, Thiotrichaceae, Micromonosporaceae, Desulfurellaceae and Myxococcales) contributing to nutrient (C, N, S and P) cycling were enriched, whereas the relative abundances of acid and alkali resistant microorganisms (Acidobacteriaceae and Sporolactobacillaceae) were increased under conventional farming practices. Our results indicated that, for all three crops, organic farming have a more stable microflora and the uniformity of the bacterial community structure. Organic agriculture significantly increased the abundance of some nutrition-related bacteria, while reducing some of the abundance of acid and alkali resistant bacteria. PMID:27725750

  11. Consistent responses of the microbial community structure to organic farming along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wenhui; Wang, Hui; Feng, Youzhi; Wang, Lei; Xiao, Xingji; Xi, Yunguan; Luo, Xue; Sun, Ruibo; Ye, Xianfeng; Huang, Yan; Zhang, Zhengguang; Cui, Zhongli

    2016-10-11

    Soil microorganisms play a crucial role in the biogeochemical cycling of nutrient elements and maintaining soil health. We aimed to investigate the response of bacteria communities to organic farming over different crops (rice, tea and vegetable) along the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River of China. Compared with conventional farming, organic farming significantly increased soil nutrients, soil enzyme activities, and bacterial richness and diversity. A Venn diagram and principal component analysis revealed that the soils with 3 different crops under organic farming have more number and percent of shared OTUs (operational taxonomic units), and shared a highly similar microbial community structure. Under organic farming, several predominant guilds and major bacterial lineages (Rhizobiales, Thiotrichaceae, Micromonosporaceae, Desulfurellaceae and Myxococcales) contributing to nutrient (C, N, S and P) cycling were enriched, whereas the relative abundances of acid and alkali resistant microorganisms (Acidobacteriaceae and Sporolactobacillaceae) were increased under conventional farming practices. Our results indicated that, for all three crops, organic farming have a more stable microflora and the uniformity of the bacterial community structure. Organic agriculture significantly increased the abundance of some nutrition-related bacteria, while reducing some of the abundance of acid and alkali resistant bacteria.

  12. Wild bees visiting cucumber on midwestern U.S. organic farms benefit from near-farm semi-natural areas.

    PubMed

    Smith, A A; Bentley, M; Reynolds, H L

    2013-02-01

    Wild bees that provide pollination services to vegetable crops depend on forage resources, nesting sites, and overwintering sites in the agricultural landscape. The scale at which crop-visiting bees use resources in the landscape can vary regionally, and has not been characterized in the Midwestern United States. We investigated the effects of seminatural land cover on wild bee visitation frequency to cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) and on wild bee species richness on 10 organic farms in Indiana. We estimated the spatial scale at which the effects of land cover were strongest, and also examined the effects of nonlandscape factors on wild bees. The visitation frequency of wild bees to cucumber was positively related to the proportion of seminatural land in the surrounding landscape, and this relationship was strongest within 250 m of the cucumber patch. The species richness of wild cucumber visitors was not affected by land cover at any spatial scale, nor by any of the nonlandscape factors we considered. Our results indicate that wild, crop visiting bees benefit from seminatural areas in the agricultural landscape, and benefit most strongly from seminatural areas within 250 m of the crop field. This suggests that setting aside natural areas in the near vicinity of vegetable fields may be an effective way to support wild, crop-visiting bees and secure their pollination services.

  13. Organic farming enhances soil microbial abundance and activity—A meta-analysis and meta-regression

    PubMed Central

    Symnaczik, Sarah; Mäder, Paul; De Deyn, Gerlinde; Gattinger, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    Population growth and climate change challenge our food and farming systems and provide arguments for an increased intensification of agriculture. A promising option is eco-functional intensification through organic farming, an approach based on using and enhancing internal natural resources and processes to secure and improve agricultural productivity, while minimizing negative environmental impacts. In this concept an active soil microbiota plays an important role for various soil based ecosystem services such as nutrient cycling, erosion control and pest and disease regulation. Several studies have reported a positive effect of organic farming on soil health and quality including microbial community traits. However, so far no systematic quantification of whether organic farming systems comprise larger and more active soil microbial communities compared to conventional farming systems was performed on a global scale. Therefore, we conducted a meta-analysis on current literature to quantify possible differences in key indicators for soil microbial abundance and activity in organic and conventional cropping systems. All together we integrated data from 56 mainly peer-reviewed papers into our analysis, including 149 pairwise comparisons originating from different climatic zones and experimental duration ranging from 3 to more than 100 years. Overall, we found that organic systems had 32% to 84% greater microbial biomass carbon, microbial biomass nitrogen, total phospholipid fatty-acids, and dehydrogenase, urease and protease activities than conventional systems. Exclusively the metabolic quotient as an indicator for stresses on microbial communities remained unaffected by the farming systems. Categorical subgroup analysis revealed that crop rotation, the inclusion of legumes in the crop rotation and organic inputs are important farming practices affecting soil microbial community size and activity. Furthermore, we show that differences in microbial size and activity

  14. Organic farming enhances soil microbial abundance and activity-A meta-analysis and meta-regression.

    PubMed

    Lori, Martina; Symnaczik, Sarah; Mäder, Paul; De Deyn, Gerlinde; Gattinger, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    Population growth and climate change challenge our food and farming systems and provide arguments for an increased intensification of agriculture. A promising option is eco-functional intensification through organic farming, an approach based on using and enhancing internal natural resources and processes to secure and improve agricultural productivity, while minimizing negative environmental impacts. In this concept an active soil microbiota plays an important role for various soil based ecosystem services such as nutrient cycling, erosion control and pest and disease regulation. Several studies have reported a positive effect of organic farming on soil health and quality including microbial community traits. However, so far no systematic quantification of whether organic farming systems comprise larger and more active soil microbial communities compared to conventional farming systems was performed on a global scale. Therefore, we conducted a meta-analysis on current literature to quantify possible differences in key indicators for soil microbial abundance and activity in organic and conventional cropping systems. All together we integrated data from 56 mainly peer-reviewed papers into our analysis, including 149 pairwise comparisons originating from different climatic zones and experimental duration ranging from 3 to more than 100 years. Overall, we found that organic systems had 32% to 84% greater microbial biomass carbon, microbial biomass nitrogen, total phospholipid fatty-acids, and dehydrogenase, urease and protease activities than conventional systems. Exclusively the metabolic quotient as an indicator for stresses on microbial communities remained unaffected by the farming systems. Categorical subgroup analysis revealed that crop rotation, the inclusion of legumes in the crop rotation and organic inputs are important farming practices affecting soil microbial community size and activity. Furthermore, we show that differences in microbial size and activity

  15. Distinct soil microbial diversity under long-term organic and conventional farming.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Martin; Frey, Beat; Mayer, Jochen; Mäder, Paul; Widmer, Franco

    2015-05-01

    Low-input agricultural systems aim at reducing the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides in order to improve sustainable production and ecosystem health. Despite the integral role of the soil microbiome in agricultural production, we still have a limited understanding of the complex response of microbial diversity to organic and conventional farming. Here we report on the structural response of the soil microbiome to more than two decades of different agricultural management in a long-term field experiment using a high-throughput pyrosequencing approach of bacterial and fungal ribosomal markers. Organic farming increased richness, decreased evenness, reduced dispersion and shifted the structure of the soil microbiota when compared with conventionally managed soils under exclusively mineral fertilization. This effect was largely attributed to the use and quality of organic fertilizers, as differences became smaller when conventionally managed soils under an integrated fertilization scheme were examined. The impact of the plant protection regime, characterized by moderate and targeted application of pesticides, was of subordinate importance. Systems not receiving manure harboured a dispersed and functionally versatile community characterized by presumably oligotrophic organisms adapted to nutrient-limited environments. Systems receiving organic fertilizer were characterized by specific microbial guilds known to be involved in degradation of complex organic compounds such as manure and compost. The throughput and resolution of the sequencing approach permitted to detect specific structural shifts at the level of individual microbial taxa that harbours a novel potential for managing the soil environment by means of promoting beneficial and suppressing detrimental organisms.

  16. Distinct soil microbial diversity under long-term organic and conventional farming

    PubMed Central

    Hartmann, Martin; Frey, Beat; Mayer, Jochen; Mäder, Paul; Widmer, Franco

    2015-01-01

    Low-input agricultural systems aim at reducing the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides in order to improve sustainable production and ecosystem health. Despite the integral role of the soil microbiome in agricultural production, we still have a limited understanding of the complex response of microbial diversity to organic and conventional farming. Here we report on the structural response of the soil microbiome to more than two decades of different agricultural management in a long-term field experiment using a high-throughput pyrosequencing approach of bacterial and fungal ribosomal markers. Organic farming increased richness, decreased evenness, reduced dispersion and shifted the structure of the soil microbiota when compared with conventionally managed soils under exclusively mineral fertilization. This effect was largely attributed to the use and quality of organic fertilizers, as differences became smaller when conventionally managed soils under an integrated fertilization scheme were examined. The impact of the plant protection regime, characterized by moderate and targeted application of pesticides, was of subordinate importance. Systems not receiving manure harboured a dispersed and functionally versatile community characterized by presumably oligotrophic organisms adapted to nutrient-limited environments. Systems receiving organic fertilizer were characterized by specific microbial guilds known to be involved in degradation of complex organic compounds such as manure and compost. The throughput and resolution of the sequencing approach permitted to detect specific structural shifts at the level of individual microbial taxa that harbours a novel potential for managing the soil environment by means of promoting beneficial and suppressing detrimental organisms. PMID:25350160

  17. TANK FARM REMEDIATION TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT PROJECT AN EXERCISE IN TECHNICAL & REGULATORY COLLABORATION

    SciTech Connect

    JARAYSI, M.N.

    2007-01-08

    The Tank Farm Remediation Technology Development Project at the Hanford Site focuses on waste storage tanks, pipelines and associated ancillary equipment that are part of the C-200 single-shell tank (SST) farm system located in the C Tank Farm. The purpose of the project is to obtain information on the implementation of a variety of closure activities and to answer questions on technical, operational and regulatory issues associated with closure.

  18. Comparison of organochlorine pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls residues in vegetables, grain and soil from organic and conventional farming in Poland.

    PubMed

    Witczak, Agata; Abdel-Gawad, Hassan

    2012-01-01

    Organic and conventional crops were studied by identifying the relationship between persistent organic pollutants in cereals, vegetables and soil. The residues of organochlorine pesticides and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were determined in grains (rye and wheat), vegetables (carrots and beets) and soil collected from the fields. PCB residues recorded in the beets from organic farming were as high as 3.71 ppb dry weight (dry wt.), while in the soil from conventional farming of beets 0.53 ppb dry wt. Among vegetables, higher concentrations of pesticides were detected in organically grown beets (190.63 ppb dry wt.). Soil samples from the organic farming contained lower levels of organochlorine pesticide residues compared to the conventional farming. Taking into account toxicity equivalent (TEQ), the conventionally grown carrots accumulated the most toxic PCBs. Non-ortho and mono-ortho PCBs were also noted in the grain of conventionally grown rye and amounted to 3.05 pg-TEQ/g wet wt.

  19. Effect of crop rotation on soil nutrient balance and weediness in soddy podzolic organic farming fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zarina, Livija; Zarina, Liga

    2017-04-01

    The nutrient balance in different crop rotations under organic cropping system has been investigated in Latvia at the Institute of Agricultural Resources and Economics since 2006. Latvia is located in a humid and moderate climatic region where the rainfall exceeds evaporation (soil moisture coefficient > 1) and the soil moisture regime is characteristic with percolation. The average annual precipitation is 670-850 mm. The average temperature varies from -6.7° C in January to 16.5 °C in July. The growing season is 175 - 185 days. The most widespread are podzolic soils and mainly they are present in agricultural fields in all regions of Latvia. In a wider sense the goal of the soil management in organic farming is a creation of the biologically active flora and fauna in the soil by maintaining a high level of soil organic matter which is good for crops nutrient balance. Crop rotation is a central component of organic farming systems and has many benefits, including growth of soil microbial activity, which may increase nutrient availability. The aim of the present study was to calculate nutrient balance for each crop in the rotations and average in each rotation. Taking into account that crop rotations can limit build-up of weeds, additionally within the ERA-net CORE Organic Plus transnational programs supported project PRODIVA the information required for a better utilization of crop diversification for weed management in North European organic arable cropping systems was summarized. It was found that the nutrient balance was influenced by nutrients uptake by biomass of growing crops in crop rotation. The number of weeds in the organic farming fields with crop rotation is dependent on the cultivated crops and the succession of crops in the crop rotation.

  20. The role of soil communities in improving ecosystem services in organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zandbergen, Jelmer; Koorneef, Guusje; Veen, Cees; Schrama, Jan; van der Putten, Wim

    2017-04-01

    Worldwide soil fertility decreases and it is generally believed that organic matter (OM) addition to agricultural soils can improve soil properties leading to beneficial ecosystem services. However, it remains unknown under which conditions and how fast biotic, physical and chemical soil properties respond to varying quality and quantity of OM inputs. Therefore, the aims of this research project are (1) to unravel biotic, physical and chemical responses of soils to varying quantity and quality of OM addition; and (2) to understand how we can accelerate the response of soils in order to improve beneficial soil ecosystem services faster. The first step in our research project is to determine how small-scale spatio-temporal patterns in soil biotic, physical and chemical properties relate to crop production and quality. To do this we combine field measurements on soil properties with remote and proximate sensing measures on crop development and yield in a long-term farming systems experiment in the Netherlands (Vredepeel). We hypothesize that spatio-temporal variation in crop development and yield are strongly related to spatio-temporal variation in soil parameters. In the second step of our project we will use this information to identify biological interactions underlying improving soil functions in response to OM addition over time. We will specifically focus on the role of soil communities in driving nutrient cycling, disease suppression and the formation of soil structure, all crucial elements of key soil services in agricultural soils. The knowledge that will be generated in our project can be used to detect specific organic matter qualities that support the underlying ecological processes to accelerate the transition towards improved soil functioning thereby governing enhanced crop yields.

  1. Detecting the presence of fish farm-derived organic matter at the seafloor using stable isotope analysis of phospholipid fatty acids.

    PubMed

    Mayor, Daniel J; Gray, Nia B; Hattich, Giannina S I; Thornton, Barry

    2017-07-11

    The expansion of global aquaculture activities is important for the wellbeing of future generations in terms of employment and food security. Rearing animals in open-exchange cages permits the release of organic wastes, some of which ultimately reaches the underlying sediments. The development of rapid, quantitative and objective monitoring techniques is therefore central to the environmentally sustainable growth of the aquaculture industry. Here, we demonstrate that fish farm-derived organic wastes can be readily detected at the seafloor by quantifying sediment phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) and their carbon stable isotope signatures. Observations across five farms reveal that farm size and/or distance away from it influence the spatial distribution of the generated organic wastes and their effect on benthic bacterial biomass. Comparison to the isotopic signatures of fish feed-derived PLFAs indicates that 16:0 and 18:1(n-9) are potential biomarkers for fish farm-derived organic wastes. Our results suggest that stable isotope analysis of sediment PLFAs has potential for monitoring the environmental performance of aquaculture activities, particularly given the increasing prevalence of terrigenous organic matter in aquaculture feed stocks because it is isotopically district to marine organic matter.

  2. Antimicrobial susceptibility of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli isolated from organic dairy farms, conventional dairy farms, and county fairs in Minnesota.

    PubMed

    Cho, Seongbeom; Fossler, Charles P; Diez-Gonzalez, Francisco; Wells, Scott J; Hedberg, Craig W; Kaneene, John B; Ruegg, Pamela L; Warnick, Lorin D; Bender, Jeffrey B

    2007-01-01

    This study compared the antimicrobial susceptibility of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) isolates from organic dairy farms, conventional dairy farms, and Minnesota county fairs. A total of 83 STEC isolates (43 O157 and 40 non-O157 STEC) were tested for antimicrobial susceptibility as determined by the automated broth microdilution method. Resistance to tetracycline was identified in 19 (23%) isolates and to sulphadimethoxine in 40 (48%) isolates. Half of the STEC isolates were resistant to at least one antimicrobial agent. Resistance to at least one antimicrobial agent was observed in 18 (62%) isolates from conventional farms and in 11 (48%) isolates from organic farms. Resistance to at least one antimicrobial agent was more frequent in isolates from calves (77%) than from cows (39%). Multidrug resistant patterns were more common in non-O157 STEC than O157 STEC. This study provides data to document the degree of STEC antimicrobial resistance from dairy cattle sources in Minnesota. The use of antimicrobial agents on farms, and other environmental influences, may affect resistance patterns in isolates from cattle sources. Systematic surveillance of STEC from cattle could potentially detect emergence of antimicrobial resistance that may be spread to humans through the food chain.

  3. Assessment of tissue concentrations of metals and volatile organic chemicals in farm animal products

    SciTech Connect

    Stone, P.R. III; Shortelle, A.B.; Charna, R.; Maxwell, J.

    1995-12-31

    An Army site in Pennsylvania is included on the National Priorities List. Site-related chemicals such as volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) and metals have been released to the groundwater from the industrial sewer which have now been repaired. VOCs are also present in groundwater in off post residential wells. The purpose of this study was to address the possible effects of groundwater and surface water chemicals to livestock and humans via the food chain pathway in the off post areas. Sampling of off post farm animal tissues was performed to confirm or revise the conclusion (based on modeled results) that this exposure pathway does not pose significant risk to human or animal health. Objectives of this study were to: (1) determine the potential presence of study constituents in the components of the food chain, and (2) develop data for use in the future risk assessment. Samples collected from the study area and reference (background) areas include beef (4 cuts), poultry, eggs, pork (5 cuts), and cow`s milk. The analyses were performed using published EPA methodologies modified as appropriate for sample (tissue) preparation. VOCs were analyzed using the EPA GC/MS purge and trap method SW846-8240. Metals were analyzed using the EPA inductively coupled/mass spectrometer (ICP/MS) method SW846-6020. Metals were found ubiquitously in samples from both areas. VOCs were only sporadically found. Statistical analyses were performed to identify chemicals in specific tissues where concentrations differed significantly between study area and reference areas.

  4. European organic dairy farmers' preference for animal health management within the farm management system.

    PubMed

    van Soest, F J S; Mourits, M C M; Hogeveen, H

    2015-11-01

    The expertise and knowledge of veterinary advisors on improving animal health management is key towards a better herd health status. However, veterinary advisors are not always aware of the goals and priorities of dairy farmers. To dairy farmers animal health is only one aspect of farm management and resources may be allocated to other more preferred areas. Veterinary advisors may experience this as non-compliant with their advice. To explore the preferences of European Union (EU) organic dairy farmers for improved animal health management relative to other farm management areas an adaptive conjoint analysis (ACA) was performed. A total of 215 farmers participated originating from organic dairy farms in France (n = 70), Germany (n = 60), Spain (n = 28) and Sweden (n = 57). The management areas udder health and claw health represented animal health management whereas barn, calf and pasture management represented potential conflicting management areas. Results indicate that EU organic dairy farmers differ in their preferences for improved animal health management within the farming system. In general, improved calf management was the most preferred area and improved claw health management was found to be least preferred, the remaining areas were of intermediate interest. Cluster analyses on claw health measures and udder health measures resulted in respectively seven and nine distinct preference profiles. The results indicate a high degree of variation in farmers' preference, which cannot be explained by the typical herd characteristics. With the individual preferences revealed by ACA, a veterinary advisor can now find out whether his intended advice is directed at a favourable or unfavourable management area of the farmer. If the latter is the case the veterinarian should first create awareness of the problem to the farmer. Insights in individual farmers preferences will allow veterinary advisors to better understand why farmers were incompliant with their advice

  5. The concept of animal welfare at the interface between producers and scientists: the example of organic pig farming.

    PubMed

    Leeb, Christine

    2011-06-01

    In organic farming animal welfare is one important aspect included in the internationally agreed organic principles of health, ecology, fairness and care (IFOAM 2006), reflecting expectation of consumers and farmers. The definition of organic animal welfare includes-besides traditional terms of animal welfare-'regeneration' and 'naturalness'. Organic animal welfare assessment needs to reflect this and use complex parameters, include natural behaviour and a systemic view. Furthermore, various parties with seemingly conflicting interests are involved, causing ethical dilemmas, such as the use of nose rings for outdoor sows (impaired animal welfare vs. destruction of humus). Solutions can only be found when foundational concepts are translated and applied to practical situations. On-farm animal welfare assessment and implementation of improvement strategies are increasingly relevant scientific areas. They combine on-farm welfare assessment, identification of key problem areas and connected risk factors. Constant communication between all parties is crucial for success. Animal health and welfare planning is one application of this approach, which was carried out on Austrian organic pig farms as well as organic dairy farms in seven European countries. The projects included welfare assessment, feedback and benchmarking as a tool for communication between farmers, advisors and scientists. Finally goals were set by the farmer and improvement strategies applicable to organic farming were implemented. This included prevention of disease by management strategies instead of routine treatment with pharmaceutical products. It appeared that next to problem structuring, multidisciplinary problem solving demands good communications skills to relate animal welfare science to value reflections.

  6. Development of Occupational Exposure Limits for the Hanford Tank Farms

    SciTech Connect

    Still, Kenneth; Gardner, Donald; Snyder, Robert; Anderson, Thomas; Honeyman, James; Timchalk, Charles

    2010-04-01

    Production of plutonium for the United States’ nuclear weapons program from the 1940’s to the 1980’s generated 53 million gallons of radioactive chemical waste, which is storedin 177 underground tanks at the Hanford Site in southeastern W 18 ashington State. Recent 19 attempts to begin the retrieval and treatment of these wastes require moving the waste to 20 more modern tanks results in potential exposure of the workers to unfamiliar odors 21 emanating from headspace in the tanks. Given the unknown risks involved, workers 22 were placed on supplied air respiratory protection. CH2M HILL, the managers of the 23 Hanford Site Tank Farms, asked an Independent Toxicology Panel (ITP) to assist them in issues relating to an Industrial Hygiene and risk assessment problem. The ITP was called upon to help determine the risk of exposure to vapors from the tanks, and in general develop a strategy for solution of the problem. This paper presents the methods used to determine the chemicals of potential concern (COPC) and the resultant development of screening values and Acceptable Occupational Exposure Limits (AOELs) for these COPCs. A total of 1,826 chemicals were inventoried and evaluated. Over 1,500 chemicals were identified in the waste tanks headspaces and more than 600 of these were assigned screening values; 72 of these compounds were recommended for AOEL development. Included in this list of 72 were 57 COPCs identified by the ITP and of these 47 were subsequently assigned AOELs. An exhaustive exposure assessment strategy was developed by the CH2M HILL industrial hygiene department to evaluate these COPCs.

  7. Development of occupational exposure limits for the Hanford tank farms.

    PubMed

    Still, Kenneth R; Gardner, Donald E; Snyder, Robert; Anderson, Thomas J; Honeyman, James O; Timchalk, Charles

    2010-04-01

    Production of plutonium for the United States' nuclear weapons program from the 1940s to the 1980s generated 53 million gallons of radioactive chemical waste, which is stored in 177 underground tanks at the Hanford site in southeastern Washington State. Recent attempts to begin the retrieval and treatment of these wastes require moving the waste to more modern tanks and result in potential exposure of the workers to unfamiliar odors emanating from headspace in the tanks. Given the unknown risks involved, workers were placed on supplied air respiratory protection. CH2MHILL, the managers of the Hanford site tank farms, asked an Independent Toxicology Panel (ITP) to assist them in issues relating to an industrial hygiene and risk assessment problem. The ITP was called upon to help determine the risk of exposure to vapors from the tanks, and in general develop a strategy for solution of the problem. This paper presents the methods used to determine the chemicals of potential concern (COPCs) and the resultant development of screening values and Acceptable Occupational Exposure Limits (AOELs) for these COPCs. A total of 1826 chemicals were inventoried and evaluated. Over 1500 chemicals were identified in the waste tanks headspaces and more than 600 of these were assigned screening values; 72 of these compounds were recommended for AOEL development. Included in this list of 72 were 57 COPCs identified by the ITP and of these 47 were subsequently assigned AOELs. An exhaustive exposure assessment strategy was developed by the CH2MHILL industrial hygiene department to evaluate these COPCs.

  8. Identification of land degradation evidences in an organic farm using probability maps (Croatia)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, Paulo; Bogunovic, Igor; Estebaranz, Ferran

    2017-04-01

    =0.660), IK (RMSE=0.722) and PK (RMSE=1.661). According to the most accurate method, it is observed that the majority of the area studied has a high probability to be degraded. Measures are needed to restore this area. References Amaya-Romero, M., Abd-Elmabod, S., Munoz-Rojas, M., Castellano, G., Ceacero, C., Alvarez, S., Mendez, M., De la Rosa, D. (2015) Evaluating soil threats under climate change scenarios in the Andalusia region, Southern Spain. Land Degradation and Development, 26, 441-449. Beyene, F. (2015) Incentives and challenges in community based rangeland management: Evidence from Eastern Ethiopia. Land Degradation and Development, 26, 502-509. Brevik, E., Calzolari, C., Miller, B., Pereira, P., Kabala, C., Baumgarten, A., Jordán, A. (2016) Historical perspectives and future needs in soil mapping, classification and pedological modelling, Geoderma, 264, Part B, 256-274. Kraaijvanger, R., Veldkamp, T. (2015) Grain productivity, fertilizer response and nutrient balance of farming systems in Tigray, Ethiopia: A Multiprespective view in relation do soil fertility degradation. Land Degradation and Development, 26, 701-710. Lanckriet, S., Derudder, B., Naudts, J., Bauer, H., Deckers, J., Haile, M., Nyssen, J. (2015) A political ecology perspective of land degradation in the North Ethiopian Highlands. Land Degradation and Development, 26, 521-530. Loveland, P., Weeb, J. (2003) Is there a critical level of organic matter in the agricultural soils of temperate regions: a review. Soil & Tillage Research, 70, 1-18. Pereira, P., Brevik, E., Munoz-Rojas, M., Miller, B., Smetanova, A., Depellegrin, D., Misiune, I., Novara, A., Cerda, A. Soil mapping and process modelling for sustainable land management. In: Pereira, P., Brevik, E., Munoz-Rojas, M., Miller, B. (Eds.) Soil mapping and process modelling for sustainable land use management (Elsevier Publishing House) ISBN: 9780128052006

  9. Enzymatic activity of anthropogenic proto-organic soils in soilless farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bireescu, Geanina; Dazzi, Carmelo; Laudicina, Vito Armando; Lo Papa, Giuseppe

    2017-04-01

    In soilless agriculture and horticulture coir is the more used substratum to grow plants because it is widely available and more environmentally friendly than sphagnum or peat. In Italy, soilless agriculture concerns an area of about 1,000 hectares, particularly concentrated in Sicily. The southern coastal belt of this region is the area interested by the most significant experiences in the application of techniques of soilless cultivation that, recently, has been used also for growing table grapes. Starting from the above consideration we suppose that the features of the coconut fiber underlay an evident transformation and that even after few years of table grape cultivation, such organic material undergone to a transformation that allows for the formation of a proto-organic soil (a proto-Histosol, we supposed). If this is true, we believe that, in this case, to speak about soilless cultivation is for sure misleading for the common people, as we should define this cultivation "on anthropogenic soils" instead. To fit the aims of this survey we used a big greenhouse devoted to soilless cultivation of table grape in a farm in the Southern Sicily We have considered the enzymatic activity that characterized the coconut fiber after 3 cycles of cultivation of table grapes. We used as a control the coconut fiber that the farmer used to prepare pots for soilless cultivation and coconut fiber of: 6 pots at the end of the first productive cycle 6 pots at the end of the second cycle and 3 pots at the end of the third cycle. On these organic samples we investigated three enzymes, belonging to oxydoreductase (catalase and dehydrogenase) and hydrolase (urease) classes. Statistical analysis of the investigated enzymes was developed using IBM Statistic SPSS v20 by ANOVA, Tukey test HSD for p ≤ 0.01 and Multivariate Statistical Analysis. Results have shown significant differences in enzymes content and quality among coir tests. The use of the coco fiber, as nutritive substratum

  10. Tightly-Coupled Plant-Soil Nitrogen Cycling: Comparison of Organic Farms across an Agricultural Landscape

    PubMed Central

    Bowles, Timothy M.; Hollander, Allan D.; Steenwerth, Kerri; Jackson, Louise E.

    2015-01-01

    How farming systems supply sufficient nitrogen (N) for high yields but with reduced N losses is a central challenge for reducing the tradeoffs often associated with N cycling in agriculture. Variability in soil organic matter and management of organic farms across an agricultural landscape may yield insights for improving N cycling and for evaluating novel indicators of N availability. We assessed yields, plant-soil N cycling, and root expression of N metabolism genes across a representative set of organic fields growing Roma-type tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum L.) in an intensively-managed agricultural landscape in California, USA. The fields spanned a three-fold range of soil carbon (C) and N but had similar soil types, texture, and pH. Organic tomato yields ranged from 22.9 to 120.1 Mg ha-1 with a mean similar to the county average (86.1 Mg ha-1), which included mostly conventionally-grown tomatoes. Substantial variability in soil inorganic N concentrations, tomato N, and root gene expression indicated a range of possible tradeoffs between yields and potential for N losses across the fields. Fields showing evidence of tightly-coupled plant-soil N cycling, a desirable scenario in which high crop yields are supported by adequate N availability but low potential for N loss, had the highest total and labile soil C and N and received organic matter inputs with a range of N availability. In these fields, elevated expression of a key gene involved in root N assimilation, cytosolic glutamine synthetase GS1, confirmed that plant N assimilation was high even when inorganic N pools were low. Thus tightly-coupled N cycling occurred on several working organic farms. Novel combinations of N cycling indicators (i.e. inorganic N along with soil microbial activity and root gene expression for N assimilation) would support adaptive management for improved N cycling on organic as well as conventional farms, especially when plant-soil N cycling is rapid. PMID:26121264

  11. Performance of dairy cows on Swiss farms with organic and integrated production.

    PubMed

    Roesch, M; Doherr, M G; Blum, J W

    2005-07-01

    Milk production of cows on farms in which milk was organically produced (OP) tends to be less than that on farms with conventional or integrated production (IP), but causes for the difference have not been thoroughly evaluated. We performed a study to investigate management, nutritional, metabolic, and endocrine risk factors that may be associated with lower milk production on OP farms. Fertility traits were also compared. In 60 OP and 60 IP farms, matched in size, location, and agricultural zone (altitude), 970 cows were selected. Body condition scores (BCS) and body weights (BW) were determined at approximately 29 d prepartum (visit 1) and at 31 (visit 2) and 102 d postpartum (visit 3). Blood was sampled at visit 2 to determine plasma concentrations of glucose, nonesterified fatty acids, beta-hydroxybutyrate, albumin, urea, insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-I), and 3,5,3'-triiodothyronine. Metabolic and endocrine traits as well as milk yield, fertility, and feeding factors were compared among cows in the 2 production systems. A univariable and stepwise multivariable logistic regression model was used to identify risk factors for poor milk yield. Energy-corrected milk yield medians and milk urea concentrations were less in OP than in IP cows at visits 2 and 3. Organic farms provided less concentrates, and OP cows at all visits had lower BW than IP cows. Plasma albumin and urea concentrations were lower in OP than IP cows. The following factors were positively associated with low milk yield (below median): Simmental breed, greater BCS, positive California mastitis test in hindquarters, and sampling during summer. Factors associated with an elevated (above median) milk yield were: Holstein breed, greater BW and lactation number (age), weak udder suspension, greater blood albumin, milk fat and milk protein, more lactation persistency, longer calving intervals, routine teat dipping, and more outdoor access during winter. In conclusion, significant differences

  12. Differences in soil quality between organic and conventional farming over a maize crop season

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira, Carla; Veiga, Adelcia; Puga, João; Kikuchi, Ryunosuke; Ferreira, António

    2017-04-01

    Land degradation in agricultural areas is a major concern. The large number of mechanical interventions and the amount of inputs used to assure high crop productivity, such as fertilizers and pesticides, have negative impacts on soil quality and threaten crop productivity and environmental sustainability. Organic farming is an alternative agriculture system, based on organic fertilizers, biological pest control and crop rotation, in order to mitigate soil degradation. Maize is the third most important cereal worldwide, with 2008 million tons produced in 2013 (IGN, 2016). In Portugal, 120000 ha of arable land is devoted to maize production, leading to annual yields of about 930000 ton (INE, 2015). This study investigates soil quality differences in maize farms under organic and conventional systems. The study was carried out in Coimbra Agrarian Technical School (ESAC), in central region of Portugal. ESAC campus comprises maize fields managed under conventional farming - Vagem Grande (32 ha), and organic fields - Caldeirão (12 ha), distancing 2.8 km. Vagem Grande has been intensively used for grain maize production for more than 20 years, whereas Caldeirão was converted to organic farming in 2008, and is being used to select regional maize varieties. The region has a Mediterranean climate. The maize fields have Eutric Fluvisols, with gentle slopes (<3%). In order to assess soil quality, three plots per farm were installed in May 2006, immediately after sowing, and monitored until October 2016, before harvesting, in order to cover all the crop season. Each plot comprises 5 plant lines (˜4 m width) with 20 m length. In order to assure the comparison between both farms, the same maize variety was used (Pigarro) in both fields, with the same compass. Soil samples were collected immediately after sowing. In Vagem Grande distinct soil samples were taken: (i) within plant lines, and (ii) between plant lines, since mineral fertilizers were spread over the field before

  13. NMR-based metabolomics for organic farming traceability of early potatoes.

    PubMed

    Pacifico, Daniela; Casciani, Lorena; Ritota, Mena; Mandolino, Giuseppe; Onofri, Chiara; Moschella, Anna; Parisi, Bruno; Cafiero, Caterina; Valentini, Massimiliano

    2013-11-20

    (1)H HRMAS-NMR spectroscopy was successfully used to determine the metabolic profiles of 78 tubers obtained from three early genotypes grown under organic and conventional management. The variation in total hydrogen, carbon, and nitrogen contents was also assessed. A PLS-DA multivariate statistical analysis provided good discrimination among the varieties and cropping systems (100% unknown samples placed in a cross-validation blind test), suggesting that this method is a powerful and rapid tool for tracing organic potatoes. As a result of the farming system, the nitrogen content decreased by 11-14% in organic tubers, whereas GABA and lysine accumulated in the organic tubers of all clones. Clear variations in primary metabolites are discussed to provide a better understanding of the metabolic pathway modifications resulting from agronomical practices.

  14. The value of woody hedgerows for moth diversity on organic and conventional farms.

    PubMed

    Boutin, C; Baril, A; McCabe, S K; Martin, P A; Guy, M

    2011-06-01

    Habitat destruction and degradation are important drivers of biodiversity loss within agro-ecosystems. However, little is known about the effect of farming practices and the value of woody hedgerows on Lepidoptera in North America. The purpose of this work was to study moth diversity in woody hedgerows and croplands of organic and conventional farms. In addition, the influence of vegetation composition and abiotic variables on species richness, abundance, and composition was examined. Moths were sampled with light traps during six weeks in the summer of 2001. Vegetation data and abiotic variables were obtained for all sites. In total, 26,020 individuals from 12 families and 408 species were captured. Most species were uncommon. Only 35 species included >100 individuals while for 71% of species <10 individuals were found. The Noctuidae represented 221 species and 85% of all individuals captured. Woody hedgerows harbored more species and in greater number than croplands. There was no significant difference in moth diversity between organic and conventional farms, except that the Notodontidae were significantly more species rich in organic than in conventional sites. Results show that species richness, abundance, and composition were greatly influenced by habitat types (hedgerow versus crop field) and abiotic variables (minimum temperature which was correlated to moon illumination, rainfall, and cloud cover). Moth species composition was significantly correlated to vegetation composition. This study broadens our understanding of the factors driving moth diversity and expands our knowledge of their geographic range. The maintenance of noncrop habitats such as woody hedgerows within agro-ecosystems seems paramount to preserving the biodiversity and abundance of many organisms, including moths.

  15. Strawberries from integrated pest management and organic farming: phenolic composition and antioxidant properties.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Virgínia C; Domingues, Valentina F; de Freitas, Victor; Delerue-Matos, Cristina; Mateus, Nuno

    2012-10-15

    Consumer awareness, pesticide and fertilizer contaminations and environmental concerns have resulted in significant demand for organically grown farm produce. Consumption of berries has become popular among health-conscious consumers due to the high levels of valuable antioxidants, such as anthocyanins and other phenolic compounds. The present study evaluated the influence that organic farming (OF) and integrated pest management (IPM) practise exert on the total phenolic content in 22 strawberry samples from four varieties. Postharvest performance of OF and IPM strawberries grown in the same area in the centre of Portugal and harvested at the same maturity stage were compared. Chemical profiles (phenolic compounds) were determined with the aid of HPLC-DAD/MS. Total phenolic content was higher for OF strawberry extracts. This study showed that the main differences in bioactive phytochemicals between organically and IPM grown strawberries concerned their anthocyanin levels. Organically grown strawberries were significantly higher in antioxidant activity than were the IPM strawberries, as measured by DPPH and FRAP assays.

  16. 7 CFR 761.104 - Developing the farm operating plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... yields will be calculated according to the following priorities: (i) The applicant or borrower's own...) FSA Farm Program actual yield records; (iv) County averages; (v) State averages. (4) If the applicant... area, the applicant or borrower may: (i) Use county average yields, or state average yields if...

  17. 7 CFR 761.104 - Developing the farm operating plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... yields will be calculated according to the following priorities: (i) The applicant or borrower's own...) FSA Farm Program actual yield records; (iv) County averages; (v) State averages. (4) If the applicant... area, the applicant or borrower may: (i) Use county average yields, or state average yields if...

  18. 7 CFR 761.104 - Developing the farm operating plan.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... yields will be calculated according to the following priorities: (i) The applicant or borrower's own...) FSA Farm Program actual yield records; (iv) County averages; (v) State averages. (4) If the applicant... area, the applicant or borrower may: (i) Use county average yields, or state average yields if...

  19. Blood meal-based compound. Good choice as iron fertilizer for organic farming.

    PubMed

    Yunta, Felipe; Di Foggia, Michele; Bellido-Díaz, Violeta; Morales-Calderón, Manuel; Tessarin, Paola; López-Rayo, Sandra; Tinti, Anna; Kovács, Krisztina; Klencsár, Zoltán; Fodor, Ferenc; Rombolà, Adamo Domenico

    2013-05-01

    Prevention of iron chlorosis with Fe synthetic chelates is a widespread agronomical practice but implies high costs and environmental risks. Blood meal is one of the main fertilizers allowed to be used in organic farming. Through this work a novel blood meal fertilizer was audited. Measurements such as FTIR, Raman, electron paramagnetic resonance, and Mössbauer spectroscopy, UV-visible properties, stability against pH, and batch experiments were performed to characterize and assess the reactivity on soil constituents and agronomic soils. The spectroscopy findings give clear indications that Fe is in the ferric oxidation state, is hexacoordinated, and has a low-spin form suggesting a similar structure to hemin and hematin. A spectrophotometric method at 400 nm was validated to quantify blood meal concentration at low electrolyte concentrations. Batch experiments demonstrated high reactivity of blood meal fertilizer with soil constituents, mainly in the presence of calcium, where aggregation processes are predominant, and its ability to take Fe from synthetic Fe (hydr)oxides. The beneficial profile of blood meal by a providing nitrogen source together with the capability to keep the Fe bound to porphyrin organic compounds makes it a good candidate to be used as Fe fertilizer in organic farming.

  20. Rapid analysis of organic farming insecticides in soil and produce using ultra-performance liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Drozdzyński, Dariusz; Kowalska, Jolanta

    2009-08-01

    A new method for the analysis of three ecological insecticides, namely azadyrachtin, spinosad (sum of spinosyn A and spinosyn D) and rotenone, in produce and soil samples is presented. Investigated compounds are one of the most significant insecticides authorized for organic farming crop protection in many countries. Extraction of the pesticides from plant and soil matrices was performed by using a modified quick, easy, cheap, effective, rugged, and safe (QuEChERS) method. The method entailed a single extraction of the investigated compounds with acidified acetonitrile followed by a dispersive solid-phase extraction cleanup step prior to the final determination by reverse-phase ultra-performance liquid chromatography/tandem quadrupole mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS). Validation studies were carried out on cabbage, tomato and soil samples. Recoveries of the spiked samples were in the range between 67% and 108%, depending on the matrix and the spiking level. Relative standard deviations for all matrix-compound combinations did not exceed 12%. The limits of quantification were < or = 0.01 mg kg(-1) in all cases, except for azadirachtin. The developed method was applied to the analysis of real samples originating from organic farming production.

  1. Pregnant Sheep in a Farm Environment Did Not Develop Anaemia

    PubMed Central

    Musk, Gabrielle C.; James, Amanda; Kemp, Matthew W.; Ritchie, Sara; Ritchie, Andrew; Laurence, Michael

    2017-01-01

    gestation (p = 0.04). GSHPx was not different between groups during the study. MMA decreased in all animals during the study (p < 0.0001), but was not different between groups. Faecal samples were consistently negative for strongyle and nematode eggs, and coccidian oocysts. The pasture was good quality. Pregnant sheep in a farm environment with normal trace element status, no parasites, and an adequate diet, did not develop anaemia (PCV < 0.27). PMID:28441332

  2. Influence of nitrogen and phosphorus sources on mycorrhizal lettuces under organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scotti, Riccardo; Seguel, Alex; Cornejo, Pablo; Rao, Maria A.; Borie, Fernando

    2010-05-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) develop symbiotic associations with plants roots. These associations are very common in the natural environment and can provide a range of benefits to the host plant. AMF improve nutrition, enhance resistance to soil-borne pests and disease, increase resistance to drought and tolerance to heavy metals, and contribute to a better soil structure. However, agricultural intensive managements, such as the use of mineral fertilizes, pesticides, mouldboard tillage, monocultures and use of non-mycorrhizal crops, are detrimental to AMF. As a consequence, agroecosystems are impoverished in AMF and may not provide the full range of benefits to the crop. Organic farming systems may be less unfavourable to AMF because they exclude the use of water-soluble fertilisers and most pesticides, and generally they plan diverse crop rotations. The AMF develop the most common type of symbiosis in nature: about 90% of the plants are mycorrhizal and many agricultural crops are mycorrhizal. One of more mycorrhizal crops is lettuce, that is very widespread in intensive agricultural under greenhouse. Therefore, cultivated lettuce is know to be responsive to mycorrhizal colonization which can reach 80% of root length and contribute to phosphorus and nitrogen absorption by this plant specie. For this work four different lettuce cultivars (Romana, Milanesa, Grande Lagos and Escarola) were used to study mycorrhization under organic agricultural system, supplying compost from agricultural waste (1 kg m-2) as background fertilization for all plots, red guano as phosphorus source (75 U ha-1 and 150 U ha-1 of P2O5), lupine flour as nitrogen source (75 and 150 U/ha of N) and a combination of both. Lettuce plants were cultivated under greenhouse and after two months of growing, plants were harvested and dried and fresh weight of lettuce roots and shoots were evaluated. The number of spores, percentage of colonization, total mycelium and glomalin content were also

  3. Recent development in organic scintillators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horrocks, D. L.; Wirth, H. O.

    1969-01-01

    Discussion on recent developments of organic scintillators includes studies of organic compounds that form glass-like masses which scintillate and are stable at room temperature, correlations between molecular structure of organic scintillators and self-quenching, recently developed fast scintillators, and applications of liquid-scintillation counters.

  4. Development of a simple ecosystem model and its application to fish farms at Hazamaura

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamamoto, Joji; Hirano, Tadahiko; Horiguchi, Fumio

    Fish farms often cause environmental degradation to the surrounding aquatic areas when they operate for a long time. In this study, a simple numerical model was developed to evaluate the water quality (dissolved inorganic nitrogen, dissolved oxygen) of fish farms. This model consisted of a conventional ecosystem model with an added "cultured fish" component. This model was applied to represent the material cycling in a red sea bream culture at Hazamaura, Gokasho Bay, Japan.The analysis was carried out on the basis of field data collected from 1986-1989. In order to verify the model, the simulated concentrations of dissolved inorganic nitrogen and dissolved oxygen were compared to observed concentrations. The simulated results were in good agreement with the observational data for the whole year. In the simulated nitrogen and dissolved oxygen cycle, we found that the factors causing water pollution (eutrophication, anoxia, etc.) were: excretion by the cultured fishes, river load and benthic regeneration in summer, an increase in organic substances from feed scraps and an increase in dissolved inorganic nitrogen through mineralization in winter.

  5. Comparative analysis of the diversity of aerobic spore-forming bacteria in raw milk from organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Coorevits, An; De Jonghe, Valerie; Vandroemme, Joachim; Reekmans, Rieka; Heyrman, Jeroen; Messens, Winy; De Vos, Paul; Heyndrickx, Marc

    2008-06-01

    Bacterial contamination of raw milk can originate from different sources: air, milking equipment, feed, soil, faeces and grass. It is hypothesized that differences in feeding and housing strategies of cows may influence the microbial quality of milk. This assumption was investigated through comparison of the aerobic spore-forming flora in milk from organic and conventional dairy farms. Laboratory pasteurized milk samples from five conventional and five organic dairy farms, sampled in late summer/autumn and in winter, were plated on a standard medium and two differential media, one screening for phospholipolytic and the other for proteolytic activity of bacteria. Almost 930 isolates were obtained of which 898 could be screened via fatty acid methyl ester analysis. Representative isolates were further analysed using 16S rRNA gene sequencing and (GTG)(5)-PCR. The majority of aerobic spore-formers in milk belonged to the genus Bacillus and showed at least 97% 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity with type strains of Bacillus licheniformis, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus circulans, Bacillus subtilis and with type strains of species belonging to the Bacillus cereus group. About 7% of all isolates may belong to possibly new spore-forming taxa. Although the overall diversity of aerobic spore-forming bacteria in milk from organic vs. conventional dairy farms was highly similar, some differences between both were observed: (i) a relatively higher number of thermotolerant organisms in milk from conventional dairy farms compared to organic farms (41.2% vs. 25.9%), and (ii) a relatively higher number of B. cereus group organisms in milk from organic (81.3%) and Ureibacillus thermosphaericus in milk from conventional (85.7%) dairy farms. One of these differences, the higher occurrence of B. cereus group organisms in milk from organic dairy farms, may be linked to differences in housing strategy between the two types of dairy farming. However, no plausible clarification was found for

  6. Organic farming and cover crops as an alternative to mineral fertilizers to improve soil physical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sánchez de Cima, Diego; Luik, Anne; Reintam, Endla

    2015-10-01

    For testing how cover crops and different fertilization managements affect the soil physical properties in a plough based tillage system, a five-year crop rotation experiment (field pea, white potato, common barley undersown with red clover, red clover, and winter wheat) was set. The rotation was managed under four different farming systems: two conventional: with and without mineral fertilizers and two organic, both with winter cover crops (later ploughed and used as green manure) and one where cattle manure was added yearly. The measurements conducted were penetration resistance, soil water content, porosity, water permeability, and organic carbon. Yearly variations were linked to the number of tillage operations, and a cumulative effect of soil organic carbon in the soil as a result of the different fertilization amendments, organic or mineral. All the systems showed similar tendencies along the three years of study and differences were only found between the control and the other systems. Mineral fertilizers enhanced the overall physical soil conditions due to the higher yield in the system. In the organic systems, cover crops and cattle manure did not have a significant effect on soil physical properties in comparison with the conventional ones, which were kept bare during the winter period. The extra organic matter boosted the positive effect of crop rotation, but the higher number of tillage operations in both organic systems counteracted this effect to a greater or lesser extent.

  7. Organic farming and landscape structure: effects on insect-pollinated plant diversity in intensively managed grasslands.

    PubMed

    Power, Eileen F; Kelly, Daniel L; Stout, Jane C

    2012-01-01

    Parallel declines in insect-pollinated plants and their pollinators have been reported as a result of agricultural intensification. Intensive arable plant communities have previously been shown to contain higher proportions of self-pollinated plants compared to natural or semi-natural plant communities. Though intensive grasslands are widespread, it is not known whether they show similar patterns to arable systems nor whether local and/or landscape factors are influential. We investigated plant community composition in 10 pairs of organic and conventional dairy farms across Ireland in relation to the local and landscape context. Relationships between plant groups and local factors (farming system, position in field and soil parameters) and landscape factors (e.g. landscape complexity) were investigated. The percentage cover of unimproved grassland was used as an inverse predictor of landscape complexity, as it was negatively correlated with habitat-type diversity. Intensive grasslands (organic and conventional) contained more insect-pollinated forbs than non-insect pollinated forbs. Organic field centres contained more insect-pollinated forbs than conventional field centres. Insect-pollinated forb richness in field edges (but not field centres) increased with increasing landscape complexity (% unimproved grassland) within 1, 3, 4 and 5km radii around sites, whereas non-insect pollinated forb richness was unrelated to landscape complexity. Pollination systems within intensive grassland communities may be different from those in arable systems. Our results indicate that organic management increases plant richness in field centres, but that landscape complexity exerts strong influences in both organic and conventional field edges. Insect-pollinated forb richness, unlike that for non-insect pollinated forbs, showed positive relationships to landscape complexity reflecting what has been documented for bees and other pollinators. The insect-pollinated forbs, their

  8. Organic Farming and Landscape Structure: Effects on Insect-Pollinated Plant Diversity in Intensively Managed Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Power, Eileen F.; Kelly, Daniel L.; Stout, Jane C.

    2012-01-01

    Parallel declines in insect-pollinated plants and their pollinators have been reported as a result of agricultural intensification. Intensive arable plant communities have previously been shown to contain higher proportions of self-pollinated plants compared to natural or semi-natural plant communities. Though intensive grasslands are widespread, it is not known whether they show similar patterns to arable systems nor whether local and/or landscape factors are influential. We investigated plant community composition in 10 pairs of organic and conventional dairy farms across Ireland in relation to the local and landscape context. Relationships between plant groups and local factors (farming system, position in field and soil parameters) and landscape factors (e.g. landscape complexity) were investigated. The percentage cover of unimproved grassland was used as an inverse predictor of landscape complexity, as it was negatively correlated with habitat-type diversity. Intensive grasslands (organic and conventional) contained more insect-pollinated forbs than non-insect pollinated forbs. Organic field centres contained more insect-pollinated forbs than conventional field centres. Insect-pollinated forb richness in field edges (but not field centres) increased with increasing landscape complexity (% unimproved grassland) within 1, 3, 4 and 5km radii around sites, whereas non-insect pollinated forb richness was unrelated to landscape complexity. Pollination systems within intensive grassland communities may be different from those in arable systems. Our results indicate that organic management increases plant richness in field centres, but that landscape complexity exerts strong influences in both organic and conventional field edges. Insect-pollinated forb richness, unlike that for non-insect pollinated forbs, showed positive relationships to landscape complexity reflecting what has been documented for bees and other pollinators. The insect-pollinated forbs, their

  9. The structure and strength of public attitudes towards wind farm development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bidwell, David Charles

    A growing social science literature seeks to understand why, despite broad public support for wind energy, proposals for specific projects are often met with strong local opposition. This gap between general and specific attitudes is viewed as a significant obstacle to the deployment of wind energy technologies. This dissertation applies theoretical perspectives and methodological tools from social psychology to provide insights on the structure and strength of attitudes towards the potential development of commercial wind farm in three coastal areas of Michigan. A survey of attitudes was completed by 375 residents in these communities and structural equation modeling was used to explore the relationship among variables. The analysis found that attitudes towards wind farm development are shaped by anticipated economic benefits to the community, but expectations of economic benefit are driven by personal values. Social psychology has long recognized that all attitudes are not created equal. Weak attitudes are fleeting and prone to change, while strong attitudes are stable over time and resistant to change. There are two fundamental paths to strong attitudes: repeated experience with an attitude object or the application of deeply held principles or values to that object. Structural equation models were also used to understand the strength of attitudes among the survey respondents. Both the anticipated effects of wind farm development and personal values were found to influence the strength of attitudes towards wind farms. However, while expectations that wind farm development will have positive effects on the economy bolster two measures of attitude strength (collective identity and importance), these expectations are associated with a decline in a third measure (confidence). A follow-up survey asking identical questions was completed by completed by 187 respondents to the initial survey. Linear regressions models were used to determine the effects of attitude

  10. Molecular diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in onion roots from organic and conventional farming systems in the Netherlands.

    PubMed

    Galván, Guillermo A; Parádi, István; Burger, Karin; Baar, Jacqueline; Kuyper, Thomas W; Scholten, Olga E; Kik, Chris

    2009-06-01

    Diversity and colonization levels of naturally occurring arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) in onion roots were studied to compare organic and conventional farming systems in the Netherlands. In 2004, 20 onion fields were sampled in a balanced survey between farming systems and between two regions, namely, Zeeland and Flevoland. In 2005, nine conventional and ten organic fields were additionally surveyed in Flevoland. AMF phylotypes were identified by rDNA sequencing. All plants were colonized, with 60% for arbuscular colonization and 84% for hyphal colonization as grand means. In Zeeland, onion roots from organic fields had higher fractional colonization levels than those from conventional fields. Onion yields in conventional farming were positively correlated with colonization level. Overall, 14 AMF phylotypes were identified. The number of phylotypes per field ranged from one to six. Two phylotypes associated with the Glomus mosseae-coronatum and the G. caledonium-geosporum species complexes were the most abundant, whereas other phylotypes were infrequently found. Organic and conventional farming systems had similar number of phylotypes per field and Shannon diversity indices. A few organic and conventional fields had larger number of phylotypes, including phylotypes associated with the genera Glomus-B, Archaeospora, and Paraglomus. This suggests that farming systems as such did not influence AMF diversity, but rather specific environmental conditions or agricultural practices.

  11. Aquatic carbon export from peatland catchments recently undergone wind farm development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Ben; Waldron, Susan; Henderson, Andrew; Flowers, Hugh; Gilvear, David

    2013-04-01

    Scotland's peat landscapes are desirable locations for wind-based renewables due to high wind resources and low land use pressures in these areas. The environmental impact of sitting wind-based renewables on peats however, is unknown. Globally, peatlands are important terrestrial carbon stores. Given the topical nature of carbon-related issues, e.g. global warming and carbon footprints, it is imperative we help mitigate their degradation and maintain carbon sequestration. To do so, we need to better understand how peatland systems function with regards to their carbon balance (export versus sequestration) so we can assess their resilience and adaptation to hosting land-based renewable energy projects. Predicting carbon lost as a result of construction of wind farms built on peatland has not been fully characterised and this research will provide data that can supplement current 'carbon payback calculator' models for wind farms that aim to reinforce their 'green' credentials. Transfer of carbon from the terrestrial peatland systems to the aquatic freshwater and oceanic systems is most predominant during periods of high rainfall. It has been estimated that 50% of carbon is exported during only 10% of highest river flows, (Hinton et al., 1998). Furthermore, carbon export from peatlands is known to have a seasonal aspect with highest concentrations of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) found mostly in late summer months of August and September and lowest in December and January, (Dawson et al., 2004). Event sampling, where high intensity sample collection is carried out during high river flow periods, offers a better insight, understanding and estimation of carbon aquatic fluxes from peatland landscapes. The Gordonbush estate, near Brora, has an extensive peatland area where a wind farm development has recently been completed (April 2012). Investigations of aquatic carbon fluxes from this peatland system were started in July 2010, in conjunction with the start of

  12. Implications of feed concentrate reduction in organic grassland-based dairy systems: a long-term on-farm study.

    PubMed

    Leiber, F; Schenk, I K; Maeschli, A; Ivemeyer, S; Zeitz, J O; Moakes, S; Klocke, P; Staehli, P; Notz, C; Walkenhorst, M

    2017-04-24

    In response to increasing efforts for reducing concentrate inputs to organic dairy production in grassland-rich areas of Europe, a long-term study was conducted, which assessed the impacts of concentrate reductions on cows' performance, health, fertility and average herd age. In total, 42 Swiss commercial organic dairy cattle farms were monitored over 6 years ('Y0', 2008/09 until 'Y5', 2013/14). In comparison with overall data of Swiss herdbooks (including conventional and organic farms), the herds involved in the project had lower milk yields, similar milk solids, shorter calving intervals and higher average lactation numbers. During the first 3 project years farmers reduced the concentrate proportion (i.e. cereals, oilseeds and grain legumes) in the dairy cows' diets to varying degrees. In Y0, farms fed between 0% and 6% (dietary dry matter proportion per year) of concentrates. During the course of the study they changed the quantity of concentrates to voluntarily chosen degrees. Retrospectively, farms were clustered into five farm groups: Group '0-conc' (n=6 farms) already fed zero concentrates in Y0 and stayed at this level. Group 'Dec-to0' (n=11) reduced concentrates to 0 during the project period. Groups 'Dec-strong' (n=8) and 'Dec-slight' (n=12) decreased concentrate amounts by >50% and <50%, respectively. Group 'Const-conc' (n=5 farms) remained at the initial level of concentrates during the project. Milk recording data were summarised and analysed per farm and project year. Lactation number and calving intervals were obtained from the databases of the Swiss breeders' associations. Dietary concentrate amounts and records of veterinary treatments were obtained from the obligatory farm documentations. Data were analysed with GLMs. Daily milk yields differed significantly between farm groups already in Y0, being lowest in groups 0-conc (16.0 kg) and Dec-to0 (16.7 kg), and highest in groups Dec-slight (19.6 kg) and Const-conc (19.2 kg). Milk yield decreases

  13. Influences of Farming Management on Quality and Quantity of Soil Organic Matter in Volcanic Ash Soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshikawa, M.; Tanaka, H.; Matsumura, S.; Shimizu, T.; Zhang, M.

    2013-12-01

    Storage of soil organic matter (SOM) in terrestrial ecosystem plays a significant role in reducing carbon flux to the atmosphere and thus prevents the earth from global warming. In agricultural field, farming management, such as manure application and/or reduced tillage, are known to be effective methods to stimulate SOM storage. Volcanic ash soil, categorized into Andosols, is a major type of upland soil in Japan, and the soil contains relatively high concentration of SOM, meaning that volcanic ash soil can play an important role in carbon storage in Japan. To investigate the influences of farming management on quality and quantity of SOM, an empirical study was carried out in an upland soil field derived from volcanic ash. Surface soil samples were taken every three months from the field and fractionated physically and chemically. As for the physical fractionation, 53 μm sieving was performed. SOM in the samples were sorted into particulate organic matter (POM) denoting organic matter with particle size greater than 53 μm and less than 2 mm, and mineral-associated organic matter (MOM) denoting less than 53 μm. In addition, both POM and MOM were further fractionated chemically by extraction with pyrophosphate buffer solutions at three different pH levels. The fractionated organic matter as well as unfractionated SOM were analyzed and quantified for organic carbon, nitrogen content. This study induced the following results and findings. The manure and/or reduced tillage treatments can significantly increase the particulate organic carbon (POC) and all chemically fractionated POC contents. Especially, POC extracted with the buffer solution at pH4 (POCpH4) and the differences between POC and POC extracted with the buffer solution at pH10 (POC-POCpH10) have strong correlations with SOC, and manure application can effectively increase POC-POCpH10 fraction. The results indicate that these fractionated organic carbons would contribute storage of organic matter in

  14. College and Career Development Organizer

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National High School Center, 2012

    2012-01-01

    The National High School Center has created a college and career development organizer to synthesize and organize an increasingly complicated and crowded field of college and career readiness initiatives. The organizer, composed of three strands, can be used to map the efforts of state education agencies (SEAs) and local education agencies (LEAs)…

  15. Developing Organizations: Diagnosis and Action.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lawrence, Paul R.; Lorsch, Jay W.

    This book represent s a personal statement of the authors' evolving experience as collaborators in the work of developing organizations. Focus is on three critical interfaces: the organization-environment, the group-group, and the individual organization. Close attention is paid to the attainment both of organizational goals and of individual…

  16. Hock injury prevalence and associated risk factors on organic and nonorganic dairy farms in the United Kingdom.

    PubMed

    Rutherford, K M D; Langford, F M; Jack, M C; Sherwood, L; Lawrence, A B; Haskell, M J

    2008-06-01

    The presence of hock injury was assessed in the milking herds of 80 dairy farms (40 organic, 40 nonorganic) across the United Kingdom. A wide range of information on farm management and husbandry was gathered via interview to assess the factors contributing to hock damage for all 80 farms, and a comprehensive building appraisal was conducted for 40 farms visited during the winter housing period. The prevalence of hock lesions was lower on organic compared with nonorganic farms (37.2 vs. 49.1%). Prevalence of hock damage was greater in the spring than fall (59.9 vs. 21.6%) and cows housed in free-stalls had a greater prevalence of hock lesions than those housed on straw (46.0 vs. 25.0%). Prevalence of hock damage increased with lactation number. In the analysis of fall/spring data, the age first mated, herd biosecurity, duration of summer grazing, and cow milk yield were significant factors relating to herd hock damage. Larger herds had a greater proportion of cows with hock swellings. Farms with a shorter calving interval had more cows with hock swellings. Factors relating to housing conditions that were positively associated with the prevalence of hock damage were low feed face space per cow, inferior passageway cleanliness, low total standing area per cow, and the type of bedding added to the free-stall. To assess whether free-stall versus straw-pen or organic versus nonorganic farms had different sets of risk factors, the data were reanalyzed for these types separately. For the straw-pen farms a high culling rate was associated with more hock damage. Within nonorganic farms, the length of summer grazing was significant, with longer periods meaning less hock injury. The prevalence of hock injuries on many UK farms, both organic and non-organic, exceeded levels that are deemed acceptable for cow comfort. Efforts are needed to improve housing standards to reduce the prevalence of hock injury and consequently improve cow welfare.

  17. House and stable fly (Diptera: Muscidae) seasonal abundance, larval development substrates, and natural parasitism on small equine farms in Florida

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    This 1-year study was designed to determine adult fly population levels and development substrates on four small equine farms. Results showed that pest flies were present year-round, but differences existed in population levels among farms and seasons. Fly larvae were not found on two of the farms, ...

  18. Functional and structural microbial diversity in organic and conventional viticulture: organic farming benefits natural biocontrol agents.

    PubMed

    Schmid, Florian; Moser, Gerit; Müller, Henry; Berg, Gabriele

    2011-03-01

    Statistically significant differences in the structure and function of above-ground grapevine-associated microorganisms from organically and conventionally managed vineyards were found. Aureobasidium pullulans, a copper-detoxifying fungus and biocontrol agent, plays a key role in explaining these differences. The black fungus was strongly enriched in the communities of organically managed plants and yielded a higher indigenous antiphytopathogenic potential.

  19. A survey of gastrointestinal pig parasites on free-range, organic and conventional pig farms in The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    Eijck, I A J M; Borgsteede, F H M

    2005-07-01

    The prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites in suckling piglets, weaners, fattening pigs and sows was studied from November 2001 to October 2002 on 16 free-range farms (FRF), 11 organic farms (OF) and 9 conventional farms (CF) by means of faecal examinations of composite samples. Each farm was visited four times with a 3-month interval. Infections with coccidia were found on 43.8% of the FRF, 90.9% of the OF and 66.7% of the CF. Sows had the highest prevalence, particularly on FRF (87.5%) and OF (80%). Ascaris suum was present on 50% of the FRF, 72.7% of the OF and 11.1% of the CF, whereas fattening pigs on FRF (42.9%) and OF (54.5%) had the highest prevalence. Oesophagostomum spp. were observed on 25% of the FRF, 27.2% of the OF and 22.2% of the CF. The infection was most prevalent in the sows on all farm types: 37.5% on FRF, 30% on OF and 22.2% on CF.Trichuris suis was found on 37.5% of the FRF, 36.4% of the OF and 11.1% of the CF. Again, this infection was most prevalent in the sows, particularly on the FRF (50%) and OF (30%). No other gastrointestinal parasite species were found and no clinical signs were observed. No seasonal trends could be distinguished. In many cases, when an age group on a farm was positive for a certain parasite, it remained so during the whole study. This indicates that this parasite was really 'endemic' on that farm. The results of this study demonstrate that the prevalence of helminth infections of pigs on farms with outdoor facilities is higher than in pigs on conventional farms.

  20. Quantitative assessment of a Tanzanian integrated conservation and development project involving butterfly farming.

    PubMed

    Morgan-Brown, Theron; Jacobson, Susan K; Wald, Kenneth; Child, Brian

    2010-04-01

    Scientific understanding of the role of development in conservation has been hindered by the quality of evaluations of integrated conservation and development projects. We used a quasi-experimental design to quantitatively assess a conservation and development project involving commercial butterfly farming in the East Usambara Mountains of Tanzania. Using a survey of conservation attitudes, beliefs, knowledge, and behavior, we compared 150 butterfly farmers with a control group of 170 fellow community members. Due to the nonrandom assignment of individuals to the two groups, we used propensity-score matching and weighting in our analyses to control for observed bias. Eighty percent of the farmers believed butterfly farming would be impossible if local forests were cleared, and butterfly farmers reported significantly more participation in forest conservation behaviors and were more likely to believe that conservation behaviors were effective. The two groups did not differ in terms of their general conservation attitudes, attitudes toward conservation officials, or knowledge of conservation-friendly building techniques. The relationship between butterfly farming and conservation behavior was mediated by dependency on butterfly farming income. Assuming unobserved bias played a limited role, our findings suggest that participation in butterfly farming increased participation in conservation behaviors among project participants because farmers perceive a link between earnings from butterfly farming and forest conservation.

  1. Effect of Organic Amendment Application Rate on Greenhouse Gas Emissions at an Organic Farm in Santa Barbara County, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oyewole, M.; King, J. Y.; Cleveland, D. A.

    2015-12-01

    Though greenhouse gas emissions (GHGEs) from mineral fertilizer application in agriculture have been well studied, the effect of organic amendment (OA) application rate on GHGEs is not yet understood. Application of multiple OAs can improve different properties that control soil fertility, including nutrient availability, aggregate stability, and water-holding capacity. We measured nitrous oxide (N2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), and methane (CH4) flux at an organic farm in Goleta, CA in order to understand how OA application rate affects GHGEs and crop yield from agricultural soils. Based on management practices in the region, we asked farm managers to establish high compost (HC) and low compost (LC) treatments during the growing season of an annual crop (18.2, 9.13 Mg ha-1, respectively), and we measured GHGEs in beds and furrows using static chambers. Organic fertilizer (672 kg ha-1) was applied equally to HC and LC beds six weeks after compost application. Overall, emissions of N2O and CO2 were higher in HC than LC, but yield-scaled emissions were higher in LC. Importantly, treatment differences in both N2O and CO2 emissions were not apparent until after mid-season fertilizer application. Net CH4 uptake was higher in HC than LC in the furrows, but there was no difference in the beds. Our data suggest that high compost application rates likely increased SOM mineralization, soil water content, and nitrification and denitrification rates in HC relative to LC, which led to higher N2O emissions during the growing season. Fertilization primed SOM decomposition and increased soil respiration, which led to increased CO2 emissions. Our results suggest that improved management of application rate and timing during use of multiple OAs could reduce GHGEs while maintaining high crop yield. Understanding the mechanisms by which OA application rates alter the balance between GHGEs and yield is an important step toward reducing agriculture's contribution to climate change through

  2. Volatile organic compounds in dwelling houses and stables of dairy and cattle farms in Northern Germany.

    PubMed

    Beck, Jens P; Heutelbeck, Astrid; Dunkelberg, Hartmut

    2007-01-01

    Farmers are exposed to a complex mixture of airborne substances which can represent a health hazard. Especially animal production on a farm can be a risk factor for respiratory diseases. Most studies in this context focused on bioaerosols, compounds attached to bioaerosols or on gases such as ammonia or hydrogen sulfide. Less attention was paid to volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which may also cause respiratory diseases. This pilot study presents results of measuring VOCs in the air of the dwellings and stables, as well as in the outdoor environment, of cattle farms in Northern Germany in spring and autumn. Farmers on all selected farms complained of symptoms such as asthma, rhinitis and conjunctivitis which occurred especially during work in the stable but also in the dwellings. The mean concentration of total VOC (TVOC) for the outdoor environment, the dwellings, and the stables were 100 microg m(-3), 763 microg m(-3), 322 microg m(-3) in spring and 143 microg m(-3), 544 microg m(-3), 595 microg m(-3) in autumn, respectively. There was no significant difference in season. TVOC concentrations in dwellings on farms were elevated when compared to dwellings in other environments, probably because of an additional exposure to fuels and chemicals used in agriculture. Aliphatic and alicyclic hydrocarbons, aromatic compounds, and terpenes were main compounds of the dwellings and ketones, alcohols, and esters of the stables. Terpene concentrations in the stables were low probably because straw, which was not a strong terpene emitter, was used instead of sawdust as floor covering. Large amounts of methylethylketone were encountered in the air of one stable, probably from animal exhalation caused by increased animal activity. However, it was unlikely that this caused respiratory symptoms. Generally it was likely that the concentrations of VOCs were too low to have health effects on their own. On the other hand, the VOC concentrations were in a multifactor concentration

  3. How developments in cryobiology, reproductive technologies and conservation genomics could shape gene banking strategies for (farm) animals.

    PubMed

    Woelders, H; Windig, J; Hiemstra, S J

    2012-08-01

    Many local breeds are currently at risk because of replacement by a limited number of specialized commercial breeds. Concurrently, for many breeds, allelic diversity within breeds declines because of inbreeding. Gene banking of germplasm may serve to secure the breeds and the alleles for any future use, for instance to recover a lost breed, to address new breeding goals, to support breeding schemes in small populations to minimize inbreeding, and for conservation genetics and genomics research. Developments in cryobiology and reproductive technology have generated several possibilities for preserving germplasm in farm animals. Furthermore, in some mammalian and bird species, gene banking of material is difficult or impossible, requiring development of new alternative methods or improvement of existing methods. Depending on the species, there are interesting possibilities or research developments in the use of epididymal spermatozoa, oocytes and embryos, ovarian and testicular tissue, primordial germ cells, and somatic cells for the conservation of genetic diversity in farm- and other animal species. Rapid developments in genomics research also provide new opportunities to optimize conservation and sampling strategies and to characterize genome-wide genetic variation. With regard to gene banks for farm animals, collaboration between European countries is being developed through a number of organizations, aimed at sharing knowledge and expertise between national programmes. It would be useful to explore further collaboration between countries, within the framework of a European gene banking strategy that should minimize costs of conservation and maximize opportunities for exploitation and sustainable use of genetic diversity.

  4. Insect infestations crop development and evolving management approaches on a northeast Arkansas cotton farm

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    COTMAN information, cotton production records and insect scouting reports for Wildy Farms in Mississippi County, Arkansas were organized into large databases and studied for variability among years and fields in a wide range of crop and insect indices. The study included records from 126 individual...

  5. Impacts of stored feed cropping systems and farm size on the profitability of Maine organic dairy farm simulations

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    U.S. organic dairy production has increased to meet demand for organic milk. Organic dairy farmers have come under increasing financial stress due to increases in concentrated feed prices. Organic dairies in the Northeast U.S. have experimented with different forage and grain crops to maximize on-fa...

  6. Conserving and promoting evenness: organic farming and fire-based wildland management as case studies.

    PubMed

    Crowder, David W; Northfield, Tobin D; Gomulkiewicz, Richard; Snyderi, William E

    2012-09-01

    Healthy ecosystems include many species (high richness) with similar abundances (high evenness). Thus, both aspects of biodiversity are worthy of conservation. Simultaneously conserving richness and evenness might be difficult, however, if, for example, the restoration of previously absent species to low densities brings a cost in reduced evenness. Using meta-analysis, we searched for benefits to biodiversity following adoption of two common land-management schemes: the implementation of organic practices by farmers and of controlled burning by natural-land managers. We used rarefaction to eliminate sampling bias in all of our estimates of richness and evenness. Both conservation practices significantly increased evenness and overall abundance across taxonomic classifications (arthropods, birds, non-bird vertebrates, plants, soil organisms). Evenness and richness varied independently, leading to no richness-evenness correlation and no significant overall change in richness. Demonstrating the importance of rarefaction, analyses of raw data that did not receive rarefaction indicated misleadingly strong benefits of organic agriculture and burning for richness while underestimating true gains in evenness. Both organic farming and burning favored species that were not numerically dominant, re-balancing communities as uncommon species gained individuals. Our results support the assertion that richness and evenness capture separate facets of biodiversity, each needing individual attention during conservation.

  7. Isolation of a lytic bacteriophage against virulent Aeromonas hydrophila from an organized equine farm.

    PubMed

    Anand, Taruna; Vaid, Rajesh Kumar; Bera, Bidhan Ch; Singh, Jitender; Barua, Sanjay; Virmani, Nitin; Rajukumar, K; Yadav, Neeraj Kumar; Nagar, Dinesh; Singh, Raj K; Tripathi, B N

    2016-04-01

    A bacteriophage (VTCCBPA6) against a pathogenic strain of Aeromonas hydrophila was isolated from the sewage of an organized equine breeding farm. On the basis of TEM analysis, phage belonged to family Myoviridae. PCR amplification and sequence analysis of gp23 gene (encoding for major capsid protein) revealed phylogenetic resemblance to T4 like virus genus. Protein profiling by SDS-PAGE also indicated its resemblance to T4 like phage group. However, the comparison of its gp23 gene sequence with previously reported phages showed similarity with T4-like phages infecting Enterobacteriaceae instead of Aeromonas spp. Thus, to our knowledge, this report points toward the fact that a novel/evolved phage might exist in equine environment against A. hydrophila, which can be potentially used as a biocontrol agent. © 2016 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. Selection of cows for treatment at dry-off on organic dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Kiesner, Klemens; Wente, Nicole; Volling, Otto; Krömker, Volker

    2016-11-01

    Restrictions regarding the use of antibiotics make selective antibiotic dry cow therapy (DCT) mandatory on organic farms in Germany. This requires methods for identifying cows with an intramammary infection (IMI) at dry-off. The aim of this field study was to create a decision scheme for the use of DCT based on cow level factors associated with IMI at dry-off and the probability of both cure and new infection (NI) during the dry period. Data from 250 cows from five organic farms were collected including somatic cell counts (SCC) from Dairy Herd Improvement (DHI) records, California mastitis test (CMT) results at dry-off, clinical mastitis (CM) history, parity and dry-off treatment. IMI at dry-off were most accurate identified using a geometric mean SCC of 100 000 cells/ml as a threshold at either one or three DHI records prior to dry-off. Using a combination of SCC with either CM history, CMT at dry off or parity slightly increased the sensitivity of detection (SE). The probability of cure of the infection over the dry period increased with use of both antibiotic DCT and application of an internal teat sealant (ITS) and decreased when the dry period was longer than 56 d. The risk of NI decreased with the use of ITS and infections with minor pathogens at dry-off. Compared with the selection performed by the farmers during the study period identification of IMI based on the selection criterion with a defined SCC threshold achieved a higher SE.

  9. Comparative Analysis of Prokaryotic Communities Associated with Organic and Conventional Farming Systems

    PubMed Central

    Pershina, Elizaveta; Valkonen, Jari; Kurki, Päivi; Ivanova, Ekaterina; Chirak, Evgeny; Korvigo, Ilia; Provorov, Nykolay; Andronov, Evgeny

    2015-01-01

    One of the most important challenges in agriculture is to determine the effectiveness and environmental impact of certain farming practices. The aim of present study was to determine and compare the taxonomic composition of the microbiomes established in soil following long-term exposure (14 years) to a conventional and organic farming systems (CFS and OFS accordingly). Soil from unclared forest next to the fields was used as a control. The analysis was based on RT-PCR and pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes of bacteria and archaea. The number of bacteria was significantly lower in CFS than in OFS and woodland. The highest amount of archaea was detected in woodland, whereas the amounts in CFS and OFS were lower and similar. The most common phyla in the soil microbial communities analyzed were Proteobacteria (57.9%), Acidobacteria (16.1%), Actinobacteria (7.9%), Verrucomicrobia (2.0%), Bacteroidetes (2.7%) and Firmicutes (4.8%). Woodland soil differed from croplands in the taxonomic composition of microbial phyla. Croplands were enriched with Proteobacteria (mainly the genus Pseudomonas), while Acidobacteria were detected almost exclusively in woodland soil. The most pronounced differences between the CFS and OFS microbiomes were found within the genus Pseudomonas, which significantly (p<0,05) increased its number in CFS soil compared to OFS. Other differences in microbiomes of cropping systems concerned minor taxa. A higher relative abundance of bacteria belonging to the families Oxalobacteriaceae, Koribacteriaceae, Nakamurellaceae and genera Ralstonia, Paenibacillus and Pedobacter was found in CFS as compared with OFS. On the other hand, microbiomes of OFS were enriched with proteobacteria of the family Comamonadaceae (genera Hylemonella) and Hyphomicrobiaceae, actinobacteria from the family Micrococcaceae, and bacteria of the genera Geobacter, Methylotenera, Rhizobium (mainly Rhizobium leguminosarum) and Clostridium. Thus, the fields under OFS and CFS did not differ

  10. Comparative Analysis of Prokaryotic Communities Associated with Organic and Conventional Farming Systems.

    PubMed

    Pershina, Elizaveta; Valkonen, Jari; Kurki, Päivi; Ivanova, Ekaterina; Chirak, Evgeny; Korvigo, Ilia; Provorov, Nykolay; Andronov, Evgeny

    2015-01-01

    One of the most important challenges in agriculture is to determine the effectiveness and environmental impact of certain farming practices. The aim of present study was to determine and compare the taxonomic composition of the microbiomes established in soil following long-term exposure (14 years) to a conventional and organic farming systems (CFS and OFS accordingly). Soil from unclared forest next to the fields was used as a control. The analysis was based on RT-PCR and pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes of bacteria and archaea. The number of bacteria was significantly lower in CFS than in OFS and woodland. The highest amount of archaea was detected in woodland, whereas the amounts in CFS and OFS were lower and similar. The most common phyla in the soil microbial communities analyzed were Proteobacteria (57.9%), Acidobacteria (16.1%), Actinobacteria (7.9%), Verrucomicrobia (2.0%), Bacteroidetes (2.7%) and Firmicutes (4.8%). Woodland soil differed from croplands in the taxonomic composition of microbial phyla. Croplands were enriched with Proteobacteria (mainly the genus Pseudomonas), while Acidobacteria were detected almost exclusively in woodland soil. The most pronounced differences between the CFS and OFS microbiomes were found within the genus Pseudomonas, which significantly (p<0,05) increased its number in CFS soil compared to OFS. Other differences in microbiomes of cropping systems concerned minor taxa. A higher relative abundance of bacteria belonging to the families Oxalobacteriaceae, Koribacteriaceae, Nakamurellaceae and genera Ralstonia, Paenibacillus and Pedobacter was found in CFS as compared with OFS. On the other hand, microbiomes of OFS were enriched with proteobacteria of the family Comamonadaceae (genera Hylemonella) and Hyphomicrobiaceae, actinobacteria from the family Micrococcaceae, and bacteria of the genera Geobacter, Methylotenera, Rhizobium (mainly Rhizobium leguminosarum) and Clostridium. Thus, the fields under OFS and CFS did not differ

  11. Comparison of Sulphate-reducing Bacterial Communities in Japanese Fish Farm Sediments with Different Levels of Organic Enrichment

    PubMed Central

    Kondo, Ryuji; Mori, Yumi; Sakami, Tomoko

    2012-01-01

    Fish farm sediments receive a large amount of organic matter from uneaten food and fecal material. This nutrient enrichment, or organic pollution, causes the accumulation of sulphide in the sediment from the action of sulphate-reducing bacteria (SRB). We investigated the effect of organic enrichment around coastal fish farms comparing the SRB community structure in these sediments. Sediment samples with different levels of organic pollution classified based upon the contents of acid-volatile sulphide and chemical oxygen demand were collected at three stations on the coast of western Japan. The SRB community composition was assessed using PCR amplification, cloning, sequencing and phylogenetic analysis of the dissimilatory sulphite reductase β-subunit gene (dsrB) fragments using directly extracted sediment DNA. Sequencing of the cloned PCR products of dsrB showed the existence of different SRB groups in the sediments. The majority of dsrB sequences were associated with the families Desulfobacteraceae and Desulfobulbaceae. Clones related to the phylum Firmicutes were also detected from all sediment samples. Statistical comparison of sequences revealed that community compositions of SRB from polluted sediments significantly differed from those of moderately polluted sediments and unpolluted sediments (LIBSHUFF, p<0.05), showing a different distribution of SRB in the fish farm sediments. There is evidence showing that the organic enrichment of sediments influences the composition of SRB communities in sediments at marine fish farms. PMID:22791053

  12. Lower prevalence of antibiotic-resistant Enterococci on U.S. conventional poultry farms that transitioned to organic practices.

    PubMed

    Sapkota, Amy R; Hulet, R Michael; Zhang, Guangyu; McDermott, Patrick; Kinney, Erinna L; Schwab, Kellogg J; Joseph, Sam W

    2011-11-01

    In U.S. conventional poultry production, antimicrobials are used for therapeutic, prophylactic, and nontherapeutic purposes. Researchers have shown that this can select for antibiotic-resistant commensal and pathogenic bacteria on poultry farms and in poultry-derived products. However, no U.S. studies have investigated on-farm changes in resistance as conventional poultry farms transition to organic practices and cease using antibiotics. We investigated the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant Enterococcus on U.S. conventional poultry farms that transitioned to organic practices. Poultry litter, feed, and water samples were collected from 10 conventional and 10 newly organic poultry houses in 2008 and tested for Enterococcus. Enterococcus (n = 259) was identified using the Vitek® 2 Compact System and tested for susceptibility to 17 antimicrobials using the Sensititre™ microbroth dilution system. Data were analyzed using SAS software (version 9.2), and statistical associations were derived based on generalized linear mixed models. Litter, feed, and water samples were Enterococcus positive. The percentages of resistant Enterococcus faecalis and resistant Enterococcus faecium were significantly lower (p < 0.05) among isolates from newly organic versus conventional poultry houses for two (erythromycin and tylosin) and five (ciprofloxacin, gentamicin, nitrofurantoin, penicillin, and tetracycline) antimicrobials, respectively. Forty-two percent of E. faecalis isolates from conventional poultry houses were multidrug resistant (MDR; resistant to three or more antimicrobial classes), compared with 10% of isolates from newly organic poultry houses (p = 0.02); 84% of E. faecium isolates from conventional poultry houses were MDR, compared with 17% of isolates from newly organic poultry houses (p < 0.001). Our findings suggest that the voluntary removal of antibiotics from large-scale U.S. poultry farms that transition to organic practices is associated with a lower prevalence

  13. Lower Prevalence of Antibiotic-Resistant Enterococci on U.S. Conventional Poultry Farms that Transitioned to Organic Practices

    PubMed Central

    Hulet, R. Michael; Zhang, Guangyu; McDermott, Patrick; Kinney, Erinna L.; Schwab, Kellogg J.; Joseph, Sam W.

    2011-01-01

    Background: In U.S. conventional poultry production, antimicrobials are used for therapeutic, prophylactic, and nontherapeutic purposes. Researchers have shown that this can select for antibiotic-resistant commensal and pathogenic bacteria on poultry farms and in poultry-derived products. However, no U.S. studies have investigated on-farm changes in resistance as conventional poultry farms transition to organic practices and cease using antibiotics. Objective: We investigated the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant Enterococcus on U.S. conventional poultry farms that transitioned to organic practices. Methods: Poultry litter, feed, and water samples were collected from 10 conventional and 10 newly organic poultry houses in 2008 and tested for Enterococcus. Enterococcus (n = 259) was identified using the Vitek® 2 Compact System and tested for susceptibility to 17 antimicrobials using the Sensititre™ microbroth dilution system. Data were analyzed using SAS software (version 9.2), and statistical associations were derived based on generalized linear mixed models. Results: Litter, feed, and water samples were Enterococcus positive. The percentages of resistant Enterococcus faecalis and resistant Enterococcus faecium were significantly lower (p < 0.05) among isolates from newly organic versus conventional poultry houses for two (erythromycin and tylosin) and five (ciprofloxacin, gentamicin, nitrofurantoin, penicillin, and tetracycline) antimicrobials, respectively. Forty-two percent of E. faecalis isolates from conventional poultry houses were multidrug resistant (MDR; resistant to three or more antimicrobial classes), compared with 10% of isolates from newly organic poultry houses (p = 0.02); 84% of E. faecium isolates from conventional poultry houses were MDR, compared with 17% of isolates from newly organic poultry houses (p < 0.001). Conclusions: Our findings suggest that the voluntary removal of antibiotics from large-scale U.S. poultry farms that transition to

  14. Array Effects in Large Wind Farms. Cooperative Research and Development Final Report, CRADA Number CRD-09-343

    SciTech Connect

    Moriarty, Patrick

    2016-02-23

    The effects of wind turbine wakes within operating wind farms have a substantial impact on the overall energy production from the farm. The current generation of models drastically underpredicts the impact of these wakes leading to non-conservative estimates of energy capture and financial losses to wind farm operators and developers. To improve these models, detailed research of operating wind farms is necessary. Rebecca Barthelmie of Indiana University is a world leader of wind farm wakes effects and would like to partner with NREL to help improve wind farm modeling by gathering additional wind farm data, develop better models and increase collaboration with European researchers working in the same area. This is currently an active area of research at NREL and the capabilities of both parties should mesh nicely.

  15. Farm Animal Models of Organic Dust Exposure and Toxicity: Insights and Implications for Respiratory Health

    PubMed Central

    McClendon, Chakia J.; Gerald, Carresse L.; Waterman, Jenora T.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose of review Modern food animal production is a major contributor to the global economy, owing to advanced intensive indoor production facilities aimed at increasing market readiness and profit. Consequences of these advances are accumulation of dusts, gases and microbial products that diminish air quality within production facilities. Chronic inhalation exposure contributes to onset and exacerbation of respiratory symptoms and diseases in animals and workers. This article reviews literature regarding constituents of farm animal production facility dusts; animal responses to production building and organic dust exposure, and the effect of chronic inhalation exposure on pulmonary oxidative stress and inflammation. Recent findings –Porcine models of production facility and organic dust exposures reveal striking similarities to observations of human cells, tissues and clinical data. Oxidative stress plays a key role in mediating respiratory diseases in animals and humans, and enhancement of antioxidant levels through nutritional supplements can improve respiratory health. Summary – Pigs are well adapted to the exposures common to swine production buildings and thus serve as excellent models for facility workers. Insight for understanding mechanisms governing organic dust associated respiratory diseases may come from parallel comparisons between farmers and the animals they raise. PMID:25636160

  16. Nitrogen Utilization and Environmental Losses from Organic Farming and Biochar's Potential to Improve N Efficiency.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pereira, E. I.; SIX, J. W. U. A.

    2014-12-01

    The response of plant performance and nitrogen (N) dynamics to biochar amendments were studied across various levels of N input for two growing seasons in mesocosms representing an organic lettuce production systems. A silt loam soil was amended with pine chip (PC) and walnut shell (WS) biochar (10 t ha-1) in combination with five organic N fertilization rates 0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% of 225 kg N ha-1. N output through harvest, leachate, and nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions were determined to assess N utilization and environmental losses of biochar-amended soils. Analysis of plant performance indicate that PC and WS biochar did not provide any increases in plant biomass in soils that received less than business-as-usual fertilization rates. At 100% N fertilization rate, biochar amendments (both PC and WS) improved lettuce biomass production, which resulted in significant increases in NUE with no effects on N2O emissions. Furthermore, N losses via leaching were decreased by PC biochar at 100% N fertilization rates. Thus, due to increases in plant biomass and decreases in N losses via leachate, PC biochar significantly decreased the ratio of N lost over N exported in biomass. Findings from this study suggest that biochar can provide some beneficial effects to organic farming systems, however, not in all circumstances, given the effects seem to vary with biochar type and fertilization level.

  17. Organization Development: Strategies and Models.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beckhard, Richard

    This book, written for managers, specialists, and students of management, is based largely on the author's experience in helping organization leaders with planned-change efforts, and on related experience of colleagues in the field. Chapter 1 presents the background and causes for the increased concern with organization development and planned…

  18. The role of shoreland development and commercial cranberry farming in a lake in Wisconsin, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garrison, P.J.; Fitzgerald, S.A.

    2005-01-01

    Musky Bay in Lac Courte Oreilles, Wisconsin, USA, is currently eutrophic. This large, shallow bay of an oligotrophic lake possesses the densest aquatic plant growth and a floating algal mat. Paleoecological reconstructions encompassing the last 130 years, were based on multiproxy analyses of sediment cores from three coring sites, two within the bay and one in the lake itself. These data were compared to historical records of the construction and expansion of two commercial cranberry bogs and shoreline residential homes to identify temporal and causal relations of eutrophication. The proxies investigated included: minor and trace elements; biogenic silica; and the diatom community. Post-depositional diagenesis of organic carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus in the upper 30 cm of the core obscured records of historical ambient nutrient concentrations in the bay obviating their usefulness for this purpose. In contrast, calcium, magnesium, and potassium concentration profiles appeared to reflect runoff of soil amendments applied to the cranberry bogs and aerial fertilizer spraying over the eastern bog adjacent to Musky Bay. The increase in aluminum content since about 1930 coincided with the historical trend in shoreland development and construction of the original commercial cranberry farm. The biogenic silica profile recorded a steady increase of nutrients to Musky Bay over the last several decades. Stratigraphic changes in the diatom community indicated that nutrient input began to increase in the 1940s and accelerated in the mid-1990s with the onset of a noxious floating algal mat. The diatom community indicates the bay has possessed a significant macrophyte community for at least the last 200 years, but increased nutrient input was manifested by a change in the composition, and an increase in the density of the epiphytic diatom community. Cranberry farming appeared to be the major source of nutrients because the diatom community changes occurred prior to the

  19. Spatial Organization of "Farmed" Wetlands in Iowa's Prairie Pothole Landscape: Geomorphic and Anthropogenic Controls

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stunkel, K. B.; Basu, N. B.

    2012-12-01

    The Des Moines Lobe landform within North Central Iowa is the southernmost portion of the Prairie Pothole Region (PPR) that extends northwest into Canada. The PPR is a vast landscape dotted with thousands of glacially formed depressional wetlands known as prairie potholes. These potholes provide a wide range of ecological and hydrological services and are notable for their high waterfowl productivity. Within Iowa it is estimated that 95% of the wetlands in the Des Moines Lobe have been drained for agricultural purposes. Wetlands in this region are typically drained by subsurface tile drains in an attempt to lower the water table and increase agricultural productivity. Efforts are also underway in restoring some of these drained wetlands. In order to better understand the hydrological impacts of restoring drained wetlands at the watershed scale, it is important to understand how these depressions are distributed in space throughout the Des Moines Lobe. The overall objective of this study was to (1) understand the size-distribution and spatial organization of depressional features in the Des Moines Lobe as a function of watershed area and landform type; and (2) Explore the role of human impact on the size-distribution and spatial organization by comparing depressions based on 1m LIDAR DEM (surrogate for historic wetlands) with "farmed" wetlands based on National Wetlands Inventory (NWI ) data. It was found that the size-frequency relationship follows a power law regression that varies based on the landform type and the size of the study area. The power law function varies predictably with changes in area, suggesting fractal properties within the watersheds examined. Comparison between the National Wetlands Inventory (NWI) database and the LIDAR images was used to evaluate the effect of human disturbance on the landscape. The LIDAR captures the depressional areas that correspond to wetlands before the landscape was extensively tile-drained, while NWI captures the

  20. Anaerobic codigestion of municipal, farm, and industrial organic wastes: a survey of recent literature.

    PubMed

    Alatriste-Mondragón, Felipe; Samar, Parviz; Cox, Huub H J; Ahring, Birgitte K; Iranpour, Reza

    2006-06-01

    Codigestion of organic wastes is a technology that is increasingly being applied for simultaneous treatment of several solid and liquid organic wastes. The main advantages of this technology are improved methane yield because of the supply of additional nutrients from the codigestates and more efficient use of equipment and cost-sharing by processing multiple waste streams in a single facility. Many municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in industrialized countries currently process wastewater sludge in large digesters. Codigestion of organic wastes with municipal wastewater sludge can increase digester gas production and provide savings in the overall energy costs of plant operations. Methane recovery also helps to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. The goal of this literature survey was to summarize the research conducted in the last four years on anaerobic codigestion to identify applications of codigestion at WWTPs. Because the solids content in municipal wastewater sludge is low, this survey only focuses on codigestion processes operated at relative low solids content (slurry mode). Semi-solid or solid codigestion processes were not included. Municipal wastewater sludge, the organic fraction of municipal solid waste, and cattle manure (CAM) are the main wastes most often used in codigestion processes. Wastes that are codigested with these main wastes are wood wastes, industrial organic wastes, and farm wastes. These are referred to in this survey as codigestates. The literature provides many laboratory studies (batch assays and bench-scale digesters) that assess the digestibility of codigestates and evaluate the performance and monitoring of codigestion, inhibition of digestion by codigestates, the design of the process (e.g., single-stage or two-stage processes), and the operation temperature (e.g., mesophilic or thermophilic). Only a few reports on pilot- and full-scale studies were found. These evaluate general process

  1. Element content analysis by WDXRF in pistachios grown under organic and conventional farming regimes for human nutrition and health.

    PubMed

    Akbaba, Ugur; Sahin, Yusuf; Türkez, Hasan

    2012-10-01

    In this investigation, the elemental composition of various Antep pistachios (Pistacia vera L.) samples was determined using a sensitive method called wavelength dispersive x-ray fluorescence (WDXRF). A total of 27 elements, such as Al, As, Bi, Ca, Cd, Cu, Fe, Mn, Ni, P, S, Sr, Zn, Cl, Pb, K, Mg, Na, Ba, Rb, Si, Br, Sn, Au, La, Ti and Zr, were determined in pistachios samples (n = 10) grown under organic and conventional farming regimes. The obtained results from each group were analyzed statistically using SPSS statistic program. It was observed that the concentration and peak intensity values of Ca, Fe, Mn, P, Mg, Cl, Na and K elements were higher in the pistachios samples grown under organic farming regime. Similarly, Al was found in higher level in the samples grown under conventional farming regime. As, Bi, Cd, Pb, Ti, La, Sn and Zr contents were measured. Their contents were below the detection limits. Our findings clearly revealed that organic pistachios are likely to have higher nutritional mineral content. The pistachios samples grown under conventional farming regime could contain harmful metals like Al that might damage various systems and/or organs of humans and animals.

  2. Metabolite profiling on wheat grain to enable a distinction of samples from organic and conventional farming systems.

    PubMed

    Bonte, Anja; Neuweger, Heiko; Goesmann, Alexander; Thonar, Cécile; Mäder, Paul; Langenkämper, Georg; Niehaus, Karsten

    2014-10-01

    Identification of biomarkers capable of distinguishing organic and conventional products would be highly welcome to improve the strength of food quality assurance. Metabolite profiling was used for biomarker search in organic and conventional wheat grain (Triticum aestivum L.) of 11 different old and new bread wheat cultivars grown in the DOK system comparison trial. Metabolites were extracted using methanol and analysed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Altogether 48 metabolites and 245 non-identified metabolites (TAGs) were detected in the cultivar Runal. Principal component analysis showed a sample clustering according to farming systems and significant differences in peak areas between the farming systems for 10 Runal metabolites. Results obtained from all 11 cultivars indicated a greater influence of the cultivar than the farming system on metabolite concentrations. Nevertheless, a t-test on data of all cultivars still detected 5 metabolites and 11 TAGs with significant differences between the farming systems. Based on individual cultivars, metabolite profiling showed promising results for the categorization of organic and conventional wheat. Further investigations are necessary with wheat from more growing seasons and locations before definite conclusions can be drawn concerning the feasibility to evolve a combined set of biomarkers for organically grown wheat using metabolite profiles. © 2014 Society of Chemical Industry.

  3. Analysis to develop a program for energy-integrated farm systems

    SciTech Connect

    Eakin, D.E.; Clark, M.A.; Inaba, L.K.; Johnson, K.I.

    1981-09-01

    A program to use renewable energy resources and possibly develop decentralization of energy systems for agriculture is discussed. The purpose of the research presented is to establish the objective of the program and identify guidelines for program development. The program's objective is determined by: (1) an analysis of the technologies that could be utilized to transform renewable farm resources to energy by the year 2000, (2) the quantity of renewable farm resources that are available, and (3) current energy-use patterns. Individual research, development, and demonstration projects are fit into a national program of energy-integrated farm systems on the basis of: (1) market need, (2) conversion potential, (3) technological opportunities, and (4) acceptability. Quantification of these factors for the purpose of establishing program guidelines is conducted using the following four precepts: (1) market need is identified by current use of energy for agricultural production; (2) conversion potential is determined by the availability of renewable resources; and (3) technological opportunities are determined by the state-of-the-art methods, techniques, and processes that can convert renewable resources into farm energy. Each of these factors is analyzed in Chapters 2 to 4. Chapter 5 draws on the analysis of these factors to establish the objective of the program and identify guidelines for the distribution of program funds. Chapter 6 then discusses the acceptability of integrated farm systems, which can not be quantified like the other factors.

  4. Phosphate solubilizing rhizobacteria from an organic farm and their influence on the growth and yield of maize (Zea mays L.).

    PubMed

    Kaur, Gurdeep; Reddy, M Sudhakara

    2013-01-01

    Organic farming is gaining popularity all over the world as it avoids the use of synthetic chemicals. Plant production in organic farming mainly depends on nutrient release as a function of mineralization processes in soils. In the present study, efficient phosphate mineralizing bacteria were isolated and their efficacy tested in plant mineral uptake and soil fertility of an organic field. Amongst 12 P-solubilizing bacteria (PSB) isolated from an organic field, two isolates were selected for field inoculation based on their rock phosphate (RP) solubilzing ability, exudation of organic acids, phosphatase and phytase activity and production of indole acetic acid and siderophores. On the basis of biochemical characterization and 16S rRNA sequence analysis, these isolates were identified as Pantoea cypripedii (PSB-3) and Pseudomonas plecoglossicida (PSB-5). These isolates significantly increased yield and total P uptake in maize. Soil analysis showed that available P, organic carbon and soil enzyme activities were significantly increased. Present study results suggested that inoculation of these bacteria has great application potential in improving the crop yield and soil fertility in organic farming.

  5. Predominant populations of indigenous soybean-nodulating Bradyrhizobium japonicum strains obtained from organic farming systems in Minnesota.

    PubMed

    Wongphatcharachai, M; Staley, C; Wang, P; Moncada, K M; Sheaffer, C C; Sadowsky, M J

    2015-05-01

    Bradyrhizobium from organic fields in Minnesota were isolated and genotyped to assess diversity of soybean-bradyrhizobia in organic farming systems that can be used to improve soybean productivity. Soil samples were collected from 25 organic fields in Minnesota during May to July 2012. Soybean (cv. Lambert) was used as a host to trap indigenous bradyrhizobia in each sample. Genetic diversity of Bradyrhizobium strains (n=733) was determined using the horizontal, fluorophore-enhanced, repetitive extragenic palindromic-PCR (HFERP) DNA fingerprinting technique and the soybean-bradyrhizobia were classified into 79 different genotypes. Of these, 15 dominant genotypes were found and were highly similar (>92% fingerprint similarity) to serotypes USDA 127 (40.4%), USDA 4 (31.8%) and USDA 123 (15.5%), which were the three main populations of soybean-bradyrhizobia in organic fields. Bradyrhizobium japonicum serogroup USDA 4 strains were found to make up a previously unrecognized, predominant rhizobial population in the organic farming soils examined. The relative abundance of strain USDA 4 was negatively correlated with that of USDA 127 and this relationship may be influenced by the levels of NO3 -N and other soil edaphic factors. The local community of bradyrhizobia can be affected by applying inoculant bacteria to organic fields. Based on these results, soybean production in organic farms may be improved by displacing strains similar to USDA 4 with those better at nitrogen fixation and competitive ability than indigenous strains. © 2015 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  6. Salmonella in chicken: current and developing strategies to reduce contamination at farm level.

    PubMed

    Vandeplas, S; Dubois Dauphin, R; Beckers, Y; Thonart, P; Théwis, A

    2010-04-01

    Salmonella is a human pathogen that frequently infects poultry flocks. Consumption of raw or undercooked contaminated poultry products can induce acute gastroenteritis in humans. Faced with the public health concerns associated with salmonellosis, the European Union has established a European regulation forcing member states to implement control programs aimed at reducing Salmonella prevalence in poultry production, especially at the primary production level. The purpose of the present review article is to summarize the current research and to suggest future developments in the area of Salmonella control in poultry, which may be of value to the industry in the coming years. The review will focus especially on preventive strategies that have been developed and that aim at reducing the incidence of Salmonella colonization in broiler chickens at the farm level. In addition to the usual preventive hygienic measures, other strategies have been investigated, such as feed and drinking water acidification with organic acids and immune strategies based on passive and active immunity. Modification of the diet by changing ingredients and nutrient composition with the intent of reducing a bird's susceptibility to Salmonella infection also has been examined. Because in ovo feeding accelerates small intestine development and enhances epithelial cell function, this approach could be an efficient tool for controlling enteric pathogens. Feed additives such as antibiotics, prebiotics, probiotics, and synbiotics that modify the intestinal microflora are part of another field of investigation, and their success depends on the additive used. Other control methods such as the use of chlorate products and bacteriophages also are under study.

  7. Developments in veterinary herd health programmes on dairy farms: a review.

    PubMed

    Noordhuizen, J P; Wentink, G H

    2001-11-01

    This review article addresses some major developments in herd health programmes for dairy farms over the last decades. It focuses particularly on herd health and production management programmes that use protocols and monitoring activities. The article further emphasizes the need for merging herd health programmes with quantitative epidemiological principles and methods. Subsequently, this article points to the latest developments regarding quality assurance in the dairy sector and some quality management methods. Quality should be regarded in its broadest sense. The importance of integrating veterinary herd health programmes and quality (risk) management support at a dairy farm level is stressed. Examples are provided.

  8. A risk-based decision tool for the management of organic waste in agriculture and farming activities (FARMERS).

    PubMed

    Río, Miguel; Franco-Uría, Amaya; Abad, Emilio; Roca, Enrique

    2011-01-30

    Currently, specific management guidelines must be implemented for guaranteeing the safe reuse of organic waste in agriculture. With that aim, this work was focused on the development of a decision support tool for a safe and sustainable management of cattle manure as fertiliser in pastureland, to control and limit metal accumulation in soil and to reduce metal biotransfer from soil to other compartments. The system was developed on the basis of an environmental risk assessment multi-compartmental model. In contrast to other management tools, a long-term dynamic modelling approach was selected considering the persistence of metals in the environment. A detailed description of the underlying flow equations which accounts for distribution, human exposure and risk characterisation of metals in the assessed scenario was presented, as well as model parameterization. The tool was implemented in Visual C++ and is structured on a data base, where all required data is stored, the risk assessment model and a GIS module for the visualization of the scenario characteristics and the results obtained (risk indexes). The decision support system allows choosing among three estimation options, depending on the needs of the user, which provide information to both farmers and policy makers. The first option is useful for evaluating the adequacy of the current management practices of the different farms, and the remaining ones provides information on the measures that can be taken to carry out a fertilising plan without exceeding risk to human health. Among other results, maximum values of application rates of manure, maximum permissible metal content of manure and maximum application times in a particular scenario can be estimated by this system. To illustrate tool application, a real case study with data corresponding to different farms of a milk production cooperative was presented.

  9. Professional transitions towards sustainable farming systems: The development of farmers' professional worlds.

    PubMed

    Coquil, Xavier; Dedieu, Benoît; Béguin, Pascal

    2017-01-01

    While farming in France and generally in Europe is continuing to intensify, at the expense of its environmental sustainability, promising alternatives are emerging. The processes whereby farmers change and transform their own work, to shift from an intensive mode of production to a self-sufficient and autonomous one, need to be formalized if we are to further our understanding of why and how these forms of sustainable farming activity emerge. We use the development of professional worlds theory, a systemic representation of workers' activity, whereby their experience is formalized. This can be explained as the praxis1, conceptual and axiological underpinnings form a system with the object of the action. The development of a professional world is analyzed according to the evolution of its components and the search for pragmatic coherence within it. We analyzed professional transitions towards self-sufficient and autonomous mixed farming through a case study. Our findings showed that the transition is initiated by the discovery of the unthinkable, awareness of a discrepancy between what the farmers think and what they do, the appearance of problems, and the response to external constraints. Professional transition is a non-teleological and non-incremental process; it corresponds to a comparison with reality, and a resolution of difficulties. This process is stimulated by the use of artifacts instrumented by the farmers. New perspectives are opened up by this formalization of transitions, in terms of (i) support towards sustainable farming and (ii) the design of sustainable farming systems.

  10. Development of short-term forecast quality for new offshore wind farms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurt, M.; Lange, B.

    2014-06-01

    As the rapid wind power build-out continues, a large number of new wind farms will come online but forecasters and forecasting algorithms have little experience with them. This is a problem for statistical short term forecasts, which must be trained on a long record of historical power production - exactly what is missing for a new farm. Focus of the study was to analyse development of the offshore wind power forecast (WPF) quality from beginning of operation up to one year of operational experience. This paper represents a case study using data of the first German offshore wind farm "alpha ventus" and first German commercial offshore wind farm "Baltic1". The work was carried out with measured data from meteorological measurement mast FINO1, measured power from wind farms and numerical weather prediction (NWP) from the German Weather Service (DWD). This study facilitates to decide the length of needed time series and selection of forecast method to get a reliable WPF on a weekly time axis. Weekly development of WPF quality for day-ahead WPF via different models is presented. The models are physical model; physical model extended with a statistical correction (MOS) and artificial neural network (ANN) as a pure statistical model. Selforganizing map (SOM) is investigated for a better understanding of uncertainties of forecast error.

  11. Conventional tillage versus organic farming in relation to soil organic carbon stock in olive groves in Mediterranean rangelands (southern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parras-Alcántara, L.; Lozano-García, B.

    2014-05-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) concentration is a soil variable subject to changes. The management system is a key factor that influences these changes. To determine the long-term effects of the management system on SOC stocks (SOCS) in olive groves, 114 soil profiles were studied in the Los Pedroches Valley (Mediterranean rangelands - southern Spain) for 20 years. The management practices were conventional tillage (CT) and organic farming (OF) in four soil types: Cambisols (CMs), Regosols (RGs), Luvisols (LVs) and Leptosols (LPs). Soil properties were statistically analysed by management techniques, soil types and horizons. Significant differences (p < 0.05) were found between soil types and management practices. It was equally observed that the management system affected SOCS. In addition, the total SOCS during the 20-year experiment increased in OF with respect to CT by 72 and 66% in CMs and LVs respectively. SOC showed significant differences for horizons (p < 0.05) in relation to the management type. The stratification ratio (SR) was used as an indicator of soil quality based on the influence of surface SOC levels on erosion control, water infiltration and nutrient conservation with respect to deep layers. The SR of SOC from the surface to depth was greater in CT compared to OF with the exception of RGs. In all cases, the SR of SOC was >2. These results indicate high soil quality and that management practices affect SOC storage in the Los Pedroches Valley.

  12. Conventional tillage vs. organic farming in relation to soil organic carbon stock in olive groves in Mediterranean rangelands (Southern Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parras-Alcántara, L.; Lozano-García, B.

    2014-01-01

    Soil organic carbon (SOC) concentration is a soil variable subject to changes. In agricultural soils, the management system is a key factor that influence to these changes. For determine the management system effects on SOC stocks (SOC-S) in olive groves, 114 soil profiles were studied in the Los Pedroches Valley (Mediterranean rangelands - southern Spain) for long-term (20 yr). The management practices were conventional tillage (CT) and organic farming (OF) in four soil types: Cambisols (CM), Regosols (RG), Luvisols (LV) and Leptosols (LP). Soil properties were statistically analyzed by management techniques, soil types and horizons. The principal components analyses identified four factors that explained 65% of the variance. Also, significant differences (p < 0.05) were found between soil types and management techniques. Equally was observed that the management system affected to SOC-S. In addition, the total SOC-S for 20 yr increased in OF with respect to CT by 72% and 66% in CM and LV respectively. The SOC showed significant differences for horizons (p < 0.05) in relation to the management types. The stratification ratio index of SOC was >2 in all studied soils. These results indicate high soils quality, and that management practices affect to SOC store in the Los Pedroches Valley.

  13. Impact of Organic and Conventional Systems of Coffee Farming on Soil Properties and Culturable Microbial Diversity.

    PubMed

    Velmourougane, Kulandaivelu

    2016-01-01

    A study was undertaken with an objective of evaluating the long-term impacts of organic (ORG) and conventional (CON) methods of coffee farming on soil physical, chemical, biological, and microbial diversity. Electrical conductivity and bulk density were found to increase by 34% and 21%, respectively, in CON compared to ORG system, while water holding capacity was found decreased in both the systems. Significant increase in organic carbon was observed in ORG system. Major nutrients, nitrogen and potassium, levels showed inclination in both ORG and CON system, but the trend was much more pronounced in CON system. Phosphorus was found to increase in both ORG and CON system, but its availability was found to be more with CON system. In biological attributes, higher soil respiration and fluorescein diacetate activity were recorded in ORG system compared to CON system. Higher soil urease activity was observed in CON system, while dehydrogenase activity does not show significant differences between ORG and CON systems. ORG system was found to have higher macrofauna (31.4%), microbial population (34%), and microbial diversity indices compared to CON system. From the present study, it is accomplished that coffee soil under long-term ORG system has better soil properties compared to CON system.

  14. Impact of Organic and Conventional Systems of Coffee Farming on Soil Properties and Culturable Microbial Diversity

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    A study was undertaken with an objective of evaluating the long-term impacts of organic (ORG) and conventional (CON) methods of coffee farming on soil physical, chemical, biological, and microbial diversity. Electrical conductivity and bulk density were found to increase by 34% and 21%, respectively, in CON compared to ORG system, while water holding capacity was found decreased in both the systems. Significant increase in organic carbon was observed in ORG system. Major nutrients, nitrogen and potassium, levels showed inclination in both ORG and CON system, but the trend was much more pronounced in CON system. Phosphorus was found to increase in both ORG and CON system, but its availability was found to be more with CON system. In biological attributes, higher soil respiration and fluorescein diacetate activity were recorded in ORG system compared to CON system. Higher soil urease activity was observed in CON system, while dehydrogenase activity does not show significant differences between ORG and CON systems. ORG system was found to have higher macrofauna (31.4%), microbial population (34%), and microbial diversity indices compared to CON system. From the present study, it is accomplished that coffee soil under long-term ORG system has better soil properties compared to CON system. PMID:27042378

  15. Understanding the Impacts of Soil, Climate, and Farming Practices on Soil Organic Carbon Sequestration: A Simulation Study in Australia.

    PubMed

    Godde, Cécile M; Thorburn, Peter J; Biggs, Jody S; Meier, Elizabeth A

    2016-01-01

    Carbon sequestration in agricultural soils has the capacity to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, as well as to improve soil biological, physical, and chemical properties. The review of literature pertaining to soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics within Australian grain farming systems does not enable us to conclude on the best farming practices to increase or maintain SOC for a specific combination of soil and climate. This study aimed to further explore the complex interactions of soil, climate, and farming practices on SOC. We undertook a modeling study with the Agricultural Production Systems sIMulator modeling framework, by combining contrasting Australian soils, climates, and farming practices (crop rotations, and management within rotations, such as fertilization, tillage, and residue management) in a factorial design. This design resulted in the transposition of contrasting soils and climates in our simulations, giving soil-climate combinations that do not occur in the study area to help provide insights into the importance of the climate constraints on SOC. We statistically analyzed the model's outputs to determinate the relative contributions of soil parameters, climate, and farming practices on SOC. The initial SOC content had the largest impact on the value of SOC, followed by the climate and the fertilization practices. These factors explained 66, 18, and 15% of SOC variations, respectively, after 80 years of constant farming practices in the simulation. Tillage and stubble management had the lowest impacts on SOC. This study highlighted the possible negative impact on SOC of a chickpea phase in a wheat-chickpea rotation and the potential positive impact of a cover crop in a sub-tropical climate (QLD, Australia) on SOC. It also showed the complexities in managing to achieve increased SOC, while simultaneously aiming to minimize nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions and nitrate leaching in farming systems. The transposition of contrasting soils and climates in

  16. Understanding the Impacts of Soil, Climate, and Farming Practices on Soil Organic Carbon Sequestration: A Simulation Study in Australia

    PubMed Central

    Godde, Cécile M.; Thorburn, Peter J.; Biggs, Jody S.; Meier, Elizabeth A.

    2016-01-01

    Carbon sequestration in agricultural soils has the capacity to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, as well as to improve soil biological, physical, and chemical properties. The review of literature pertaining to soil organic carbon (SOC) dynamics within Australian grain farming systems does not enable us to conclude on the best farming practices to increase or maintain SOC for a specific combination of soil and climate. This study aimed to further explore the complex interactions of soil, climate, and farming practices on SOC. We undertook a modeling study with the Agricultural Production Systems sIMulator modeling framework, by combining contrasting Australian soils, climates, and farming practices (crop rotations, and management within rotations, such as fertilization, tillage, and residue management) in a factorial design. This design resulted in the transposition of contrasting soils and climates in our simulations, giving soil–climate combinations that do not occur in the study area to help provide insights into the importance of the climate constraints on SOC. We statistically analyzed the model’s outputs to determinate the relative contributions of soil parameters, climate, and farming practices on SOC. The initial SOC content had the largest impact on the value of SOC, followed by the climate and the fertilization practices. These factors explained 66, 18, and 15% of SOC variations, respectively, after 80 years of constant farming practices in the simulation. Tillage and stubble management had the lowest impacts on SOC. This study highlighted the possible negative impact on SOC of a chickpea phase in a wheat–chickpea rotation and the potential positive impact of a cover crop in a sub-tropical climate (QLD, Australia) on SOC. It also showed the complexities in managing to achieve increased SOC, while simultaneously aiming to minimize nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions and nitrate leaching in farming systems. The transposition of contrasting soils and

  17. Hospital development and the performance of organ procurement organizations.

    PubMed

    McKinney, M M; Begun, J W; Ozcan, Y A

    1998-06-01

    With more than 56,000 patients on the national waiting list for organ transplants and relatively little growth in the number of donors, organ procurement organizations now recognize the need to aggressively market their services and the range of donor procurement opportunities to hospital personnel. This study examines the types and levels of hospital development activities being conducted by organ procurement organizations, the characteristics of organ procurement organizations that are more involved in hospital development, and the relationship between hospital development and organ procurement. Results from a national survey indicate that, as of the mid-1990s, organ procurement organizations had not made major investments in hospital development despite an increased recognition of the importance of these activities. Organ procurement organizations whose directors were more committed to hospital development exhibited higher levels of hospital development activity. Efforts to formalize hospital development activities through the establishment of a hospital development department and evaluation standards were associated with more organs procured per donor.

  18. Suitability of cross-bred cows for organic farms based on cross-breeding effects on production and functional traits.

    PubMed

    de Haas, Y; Smolders, E A A; Hoorneman, J N; Nauta, W J; Veerkamp, R F

    2013-04-01

    Data from 113 Dutch organic farms were analysed to determine the effect of cross-breeding on production and functional traits. In total, data on 33 788 lactations between January 2003 and February 2009 from 15 015 cows were available. Holstein-Friesian pure-bred cows produced most kg of milk in 305 days, but with the lowest percentages of fat and protein of all pure-bred cows in the data set. Cross-breeding Holstein dairy cows with other breeds (Brown Swiss, Dutch Friesian, Groningen White Headed, Jersey, Meuse Rhine Yssel, Montbéliarde or Fleckvieh) decreased milk production, but improved fertility and udder health in most cross-bred animals. In most breeds, heterosis had a significant effect (P < 0.05) on milk (kg in 305 days), fat and protein-corrected milk production (kg in 305 days) and calving interval (CI) in the favourable direction (i.e. more milk, shorter CI), but unfavourably for somatic cell count (higher cell count). Recombination was unfavourable for the milk production traits, but favourable for the functional traits (fertility and udder health). Farm characteristics, like soil type or housing system, affected the regression coefficients on breed components significantly. The effect of the Holstein breed on milk yield was twice as large in cubicle housing as in other housing systems. Jerseys had a negative effect on fertility only on farms on sandy soils. Hence, breed effects differ across farming systems in the organic farming and farmers can use such information to dovetail their farming system with the type of cow they use.

  19. A farm-level model of VOC emission from silage

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Recent measurements suggest that dairy farms can be a significant emission source of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). However, accurate estimates of farm-level emissions currently do not exist. A preliminary process-based model was developed to estimate VOC emissions from silage on farms and to as...

  20. Reproductive Performance, Udder Health, and Antibiotic Resistance in Mastitis Bacteria isolated from Norwegian Red cows in Conventional and Organic Farming

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The objectives of this study were to investigate whether there were differences between Norwegian Red cows in conventional and organic farming with respect to reproductive performance, udder health, and antibiotic resistance in udder pathogens. Methods Twenty-five conventional and 24 organic herds from south-east and middle Norway participated in the study. Herds were matched such that geographical location, herd size, and barn types were similar across the cohorts. All organic herds were certified as organic between 1997 and 2003. All herds were members of the Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System. The herds were visited once during the study. The relationship between the outcomes and explanatory variables were assessed using mixed linear models. Results There were less > 2nd parity cows in conventional farming. The conventional cows had higher milk yields and received more concentrates than organic cows. Although after adjustment for milk yield and parity, somatic cell count was lower in organic cows than conventional cows. There was a higher proportion of quarters that were dried off at the herd visit in organic herds. No differences in the interval to first AI, interval to last AI or calving interval was revealed between organic and conventional cows. There was no difference between conventional and organic cows in quarter samples positive for mastitis bacteria from the herd visit. Milk yield and parity were associated with the likelihood of at least one quarter positive for mastitis bacteria. There was few S. aureus isolates resistance to penicillin in both management systems. Penicillin resistance against Coagulase negative staphylococci isolated from subclinically infected quarters was 48.5% in conventional herds and 46.5% in organic herds. Conclusion There were no large differences between reproductive performance and udder health between conventional and organic farming for Norwegian Red cows. PMID:20141638

  1. Effects of arbuscular mycorrhizas on ammonia oxidizing bacteria in an organic farm soil.

    PubMed

    Cavagnaro, T R; Jackson, L E; Scow, K M; Hristova, K R

    2007-11-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are potentially important in nutrient cycling in agricultural soils and particularly in soils managed for organic production; little is known, however, about the interrelationships between AMF and other members of soil microbial communities. Ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB) are a trophic group of bacteria having an enormous impact on nitrogen availability in soils and are expected to be influenced by the presence of AMF. In a field study, we utilized a unique genetic system comprised of a mycorrhiza defective tomato mutant (named rmc) and its mycorrhiza wild-type progenitor (named 76RMYC+). We examined the effect of AMF by comparing AOB community composition and populations in soil containing roots of the two tomato genotypes in an organically managed soil. Responses of AOB to soil N and P amendments were also studied in the same experiment. Phylogenetic analysis of cloned AOB sequences, derived from excised denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) bands, revealed that the organic farm soil supported a diverse yet stable AOB community, which was neither influenced by mycorrhizal colonization of roots nor by N and P addition to the soil. Real-time TaqMan polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to quantify AOB population sizes and showed no difference between any of the treatments. An alternative real-time PCR protocol for quantification of AOB utilizing SYBR green yielded similar results as the TaqMan real-time PCR method, although with slightly lower resolution. This alternative method is advantageous in not requiring the detailed background information about AOB community composition required for adaptation of the TaqMan system for a new soil.

  2. Response of soil microbial biomass and community structures to conventional and organic farming systems under identical crop rotations.

    PubMed

    Esperschütz, Jürgen; Gattinger, Andreas; Mäder, Paul; Schloter, Michael; Fliessbach, Andreas

    2007-07-01

    In this study the influence of different farming systems on microbial community structure was analyzed using soil samples from the DOK long-term field experiment in Switzerland, which comprises organic (BIODYN and BIOORG) and conventional (CONFYM and CONMIN) farming systems as well as an unfertilized control (NOFERT). We examined microbial communities in winter wheat plots at two different points in the crop rotation (after potatoes and after maize). Employing extended polar lipid analysis up to 244 different phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) and phospholipid ether lipids (PLEL) were detected. Higher concentrations of PLFA and PLEL in BIODYN and BIOORG indicated a significant influence of organic agriculture on microbial biomass. Farmyard manure (FYM) application consistently revealed the strongest, and the preceding crop the weakest, influence on domain-specific biomass, diversity indices and microbial community structures. Esterlinked PLFA from slowly growing bacteria (k-strategists) showed the strongest responses to long-term organic fertilization. Although the highest fungal biomass was found in the two organic systems of the DOK field trial, their contribution to the differentiation of community structures according to the management regime was relatively low. Prokaryotic communities responded most strongly to either conventional or organic farming management.

  3. Community Change and the Farm Sector: Impacts of Rural Development on Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beaulieu, Lionel J.; Molnar, Joseph J.

    Findings from current literature form the basis for this examination of five critical elements of change and development within the local community setting which impact on agriculture: population, employment, land, water, and environment. Renewed rural population growth during the 1970's has reversed small farm trends but placed strains on local…

  4. Urban Farming as a Civic Virtue Development in the Environmental Field

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prasetiyo, Wibowo Heru; Budimansyah, Dasim; Roslidah, Navila

    2016-01-01

    This research aims to describe the impact of urban farming carried out by Bandung Berkebun community as an attempt to develop the civic virtue in the environmental field. Research method used is a case study with qualitative approach. The results show that this program has educational, economic, social, and ecological impact to the society. This…

  5. ENDOW (efficient development of offshore wind farms): modelling wake and boundary layer interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barthelmie, Rebecca; Larsen, Gunner; Pryor, Sara; Jørgensen, Hans; Bergström, Hans; Schlez, Wolfgang; Rados, Kostas; Lange, Bernhard; Vølund, Per; Neckelmann, Søren; Mogensen, Søren; Schepers, Gerard; Hegberg, Terry; Folkerts, Luuk; Magnusson, Mikael

    2004-07-01

    While experience gained through the offshore wind energy projects currently operating is valuable, a major uncertainty in estimating power production lies in the prediction of the dynamic links between the atmosphere and wind turbines in offshore regimes. The objective of the ENDOW project was to evaluate, enhance and interface wake and boundary layer models for utilization offshore. The project resulted in a significant advance in the state of the art in both wake and marine boundary layer models, leading to improved prediction of wind speed and turbulence profiles within large offshore wind farms. Use of new databases from existing offshore wind farms and detailed wake profiles collected using sodar provided a unique opportunity to undertake the first comprehensive evaluation of wake models in the offshore environment. The results of wake model performance in different wind speed, stability and roughness conditions relative to observations provided criteria for their improvement. Mesoscale model simulations were used to evaluate the impact of thermal flows, roughness and topography on offshore wind speeds. The model hierarchy developed under ENDOW forms the basis of design tools for use by wind energy developers and turbine manufacturers to optimize power output from offshore wind farms through minimized wake effects and optimal grid connections. The design tools are being built onto existing regional-scale models and wind farm design software which was developed with EU funding and is in use currently by wind energy developers. Copyright

  6. Software Development Plan for the 241-AY and 241-AZ Tank Farm MICON automation system

    SciTech Connect

    Teats, M.C.

    1995-04-28

    Project W-030 will install a new tank ventilation system for the aging 241-AY and 241-AZ tank farm facilities. Controls for this system will be provided by a MICON distributed control system. This document defines the plan, deliverables, and schedule to develop software for the control system.

  7. Interrill erosion of carbon and phosphorus from conventionally and organically farmed Devon silt soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Armstrong, Elisabeth; Conelly, Kathrin; Ling, Amy; Kuhn, Nikolaus J.

    2010-05-01

    . This shows that the net P and C export from organically farmed soils is not reduced by a similar degree than soil erosion compared to conventional soil management. The enrichment of P and C in the interrill sediment was not directly related to SOC, P content of the soil and soil interrill erodibility. A comparison of soil and sediment properties indicates that crusting, P and C content as well as density and size of eroded aggregate fragments control P and C enrichment. Due to complex and dynamic interactions between P, SOC and interrill erosional processes, the nutrient and C status of sediments cannot be predicted based on P content, SOC or interrill erodibility alone. Clearly, further research on crust formation and the composition of fragments generated by aggregate breakdown and their transport in raindrop impacted flow under different rainfall conditions is required. Attaining this critical missing knowledge would enable a comprehensive assessment of the benefits of organic farming on nutrient budgets, off-site effects of interrill erosion and its role in the global C cycle.

  8. Interrill sediment enrichment of P and C from organically and conventionally farmed silty loams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuhn, N. J.

    2012-04-01

    that the net P export from organically farmed soils is not reduced by a similar degree than soil erosion compared to conventional soil management. The enrichment of P and C in the interrill sediment was not directly related to SOC, P content of the soil and soil interrill erodibility. A comparison of soil and sediment properties indicates that crusting, P and C content as well as density and size of eroded aggregate fragments control P and C enrichment. Due to complex and dynamic interactions between P, SOC and interrill erosional processes, the nutrient and C status of sediments cannot be predicted based on soil P content, SOC or interrill erodibility alone. Clearly, further research on crust formation and the composition of fragments generated by aggregate breakdown and their transport in raindrop impacted flow under different rainfall conditions is required. Attaining this critical missing knowledge would enable a comprehensive assessment of the benefits of organic farming on nutrient budgets, off-site effects of interrill erosion and its role in the global C cycle.

  9. Effect of short-term versus long-term grassland management and seasonal variation in organic and conventional dairy farming on the composition of bulk tank milk.

    PubMed

    Adler, S A; Jensen, S K; Govasmark, E; Steinshamn, H

    2013-09-01

    Bulk tank milk from 28 dairy farms was sampled every second month for 2 yr to assess the effects of grassland management, production system and season on milk fatty acid (FA) composition, concentrations of fat-soluble vitamins, Se, and milk sensory quality. Grassland management varied in terms of time since establishment. Short-term grassland management (SG) was defined as establishment or reseeding every fourth year or more often, and long-term grassland management (LG) was defined as less frequent establishment or reseeding. Fourteen organic (ORG) dairy farms with either short-term or long-term grassland management were paired with 14 conventional (CON) farms with respect to grassland management. Within ORG farms, SG farms differed from LG farms in herbage botanical composition, but not in concentrate FA concentrations, dry matter intake, or milk yield. Within CON farms, herbage composition, concentrate FA concentrations, dry matter intake, and milk yield showed no or insignificant variations. The ORG farms differed from CON farms in herbage botanical composition, concentrate FA concentrations, concentrate intake, and milk yield. Compared with ORG-LG farms, ORG-SG farms produced milk fat with higher proportions of C10:0 and C12:0 associated with higher herbage proportions of legumes (Fabaceae) and lower proportions of other dicotyledon families. Compared with milk from CON farms, milk fat from ORG farms had higher proportions of most saturated FA and all n-3 FA, but lower proportions of C18:0 and C18:1 cis-9 associated with higher forage proportion and differences in concentrations of FA in concentrates. Compared with the outdoor-feeding periods, the indoor feeding periods yielded milk fat with higher proportions of most short-chain and medium-chain FA and lower proportions of most C18-FA associated with grazing and higher forage proportions. Milk concentrations of α-tocopherol and β-carotene were lower during the grazing periods. Inclusion of fishmeal in

  10. Evaporation losses and dispersion of volatile organic compounds from tank farms.

    PubMed

    Howari, Fares M

    2015-05-01

    The present study is an application of a Gaussian dispersion model to evaluate volatilization losses from tank farms. It reports methodology to estimate evaporation losses of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from organic liquid in storage tanks. This study used fixed roof and floating roof equations for breathing and working losses. Total loss, the breathing loss, vapor pressure, molecular weight of the product, tank diameter, diurnal temperature, paint factor, tank capacity, and number of turnovers were considered and factored in the calculation. AERMOD and ALOHA softwares were used to simulate the dispersion of VOCs under normal and accidental scenarios. For the modeling purposes, meteorological data such as annual average ambient temperature, annual average atmospheric pressure, daily minimum ambient temperature, daily maximum ambient temperature, solar insulation factor, and average wind speed were included as input in the calculation and modeling activities. The study took place in Sharjah Emirate in United Arab Emirates, which borders Dubai to the south and Ajman to the north, and the three form a conurbation. The reported method was used to estimate evaporation losses for baseline and hypothetical leak scenarios. Results of this research show that liquid storage tanks in the study area emit a low concentration of VOC under the studied and assumed conditions, e.g., new tanks with high performance sealing as well as the noted earlier climatic conditions. The dispersion of those concentrations is controlled by the prevailing wind direction. The predicted VOCs concentrations were within the range of the measured VOCs values in air. The study found that the spatial distributions of the predicted concentration attenuate with time and distance. Under the reported accidental spill scenario, the Gaussian model indicates that the danger area starts within the zone of less than 10 m. The danger area is subjected to flame pockets, and the VOC concentrations in this

  11. Using Duddingtonia flagrans in calves under an organic milk farm production system in the Mexican tropics.

    PubMed

    Ortiz Pérez, Diego Otoniel; Sánchez Muñoz, Bernardo; Nahed Toral, José; Orantes Zebadúa, Miguel Ángel; Cruz López, José Luis; Reyes García, María Eréndira; Mendoza de Gives, Pedro

    2017-04-01

    The reduction of the gastrointestinal nematode (GIN) larvae population in faeces of cattle treated with Duddingtonia flagrans chlamydospores on a farm under an organic production system in Chiapas, Mexico, was assessed. Seventeen Cebu/Swiss crossbreed grazing calves naturally infected with GIN, were randomly distributed into two groups and treated as follows: Group 1, an oral administration of 2 × 10(6)D. flagrans chlamydospores/kg BW, every two days for 30 days; group 2, Control, without any treatment. Results indicated that the epg values in both groups remained similar (p > 0.05). The average number of (L3) from coprocultures from the group treated with D. flagrans had an important reduction (53.8%) with respect to the control group and it reached 75.3% maximum larval reduction at the 14th sampling; although, no statistic significance was observed (p > 0.05). Likewise, the average of larvae (L3) recovered from grass corresponding to the animals treated with D. flagrans diminished at 25.1% with respect to the control group (p > 0.05). A mixture of GIN genera including Strongyloides sp., Haemonchus sp., Cooperia sp., Trichostrongylus sp., Oesophagostomum sp. and Mecistocirrus sp., were identified from coprocultures. It was concluded that treatment with D. flagrans chlamydospores reduces the GIN larvae population in grass and in faeces of calves maintained under an organic milk production system. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Reduced likelihood of bovine coronavirus and bovine respiratory syncytial virus infection on organic compared to conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Bidokhti, Mehdi R M; Tråvén, Madeleine; Fall, Nils; Emanuelson, Ulf; Alenius, Stefan

    2009-12-01

    The prevalence of antibodies to bovine coronavirus (BCV) and bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) infections was studied in 20 conventional and 20 organic dairy herds. The organic farms had produced 'certified' milk for at least 2 years. On two occasions, with a 1-year interval, 699 serum samples from 624 peri-parturient cows were tested by ELISA for antibodies to BCV and BRSV. Accompanying data relating to the sampled animals were collected in order to identify potential factors associated with increased antibody prevalence. The antibody prevalence was high at both sampling times with approximately 85% and 80% of animals positive for antibodies to BCV and to BRSV, respectively. Conventional herds had a significantly higher mean antibody prevalence to BCV and BRSV than the organically managed herds (P<0.01). Animal age was significantly associated with increased antibody prevalence (P<0.001). The findings of this study suggest that organic farm management may be effective in reducing the seroprevalence of these viruses relative to conventional farming methods.

  13. Perceptions of French private veterinary practitioners' on their role in organic dairy farms and opportunities to improve their advisory services for organic dairy farmers.

    PubMed

    Duval, J E; Bareille, N; Fourichon, C; Madouasse, A; Vaarst, M

    2016-10-01

    Veterinarians could be the expected sparring partners of organic dairy farmers in promoting animal health which is one of the main organic principles. However, in the past organic dairy farmers did not always consider veterinarians to be pertinent advisors for them. The objectives of this study are - from private veterinary practitioners' point of views- i) to describe the roles of veterinarians today in organic dairy farmers' animal health promotion strategies, ii) to identify factors related to organic farming which determine their role on organic dairy farms, and, iii) to identify opportunities for improvement of veterinarians' advisory services for organic dairy herds. Fourteen veterinarians, providing herd health advisory services to dairy farmers, were interviewed using qualitative semi-structured research interviews. A modified approach to Grounded Theory was used for data collection and analysis. Most often veterinarians had only contact with the organic dairy farmers in cases of individual ill animals or acute herd health problems. Even though certain veterinarians experienced situations and approaches of animal health and welfare on organic dairy farms not meeting their standards, they were not always able to establish themselves an advisory role supporting farmers in improving this. Indeed, organic production principles, regulations and farmers' health approaches challenged veterinarians' values on animal health and welfare and their perceptions of 'good veterinary practices'. Also, some veterinarians considered that there was no direct economic interest for them in the organic dairy sector and that could diminish their willingness to invest in this sector. Possible opportunities for improvement were identified; for example proposing more proactively advice via existing organisations, by making adaptations to advisory services for the organic sector and/or by dissociating veterinarians' curative role from their advisory role in disease prevention.

  14. The economic efficiency of conservation measures for amphibians in organic farming--results from bio-economic modelling.

    PubMed

    Schuler, Johannes; Sattler, Claudia; Helmecke, Angela; Zander, Peter; Uthes, Sandra; Bachinger, Johann; Stein-Bachinger, Karin

    2013-01-15

    This paper presents a whole farm bio-economic modelling approach for the assessment and optimisation of amphibian conservation conditions applied at the example of a large scale organic farm in North-Eastern Germany. The assessment focuses mainly on the habitat quality as affected by conservation measures such as through specific adapted crop production activities (CPA) and in-field buffer strips for the European tree frog (Hyla arborea), considering also interrelations with other amphibian species (i.e. common spadefoot toad (Pelobates fuscus), fire-bellied toad (Bombina bombina)). The aim of the approach is to understand, analyse and optimize the relationships between the ecological and economic performance of an organic farming system, based on the expectation that amphibians are differently impacted by different CPAs. The modelling system consists of a set of different sub-models that generate a farm model on the basis of environmentally evaluated CPAs. A crop-rotation sub-model provides a set of agronomically sustainable crop rotations that ensures overall sufficient nitrogen supply and controls weed, pest and disease infestations. An economic sub-model calculates the gross margins for each possible CPA including costs of inputs such as labour and machinery. The conservation effects of the CPAs are assessed with an ecological sub-model evaluates the potential negative or positive effect that each work step of a CPA has on amphibians. A mathematical programming sub-model calculates the optimal farm organization taking into account the limited factors of the farm (e.g. labour, land) as well as ecological improvements. In sequential model runs, the habitat quality is to be improved by the model, while the highest possible gross margin is still to be achieved. The results indicate that the model can be used to show the scope of action that a farmer has to improve habitat quality by reducing damage to amphibian population on its land during agricultural activities

  15. Effect of farming systems on the yield, quality parameters and sensory properties of conventionally and organically grown potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) tubers.

    PubMed

    Brazinskiene, V; Asakaviciute, R; Miezeliene, A; Alencikiene, G; Ivanauskas, L; Jakstas, V; Viskelis, P; Razukas, A

    2014-02-15

    The objectives of this two-year research were to study the impact of two different farming types, conventional and organic, on the yield and sensory properties of five Lithuanian varieties of potato tuber. The parameters and properties examined were: phenolic acids; dry matter and starch content; and the spread and intensity of Phytophthora infestans growth. It was determined that potato yield fluctuates with the variety, but for conventional farming it is significantly (p<0.05) higher than that obtained by organic farming. The farming type has no significant effect (p>0.05) on the content of phenolic acids. No significant effect (p>0.05) of farming type on dry matter and starch content, or sensory properties was found. No significant relation (p>0.05) was found between the content of phenolic acids and P. infestans spread. The spread of P. infestans was faster and infection was heavier in organically grown potatoes.

  16. Impacts of Wind Farms on Cumulus Cloud Development in the Central Great Plains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahoney, L. C.; Wagner, T. J.; L'Ecuyer, T. S.; Kulie, M.

    2014-12-01

    Cumulus clouds have a net cooling effect on the surface radiative balance by reflecting more downwelling solar radiation than absorbing upwelling terrestrial radiation. As boundary layer cumuli form from buoyant, moist plumes ascending from the surface, their growth may be hindered by the turbulent deformation of the plume by wind farms. A natural laboratory to study the impact of wind farms on cumulus formation are the states of Iowa and Nebraska. Despite their prime location for wind resources and similar synoptic forcings, regulatory issues cause these two states to vary vastly in their wind power offerings. In 2013, Iowa ranked 3rd in the nation for total megawatts installed and generates over a quarter of its electricity from wind energy, more than any other state. In contrast, Nebraska has an order of magnitude fewer turbines installed, and less than five percent of the state's electrical load is wind-generated. This variance in wind power in close proximity makes Iowa and Nebraska a prime area for initial research. This study uses Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) visible satellite imagery from the summer of 2009 to 2013 to investigate cumulus development in these adjacent states, as the majority of large-scale wind farms in Iowa were completed by 2009. Image reflectances in Nebraska and Iowa are compared to determine the magnitude of cumulus growth. Preliminary analysis indicates a reduction in cumulus development near the existing wind farms; a synoptic investigation of these cases will be completed to determine causality.

  17. An integrated methodology on the suitability of offshore sites for wind farm development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patlakas, Platon; Galanis, George; Péray, Marie; Filipot, Jean-François; Kalogeri, Christina; Spyrou, Christos; Diamantis, Dimitris; Kallos, Gerorge

    2016-04-01

    During, the last decades the potential and interest in wind energy investments has been constantly increasing in the European countries. As technology changes rapidly, more and more areas can be identified as suitable for energy applications. Offshore wind farms perfectly illustrate how new technologies allow to build bigger, more efficient and resistant in extreme conditions wind power plants. The current work proposes an integrated methodology to determine the suitability of an offshore marine area for the development of wind farm structures. More specifically, the region of interest is evaluated based both on the natural resources, connected to the local environmental characteristics, and potential constrains set by anthropogenic or other activities. State of the art atmospheric and wave models and a 10-year hindcast database are utilized in conjunction with local information for a number of potential constrains, leading to a 5-scale suitability index for the whole area. In this way, sub regions are characterized, at a high resolution mode, as poorly or highly suitable for wind farm development, providing a new tool for technical/research teams and decision makers. In addition, extreme wind and wave conditions and their 50-years return period are analyzed and used to define the safety level of the wind farms structural characteristics.

  18. Co-production of ethanol, biogas, protein fodder and natural fertilizer in organic farming--evaluation of a concept for a farm-scale biorefinery.

    PubMed

    Oleskowicz-Popiel, Piotr; Kádár, Zsófia; Heiske, Stefan; Klein-Marcuschamer, Daniel; Simmons, Blake A; Blanch, Harvey W; Schmidt, Jens Ejbye

    2012-01-01

    The addition of a biorefinery to an organic farm was investigated, where ethanol was produced from germinated rye grains and whey, and the effluent was separated into two streams: the protein-rich solid fraction, to be used as animal feed, and the liquid fraction, which can be co-digested with clover grass silage to produce biogas. A method for ethanol production from rye was applied by utilizing inherent amylase activity from germination of the seed. Biogas potential of ethanol fermentation effluent was measured through anaerobic digestion trials. The effluent from the trials was assumed to serve as natural fertilizer. A technoeconomic analysis was also performed; total capital investment was estimated to be approximately 4 M USD. Setting a methane selling price according to available incentives for "green electricity" (0.72 USD/m(3)) led to a minimum ethanol selling price of 1.89 USD/L (project lifetime 25 yr, at a discount rate 10%).

  19. Mediterranean fouling communities assimilate the organic matter derived from coastal fish farms as a new trophic resource.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Silvera, D; Izquierdo-Gomez, D; Fernandez-Gonzalez, V; Martínez-López, F J; López-Jiménez, J A; Sanchez-Jerez, P

    2015-02-15

    Currently, the lipid content of fish feeds includes high amounts of terrestrial vegetable oils, rich in n-6 fatty acids and poor in n-3 fatty acids. Sinking organic matter in the shape of fragmented pellets and fish faeces could be ingested by the surrounding fauna attracted to the submerged structures of aquaculture facilities or living in natural benthic habitats. Fatty acids contained in feed pellets were used as trophic markers to shed light on the assimilation and incorporation of aquaculture wastes by the invertebrate fauna associated to sea-cages. Eighteen macroinvertebrate species, and zooplankton, seaweeds and sediments were collected from two fish farms, one of which (control) had not been used as such for two years. This study demonstrates that macroinvertebrate fauna present in fouling can take up sinking organic matter from farms. Further research should be directed at assessing the potential implications of aquaculture production for the surrounding ecosystem.

  20. Natural Products for Weed Management in Organic Farming in the USA

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The public sentiment toward the use of synthetic herbicides and genetically modified crops has become negative in the developed world. In contrast, the popularity of and demand for organic foods has grown throughout the developed world, which has resulted in the conversion of millions of hectares f...

  1. High-resolution computational algorithms for simulating offshore wind turbines and farms: Model development and validation

    SciTech Connect

    Calderer, Antoni; Yang, Xiaolei; Angelidis, Dionysios; Feist, Chris; Guala, Michele; Ruehl, Kelley; Guo, Xin; Boomsma, Aaron; Shen, Lian; Sotiropoulos, Fotis

    2015-10-30

    The present project involves the development of modeling and analysis design tools for assessing offshore wind turbine technologies. The computational tools developed herein are able to resolve the effects of the coupled interaction of atmospheric turbulence and ocean waves on aerodynamic performance and structural stability and reliability of offshore wind turbines and farms. Laboratory scale experiments have been carried out to derive data sets for validating the computational models.

  2. Study of the degradation of mulch materials in vegetable crops for organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    María Moreno, Marta; Mancebo, Ignacio; Moreno, Carmen; Villena, Jaime; Meco, Ramón

    2014-05-01

    early but once they have fulfilled their functions, appearing as a good alternative to PE, especially in organic farming. Project INIA RTA2011-00104-C04-03. References: Kasirajan, S.; Ngouajio, M. 2012. Polyethylene and biodegradable mulches for agricultural applications: a review. Agron. Sustain. Dev. 32: 501-529. Martín-Closas, L.; Pelacho, A.M. 2011. Agronomic potential of biopolymer films. p. 277-299. In: Biopolymers. New materials for sustainable films and coating. John Wiley & Sons, New York. Moreno, M.M.; Moreno A. 2008. Effect of different biodegradable and polyethylene mulches on productivity and soil thermal and biological properties in a tomato crop. Sci. Hort. 116(3): 256-263.

  3. Performance of commercial laying hen genotypes on free range and organic farms in Switzerland, France and The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    Leenstra, F; Maurer, V; Bestman, M; van Sambeek, F; Zeltner, E; Reuvekamp, B; Galea, F; van Niekerk, T

    2012-01-01

    1. A total of 257 farmers with free ranging laying hens (organic and conventional) in Switzerland, France and The Netherlands with 273 flocks were interviewed to determine the relationships between the genotype of the hens, management conditions and performance. 2. Almost 20 different genotypes (brands) were present on the farms. In France, all birds were brown feathered hens laying brown eggs. In Switzerland and The Netherlands, there were brown, white (white feathered hens laying white eggs) and silver (white feathered hens laying brown eggs) hens. In Switzerland, mixed flocks were also present. 3. The overall effect of system (organic vs. conventional free range) on egg production and mortality was significant, with higher mortality and lower egg production among organic hens. In pair wise comparisons within country, the difference was highly significant in The Netherlands, and showed a non-significant tendency in the same direction in Switzerland and France. 4. White hens tended to perform better than brown hens. Silver hens appeared to have a higher mortality and lower production per hen housed at 60 weeks of age. 5. There were no significant relationships between production, mortality, feather condition and use of outside run or with flock size. 6. There was more variation in mortality and egg production among farms with a small flock size than among farms with a large flock size.

  4. The development of poultry farms risk assessment tool for avian influenza in Imo State, Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Obinani, Chidi; Onweagba, Anthony; Lloyd, Linda; Ross, Micheal; Troisi, Cathrine; Ohazurika, Nathaniel; Chukwu, Andrew O

    2014-09-01

    This study validated the content of a questionnaire that will be used for risk stratification in poultry farms in Imo State, Nigeria. The questionnaire was developed from avian influenza risk domains peculiar to poultry farms in Nigeria. The questionnaire was verified and modified by a group of five experts with research interest in Nigeria's poultry industry and avian influenza prevention. The questionnaire was distributed to 30 poultry farms selected from Imo State, Nigeria. The same poultry farms were visited one week after they completed the questionnaires for on-site observation. Agreement between survey and observation results was analyzed using the kappa statistic and rated as poor, fair, moderate, substantial, or nearly perfect; internal consistency of the survey was also computed. The mean kappa statistic for agreement between the survey and observations (validation) ranged from 0.06 to 1, poor to nearly perfect agreement. Eight questions showed poor agreement, four had a fair agreement, two items had moderate agreement, nineteen survey questions had substantial agreement and ten questions had nearly perfect agreement. Out of the 43 items in the questionnaire, 32 items were considered validated with coefficient alpha >0.70. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. [Homeopathic prophylaxis in dairy cows on an organic farm part 1--fertility].

    PubMed

    Fidelak, Ch; Klocke, P; Heuwieser, W

    2007-07-01

    The objective of the study was to assess the efficacy of different prophylactically applied homeopathic compounds on health and fertility during the periparturient period on an organic dairy farm. In a randomised double blinded study 146 dairy cows were enrolled in two treatment groups. The average milk yield was about 5100 kg per cow per lactation. The treatment group received the homeopathic compounds Carduus comp. and Coenzyme comp. at drying off, Traumeel on the day of calving, Lachesis comp. on day 7 post partum (p.p.) and Carduus comp. and Coenzyme comp. on day 14 days p.p. The control group followed the same protocol with a placebo (physiological saline solution). Each drug was administered subcutaneously in a dosage of 5 ml. At drying off, the day of calving and in weekly intervals until day 35 p.p. clinical examinations as well as blood sampling were performed. The effect of treatment was measured by clinical parameters, reproductive performance and serum profiles (Ca, P, AST, Urea, Bilirubin). Data of reproductive performance (days to first service, days open, conception rate) were compared between treatment groups and to those in the previous lactation. There was no significant difference between both treatment groups. Cows of the treatment group had an earlier onset of cyclic activity, especially when milk yield was considered as an influencing factor (82% vs. 57%, P < 0,05). In contrast the cows of the treatment group had a significant lower submission rate. The prophylactic treatment of all cows did not have an effect in general, but in cows with increased milk yield, especially in the current lactation. The reproductive performance in the previous lactation did not have any effects on the success of the homeopathic treatment. Reproductive performance in the herd could be enhanced slightly compared to the previous lactation.

  6. The Practice of Organization Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vaill, Peter B.

    An article about the men who are doing organization Development (O.D.) work is presented. It is divided into the following sections: (1) The Elements of O.D. Practice; (2) Interrelationships of the Elements of O.D. Practice; (3) Sources of Data on O.D. Practice; (4) The O.D. Practitioner and the Client; (5) The O.D. Practitioner and the Evaluator;…

  7. Development and Evaluation of Ergonomic Interventions for Bucket Handling on Farms

    PubMed Central

    Fathallah, Fadi A.; Tang, Steven C.H.; Waters, Thomas R.

    2016-01-01

    Objective The aim of this study was to introduce and evaluate two interventions, Ergo Bucket Carrier (EBC) and Easy Lift (EL), for youths (and adults) to handle water/feed buckets on farms. Background The physical activities of both adult and youth farm workers contribute to the development of low-back disorders (LBDs). Many of the activities youths perform on farms are associated with increased LBD risk, particularly, the handling of water and feed buckets. Methods Seventeen adult and youth participants (10 males and seven females) participated in this study. To assess the risk of LBDs, the participants were instrumented with a three-dimensional spinal electrogoniometer while lifting, carrying, and dumping water buckets using traditional method and the two interventions. Results For both the adult and youth groups, the results showed that the two interventions significantly decrease the magnitudes of LBD risk in many of the tasks evaluated. Overall, the use of the EBC resulted in a 41% reduction in the level of LBD risk for the carrying task, and a reduction of 69% for the dumping task. Using the EL, on the other hand, is especially effective for lifting tasks (55% reduction in LBD risk). Results of the subjective response were consistent with the objective evaluations. Conclusion This study demonstrated the potential for ergonomic interventions in reducing LBD risk during the common farming task of bucket handling. Application Potential application of this study includes the introduction of the EBC and EL in family farms to reduce the LBD risk among youth and adult farmers. PMID:26994024

  8. Development of a loop-mediated isothermal amplification assay for rapid, sensitive detection of Campylobacter jejuni in cattle farm samples.

    PubMed

    Dong, Hee-Jin; Cho, Ae-Ri; Hahn, Tae-Wook; Cho, Seongbeom

    2014-09-01

    Campylobacter jejuni is a leading cause of bacterial foodborne disease worldwide. The detection of this organism in cattle and their environment is important for the control of C. jejuni transmission and the prevention of campylobacteriosis. Here, we describe the development of a rapid and sensitive method for the detection of C. jejuni in naturally contaminated cattle farm samples, based on real-time loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) of the hipO gene. The LAMP assay was specific (100% inclusivity and exclusivity for 84 C. jejuni and 41 non-C. jejuni strains, respectively), sensitive (detection limit of 100 fg/μl), and quantifiable (R(2) = 0.9133). The sensitivity of the LAMP assay was then evaluated for its application to the naturally contaminated cattle farm samples. C. jejuni strains were isolated from 51 (20.7%) of 246 cattle farm samples, and the presence of the hipO gene was tested using the LAMP assay. Amplification of the hipO gene by LAMP within 30 min (mean ~10.8 min) in all C. jejuni isolates (n = 51) demonstrated its rapidity and accuracy. Next, template DNA was prepared from a total of 186 enrichment broth cultures of cattle farm samples either by boiling or using a commercial kit, and the sensitivity of detection of C. jejuni was compared between the LAMP and PCR assays. In DNA samples prepared by boiling, the higher sensitivity of the LAMP assay (84.4%) compared with the PCR assay (35.5%) indicates that it is less susceptible to the existence of inhibitors in sample material. In DNA samples prepared using a commercial kit, both the LAMP and PCR assays showed 100% sensitivity. We anticipate that the use of this rapid, sensitive, and simple LAMP assay, which is the first of its kind for the identification and screening of C. jejuni in cattle farm samples, may play an important role in the prevention of C. jejuni contamination in the food chain, thereby reducing the risk of human campylobacteriosis.

  9. Diet in 1-year-old farm and control children and allergy development: results from the FARMFLORA birth cohort

    PubMed Central

    Jonsson, Karin; Green, My; Barman, Malin; Sjöberg, Agneta; Brekke, Hilde K.; Wold, Agnes E.; Sandberg, Ann-Sofie

    2016-01-01

    Background A farming environment confers strong protection against allergy development. We have previously shown that farming mothers consume more full-fat dairy than control mothers, who instead consume more low-fat dairy, margarine, and oils; margarine and oil intake was associated with increased risk of allergy development in their children. Objectives The aims of this study were to investigate the differences in diet between children in farming and control families at 1 year of age, to investigate the relation between the diets of the mothers and their children, and to relate the children's diet to allergy development. Design The diet of 1-year-old children from dairy farming families (n=28) and from control families in the same rural area (n=37) was assessed by 24-h dietary recalls, followed by 24-h food diaries. Allergy was diagnosed by pediatricians at 3 years of age using strict predefined criteria. Results Farm children had a higher intake of farm milk, whole cream, cholesterol, saturated fat, and fat in total and tended to eat more butter, while controls consumed more carbohydrates and poultry and tended to eat more margarine. Farm children also had higher intakes of homemade porridge/gruel, oily fish, and iodine. The intake of butter and whole milk in children and mothers correlated significantly in farm families but not in controls. A weak negative association was found between seafood intake and allergy development, while allergy was positively associated with the intake of pork as well as zinc in the control group; these intakes also correlated with each other. Conclusions Consistent with mothers in farming families, the children consumed more full-fat dairy and saturated fat than did controls, but this could not be linked to the low risk of allergy in the farming group. Seafood intake might protect against allergy development, in accordance with earlier findings. PMID:27534847

  10. Analysis of risk factors for infections with gastrointestinal nematodes, Eimeria spp. and lungworms in German organic sheep farms.

    PubMed

    Kern, Gesche; Traulsen, Imke; Kemper, Nicole; Krieter, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine the risk factors influencing the occurrence of parasitic infections in organic sheep farms in Germany. Therefore, 635 pooled faecal samples from sheep kept on 20 organic farms were collected and examined by standard parasitological analyses for gastrointestinal nematodes (GINs), Eimeria species (spp.) and liver flukes (Fasciola hepatica). Additionally, 128 double-pooled samples were analysed for lungworm larvae. In 60.5% of all samples, parasite stadiums were detected, and 38.3% of the double-pooled samples were lungworm-positive. Production period, months and year of sampling had significant effects on infections with GINs (p < 0.05). The prevalence of GIN infection was lowest in 'dairy'(40.0%) when compared with'meat'sheep (65.4%). The odds of being infected with Eimeria spp. was influenced by the month (p < 0.05). The number of ewes on a farm, the primary purpose or the grazing area showed no significant effects. Infections with lungworms occurred in tendency more often 'after' lambing period.

  11. Multi-trait evolution of farmer varieties of bread wheat after cultivation in contrasting organic farming systems in Europe.

    PubMed

    Dawson, J C; Serpolay, E; Giuliano, S; Schermann, N; Galic, N; Chable, V; Goldringer, I

    2012-03-01

    Because of the lack of varieties for organic agriculture, associations of organic farmers in several European countries have begun cultivating landraces and historic varieties, effectively practicing in situ conservation of agricultural biodiversity. To promote agrobiodiversity conservation, a special list for "conservation varieties" was implemented in 2008 by the EU because for any exchange and marketing of seeds in the EU, a variety must be registered in an official catalog. Our study aimed at improving knowledge on the phenotypic diversity and evolution of such varieties when cultivated on organic farms in Europe, in order to better define their specific characteristics and the implications for the registration process. We assessed multi-trait phenotypic evolution in eight European landraces and historic varieties of bread wheat and in two pureline variety checks, each grown by eight organic farmers over 2 years and then evaluated in a common garden experiment at an organic research farm. Measurements on each farmer's version of each variety included several standard evaluation criteria for assessing distinctness, uniformity and stability for variety registration. Significant phenotypic differentiation was found among farmers' versions of each variety. Some varieties showed considerable variation among versions while others showed fewer phenotypic changes, even in comparison to the two checks. Although farmers' variety would not satisfy uniformity or stability criteria as defined in the catalog evaluation requirements, each variety remained distinct when assessed using multivariate analysis. The amount of differentiation may be related to the initial genetic diversity within landraces and historic varieties.

  12. Cadmium and zinc in kidney, liver, muscle and mammary tissue from dairy cows in conventional and organic farming.

    PubMed

    Olsson, I M; Jonsson, S; Oskarsson, A

    2001-10-01

    Input of Cd to arable soils occurs mainly through atmospheric deposition and mineral fertilisers. Phosphate fertilisers are often contaminated with Cd. In organic farming the use of mineral fertilisers is restricted. The impact of conventional and organic farming on Cd and Zn levels in tissues from dairy cows was studied. Kidney, liver, muscle and mammary tissue samples were collected at slaughter from 67 cows, aged 30-95 months, in a project with conventional and organic production at the same farm. Samples were analysed by electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry with a quality control programme. Significantly lower levels of Cd were found in cows from the organic system (n = 29) than from the conventional cows (n = 38) in kidney [330 +/- 100 (mean +/- s) micrograms kg-1 vs. 410 +/- 140], liver (33 +/- 15 vs. 44 +/- 19) and mammary tissue (0.38 +/- 0.14 vs. 0.59 +/- 0.37), while there were no differences in muscle (0.48 +/- 0.13 vs. 0.49 +/- 0.14). Organic cow kidneys had lower Zn levels than conventional cows (19 +/- 1.4 mg kg-1 vs. 20 +/- 2), whereas muscles had higher Zn levels than conventional cows (67 +/- 16 vs. 51 +/- 12). Cd and Zn in mammary tissue were positively related to age and milk production. There was a positive relationship between levels in kidney of Cd and metallothionein (MT) and a Cd/MT concentration ratio indicating protection from Cd-induced renal dysfunction. When older animals, that entered the project as milk-producing cows, were included the differences in kidney and liver Cd levels between the systems were no longer significant, while Cd in kidney became related to age- and production-related parameters. The change of significant relationships when older animals were included shows the importance of controlled conditions for environmental monitoring.

  13. Prevalence, characterization, and antimicrobial susceptibility of Salmonella Gallinarum isolated from eggs produced in conventional or organic farms in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Lee, Soo-Kyoung; Chon, Jung-Whan; Song, Kwang-Young; Hyeon, Ji-Yeon; Moon, Jin-San; Seo, Kun-Ho

    2013-10-01

    To determine the prevalence of Salmonella serotype Enteritidis in eggs in South Korea, we conducted a microbiological survey of commercially available eggs produced in conventional or organic farms during the period from 2010 to 2012. The contents of 7,000 raw shell eggs (6,000 of conventional and 1,000 of organic origin) were examined to evaluate the extent and type of Salmonella Enteritidis contamination. A total of 26 salmonellae (7.4% of all pooled samples) were isolated from 350 homogenized pools, each containing the contents from 20 eggs. An unexpected and particularly surprising finding was that all the Salmonella isolates were serotyped as Salmonella Gallinarum. Salmonella Gallinarum was more common in eggs from organic farms: 10 of 50 egg pools (20.0%) from organic and 16 of 300 egg pools (5.3%) from conventional farms tested positive for Salmonella Gallinarum. However, organic and conventional isolates showed similar antimicrobial susceptibilities. All the isolates and a vaccine strain, SG 9R, which has been widely used in South Korea, were further characterized using the automated repetitive sequence-based PCR (rep-PCR) system, DiversiLab, to ascertain the molecular subtypes and to identify differences from the vaccine strain. The rep-PCR identified 2 distinct clusters among the 26 Salmonella Gallinarum isolates with a greater than 96% similarity index. These were clearly differentiated from the vaccine strain, SG 9R, with which there was a less than 86% similarity index. We found there was low genetic heterogeneity among isolates within each cluster and were able to distinguish wild type strains from the live vaccine strain (SG 9R) using the DiversiLab system.

  14. Life cycle assessment of energy self-sufficiency systems based on agricultural residues for organic arable farms.

    PubMed

    Kimming, M; Sundberg, C; Nordberg, A; Baky, A; Bernesson, S; Norén, O; Hansson, P-A

    2011-01-01

    The agricultural industry today consumes large amounts of fossil fuels. This study used consequential life cycle assessment (LCA) to analyse two potential energy self-sufficient systems for organic arable farms, based on agricultural residues. The analysis focused on energy balance, resource use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. A scenario based on straw was found to require straw harvest from 25% of the farm area; 45% of the total energy produced from the straw was required for energy carrier production and GHG emissions were reduced by 9% compared with a fossil fuel-based reference scenario. In a scenario based on anaerobic digestion of ley, the corresponding figures were 13%, 24% and 35%. The final result was sensitive to assumptions regarding, e.g., soil carbon content and handling of by-products.

  15. A Bayesian network approach to knowledge integration and representation of farm irrigation: 1. Model development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Q. J.; Robertson, D. E.; Haines, C. L.

    2009-02-01

    Irrigation is important to many agricultural businesses but also has implications for catchment health. A considerable body of knowledge exists on how irrigation management affects farm business and catchment health. However, this knowledge is fragmentary; is available in many forms such as qualitative and quantitative; is dispersed in scientific literature, technical reports, and the minds of individuals; and is of varying degrees of certainty. Bayesian networks allow the integration of dispersed knowledge into quantitative systems models. This study describes the development, validation, and application of a Bayesian network model of farm irrigation in the Shepparton Irrigation Region of northern Victoria, Australia. In this first paper we describe the process used to integrate a range of sources of knowledge to develop a model of farm irrigation. We describe the principal model components and summarize the reaction to the model and its development process by local stakeholders. Subsequent papers in this series describe model validation and the application of the model to assess the regional impact of historical and future management intervention.

  16. Occurrence and risk assessment of tetracycline antibiotics in soil from organic vegetable farms in a subtropical city, south China.

    PubMed

    Xiang, Lei; Wu, Xiao-Lian; Jiang, Yuan-Neng; Yan, Qing-Yun; Li, Yan-Wen; Huang, Xian-Pei; Cai, Quan-Ying; Mo, Ce-Hui

    2016-07-01

    This study investigated the occurrence of tetracycline antibiotics in soils from different organic vegetable farms in Guangzhou, a subtropical city, South China and evaluated their ecological risk. Four tetracycline compounds (oxytetracycline, tetracycline, chlortetracycline, and doxycycline) were extracted ultrasonically from soil samples (n = 69), with a solid-phase extraction cleanup, and were then measured by high-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS). The results showed that four compounds were detected in all samples, with the concentrations of the individual compounds ranging from 0.04 to 184.8 μg/kg (dry weight). The concentrations of tetracycline compounds in the soils from different vegetable farms varied greatly, but their patterns of distribution were similar. Doxycycline was the predominant compound with a mean of 21.87 μg/kg, followed by chlortetracycline. The concentrations of doxycycline and chlortetracycline in 7.46 % of the samples were higher than the ecotoxic effect trigger value (100 μg/kg) set by the Steering Committee of Veterinary International Committee on Harmonization. Additionally, the concentrations of tetracyclines in greenhouse soils were significantly lower than those in open-field soils. Risk assessment based on single compound exposure showed that doxycycline could pose medium or high risks. Compared with other studies, the levels of tetracyclines in this study were relatively low. The hypothesis that antibiotic residues in the soil of organic farms fertilized with manure are higher than in the soils of conventional farms was not supported in the area studied due to the high levels of moisture, temperature, and microbial activity.

  17. Effect of Organic Acids on Salmonella Shedding and Colonization in Pigs on a Farm with High Salmonella Prevalence.

    PubMed

    Rasschaert, G; Michiels, J; Tagliabue, M; Missotten, J; De Smet, S; Heyndrickx, M

    2016-01-01

    This study builds on the results of a previous study in which six commercial feed products based on organic acids were evaluated with respect to Salmonella contamination of piglets in an artificially challenged seeder model. In the present study, the efficacy of three of these commercial products was assessed for Salmonella reduction in fattening pigs on one closed farm with a natural high Salmonella prevalence. In each of four fattening compartments, one of the following feed treatments was evaluated during two consecutive fattening rounds: (i) butyric acid (active ingredients at 1.3 kg/ton of feed; supplement A1), (ii) a combination of short-chain organic acids (mixture of free acids and salts) and natural extracts (2.92 kg/ton; supplement A4), (iii) a 1:1 blend of two commercial products consisting of medium-chain fatty acids, lactic acid, and oregano oil (3.71 kg/ton; supplement A5+A6), and (iv) a control feed. On the farm, the Salmonella status of the fattening pigs was evaluated by taking fecal samples twice during the fattening period. At the slaughterhouse, samples were collected from the cecal contents and the ileocecal lymph nodes. Salmonella isolates were serotyped and characterized by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. This farm had a particularly high number of pigs shedding Salmonella with a wide variety of sero- and pulsotypes. Only the feed blend based on the medium-chain fatty acids was able to significantly reduce Salmonella prevalence both on the farm and at the slaughterhouse. With this combined supplement, the Salmonella reduction in the feces at slaughter age, in cecal contents at slaughter, and the lymph nodes was 50, 36, and 67%, respectively, compared with the control animals. This promising finding calls for further investigation including cost-efficiency of this combined feed product and its effect on the animals.

  18. Differences in whey protein content between cow's milk collected in late pasture and early indoor feeding season from conventional and organic farms in Poland.

    PubMed

    Kuczyńska, Beata; Puppel, Kamila; Gołebiewski, Marcin; Metera, Ewa; Sakowski, Tomasz; Słoniewski, Krzysztof

    2012-11-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate bioactive whey protein concentrations in cow's milk collected in late pasture (LP) and early indoor feeding (EIF) season from conventional and organic farms in Poland. Results showed that in the LP somatic cell count (SCC) was higher under organic farming conditions. However, percentages of protein and fat were higher under conventional farming conditions. In EIF, milk from conventional dairy farms had a higher percentage of fat and lactose and a lower concentration of protein and SCC in comparison to milk from organic farms. Organic milk in LP had higher concentrations of beneficial whey proteins than conventional milk, including β-lactoglobulin (β-Lg, 4.12 vs. 2.68 g L⁻¹), lactoferrin (Lf, 334.99 vs. 188.02 mg L⁻¹), and lysozyme (Lz, 15.68 vs. 12.56 µg L⁻¹). However, conventional milk in EIF had higher concentrations of bovine serum albumin (146.47 vs. 118.65 mg L⁻¹), Lf (49 vs. 185.27 mg L⁻¹), and Lz (16.63 vs. 13.22 µg L⁻¹). The results show significant differences in the investigated parameters between organic milk and milk from conventional system during EIF and LP. Moreover, extending the pasture season during EIF in organic farms decreases concentration of bioactive compounds of milk. Copyright © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry.

  19. Local Farm Structure and Community Ties. Rural Development Research Report Number 68.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carlin, Thomas A.; Green, Bernal L.

    Whether large-scale or small farms dominate, a county's farm structure is influenced not only by changes within farming but also by key factors such as nonfarm economic activity, geography, and population growth. Large-farm counties where agriculture dominates the economy are concentrated in the Plains, Midwest, and Mississippi Delta. Small-farm…

  20. Short term recovery of soil biological functions in a new vineyard cultivated in organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costantini, Edoardo; Agnelli, Alessandro; Fabiani, Arturo; Gagnarli, Elena; Mocali, Stefano; Priori, Simone; Simoni, Sauro; Valboa, Giuseppe

    2014-05-01

    Deep earthwork activities carried out before vineyard plantation completely upset soil profile and characteristics. The resulting soil features are often much more similar to the underlying substratum than original soil profile. The time needed to recover soil functions is ecologically relevant and affects vine phenology and grape yield, particularly in organic viticulture. The general aim of this research work was to investigate the time needed to recover soil functions after the earthworks made before vine plantation. This study compared for a four years period physical and chemical properties, microbial and mesofauna communities, in new and old vineyards, cultivated on the same soil type. The experiment was conducted in a farm of the Chianti Classico district (Central Italy), on hills of high altitude (400-500 m a.s.l.) on clayey-calcareous flysches, with stony and calcareous soils (Haplic Cambisol (Calcaric, Skeletic)). The reference vine cultivar was Sangiovese. The older vineyard was planted in 2000, after slope reshaping by bulldozing and back hoe ploughing down to about 0.8-1.0 m. The new vineyard was planted in 2011 after an equivalent earthwork carried out in the summer of 2009. Both vineyards were organically managed and only compost at the rate of 1,000 kg ha-1 -a was added every year. The new vineyard was periodically cultivated by mechanical tillage, while the older only at alternate rows. Soil samples from the first 15 cm depth were collected in 4 replicates in the younger as well as in the older vineyard during the springtime of 2010-2013; in the older vineyard, two samples were from the periodically cultivated swaths and two under permanent grass cover. Samples were analysed for physical (particle size, field capacity, wilting point), chemical (pH, electrical conductivity, lime, active lime, organic carbon, total nitrogen), microbiological (soil respiration, microbial biomass, DGGE), and mesofauna features (abundance, taxa richness, BSQ index and

  1. A Diagnosis of Biophysical and Socio-Economic Factors Influencing Farmers’ Choice to Adopt Organic or Conventional Farming Systems for Cotton Production

    PubMed Central

    Riar, Amritbir; Mandloi, Lokendra S.; Poswal, Randhir S.; Messmer, Monika M.; Bhullar, Gurbir S.

    2017-01-01

    Organic agriculture is one of the most widely known alternative production systems advocated for its benefits to soil, environment, health and economic well-being of farming communities. Rapid increase in the market demand for organic products presents a remarkable opportunity for expansion of organic agriculture. A thorough understanding of the context specific motivations of farmers for adoption of organic farming systems is important so that appropriate policy measures are put in place. With an aim of understanding the social and biophysical motivations of organic and conventional cotton farmers for following their respective farming practices, a detailed farm survey was conducted in Nimar valley of Madhya Pradesh state in central India. The study area was chosen for being an important region for cotton production, where established organic and conventional farms operate under comparable circumstances. We found considerable variation among organic and conventional farmers for their social and biophysical motivations. Organic farmers were motivated by the sustainability of cotton production and growing safer food without pesticides, whereas conventional farmers were sensitive about their reputation in community. Organic farmers with larger holdings were more concerned about closed nutrient cycles and reducing their dependence on external inputs, whereas medium and small holding organic farmers were clearly motivated by the premium price of organic cotton. Higher productivity was the only important motivation for conventional farmers with larger land holdings. We also found considerable yield gaps among different farms, both under conventional and organic management, that need to be addressed through extension and training. Our findings suggest that research and policy measures need to be directed toward strengthening of extension services, local capacity building, enhancing availability of suitable inputs and market access for organic farmers. PMID:28769975

  2. A Diagnosis of Biophysical and Socio-Economic Factors Influencing Farmers' Choice to Adopt Organic or Conventional Farming Systems for Cotton Production.

    PubMed

    Riar, Amritbir; Mandloi, Lokendra S; Poswal, Randhir S; Messmer, Monika M; Bhullar, Gurbir S

    2017-01-01

    Organic agriculture is one of the most widely known alternative production systems advocated for its benefits to soil, environment, health and economic well-being of farming communities. Rapid increase in the market demand for organic products presents a remarkable opportunity for expansion of organic agriculture. A thorough understanding of the context specific motivations of farmers for adoption of organic farming systems is important so that appropriate policy measures are put in place. With an aim of understanding the social and biophysical motivations of organic and conventional cotton farmers for following their respective farming practices, a detailed farm survey was conducted in Nimar valley of Madhya Pradesh state in central India. The study area was chosen for being an important region for cotton production, where established organic and conventional farms operate under comparable circumstances. We found considerable variation among organic and conventional farmers for their social and biophysical motivations. Organic farmers were motivated by the sustainability of cotton production and growing safer food without pesticides, whereas conventional farmers were sensitive about their reputation in community. Organic farmers with larger holdings were more concerned about closed nutrient cycles and reducing their dependence on external inputs, whereas medium and small holding organic farmers were clearly motivated by the premium price of organic cotton. Higher productivity was the only important motivation for conventional farmers with larger land holdings. We also found considerable yield gaps among different farms, both under conventional and organic management, that need to be addressed through extension and training. Our findings suggest that research and policy measures need to be directed toward strengthening of extension services, local capacity building, enhancing availability of suitable inputs and market access for organic farmers.

  3. Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi and Glomalin Enhance Carbon Sequestration in Organic Farming Systems

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations have increased nearly 100 ppm in the last 250 years. Soils may be able to mitigate this by sequestering carbon, but agricultural soils are often a source rather than a sink for carbon. The Rodale Institute’s Farming Systems Trial® (FST), initiated in 1981 ...

  4. Physico-chemical characteristics, nutrient composition and consumer acceptability of wheat varieties grown under organic and inorganic farming conditions.

    PubMed

    Nitika; Punia, Darshan; Khetarpaul, N

    2008-05-01

    The aim of the investigation was to analyse physico-chemical characteristics, nutrient composition and consumer acceptability of wheat varieties grown under organic and inorganic farming conditions. The seeds of five varieties of wheat (C-306, WH-283, WH-711, WH-896 and WH-912) grown under organic and inorganic farming conditions were ground in a Junior Mill to pass through 60-mesh sieves and were stored in air-tight containers until use. Standard methods were used to estimate the physico-chemical characteristics and nutrient composition. Consumer acceptability was studied by carrying out the organoleptic evaluation of wheat chapatis, a common item in diets of the Indian population. The results of study revealed that inorganically grown wheat varieties had significantly higher 1,000-grain weight and more grain hardness as compared with organically grown wheat varieties, and a non-significant difference was observed in their gluten content, water absorption capacity and hydration capacity. On average, wheat varieties grown under inorganic conditions contained significantly higher protein and crude fibre content as compared with varieties grown under organic conditions. WH-711 variety had maximum protein content. Protein fractions (i.e. albumin, globulin, prolamin and glutelin) were significantly higher in varieties grown under inorganic conditions than those of varieties grown under organic conditions. The variety WH-711 had the highest total soluble sugars and variety WH-912 had the highest starch content. Phytic acid and polyphenol contents were significantly higher in inorganically grown wheat varieties as compared with organically grown wheat varieties. The wheat varieties grown under organic conditions had significantly higher protein and starch digestibility than the wheat grown under inorganic conditions. The data revealed that there were significant differences in total calcium and phosphorus contents of wheat varieties grown under organic and inorganic

  5. Co-existence of GM, conventional and organic crops in developing countries: Main debates and concerns.

    PubMed

    Azadi, Hossein; Taube, Friedhelm; Taheri, Fatemeh

    2017-06-05

    The co-existence approach of GM crops with conventional agriculture and organic farming as a feasible agricultural farming system has recently been placed in the center of hot debates at the EU-level and become a source of anxiety in developing countries. The main promises of this approach is to ensure "food security" and "food safety" on the one hand, and to avoid the adventitious presence of GM crops in conventional and organic farming on the other, as well as to present concerns in many debates on implementing the approach in developing countries. Here, we discuss the main debates on ("what," "why," "who," "where," "which," and "how") applying this approach in developing countries and review the main considerations and tradeoffs in this regard. The paper concludes that a peaceful co-existence between GM, conventional, and organic farming is not easy but is still possible. The goal should be to implement rules that are well-established proportionately, efficiently and cost-effectively, using crop-case, farming system-based and should be biodiversity-focused ending up with "codes of good agricultural practice" for co-existence.

  6. Development and evaluation of a system to assess antimicrobial drug use in farm animals: results of an Austrian study.

    PubMed

    Ferner, C; Obritzhauser, W; Fuchs, K; Schmerold, I

    2014-11-01

    The objective of this study was to develop and evaluate a feasible system for the collection of antimicrobial consumption data in farm animals in Austria. An electronic registry of all antibacterial pharmaceuticals approved in Austria for use in farm animals was created, listing product name, marketing authorisation number, active ingredient, package unit, strength, target species (cattle, swine, poultry), route of administration and indication, and allocating the corresponding code of the World Health Organization (WHO) Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical classification system for veterinary medicines to each substance (ATCvet-code). Different units (absolute quantities, animal daily dose, assumed daily product dose) enabled computation of the amounts of antimicrobials as pure substance, the constituents of a veterinary medicinal product, or the number of administrations. Two data collection systems were evaluated: (1) data transfer from the management software of veterinary practices or the Austrian Poultry Health Service; and (2) on-site data collection by manual data input from prescription records into an electronic registry. A total of 14,267 data sets provided by 18 practices were documented during the period January 2008 to March 2010. The total weight of active substances reported amounted to more than 5.4 tonnes for all species studied. The systems proved suitable for routine data acquisition and were considered in a recent national regulation on the surveillance of sale and consumption of veterinary antimicrobial substances.

  7. Cumulative impact assessments and bird/wind farm interactions: Developing a conceptual framework

    SciTech Connect

    Masden, Elizabeth A.; Fox, Anthony D.; Furness, Robert W.; Bullman, Rhys; Haydon, Daniel T.

    2010-01-15

    The wind power industry has grown rapidly in the UK to meet EU targets of sourcing 20% of energy from renewable sources by 2020. Although wind power is a renewable energy source, there are environmental concerns over increasing numbers of wind farm proposals and associated cumulative impacts. Individually, a wind farm, or indeed any action, may have minor effects on the environment, but collectively these may be significant, potentially greater than the sum of the individual parts acting alone. EU and UK legislation requires a cumulative impact assessment (CIA) as part of Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA). However, in the absence of detailed guidance and definitions, such assessments within EIA are rarely adequate, restricting the acquisition of basic knowledge about the cumulative impacts of wind farms on bird populations. Here we propose a conceptual framework to promote transparency in CIA through the explicit definition of impacts, actions and scales within an assessment. Our framework requires improved legislative guidance on the actions to include in assessments, and advice on the appropriate baselines against which to assess impacts. Cumulative impacts are currently considered on restricted scales (spatial and temporal) relating to individual development EIAs. We propose that benefits would be gained from elevating CIA to a strategic level, as a component of spatially explicit planning.

  8. Effects of compost fertilization in organic farming on micronutrients and heavy metals in soil and crops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erhart, Eva; Sager, Manfred; Bonell, Marion; Fuchs, Katrin; Haas, Dieter; Ableidinger, Christoph; Hartl, Wilfried

    2015-04-01

    For organic stockless and vegetable farms using biowaste compost is a way to sustain soil humus content. At the same time compost use in agriculture closes local nutrient cycles. Besides organic matter and main nutrients, biowaste compost also imports micronutrients and heavy metals in amounts determined by the compost input material. The aim of this work was to assess total and plant-available contents of micronutrients B, Ca, Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Ni, Zn, beneficial elements Co and Se and heavy metals Cd, Cr and Pb in the soil and in crops after 20 years of fertilization with compost produced from source-separated organic waste. Topsoil and wheat grain samples were collected from the long-term field experiment 'STIKO' situated near Vienna on a Molli-gleyic Fluvisol. Between 1992 and 2012 the organic treatments C1, C2 and C3 had received 5, 10 and 14 t ha-1 yr-1 (wet wt.) biowaste compost on average. They were compared with the unfertilized organic control treatment and with three mineral fertilization treatments, which had received 20, 32 and 44 kg N ha-1 yr 1, respectively, plus 40 kg P and 68 kg K ha-1 yr-1 on average. Total soil element contents of B, Cd, Cr, Co, Cu, Fe, Mn, Mo, Ni, Pb, Se and Zn were measured in aqua regia digestion. Immediately water-soluble elements were analysed in soil saturation extract, elements in exchangeable form in LiCl extract following Husz (2001), and long-term available elements in 0.5 N HCl extract. Wheat grains were dehulled, milled and subjected to microwave digestion with HNO3 and H2O2. Wheat was analyzed for Cd and Pb with ICP-MS. All other elements in wheat and all soil extracts were analyzed using ICP-AES. Total soil concentrations of micronutrients, heavy metals and beneficial elements were in the range of usual soil contents and lower than the Austrian background values for arable land with comparable pH and carbonate concentration (Schwarz and Freudenschuss, 2004) in all treatments (all mg kg-1: B 14-19, Fe 16000-18000, Mn

  9. New approaches for morphological diagnosis of bovine Eimeria species: a study on a subtropical organic dairy farm in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Florião, Mônica Mateus; Lopes, Bruno do Bomfim; Berto, Bruno Pereira; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2016-03-01

    Bovine eimeriosis or coccidiosis is an intestinal disease caused by Eimeria spp. which is related to gastrointestinal disorders and, in some cases, death. The current work aimed to identify and provide detailed morphological characteristic features of the different Eimeria spp. parasites of crossbred cows of a subtropical organic dairy farm in Brazil, offering tools for the diagnosis of bovine eimeriosis. Eimeria auburnensis, Eimeria bovis, Eimeria bukidnonensis, Eimeria canadensis, Eimeria cylindrica, Eimeria ildefonsoi, and Eimeria zuernii were identified. The application of line regressions and ANOVA provided a means for the identification of these species. Finally, the current work proposes a dichotomous key to assist in the morphologic identification of bovine Eimeria spp. oocysts.

  10. Rural Development: Part 4, S. 2223--The Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act and Amendment No. 153 (To S. 1483), to Establish the Rural Community Development Bank. Hearings Before the Subcommittee on Rural Development of the Committee on Agriculture and Forestry, United States Senate, 92d Congress, 1st Session, July 23; September 21-24, 1971.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry.

    Transcripts of Senate hearings on S. 2223 (the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act) and on Amendment No. 153 (to S. 1483) to establish the rural community development bank are presented in this document. In addition to some 25 miscellaneous documents, statements of representatives from municipal, state, and national organizations are…

  11. Distribution and risk assessment of quinolone antibiotics in the soils from organic vegetable farms of a subtropical city, Southern China.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiao-Lian; Xiang, Lei; Yan, Qing-Yun; Jiang, Yuan-Neng; Li, Yan-Wen; Huang, Xian-Pei; Li, Hui; Cai, Quan-Ying; Mo, Ce-Hui

    2014-07-15

    Organic fertilizer or manure containing antibiotics has been widely used in organic farms, but the distribution and potential impacts of antibiotics to the local environment are not well understood. In this study, four quinolone antibiotics in soil samples (n=69) from five organic vegetable farms in a subtropical city, Southern China, were analyzed using high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Our results indicated that quinolone compounds were ubiquitous in soil samples (detection frequency>97% for all compounds), and their concentrations ranged from not detectable to 42.0 μg/kg. Among the targets, enrofloxacin (ENR) was the dominant compound, followed by ciprofloxacin (CIP) and norfloxacin (NOR). The average total concentrations of four compounds in the soils were affected by vegetable types and species cultivated, decreasing in the order of fruit>rhizome>leaf vegetables. Moreover, the average concentrations of quinolone compounds (except ENR) in open-field soils were higher than those in greenhouse soils. The concentrations of quinolone antibiotics in this study were lower than the ecotoxic effect trigger value (100 μg/kg) proposed by the Veterinary Medicine International Coordination commission. Risk assessment based on the calculated risk quotients indicated that NOR, CIP, and ENR posed mainly medium to low risks to bacteria.

  12. Plant-parasitic Nematode Communities and Their Associations with Soil Factors in Organically Farmed Fields in Minnesota

    PubMed Central

    Chen, S. Y.; Sheaffer, C. C.; Wyse, D. L.; Nickel, P.; Kandel, H.

    2012-01-01

    A survey was conducted to determine the assemblage and abundance of plant-parasitic nematodes and their associations with soil factors in organically farmed fields in Minnesota. A total of 31 soil samples were collected from southeast (SE), 26 samples from southwest (SW), 28 from west-central (WC), and 23 from northwest (NW) Minnesota. The assemblage and abundance of plant-parasitic nematodes varied among the four regions. The soybean cyst nematode, Heterodera glycines, the most destructive pathogen of soybean, was detected in 45.2, 88.5, 10.7, and 0% of organically farmed fields with relative prominence (RP) values of 10.3, 26.5, 0.6, and 0 in the SE, SW, WC, and NW regions, respectively. Across the four regions, other common genera of plant-parasitic nematodes were Helicotylenchus (42.6, RP value, same below), Pratylenchus (26.9), Tylenchorhynchus and related genera (9.4), Xiphinema (5.6), and Paratylenchus (5.3). Aphelenchoides, Meloidogyne, Hoplolaimus, Mesocriconema, and Trichodorus were also detected at low frequencies and/or low population densities. The similarity index of plant-parasitic nematodes between two regions ranged from 0.44 to 0.71 and the similarity increased with decreasing distance between regions. The densities of most plant-parasitic nematodes did not correlate with measured soil factors (organic matter, pH, texture). However, the densities of Pratylenchus correlated negatively with % sand, and Xiphinema was correlated negatively with soil pH. PMID:23482641

  13. Spatio-temporal variations in the composition of organic matter in surface sediments of a mangrove receiving shrimp farm effluents (New Caledonia).

    PubMed

    Aschenbroich, Adélaïde; Marchand, Cyril; Molnar, Nathalie; Deborde, Jonathan; Hubas, Cédric; Rybarczyk, Hervé; Meziane, Tarik

    2015-04-15

    In order to investigate spatio-temporal variations in the composition and origin of the benthic organic matter (OM) at the sediment surface in mangrove receiving shrimp farm effluents, fatty acid (FA) biomarkers, natural stable isotopes (δ(13)C and δ(15)N), C:N ratios and chlorophyll-a (chl-a) concentrations were determined during the active and the non-active period of the farm. Fatty acid compositions in surface sediments within the mangrove forest indicated that organic matter inputs varied along the year as a result of farm activity. Effluents were the source of fresh particulate organic matter for the mangrove, as evidenced by the unsaturated fatty acid (UFA) distribution. The anthropogenic MUFA 18:1ω9 was not only accumulated at the sediment surface in some parts of the mangrove, but was also exported to the seafront. Direct release of bacteria and enhanced in situ production of fungi, as revealed by specific FAs, stimulated mangrove litter decomposition under effluent runoff condition. Also, microalgae released from ponds contributed to maintain high benthic chl-a concentrations in mangrove sediments in winter and to a shift in microphytobenthic community assemblage. Primary production was high whether the farm released effluent or not which questioned the temporary effect of shrimp farm effluent on benthic microalgae dynamic. This study outlined that mangrove benthic organic matter was qualitatively and quantitatively affected by shrimp farm effluent release and that responses to environmental condition changes likely depended on mangrove stand characteristics.

  14. Prevalence of Bovine Brucellosis in Organized Dairy Farms, Using Milk ELISA, in Quetta City, Balochistan, Pakistan

    PubMed Central

    Shafee, Muhammad; Rabbani, Masood; Sheikh, Ali Ahmad; Ahmad, Mansoor din; Razzaq, Abdul

    2011-01-01

    A total of 200 milk samples from cattle (n = 86) and buffalo (n = 114) were evaluated using milk ring test (MRT) and indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (i-ELISA). The overall prevalence was found to be 3% and 8.5% in cattle and buffaloes using MRT and i-ELISA, respectively. The prevalence was 4.6% and 1.7% in cattle and buffalo using MRT, respectively, while i-ELISA exhibited 20% and 0% in cattle and buffalo, respectively. The prevalence was higher in government dairy farm, compared to privately owned dairy farm. This paper points out an alarming situation in the target area with respect to the public health significance. PMID:21331157

  15. Prevalence of bovine brucellosis in organized dairy farms, using milk ELISA, in quetta city, balochistan, pakistan.

    PubMed

    Shafee, Muhammad; Rabbani, Masood; Sheikh, Ali Ahmad; Ahmad, Mansoor Din; Razzaq, Abdul

    2011-01-24

    A total of 200 milk samples from cattle (n = 86) and buffalo (n = 114) were evaluated using milk ring test (MRT) and indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (i-ELISA). The overall prevalence was found to be 3% and 8.5% in cattle and buffaloes using MRT and i-ELISA, respectively. The prevalence was 4.6% and 1.7% in cattle and buffalo using MRT, respectively, while i-ELISA exhibited 20% and 0% in cattle and buffalo, respectively. The prevalence was higher in government dairy farm, compared to privately owned dairy farm. This paper points out an alarming situation in the target area with respect to the public health significance.

  16. Ecuadorian Banana Farms Should Consider Organic Banana with Low Price Risks in Their Land-Use Portfolios

    PubMed Central

    Castro, Luz Maria; Calvas, Baltazar; Knoke, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Organic farming is a more environmentally friendly form of land use than conventional agriculture. However, recent studies point out production tradeoffs that often prevent the adoption of such practices by farmers. Our study shows with the example of organic banana production in Ecuador that economic tradeoffs depend much on the approach of the analysis. We test, if organic banana should be included in economic land-use portfolios, which indicate how much of the land is provided for which type of land-use. We use time series data for productivity and prices over 30 years to compute the economic return (as annualized net present value) and its volatility (with standard deviation as risk measure) for eight crops to derive land-use portfolios for different levels of risk, which maximize economic return. We find that organic banana is included in land-use portfolios for almost every level of accepted risk with proportions from 1% to maximally 32%, even if the same high uncertainty as for conventional banana is simulated for organic banana. A more realistic, lower simulated price risk increased the proportion of organic banana substantially to up to 57% and increased annual economic returns by up to US$ 187 per ha. Under an assumed integration of both markets, for organic and conventional banana, simulated by an increased coefficient of correlation of economic return from organic and conventional banana (ρ up to +0.7), organic banana holds significant portions in the land-use portfolios tested only, if a low price risk of organic banana is considered. We conclude that uncertainty is a key issue for the adoption of organic banana. As historic data support a low price risk for organic banana compared to conventional banana, Ecuadorian farmers should consider organic banana as an advantageous land-use option in their land-use portfolios. PMID:25799506

  17. Ecuadorian banana farms should consider organic banana with low price risks in their land-use portfolios.

    PubMed

    Castro, Luz Maria; Calvas, Baltazar; Knoke, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Organic farming is a more environmentally friendly form of land use than conventional agriculture. However, recent studies point out production tradeoffs that often prevent the adoption of such practices by farmers. Our study shows with the example of organic banana production in Ecuador that economic tradeoffs depend much on the approach of the analysis. We test, if organic banana should be included in economic land-use portfolios, which indicate how much of the land is provided for which type of land-use. We use time series data for productivity and prices over 30 years to compute the economic return (as annualized net present value) and its volatility (with standard deviation as risk measure) for eight crops to derive land-use portfolios for different levels of risk, which maximize economic return. We find that organic banana is included in land-use portfolios for almost every level of accepted risk with proportions from 1% to maximally 32%, even if the same high uncertainty as for conventional banana is simulated for organic banana. A more realistic, lower simulated price risk increased the proportion of organic banana substantially to up to 57% and increased annual economic returns by up to US$ 187 per ha. Under an assumed integration of both markets, for organic and conventional banana, simulated by an increased coefficient of correlation of economic return from organic and conventional banana (ρ up to +0.7), organic banana holds significant portions in the land-use portfolios tested only, if a low price risk of organic banana is considered. We conclude that uncertainty is a key issue for the adoption of organic banana. As historic data support a low price risk for organic banana compared to conventional banana, Ecuadorian farmers should consider organic banana as an advantageous land-use option in their land-use portfolios.

  18. Short-term effects of fertility management under organic farming in Mediterranean region on soil properties and tomato production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cavoski, Ivana; Chami, Ziad Al; Jarrar, Mohammad; Dumontet, Stefano; Mondelli, Donato

    2014-05-01

    In organic farming, plant production depends almost exclusively on nutrient deriving from the decomposition of exogenous organic matter in soil which is able to provide significant quantities of several important nutrients for the plant growth. However, in the soil the timing and amount of mineralization often does not coincide with crop nutritional need, making in-season fertilization necessary. The Regulation (EC) No 889/2008 on organic farming standards recognizes these needs and allows the use of a limited range fertilizers and soil conditioners (inputs) in order to meet nutritional needs of the plants and to achieve short term economically viable yield. Short-term open field experiment was conducted at the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari (MAIB) located in Apulia region (Southern Italy) in order study the effects of different fertilization scenarios based on equilibrated nutritional requirement on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill, cv. San Marzano) production efficiency and soil chemical properties. In soil dressing phase, three months before planting, biochar (BCH), organic fertilizers (OF), combined treatment (BCH+OF), cattle manure and vineyard wood compost (MVC), dairy wastes industry and vineyard wood compost (DVC) and unamended soil as control (CON) were established. In the pre-crop phase, organic and/or mineral fertilizers were incorporated into the previous treatments except CON and BCH in order to achieve balanced N, P and K application rates for tomato plants. Different fertilization scenarios significantly increased the yields over CON and BCH treatments, maintaining fruits quality. In short period of time, most of the soil parameters remained invariable, only available phosphorus significantly increased in the treatments which received organic fertilizers maybe due to the slight reduction in soil pH. However, such results are not surprising, if we consider the quantity of amendments and fertilizers applied in the experiment, as well as

  19. Regional scale hydrodynamic modelling of offshore wind farm development areas off the east coast of Scotland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Hara Murray, Rory; Gallego, Alejandro

    2013-04-01

    There is considerable interest in Scotland, supported by the Scottish Government, in the expansion of renewable energy production. In particular, significant offshore wind energy developments are already planned in coastal waters to the east of the Forth and Tay estuaries. It is important to understand the local and cumulative environmental impact of such developments within this region, to aid licensing decisions but also to inform marine spatial planning in general. Substantial wind farm developments may affect physical processes within the region, such as tidal-, wind-, and wave-driven circulation, as well as coastal sediment transport and more complex estuarine dynamics. Such physical impacts could have ecological and, ultimately, socio-economic consequences. The Firth of Forth and Tay areas both exhibit complex estuarine characteristics due to fresh water input, complex bathymetry and coastline, and tidal mixing. Our goal is to construct an unstructured grid hydrodynamic model of the wider Firth of Forth and Tay region using the Finite-Volume Coastal Ocean Model (FVCOM), resolving the complex estuarine hydrography of the area and representing offshore wind developments. Hydrodynamic modelling will provide an accurate baseline of the hydrography in this region but also allow the assessment of the effect on the physical environment of multiple wind farm development scenarios.

  20. Genetically modified and organic crops in developing countries: a review of options for food security.

    PubMed

    Azadi, Hossein; Ho, Peter

    2010-01-01

    Since two decades ago, when the first GM crops were introduced, there have increasingly been hot debates on the applications of gene manipulation. Currently, the development of GM crop varieties has raised a wide range of new legal, ethical and economic questions in agriculture. There is a growing body of literature reflecting the socio-economic and environmental impacts of GM crops which aims to criticize their value for farming systems. While organic crops are promoted as environmentally-friendly products in developed countries, they have provoked great controversy in developing countries facing food security and a low agricultural productivity. Discussion has been especially vigorous when organic farming was introduced as an alternative method. There are in fact, a few tradeoffs in developing countries. On the one hand, farmers are encouraged to accept and implement GM crops because of their higher productivity, while on the other hand, organic farming is encouraged because of socio-economic and environmental considerations. A crucial question facing such countries is therefore, whether GM crops can co-exist with organic farming. This paper aims to review the main considerations and tradeoffs.

  1. A field survey on the status of internal parasites in calves on organic dairy farms in southwestern Sweden.

    PubMed

    Höglund, J; Svensson, C; Hessle, A

    2001-08-01

    Infections with internal parasites are one of the most important causes of reduced productivity in first-grazing season cattle (FGSC). In conventional herds, nematode infections can be controlled by prophylactic anthelmintic treatments, but this is prohibited in organic production. The purpose of this investigation was to monitor the status of internal parasitism on 15 organic cattle enterprises in southwestern Sweden during the 1997 and 1998 grazing seasons, and to estimate the benefits of some management practices in parasite control. On each farm, the numbers of Eimeria alabamensis oocysts per gram of (opg) faeces were counted in seven fresh dung pats collected from the paddock 8-10 days after the turnout of FGSC. Faecal samples from 5 to 15 FGSC were also analysed for nematode eggs per gram (epg) faeces at four occasions during each grazing season. In addition, the FGSC and one group of second-grazing season cattle (SGSC) were weighed at turnout and housing and at the same time blood samples were collected, and analysed for serum pepsinogen concentration and antibodies against the lungworm, Dictyocaulus viviparus. On seven farms, 1-6 samples with more than 100000 opg were found, indicating considerable pasture contamination by E. alabamensis. However, clinical signs of coccidiosis were not observed. The highest outputs of nematode eggs were observed 45-55 days after turnout. More than 500 epg were only observed in 12 (2.2%) of the calves in 1997 and in three (0.6%) animals in 1998. Only 1% of the serum samples had pepsinogen values exceeding 3.6 U tyrosine, indicative of subclinical Ostertagia ostertagi infection. Lungworm infection was detected in five and nine herds in 1997 and 1998, respectively. The number of seropositive animals on these farms ranged between one (10%) and seven (70%). Clinical signs of dictyocaulosis were observed on two farms. The results indicate that dictyocaulosis is a problem in organic dairy herds in Sweden. On the other hand, the

  2. Developing web-based data analysis tools for precision farming using R and Shiny

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jahanshiri, Ebrahim; Mohd Shariff, Abdul Rashid

    2014-06-01

    Technologies that are set to increase the productivity of agricultural practices require more and more data. Nevertheless, farming data is also being increasingly cheap to collect and maintain. Bulk of data that are collected by the sensors and samples need to be analysed in an efficient and transparent manner. Web technologies have long being used to develop applications that can assist the farmers and managers. However until recently, analysing the data in an online environment has not been an easy task especially in the eyes of data analysts. This barrier is now overcome by the availability of new application programming interfaces that can provide real-time web based data analysis. In this paper developing a prototype web based application for data analysis using new facilities in R statistical package and its web development facility, Shiny is explored. The pros and cons of this type of data analysis environment for precision farming are enumerated and future directions in web application development for agricultural data are discussed.

  3. Effect of feeding strategies and cropping systems on greenhouse gas emission from Wisconsin certified organic dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Liang, D; Sun, F; Wattiaux, M A; Cabrera, V E; Hedtcke, J L; Silva, E M

    2017-07-01

    Organic agriculture continues to expand in the United States, both in total hectares and market share. However, management practices used by dairy organic producers, and their resulting environmental impacts, vary across farms. This study used a partial life cycle assessment approach to estimate the effect of different feeding strategies and associated crop production on greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) from Wisconsin certified organic dairy farms. Field and livestock-driven emissions were calculated using 2 data sets. One was a 20-yr data set from the Wisconsin Integrated Cropping System Trial documenting management inputs, crop and pasture yields, and soil characteristics, used to estimate field-level emissions from land associated with feed production (row crop and pasture), including N2O and soil carbon sequestration. The other was a data set summarizing organic farm management in Wisconsin, which was used to estimate replacement heifer emission (CO2 equivalents), enteric methane (CH4), and manure management (N2O and CH4). Three combinations of corn grain (CG) and soybean (SB) as concentrate (all corn = 100% CG; baseline = 75% CG + 25% SB; half corn = 50% CG + 50% SB) were assigned to each of 4 representative management strategies as determined by survey data. Overall, GHG emissions associated with crop production was 1,297 ± 136 kg of CO2 equivalents/t of ECM without accounting for soil carbon changes (ΔSC), and GHG emission with ΔSC was 1,457 ± 111 kg of CO2 equivalents/t of ECM, with greater reliance on pasture resulting in less ΔSC. Higher levels of milk production were a major driver associated with reduction in GHG emission per metric tonne of ECM. Emissions per metric tonne of ECM increased with increasing proportion of SB in the ration; however, including SB in the crop rotation decreased N2O emission per metric tonne of ECM from cropland due to lower applications of organically approved N fertility inputs. More SB at the expense of CG in the ration

  4. Online Investment Education: Listening to Learners to Develop an Effective Financial Literacy Program for Farm Households

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Neill, Barbara; Porter, Nancy M.; Pankow, Debra; Schuchardt, Jane; Johnson, Jason

    2010-01-01

    A needs assessment was conducted for the adaptation of an existing online Cooperative Extension investment course for use by farm households. The theoretical model was Social Marketing Theory. Data about financial attitudes, practices, and learning preferences of farm households were collected through a telephone survey of 300 farm households and…

  5. Farming Systems Research: A Critical Appraisal. MSU Rural Development Paper No. 6.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilbert, Elon H.; And Others

    The objectives of the state-of-the-art paper, second in a series on farming systems research (FSR) in the Third World, are to: (1) review the literature on farming systems; (2) evaluate farming systems research in international institutes and in national agricultural research systems in the Third World; and (3) recommend what can be done to…

  6. Development of a thermoacoustic organ

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stodola, Nathan; Tillotson, Ben; Bruno, Bradford

    2005-09-01

    A new musical instrument based on the principles of thermoacoustics has been designed and a prototype has been constructed. The instrument, referred to as the Union Thermoacoustic Organ (UTO), is unique among instruments in several aspects. The UTO creates sound by imposing a temperature difference across a stack of closely spaced channels housed between two heat exchangers in a resonant tube (this arrangement creates a thermoacoustic heat engine). The hot and cold heat exchangers are maintained at temperature by propane flames and liquid nitrogen, respectively. The primary energy source used to create the sound is a flame, so the UTO falls into the broad classification of experimental instruments known as pyrophones. However, unlike previous pyrophones the sound produced by the UTO is easily controlled, so it can play recognizable melodies and even be integrated into ensembles with conventional instruments. The prototype UTO has 14 notes (and hence 14 tubes) which are actuated by means of a mechanical keyboard. The instrument was designed by two senior mechanical engineering students as a capstone design project. The paper describes the principles of operation of this unique instrument, discusses the design and development of the instrument, and gives examples of its musical capabilities.

  7. Farm Management in Organic and Conventional Dairy Production Systems Based on Pasture in Southern Brazil and Its Consequences on Production and Milk Quality.

    PubMed

    Kuhnen, Shirley; Stibuski, Rudinei Butka; Honorato, Luciana Aparecida; Filho, Luiz Carlos Pinheiro Machado

    2015-07-09

    Pasture-based dairy production is used widely on family dairy farms in Southern Brazil. This study investigates conventional high input (C-HI), conventional low input (C-LI), and organic low input (O-LI) pasture-based systems and their effects on quantity and quality of the milk produced. We conducted technical site visits and interviews monthly over one year on 24 family farms (n = 8 per type). C-HI farms had the greatest total area (28.9 ha), greatest percentage of area with annual pasture (38.7%), largest number of lactating animals (26.2) and greatest milk yield per cow (22.8 kg·day(-1)). O-LI farms had the largest perennial pasture area (52.3%), with the greatest botanical richness during all seasons. Area of perennial pasture was positively correlated with number of species consumed by the animals (R² = 0.74). Milk from O-LI farms had higher levels of fat and total solids only during the winter. Hygienic and microbiological quality of the milk was poor for all farms and need to be improved. C-HI farms had high milk yield related to high input, C-LI had intermediate characteristics and O-LI utilized a year round perennial pasture as a strategy to diminish the use of supplements in animal diets, which is an important aspect in ensuring production sustainability.

  8. Phosphorus (P) balances and P availability in a field trial comparing organic and conventional farming systems since 35 years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jarosch, Klaus; Oberson, Astrid; Emmanuel, Frossard; Gunst, Lucie; Dubois, David; Mäder, Paul; Mayer, Jochen

    2017-04-01

    Background: The adequate supply with phosphorus (P) is crucial to maintain constant yields in all cropping systems. It remains yet unclear whether P in organic farming systems may become a limiting factor for plant nutrition in the long term. Material and Methods: The DOK long-term field trial was established in 1978 to compare different farming systems. The trial consists of two organic (biodynamic (DYN), bioorganic (ORG)) and two conventional treatments (using farmyard manure plus mineral fertilizer (KON) and mineral fertilizer only (MIN, established in 1985)). In a control treatment (NON) no fertilizer is applied. The fertilization for the organic treatments DYN and ORG is defined on manure production of 1.4 livestock units (since 1992), while before that 1.2 livestock units were used as reference. Fertilization on the conventional treatments KON and MIN is defined by Swiss fertilization guidelines. Treatments DYN, ORG and KON are maintained at full fertilization level (2) as well as halved fertilization level (1) while treatment MIN is only maintained at fertilization level 2. All treatments are maintained with the same crop rotation with a period of 7 years. An annual P-balance was calculated, based on the input factors 1) fertilization, 2) seeds and 3) deposition and the output factors 4) removal with crop yields and 5) leaching. The factors fertilization and removal with crop yields were based on documentation since trial establishment. Factor seeds was estimated based on documented quantity of used seeds per treatment and factors deposition and leaching were estimated by values available in literature. Additionally, P availability was determined via isotopic exchange kinetics (IEK) experiments after each crop rotation period (7 years). The IEK experiments allow to estimate the rate of P exchange from soil into soil solution and thus to estimate plant P availability over a cropping period. Results and Conclusions: Main influencing parameters of the P

  9. Farm Management in Organic and Conventional Dairy Production Systems Based on Pasture in Southern Brazil and Its Consequences on Production and Milk Quality

    PubMed Central

    Kuhnen, Shirley; Stibuski, Rudinei Butka; Honorato, Luciana Aparecida; Pinheiro Machado Filho, Luiz Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Simple Summary This study provides the characteristics of the conventional high input (C-HI), conventional low input (C-LI), and organic low input (O-LI) pasture-based production systems used in Southern Brazil, and its consequences on production and milk quality. C-HI farms had larger farms and herds, annual pasture with higher inputs and milk yield, whereas O-LI had smaller farms and herds, perennial pastures with lowest input and milk yields; C-LI was in between. O-LI farms may contribute to eco-system services, but low milk yield is a major concern. Hygienic and microbiological milk quality was poor for all farms and needs to be improved. Abstract Pasture-based dairy production is used widely on family dairy farms in Southern Brazil. This study investigates conventional high input (C-HI), conventional low input (C-LI), and organic low input (O-LI) pasture-based systems and their effects on quantity and quality of the milk produced. We conducted technical site visits and interviews monthly over one year on 24 family farms (n = 8 per type). C-HI farms had the greatest total area (28.9 ha), greatest percentage of area with annual pasture (38.7%), largest number of lactating animals (26.2) and greatest milk yield per cow (22.8 kg·day−1). O-LI farms had the largest perennial pasture area (52.3%), with the greatest botanical richness during all seasons. Area of perennial pasture was positively correlated with number of species consumed by the animals (R2 = 0.74). Milk from O-LI farms had higher levels of fat and total solids only during the winter. Hygienic and microbiological quality of the milk was poor for all farms and need to be improved. C-HI farms had high milk yield related to high input, C-LI had intermediate characteristics and O-LI utilized a year round perennial pasture as a strategy to diminish the use of supplements in animal diets, which is an important aspect in ensuring production sustainability. PMID:26479369

  10. Isolation of Tasmanian Rickettsia-like organism (RLO) from farmed salmonids: identification of multiple serotypes and confirmation of pathogenicity.

    PubMed

    Morrison, R N; Young, N D; Knowles, G; Cornish, M C; Carson, J

    2016-12-21

    Atlantic salmon Salmo salar L. farmed in south-east Tasmania, Australia, are susceptible to infection by the Tasmanian Rickettsia-like organism (TRLO), a Gram-negative bacterium. Here, we report the first isolation of TRLO from south-east Tasmania in pure culture and show that the bacterium is culturable on both specialised enriched agar and in cell culture using the CHSE-214 cell line. In vitro cultured TRLO was used to reproducibly elicit disease in Atlantic salmon parr held in fresh water. In inoculated fish, TRLO was observed intracytoplasmically in peripheral blood leucocytes, suggesting that these cells are responsible for haematogenous dispersal of the bacterium within the host. Fish with experimentally induced disease presented with gross and histopathological changes similar to TRLO-infected fish at commercial marine farms. TRLO was also isolated in culture from farmed Atlantic salmon in the Tamar River and Macquarie Harbour production areas in Tasmania, both of which have no history of TRLO-associated disease. These TRLO isolates appear to be serologically distinct from each other as well as from isolates obtained from south-east Tasmania, linking each serotype to a specific geographical location within Tasmania. Despite the lack of clinical evidence of TRLO-linked disease in fish grown in the Tamar River and Macquarie Harbour, experimental infection trials demonstrably showed the pathogenic potential of these TRLO serovars. Together, these data provide evidence that TRLO is a fastidious, facultative intracellular bacterium and confirm TRLO as a pathogen of Atlantic salmon, causing a disease designated Tasmanian salmonid rickettsiosis.

  11. The Distinguished American Farm.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Surdovel, Catherine; Gruber, Marcella

    1994-01-01

    Describes the development of an elementary school curriculum on farms to give students a knowledge and appreciation of the farm as a food source and of the steps involved moving food from the farm to the table. Specific activities are suggested, and appropriate book titles are recommended. (Contains 10 references.) (LRW)

  12. SIMS(DAIRY): a modelling framework to identify sustainable dairy farms in the UK. Framework description and test for organic systems and N fertiliser optimisation.

    PubMed

    Del Prado, A; Misselbrook, T; Chadwick, D; Hopkins, A; Dewhurst, R J; Davison, P; Butler, A; Schröder, J; Scholefield, D

    2011-09-01

    Multiple demands are placed on farming systems today. Society, national legislation and market forces seek what could be seen as conflicting outcomes from our agricultural systems, e.g. food quality, affordable prices, a healthy environmental, consideration of animal welfare, biodiversity etc., Many of these demands, or desirable outcomes, are interrelated, so reaching one goal may often compromise another and, importantly, pose a risk to the economic viability of the farm. SIMS(DAIRY), a farm-scale model, was used to explore this complexity for dairy farm systems. SIMS(DAIRY) integrates existing approaches to simulate the effect of interactions between farm management, climate and soil characteristics on losses of nitrogen, phosphorus and carbon. The effects on farm profitability and attributes of biodiversity, milk quality, soil quality and animal welfare are also included. SIMS(DAIRY) can also be used to optimise fertiliser N. In this paper we discuss some limitations and strengths of using SIMS(DAIRY) compared to other modelling approaches and propose some potential improvements. Using the model we evaluated the sustainability of organic dairy systems compared with conventional dairy farms under non-optimised and optimised fertiliser N use. Model outputs showed for example, that organic dairy systems based on grass-clover swards and maize silage resulted in much smaller total GHG emissions per l of milk and slightly smaller losses of NO(3) leaching and NO(x) emissions per l of milk compared with the grassland/maize-based conventional systems. These differences were essentially because the conventional systems rely on indirect energy use for 'fixing' N compared with biological N fixation for the organic systems. SIMS(DAIRY) runs also showed some other potential benefits from the organic systems compared with conventional systems in terms of financial performance and soil quality and biodiversity scores. Optimisation of fertiliser N timings and rates showed a

  13. Comparing ELISA test-positive prevalence, risk factors and management recommendations for Johne's disease prevention between organic and conventional dairy farms in Ontario, Canada.

    PubMed

    Pieper, Laura; Sorge, Ulrike S; DeVries, Trevor; Godkin, Ann; Lissemore, Kerry; Kelton, David

    2015-11-01

    Johne's disease (JD) is a chronic, infectious disease in cattle. Between 2010 and 2013, a voluntary JD control program was successfully launched in Ontario, Canada, including a Risk Assessment and Management Plan (RAMP) and JD ELISA testing of the entire milking herd. Over the last decade, the organic dairy sector has been growing. However, organic farming regulations and philosophies may influence the risk for JD transmission on Ontario organic dairy farms. The aim of this cross-sectional study was to investigate differences in JD ELISA test positive prevalence, risk factors for JD and recommendations for JD prevention between organic and conventional dairy herds in Ontario. RAMP results (i.e. RAMP scores and recommendations) and ELISA results were available for 2103 dairy herds, including 42 organic herds. If available, additional data on milk production, milk quality, and herd characteristics were gathered. Organic and conventional herds had a similar herd-level JD ELISA test-positive prevalence (26.2% and 27.2%, respectively). Organic herds (4.2%) had a higher within-herd JD ELISA test-positive prevalence compared to conventional herds (2.3%) if they had at least one JD test-positive animal on the farm. Organic farms had lower risk scores for biosecurity (9 points lower), and higher scores in the calving (7 points higher) and the calf-rearing management areas (4 points higher). After accounting for RAMP score, organic farms received fewer recommendations for the calving management area (Odds Ratio=0.41) and more recommendations in the adult cow management area (Odds Ratio=2.70). A zero-inflated negative binomial model was built with purchase of animals and the herd size included in the logistic portion of the model. Herd type (organic or conventional), colostrum and milk feeding practices, average bulk tank somatic cell count, and presence of non-Holstein breeds were included in the negative binomial portion of the model. Organic farms had a higher number of

  14. Localising the nitrogen imprint of the Paris food supply: the potential of organic farming and changes in human diet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Billen, G.; Garnier, J.; Thieu, V.; Silvestre, M.; Barles, S.; Chatzimpiros, P.

    2011-11-01

    The Seine watershed has long been the food-supplying hinterland of Paris, providing most of the animal and vegetal protein consumed in the city. Nowadays, because of the land specialisation of agriculture made possible by the shift from manure-based to synthetic nitrogen fertilisation, the Seine watershed, although it exports 80% of its huge cereal production, still provides most of the cereal consumed by the Paris agglomeration. The meat and milk supply originate, however, mainly from regions in the North and West of France, specialised in animal farming and importing about 30% of their feed from South America. As it works today, this system is responsible for a severe nitrate contamination of surface groundwater resources. Herein two scenarios of re-localising Paris's food supply are explored, based on organic farming and local provision of animal feed. We show that for the Seine watershed it is technically possible to design an agricultural system able to provide all the plant- and animal-based food required by the population, to deliver sub-root water meeting the drinking water standards and still to export a significant proportion of its production to areas less suitable for cereal cultivation. Decreasing the share of animal products in the human diet has a strong impact on the nitrogen imprint of urban food supply.

  15. Localising the nitrogen imprint of the Paris food supply: the potential of organic farming and changes in human diet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Billen, G.; Garnier, J.; Thieu, V.; Silvestre, M.; Barles, S.; Chatzimpiros, P.

    2012-01-01

    The Seine watershed has long been the food-supplying hinterland of Paris, providing most of the animal and vegetal protein consumed in the city. Nowadays, the shift from manure-based to synthetic nitrogen fertilisation, has made possible a strong land specialisation of agriculture in the Seine watershed: it still provides most of the cereal consumed by the Paris agglomeration, but exports 80% of its huge cereal production. On the other hand the meat and milk supply originates mainly from regions in the North and West of France, specialised in animal farming and importing about 30% of their feed from South America. As it works today, this system is responsible for a severe nitrate contamination of surface and groundwater resources. Herein two scenarios of re-localising Paris's food supply are explored, based on organic farming and local provision of animal feed. We show that for the Seine watershed it is technically possible to design an agricultural system able to provide all the plant- and animal-based food required by the population, to deliver sub-root water meeting the drinking water standards and still to export a significant proportion of its production to areas less suitable for cereal cultivation. Decreasing the share of animal products in the human diet has a strong impact on the nitrogen imprint of urban food supply.

  16. A living demonstration of certified organic farming by Oklahoma State University and USDA, Agricultural Research Service

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic crop production is the fastest growing portion of U.S. agriculture, increasing a minimum of 20% annually during the last 15 years. The establishment of federal guidelines for organic certification in 2002 provided a structure for producers and processors to market certified organic foods. ...

  17. Development of a procedure to determine odour emissions from animal farming for regulatory purposes in Flanders.

    PubMed

    Van Langenhove, H; De Bruyn, G

    2001-01-01

    The purpose of the project described in this paper was to develop a procedure to determine odour emissions at existing and new intensive animal farming houses. The procedure should be scientifically valid and preferably applicable on a large scale at reasonable costs. In this project odour emissions were measured during one year at the same farm. Measurements included 20 olfactometric sampling days and 50 sniffing measurements, all spread over one year. For each olfactometric sampling day, samples were taken in duplicate for the different pig categories. The olfactometric analysis resulted in the determination of odour emission factors for growing/fattening pigs, weaned piglets, dry sows and farrowing sows. The influence of external parameters (ventilation rate, inside temperature, outside temperature, pen dirtiness, number of pigs and their weight) was examined. Good correlation between the odour emission and an external parameter could only be found for the ventilation rate (r = 0.98) and outside temperature (r = 0.87). The sniffing measurements resulted in maximal odour perception distances and odour emissions calculated with short and long term dispersion models. No significant influence of the outside temperature (season) could be found here. The results of the olfactometric and sniffing measurements will be presented, including a combination of both techniques to determine the odour emission of an agricultural construction.

  18. Udder health and risk factors for subclinical mastitis in organic dairy farms in Switzerland.

    PubMed

    Busato, A; Trachsel, P; Schällibaum, M; Blum, J W

    2000-04-28

    1+ were submitted for somatic cell counting (SCC), bacteriological examination and to test for antibiotic susceptibility. The SCC and germ-cell counts of monthly bulk-tank milk samples were available through Dairy Inspection and Advisory Services and milk production data of 567 herd-book cows were available from breeding associations. Possible individual and environmental predictors of subclinical mastitis were identified using logistic models adjusted for clustering of the data at herd and cow levels. Data were analyzed separately for cows from 7 to 100 and from 101 to 305 days post partum. Prevalences of subclinical mastitis at the quarter level were 21.2% for lactation period 7-100 days and 34.5% for 101-305 days post partum. The geometric mean SCC in bulk-tank milk samples was 85.6x10(3)cells/ml. Samples at 7-100 and 101-305 days post partum were positive for Staphylococcus aureus in 16.0 and 7.4%, for coagulase-negative Staphylococci in 51.5 and 50.6%, for Streptococcus agalactiae in 0.0 and 0.8%, for other Streptococci in 19.4 and 15.6%, for E. coli in 1.0 and 0.4%, and for Corynebacterium bovis in 25.7 and 45.1%, respectively. Risks of subclinical mastitis increased significantly with increasing days post partum and advancing age of cow. Cows that were sampled when staying in alpine dairies had considerably higher risks of subclinical mastitis than cows staying in home barns. Significantly lower risks of subclinical mastitis were observed in farms where CMT was performed regularly as a control measure. Bacteria in milk from cows with mastitis exhibited antibiotic resistance at a comparable frequency as found previously in conventional farms.

  19. An opinion paper: emphasis on white muscle development and growth to improve farmed fish flesh quality.

    PubMed

    Videler, J J

    2011-06-01

    Due to rapid depletion of wild stocks, the necessity to cultivate fish is eminent. Current fish farming practices seek to improve flesh quality. The notion that white muscles are the main target of the fishing industry is emphasized. A novel approach is suggested based on the development of white muscles in wild fish from eggs to adults. A compilation of facts about white muscle structure, function and ontogeny is followed by an account of the changes in swimming behaviour and performance related to the use of white muscle during growth from larva to adult. Ecological data narrate early swimming performance with white muscle development and growth, unveiling some of the important natural selection factors eliminating weak swimmers and poor growers from the breeding stock. A comparison between fish culture practise and natural conditions reveals fundamental differences. New approaches following wild breeding processes promise several important advantages regarding the quality of white muscle.

  20. Influence of crop rotation, intermediate crops, and organic fertilizers on the soil enzymatic activity and humus content in organic farming systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcinkeviciene, A.; Boguzas, V.; Balnyte, S.; Pupaliene, R.; Velicka, R.

    2013-02-01

    The influence of crop rotation systems with different portions of nitrogen-fixing crops, intermediate crops, and organic fertilizers on the enzymatic activity and humus content of soils in organic farming was studied. The highest activity of the urease and invertase enzymes was determined in the soil under the crop rotation with 43% nitrogen-fixing crops and with perennial grasses applied twice per rotation. The application of manure and the growing of intermediate crops for green fertilizers did not provide any significant increase in the content of humus. The activity of urease slightly correlated with the humus content ( r = 0.30 at the significance level of 0.05 and r = 0.39 at the significance level of 0.01).

  1. Metabolomic fingerprinting employing DART-TOFMS for authentication of tomatoes and peppers from organic and conventional farming.

    PubMed

    Novotná, H; Kmiecik, O; Gałązka, M; Krtková, V; Hurajová, A; Schulzová, V; Hallmann, E; Rembiałkowska, E; Hajšlová, J

    2012-01-01

    The rapidly growing demand for organic food requires the availability of analytical tools enabling their authentication. Recently, metabolomic fingerprinting/profiling has been demonstrated as a challenging option for a comprehensive characterisation of small molecules occurring in plants, since their pattern may reflect the impact of various external factors. In a two-year pilot study, concerned with the classification of organic versus conventional crops, ambient mass spectrometry consisting of a direct analysis in real time (DART) ion source and a time-of-flight mass spectrometer (TOFMS) was employed. This novel methodology was tested on 40 tomato and 24 pepper samples grown under specified conditions. To calculate statistical models, the obtained data (mass spectra) were processed by the principal component analysis (PCA) followed by linear discriminant analysis (LDA). The results from the positive ionisation mode enabled better differentiation between organic and conventional samples than the results from the negative mode. In this case, the recognition ability obtained by LDA was 97.5% for tomato and 100% for pepper samples and the prediction abilities were above 80% for both sample sets. The results suggest that the year of production had stronger influence on the metabolomic fingerprints compared with the type of farming (organic versus conventional). In any case, DART-TOFMS is a promising tool for rapid screening of samples. Establishing comprehensive (multi-sample) long-term databases may further help to improve the quality of statistical classification models.

  2. Developing COMET-Farm and the DayCent Model for California Specialty Crops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steenwerth, K. L.; Barker, X. Z.; Carlson, M.; Killian, K.; Easter, M.; Swan, A.; Thompson, L.; Williams, S.; Paustian, K.

    2016-12-01

    Specialty crops are hugely important to the agricultural economy of California, which grows over 400 specialty crops and produces at least a third of the nations' vegetables and more than two thirds of its fruit and nut tree crops. Since the passage of AB32 Global Warming Solutions Act in 2006, the state has made strong investments in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and developing climate adaptation solutions. Most recently, Governor J. Brown (CA) has issued an executive order to establish reductions to 40% below 1990 levels. While agriculture in California is not regulated for greenhouse gas emissions under AB32, efforts are being made to develop tools to support practices that can enhance soil health and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. USDA-NRCS supports one such tool known as COMET-Farm, which is intended for future use with incentive programs and soil conservation plans managed by the agency. The underlying model that that simulates entity-scale greenhouse gas emissions in COMET-Farm is DayCent. Members of the California Climate Hub are collaborating with the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO to develop DayCent for 15 California specialty crops. These specialty crops include woody perennials like stone fruit like almonds and peaches, walnuts, citrus, wine grapes, raisins and table grapes. Annual specialty crops include cool season vegetables like lettuce and broccoli, tomatoes, and strawberries. DayCent has been parameterized for these crops using existing published and unpublished studies. Practice based information has also been gathered in consultation with growers. Aspects of the model have been developed for woody biomass production and competition between herbaceous vegetation and woody perennial crops. We will report on model performance for these crops and opportunities for model improvement.

  3. Humus and energy balances and greenhouse gas emissions with compost fertilization in organic farming compared with mineral fertilization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erhart, Eva; Schmid, Harald; Hülsbergen, Kurt-Jürgen; Hartl, Wilfried

    2015-04-01

    Humus and energy balances and greenhouse gas emissions with compost fertilization in organic farming compared with mineral fertilization E. Erhart, H. Schmid, K.-J. Hülsbergen, W. Hartl The positive effects of compost fertilization on soil humus with their associated benefits for soil quality are well-established. The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of compost fertilization on humus and energy balances and greenhouse gas emissions and to compare the results of the humus balances with the changes in soil organic carbon contents measured in the soil of the experimental field. In order to assess the effects of compost use in organic farming as compared to conventional farming practice using mineral fertilizers, the field experiment with compost fertilization 'STIKO' was set up in 1992 near Vienna, Austria, on a Molli-gleyic Fluvisol. It included three treatments with compost fertilization (C1, C2 and C3 with 8, 14 and 20 t ha-1 y-1 f. m. on average of 14 years), three treatments with mineral nitrogen fertilization (N1, N2 and N3 with 29, 46 and 63 kg N ha-1 y 1 on average) and an unfertilized control (0) in six replications in a latin rectangle design. In the field trial, biowaste compost from the composting plant of the City of Vienna was used. Data from the field experiment (from 14 experimental years) were fed into the model software REPRO to calculate humus and energy balances and greenhouse gas emissions. The model software REPRO (REPROduction of soil fertility) couples the balancing of C, N and energy fluxes. For the determination of the net greenhouse effect, REPRO performs calculations of C sequestration in the soil, CO2 emissions from the use of fossil energy and N2O emissions from the soil. Humus balances showed that compost fertilization at a rate of 8 t ha-1 y-1 (C1) resulted in a positive humus balance of +115 kg C ha-1 y-1. With 14 and 20 t ha-1 y-1 compost (C2 and C3), respectively, humus accumulated at rates of 558 and 1021 kg C ha-1

  4. A simple tool for implementation of US Farm Bill Programs: Can a practice-based index predict soil function in organic and conventional farming systems?

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Nationally, the focus on soil quality and soil ecosystem function as a foundation for natural resource conservation is rising in importance. The 2002 Farm Bill’s Conservation Security Program (CSP) considers soil quality a key component for good land stewardship. Similarly, the draft Senate and Hous...

  5. Associations of risk factors with somatic cell count in bulk tank milk on organic and conventional dairy farms in the United States.

    PubMed

    Cicconi-Hogan, K M; Gamroth, M; Richert, R; Ruegg, P L; Stiglbauer, K E; Schukken, Y H

    2013-06-01

    In the past decade, the demand for organic agricultural products has increased rapidly in the United States and worldwide. Milk quality research is of major interest to both consumers and dairy farmers alike. However, scientific data on milk quality, herd management methods, and animal welfare on organic farms in the United States has been lacking before the research from this study. The objective of this study was to evaluate the association of bulk tank milk somatic cell count (SCC) with management characteristics on organic and conventional dairy farms in New York, Oregon, and Wisconsin. Data from similarly sized organic farms (n=192), conventional nongrazing farms (n=64), and conventional grazing farms (n=36) were collected at a single farm visit. Of the 292 farms visited, 290 bulk tank milk samples were collected. Overall, no difference in SCC was observed between the conventional and organic grazing systems. Two models were created to assess the effects of various management and herd characteristics on the logarithmic transformation of the SCC (LSCC), one using data from all herds and one using data from organic herds only. From the total herd model, more grain fed per cow per day was negatively associated with LSCC, whereas a positive bulk tank culture for Staphylococcus aureus and years that a farmer reported being in the dairy business were both positively associated with LSCC. In the organic herd model, a seasonal effect indicated that LSCC tended to increase in the summer and decrease in the winter. Grain fed per cow per day, the use of anionic salts in transition-cow diets, the use of gloves during milking, and regular use of a quarantine unit at milking were all negatively associated with LSCC. Similar to the total herd model, a Staph. aureus-positive bulk tank culture was positively associated with LSCC in the organic model. Standard plate count was also positively associated with LSCC in the organic model. Several variables that were associated with

  6. Positive relationship detected between soil bioaccessible organic pollutants and antibiotic resistance genes at dairy farms in Nanjing, Eastern China.

    PubMed

    Sun, Mingming; Ye, Mao; Wu, Jun; Feng, Yanfang; Wan, Jinzhong; Tian, Da; Shen, Fangyuan; Liu, Kuan; Hu, Feng; Li, Huixin; Jiang, Xin; Yang, Linzhang; Kengara, Fredrick Orori

    2015-11-01

    Co-contaminated soils by organic pollutants (OPs), antibiotics and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) have been becoming an emerging problem. However, it is unclear if an interaction exists between mixed pollutants and ARG abundance. Therefore, the potential relationship between OP contents and ARG and class 1 integron-integrase gene (intI1) abundance was investigated from seven dairy farms in Nanjing, Eastern China. Phenanthrene, pentachlorophenol, sulfadiazine, roxithromycin, associated ARG genes, and intI1 had the highest detection frequencies. Correlation analysis suggested a stronger positive relationship between the ARG abundance and the bioaccessible OP content than the total OP content. Additionally, the significant correlation between the bioaccessible mixed pollutant contents and ARG/intI1 abundance suggested a direct/indirect impact of the bioaccessible mixed pollutants on soil ARG dissemination. This study provided a preliminary understanding of the interaction between mixed pollutants and ARGs in co-contaminated soils. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Prevalence and distribution of gastrointestinal nematodes on 32 organic and conventional commercial sheep farms in Ontario and Quebec, Canada (2006-2008).

    PubMed

    Mederos, A; Fernández, S; VanLeeuwen, J; Peregrine, A S; Kelton, D; Menzies, P; LeBoeuf, A; Martin, R

    2010-06-24

    In order to characterize the epidemiology of sheep gastrointestinal nematodes in organic and conventional flocks in Canada, a longitudinal study was carried out from May 2006 to March 2008 on 32 purposively selected farms in Ontario (ON) and Quebec (QC): 8 certified organic (CO), 16 non-certified organic (NCO), and 8 conventional (C) farms. On each farm, 10 ewes and 10 female lambs were selected. Farm visits were undertaken monthly during the grazing season, and twice in the winter. At each visit, individual fecal samples were taken, and pasture samples were obtained during the grazing season. In addition, body condition score was recorded for all sheep. Fecal egg counts per gram of feces (EPGs) were determined for all fecal samples, and infective larvae (L(3)) were identified in fecal samples (lambs and ewes separately) and pasture samples from farms. Necropsies of 14 lambs from 7 of the 23 Ontario farms were performed at the end of the grazing season in 2006. The mean EPG for year 1 (May 2006 to March 2007) was 181 (range=0-9840) and 351 (range=0-18,940) for the ewes in ON and QC, respectively, and for the lambs was 509 (range=0-25,020) and 147 (range=0-3060) for ON and QC, respectively. During year 2 (April 2007 to March 2008), the mean EPG was 303 (range=0-21,160) and 512 (range=0-22,340) for the ewes in ON and QC, respectively, and for lambs was 460 (range=0-26,180) and 232 (range=0-8280) for ON and QC, respectively. Although the overall mean EPGs were not remarkably high, there were months of higher EPG such as May-June for ewes and July-August for lambs in both provinces. Pasture infectivity was highest in May-June and September. There was a general trend for the CO farms to have lower mean EPG than NCO and C farms. Fecal cultures demonstrated that the most predominant nematode genera were Teladorsagia sp., Haemonchus sp. and Trichostrongylus spp. Pasture infectivity was highest during June-July (984 L3/kg DM) in ON farms and September (mean=436 L3/kg DM) in

  8. Identifying a Potential Trap Crop for a Novel Insect Pest, Halyomorpha halys (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae), in Organic Farms.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Anne L; Dively, Galen; Pote, John M; Zinati, Gladis; Mathews, Clarissa

    2016-04-01

    The invasive brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys, poses significant risk to organic farming systems because they rely on biological control, nonsynthetic inputs, and cultural tactics for pest management. This study evaluated the potential of five crop plants (sorghum, admiral pea, millet, okra, and sunflower) to be used as trap crops under organic production in four mid-Atlantic states. Stink bug (H. halys and endemic species) densities and host plant phenologies were recorded weekly (mid-June through September). Sorghum attracted significantly more H. halys than the other crops evaluated, followed by sunflower and okra. Seasonal average H. halys density was 1.5-4× higher on sorghum than the other crops (P < 0.05), depending on site. Endemic stink bugs were equally attracted to all crops except admiral pea. A significant effect of time was detected (P < 0.0001), with H. halys densities initially higher on sunflower; as the sunflower senesced, sorghum supported significantly higher average H. halys densities. While sunflower and sorghum phenologies differed, these crops together provided a 5-wk attraction period coinciding with peak H. halys activity. The efficacies of pheromone-baited traps, flaming, applying OMRI-approved insecticides (Azera and Venerate), and vacuuming to removing stink bugs were evaluated as a management tactic. Flaming was the most effective treatment against H. halys and endemic stink bugs. Our results suggest that a trap crop composed of sorghum and sunflower may be an effective management tool for the mid-Atlantic stink bug complex, including H. halys. Future research should address the appropriate size and placement of trap crop within the farm.

  9. Interactions between conventional and organic farming for biocontrol services across the landscape.

    PubMed

    Bianchi, F J J A; Ives, A R; Schellhorn, N A

    2013-10-01

    While the area of organic crop production increases at a global scale, the potential interactions between pest management in organic and conventionally managed systems have so far received little attention. Here, we evaluate the landscape-level codependence of insecticide-based and natural enemy-based pest management using a simulation model for parasitoid-host interactions in landscapes consisting of conventionally and organically managed fields. In our simulations conventional management consists of broad-spectrum or selective insecticide application, while organic management involves no insecticides. Simulations indicate that insecticide use can easily result in lose-lose scenarios whereby both organically and conventionally managed fields suffer from increased pest loads as compared to a scenario where no insecticides are used, but that under some conditions insecticide use can be compatible with biocontrol. Simulations also suggest that the pathway to achieve the insecticide reduction without triggering additional pest pressure is not straightforward, because increasing the proportion of organically managed fields or reducing the spray frequency in conventional fields can potentially give rise to dramatic increases in pest load. The disruptive effect of insecticide use, however, can be mitigated by spatially clustering organic fields and using selective insecticides, although the effectiveness of this mitigation depends on the behavioral traits of the biocontrol agents. Poorly dispersing parasitoids and parasitoids with high attack rates required a lower amount of organically managed fields for effective pest suppression. Our findings show that the transition from a landscape dominated by conventionally managed crops to organic management has potential pitfalls; intermediate levels of organic management may lead to higher pest burdens than either low or high adoption of organic management.

  10. The Role of the Farm Family in Integrated Rural Development: The Decision Making Matrix Approach. Working Paper No. 4.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Obura, Willis Bill

    Rural Africa includes some 80% of the African population; its people are poverty stricken, illiterate, ill-sheltered, and ill-nourished. These circumstances make rural development absolutely vital. However, past rural development policies have failed to take into consideration the structure and division of labor in the farm family, the traditional…

  11. Functional and Structural Microbial Diversity in Organic and Conventional Viticulture: Organic Farming Benefits Natural Biocontrol Agents ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Schmid, Florian; Moser, Gerit; Müller, Henry; Berg, Gabriele

    2011-01-01

    Statistically significant differences in the structure and function of above-ground grapevine-associated microorganisms from organically and conventionally managed vineyards were found. Aureobasidium pullulans, a copper-detoxifying fungus and biocontrol agent, plays a key role in explaining these differences. The black fungus was strongly enriched in the communities of organically managed plants and yielded a higher indigenous antiphytopathogenic potential. PMID:21278278

  12. Using cover crops to alleviate compaction in organic grain farms: effects on weeds and yields

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic producers heavily rely on tillage for mechanical weeding, creating compacted areas ideal for weedy species, and forming a vicious cycle of tillage, compaction and increasing weed populations. In an effort to address the concerns of certified organic farmers from Illinois, we explored the eff...

  13. Cutting Edge Trends in Organization Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lippitt, Gordon; And Others

    1984-01-01

    Identifies 15 trends in organizational development in the categories of the macrosystem, the human resource system (group dynamics and interpersonal intervention), and the individual in organizations. (SK)

  14. Regional crop productivity and greenhouse gas emissions from Swiss soils under organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Juhwan; Necpalova, Magdalena; Six, Johan

    2016-04-01

    There is worldwide concern about the increase in atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHG) and their impact on climate change and food security. As a sustainable alternative, organic cropping in various forms has been promoted to minimize the environmental impacts of conventional practices. However, relatively little is known about the potential to reduce GHG emissions while maintaining crop productivity through the large-scale adoption of organic practices. Therefore, we simulated and compared regional crop production, soil organic carbon status, and net soil GHG emissions under organic and conventional practices. Grid-level (2.2 km by 2.2 km) simulation was performed using previously validated DailyDayCent by considering typical crop rotations. Regional model estimates are presented and discussed specifically with the focus on Swiss organic and conventional cropping systems, which differ by type and intensity of manuring, tillage, and cover crop.

  15. Simulant Development for Hanford Tank Farms Double Valve Isolation (DVI) Valves Testing

    SciTech Connect

    Wells, Beric E.

    2012-12-21

    Leakage testing of a representative sample of the safety-significant isolation valves for Double Valve Isolation (DVI) in an environment that simulates the abrasive characteristics of the Hanford Tank Farms Waste Transfer System during waste feed delivery to the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP) is to be conducted. The testing will consist of periodic leak performed on the DVI valves after prescribed numbers of valve cycles (open and close) in a simulated environment representative of the abrasive properties of the waste and the Waste Transfer System. The valve operations include exposure to cycling conditions that include gravity drain and flush operation following slurry transfer. The simulant test will establish the performance characteristics and verify compliance with the Documented Safety Analysis. Proper simulant development is essential to ensure that the critical process streams characteristics are represented, National Research Council report “Advice on the Department of Energy's Cleanup Technology Roadmap: Gaps and Bridges”

  16. Rainwater harvesting potential for farming system development in a hilly watershed of Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tariqul Islam, Md.; Mohabbat Ullah, Md.; Mostofa Amin, M. G.; Hossain, Sahadat

    2017-09-01

    Water resources management is an important part in farming system development. Agriculture in Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh is predominantly rainfed with an average 2210 mm monsoonal rain, but rainfall during dry winter period (December-February) is inadequate for winter crop production. The natural soil water content (as low as 7 %) of hillslope and hilltop during the dry season is not suitable for shallow-rooted crop cultivation. A study was conducted to investigate the potential of monsoonal rainwater harvesting and its impact on local cropping system development. Irrigation facilities provided by the managed rainwater harvesting reservoir increased research site's cropping intensity from 155 to 300 %. Both gravity flow irrigation of valley land and low lift pumping to hillslope and hilltop from rainwater harvesting reservoir were much more economical compared to forced mode pumping of groundwater because of the installation and annual operating cost of groundwater pumping. To abstract 7548 m3 of water, equivalent to the storage capacity of the studied reservoirs, from aquifer required 2174 kWh energy. The improved water supply system enabled triple cropping system for valley land and permanent horticultural intervention at hilltop and hillslope. The perennial vegetation in hilltop and hillslope would also conserve soil moisture. Water productivity and benefit-cost ratio analysis show that vegetables and fruit production were more profitable than rice cultivation under irrigation with harvested rainwater. Moreover, the reservoir showed potentiality of integrated farming in such adverse area by facilitating fish production. The study provides water resource managers and government officials working with similar problems with valuable information for formulation of plan, policy, and strategy.

  17. Rainwater harvesting potential for farming system development in a hilly watershed of Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tariqul Islam, Md.; Mohabbat Ullah, Md.; Mostofa Amin, M. G.; Hossain, Sahadat

    2016-07-01

    Water resources management is an important part in farming system development. Agriculture in Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh is predominantly rainfed with an average 2210 mm monsoonal rain, but rainfall during dry winter period (December-February) is inadequate for winter crop production. The natural soil water content (as low as 7 %) of hillslope and hilltop during the dry season is not suitable for shallow-rooted crop cultivation. A study was conducted to investigate the potential of monsoonal rainwater harvesting and its impact on local cropping system development. Irrigation facilities provided by the managed rainwater harvesting reservoir increased research site's cropping intensity from 155 to 300 %. Both gravity flow irrigation of valley land and low lift pumping to hillslope and hilltop from rainwater harvesting reservoir were much more economical compared to forced mode pumping of groundwater because of the installation and annual operating cost of groundwater pumping. To abstract 7548 m3 of water, equivalent to the storage capacity of the studied reservoirs, from aquifer required 2174 kWh energy. The improved water supply system enabled triple cropping system for valley land and permanent horticultural intervention at hilltop and hillslope. The perennial vegetation in hilltop and hillslope would also conserve soil moisture. Water productivity and benefit-cost ratio analysis show that vegetables and fruit production were more profitable than rice cultivation under irrigation with harvested rainwater. Moreover, the reservoir showed potentiality of integrated farming in such adverse area by facilitating fish production. The study provides water resource managers and government officials working with similar problems with valuable information for formulation of plan, policy, and strategy.

  18. ANEMOS: Development of a next generation wind power forecasting system for the large-scale integration of onshore and offshore wind farms.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kariniotakis, G.; Anemos Team

    2003-04-01

    Objectives: Accurate forecasting of the wind energy production up to two days ahead is recognized as a major contribution for reliable large-scale wind power integration. Especially, in a liberalized electricity market, prediction tools enhance the position of wind energy compared to other forms of dispatchable generation. ANEMOS, is a new 3.5 years R&D project supported by the European Commission, that resembles research organizations and end-users with an important experience on the domain. The project aims to develop advanced forecasting models that will substantially outperform current methods. Emphasis is given to situations like complex terrain, extreme weather conditions, as well as to offshore prediction for which no specific tools currently exist. The prediction models will be implemented in a software platform and installed for online operation at onshore and offshore wind farms by the end-users participating in the project. Approach: The paper presents the methodology of the project. Initially, the prediction requirements are identified according to the profiles of the end-users. The project develops prediction models based on both a physical and an alternative statistical approach. Research on physical models gives emphasis to techniques for use in complex terrain and the development of prediction tools based on CFD techniques, advanced model output statistics or high-resolution meteorological information. Statistical models (i.e. based on artificial intelligence) are developed for downscaling, power curve representation, upscaling for prediction at regional or national level, etc. A benchmarking process is set-up to evaluate the performance of the developed models and to compare them with existing ones using a number of case studies. The synergy between statistical and physical approaches is examined to identify promising areas for further improvement of forecasting accuracy. Appropriate physical and statistical prediction models are also developed for

  19. Influence of the input system (conventional versus organic farming) on metabolite profiles of maize ( Zea mays ) kernels.

    PubMed

    Röhlig, Richard M; Engel, Karl-Heinz

    2010-03-10

    Maize ( Zea mays ) kernels grown conventionally and organically, respectively, were investigated using a gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS)-based metabolite profiling methodology. By analysis of three cultivars grown at two locations with different input systems and at a third location where both organic and conventional farming were applied, the impact of the growing regime on the metabolite spectrum should be put into the context of natural variability. The applied analytical approach involved consecutive extraction of freeze-dried maize flour and subsequent subfractionation. Approximately 300 compounds from a broad spectrum of chemical classes were detected, of which 167 were identified. The metabolite profiling data were statistically assessed via principal component analysis (PCA) and analysis of variance (ANOVA). The PCA demonstrated that the observed separations were mainly due to genetic differences (cultivars) and environmental influences. The different input systems (conventional/organic) only led to minor differentiations. ANOVA and quantification of selected constituents confirmed these observations. Only three metabolites (malic acid, myo-inositol, and phosphate) were consistently different because of the employed input system if samples from all field trials were considered.

  20. Associations between soil bacterial community structure and nutrient cycling functions in long-term organic farm soils following cover crop and organic fertilizer amendment.

    PubMed

    Fernandez, Adria L; Sheaffer, Craig C; Wyse, Donald L; Staley, Christopher; Gould, Trevor J; Sadowsky, Michael J

    2016-10-01

    Agricultural management practices can produce changes in soil microbial populations whose functions are crucial to crop production and may be detectable using high-throughput sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA. To apply sequencing-derived bacterial community structure data to on-farm decision-making will require a better understanding of the complex associations between soil microbial community structure and soil function. Here 16S rRNA sequencing was used to profile soil bacterial communities following application of cover crops and organic fertilizer treatments in certified organic field cropping systems. Amendment treatments were hairy vetch (Vicia villosa), winter rye (Secale cereale), oilseed radish (Raphanus sativus), buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum), beef manure, pelleted poultry manure, Sustane(®) 8-2-4, and a no-amendment control. Enzyme activities, net N mineralization, soil respiration, and soil physicochemical properties including nutrient levels, organic matter (OM) and pH were measured. Relationships between these functional and physicochemical parameters and soil bacterial community structure were assessed using multivariate methods including redundancy analysis, discriminant analysis, and Bayesian inference. Several cover crops and fertilizers affected soil functions including N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase and β-glucosidase activity. Effects, however, were not consistent across locations and sampling timepoints. Correlations were observed among functional parameters and relative abundances of individual bacterial families and phyla. Bayesian analysis inferred no directional relationships between functional activities, bacterial families, and physicochemical parameters. Soil functional profiles were more strongly predicted by location than by treatment, and differences were largely explained by soil physicochemical parameters. Composition of soil bacterial communities was predictive of soil functional profiles. Differences in soil function were

  1. Genetic mechanisms contributing to reduced tetracycline susceptibility of Campylobacter isolated from organic and conventional dairy farms in the midwestern and northeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Halbert, Lisa W; Kaneene, John B; Linz, John; Mansfield, Linda S; Wilson, Dave; Ruegg, Pamela L; Warnick, Lorin D; Wells, Scott J; Fossler, Charles P; Campbell, Amy M; Geiger-Zwald, Angela M

    2006-03-01

    Campylobacter is one of the most common causes of gastroenteritis and can be acquired through contact with farm animals or the consumption of raw milk. Because of concerns over the role of food-producing animals in the dissemination of antimicrobial resistance to humans, we evaluated the prevalence of antimicrobial resistance in Campylobacter isolates from dairy farms and the genetic mechanism conferring the observed resistance. Evaluation of antimicrobial resistance was completed on 912 isolates from conventional and 304 isolates from organic dairy farms to eight drugs (azithromycin, chloramphenicol, ciprofloxacin, clindamycin, erythromycin, gentamicin, nalidixic acid, and tetracycline) with microbroth dilution. Resistance to seven of eight drugs was very low and did not differ by farm type. However, tetracycline resistance was common in Campylobacter isolated from both organic and conventional dairy farms, with 48 and 58% of isolates affected, respectively. By multiplex PCR, we determined that tetracycline resistance was highly associated with the carriage of tetO in Campylobacter isolates (X2 = 124, P < 0.01, kappa = 0.86).

  2. Residues of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine pesticides in organically-farmed vegetables.

    PubMed

    Zohair, Azza; Salim, Abou-Bakr; Soyibo, Adeola A; Beck, Angus J

    2006-04-01

    The residues of polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in soils from organic farms and their uptake by four varieties of organic-produced potatoes and three varieties of organic carrots from England were investigated. Samples of the soils, crop peels and cores were all Soxhlet-extracted in triplicate, cleaned up by open-column chromatography and analysed by a multi-residue analytical method using gas chromatography with mass selective detection. The concentrations of PAHs, PCBs and OCPs in soils from organic farms ranged from 590+/-43 to 2301+/-146 microg/kg, 3.56+/-0.73 to 9.61+/-1.98 microg/kg and 52.2+/-4.9 to 478+/-111 microg/kg, respectively. Uptake by different crop varieties were 8.42+/-0.93 to 40.1+/-4.9 microg/kg sigmaPAHs, 0.83+/-0.19 to 2.68+/-0.94 microg/kg sigmaPCBs and 8.09+/-0.83 to 133+/-27 microg/kg sigmaOCPs. Residue uptake from soils depended on plant variety; Desiree potato and Nairobi carrot varieties were more susceptible to PAH contamination. Likewise, uptake of PCBs and OCPs depended on potato variety. There were significant positive correlations between the PCB and OCP concentrations (P<0.05) in soils and carrots but no significant correlation was found between the concentrations of any contaminants in soils and potatoes. Peeling carrots and potatoes was found to remove 52-100% of the contaminant residues depending on crop variety and the properties of the contaminants. Soil-crop bioconcentration factors (BCFs) decreased with increasing logK(ow) for PAHs up to about 4.5 and for PCBs up to about 6.5, above which no changes were discernible for either class of contaminants. No relationship was observed between soil-crop BCFs and logK(ow) for OCPs, most likely because their concentrations were low and variable.

  3. Fertilization with liquid digestate in organic farming - effects on humus balance, soil potassium contents and soil physical properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erhart, Eva; Siegl, Thomas; Bonell, Marion; Unterfrauner, Hans; Peticzka, Robert; Ableidinger, Christoph; Haas, Dieter; Hartl, Wilfried

    2014-05-01

    Biogas production and use of liquid digestate are subject of controversial discussion in organic farming. Using biomass from intercrops as feedstock for biogas production makes it possible to produce renewable energy without compromising food production. With liquid digestate, crops can be fertilized in a more targeted way than by incorporating intercrop biomass into the soil. For long-term sustainability in organic farming, however, this practice must not have adverse effects on soil fertility. In order to assess the effects of fertilization with liquid digestate on soil fertility, two randomised field experiments were conducted for two years on different soil types near Bruck/Leitha (Lower Austria). One experiment was set up on a calcareous chernozem with 4 % humus content, the other on a parachernozem with pH 5.9 and 2.1 % humus. Soil potassium content, both in the water-soluble fraction and in the exchangeable fraction, increased significantly at both sites. As fertilization with liquid digestate exceeded the potassium requirements of the crops by far, the proportion of potassium of the exchangeable cations increased rapidly. Soil physical properties were not influenced by digestate fertilization on the chernozem site. On the parachernozem, aggregate stability was increased by the organic matter applied via digestate. On this acidic site low in humus content, the supply of 4 t/ha organic matter, which featured a lignin content of 37 % and was relatively resistant to decomposition, had a clearly positive impact on soil physical properties. Humus balances were computed both with the 'Humuseinheiten'-method and with the site-adapted method STAND. They were calculated on the basis of equal amounts of intercrop biomass either left on the field as green manure or used for biogas production and the resulting amount of liquid digestate brought back to the field. The humus balances indicated that the humus-efficacy of the liquid digestate was equal to slightly higher

  4. Armed to Farm: Developing training programs for military veterans in agriculture

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Farming offers a viable avenue for returning veterans to transition and reincorporate into society. Farming opportunities for veterans are a natural fit and capitalize on skills that made them successful in the military. However, these opportunities may be missed due to lack of targeted training pr...

  5. Polyphenol and l-ascorbic acid content in tomato as influenced by high lycopene genotypes and organic farming at different environments.

    PubMed

    Martí, Raúl; Leiva-Brondo, Miguel; Lahoz, Inmaculada; Campillo, Carlos; Cebolla-Cornejo, Jaime; Roselló, Salvador

    2018-01-15

    The accumulation of polyphenols and l-ascorbic acid was evaluated under conventional (integrated pest management, IPM) and organic farming, as means to increase the accumulation of chemoprotective compounds. The effect of genotype was considerably higher than the growing system, in fact it is determining. 'Kalvert', a high-lycopene cultivar, outstood for the accumulation of most polyphenols, though low-carotenoid cultivars with high accumulation were also detected. Organic farming significantly increased the levels of caffeic acid by 20%, but reduced those of ferulic acid and naringenin by 13% and 15% respectively. A strong interaction with the environment was detected: in Navarra the differences were limited, while in Extremadura lower contents of ferulic acid and higher contents of chlorogenic acid and rutin were found in organic farming for certain cultivars. The effect of organic farming on l-ascorbic acid was dependent on cultivar and environment and it only led to an increase in Extremadura by 58%. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Organization Development: Implications for Supervision.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pajak, Edward F.

    1982-01-01

    Explains why and how organizational development can be effective at improving performance and job satisfaction in schools and maintains that the person most likely to apply it effectively is the instructional supervisor. (JM)

  7. Wind Farms in Rural Areas: How Far Do Community Benefits from Wind Farms Represent a Local Economic Development Opportunity?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Munday, Max; Bristow, Gill; Cowell, Richard

    2011-01-01

    Although the large-scale deployment of renewable technologies can bring significant, localised economic and environmental changes, there has been remarkably little empirical investigation of the rural development implications. This paper seeks to redress this through an analysis of the economic development opportunities surrounding wind energy…

  8. Wind Farms in Rural Areas: How Far Do Community Benefits from Wind Farms Represent a Local Economic Development Opportunity?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Munday, Max; Bristow, Gill; Cowell, Richard

    2011-01-01

    Although the large-scale deployment of renewable technologies can bring significant, localised economic and environmental changes, there has been remarkably little empirical investigation of the rural development implications. This paper seeks to redress this through an analysis of the economic development opportunities surrounding wind energy…

  9. Migrant farm workers' access to pesticide protection and information: Cultivando Buenos Habitos campaign development.

    PubMed

    Parrott, R; Wilson, K; Buttram, C; Jones, K; Steiner, C

    1999-01-01

    Formative evaluation of south Georgian migrant farm workers' access to information and products to promote pesticide protection and understanding of cancer risk associated with pesticide exposure was conducted using field observation, in-depth interviews of Georgia's Migrant Health Program's outreach workers, and structured face-to-face surveys of migrant farm workers. The data indicated that fewer than one-third of the pesticide products reviewed contained messages about pesticide use and exposure risk for humans. Risk information on products appeared in English only. Few protective devices were available for purchase. Migrant farm workers were aware in a very general sense of health risks posed by pesticides, but they were specifically unaware of the reach of pesticides sprayed, as illustrated by their field behaviors. Findings also demonstrated the need to educate outreach workers about migrant farm workers' cancer risk, so that they may act as migrant farm workers' health advocates to reduce the adverse effects associated with pesticide exposure.

  10. Development of a farm-firm modelling system for evaluation of herbaceous energy crops

    SciTech Connect

    English, B.C.; Alexander, R.R.; Loewen, K.H.; Coady, S.A.; Cole, G.V.; Goodman, W.R. . Dept. of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology)

    1992-01-01

    A complete analysis is performed to simulate biomass production incorporated into a realistic whole farm situation, including or replacing a typical crop mix. Representative farms are constructed to accommodate such simulation. Four management systems are simulated for each firm, with each simulation depicting a different crop mix and/or use of different farming technologies and production methods. The first simulation was a base farm plan in which the operator would maintain the historical crop mix for the area, participate in all price support programs, and not participate in either a conservative reserve or a biomass production program. In the second simulation, the operator would again maintain the historical crop mix, would not participate in a conservation reserve or biomass production program, and would be ineligible to participate in any price support system. The third simulation introduced the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and included participation in all price support programs. The fourth simulation introduced a biomass crop production enterprise (switchgrass) as an alternative to enrolling highly erodible cropland in the CRP and allowed participation in price support programs. Simulations were made for three farms, two in West Tennessee and on in South Georgia. Results indicate that erosion is likely to be reduced more by the diversion of cropland to permanent vegetative cover on farms similar to the more highly erodible West Tennessee farms than on the less erodible Tift County, Georgia farm. Equivalent reductions in erosion rates result from entering highly erodible cropland in the CRP and from production of switchgrass as a biomass energy crop. Both switchgrass and CRP farm plans result in decreased net returns from the base plan, although the biomass farm plans are, in general, more profitable than the CRP plans.

  11. Exploring cancer development in adulthood: cholinesterase depression and genotoxic effect from chronic exposure to organophosphate pesticides among rural farm children.

    PubMed

    How, Vivien; Hashim, Zailina; Ismail, Patimah; Md Said, Salmiah; Omar, Dzolkhifli; Bahri Mohd Tamrin, Shamsul

    2014-01-01

    Children are the vulnerable group in the agricultural community due to their early exposure to pesticides through the dynamic interplay between genetic predisposition, environment, and host-related factors. This study aims to identify the possible association between the depression in blood cholinesterase level and genotoxic effect among farm children. The results of micronuclei assay and comet assay showed that the reduced blood cholinesterase level from organophosphate pesticide exposure is significantly associated with an increase in chromosome breakage and DNA strand breaks. These genotoxicity end points suggest that farm children's cells experience early DNA damage that may lead to uncontrolled cell proliferation during their adulthood. Thus, farm children who grow up near pesticide-treated farmland have a higher probability of developing cancer than children with minimal or zero exposure to pesticides.

  12. Indices, multispecies and synthesis descriptors in benthic assessments: Intertidal organic enrichment from oyster farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quintino, Victor; Azevedo, Ana; Magalhães, Luísa; Sampaio, Leandro; Freitas, Rosa; Rodrigues, Ana Maria; Elliott, Michael

    2012-09-01

    Intertidal off-bottom oyster culture is shown to cause organic enrichment of the shore and although there are two stressors of interest (the presence of a structure, the trestles, and also the sediment and organic waste from the oysters), these can be separated and their relative impacts determined using an appropriate nested experimental design and data treatments. Although no artificial food sources are involved, the oysters feeding activity and intensity of culture enhances biodeposition and significantly increases the sediment fines content and total organic matter. This in general impoverished the benthic community in culture areas rather than a species succession with the installation of opportunists or a resulting increase in the abundance and biomass of benthic species; the findings can be a direct consequence of the intertidal situation which is less-amenable recruitment of species more common to the subtidal environment. Thus the most appropriate biological descriptors to diagnose the effects associated with the organic enrichment were the multispecies abundance data as well as the primary biological variables species richness and abundance. The effects were however spatially and statistically significantly confined to the area located directly underneath the culture bags compared to the corridors located between the trestles, which do not show such enrichment effects. Synthesis biotic indices were much less effective to diagnose the benthic alterations associated with this organic enrichment. These results show that special attention must be paid when using indices in areas where the organic enrichment induces an impoverishment of the benthic community but not necessarily a species replacement with the installation of opportunists.

  13. Antibiotic Resistance in Escherichia coli from Pigs in Organic and Conventional Farming in Four European Countries.

    PubMed

    Österberg, Julia; Wingstrand, Anne; Nygaard Jensen, Annette; Kerouanton, Annaelle; Cibin, Veronica; Barco, Lisa; Denis, Martine; Aabo, Sören; Bengtsson, Björn

    2016-01-01

    Organic pig production differs in many ways from conventional production of pigs, e.g., in antibiotic use, herd structure, feeding regimes, access to outdoor areas and space allowance per pig. This study investigated if these differences result in a lower occurrence of antibiotic resistance in organic slaughter pigs in Denmark, France, Italy and Sweden. Samples were taken from the colon content and/or faeces and minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) of ten antibiotics were determined in isolates of Escherichia coli. In addition, the proportion of tetracycline (TET) resistant E. coli in colon content and/or faeces from individual pigs was determined. In all four countries the percentage resistance to ampicillin, streptomycin, sulphonamides or trimethoprim was significantly lower in E. coli from organic pigs. In France and Italy, the percentage of isolates resistant to chloramphenicol, ciprofloxacin, nalidixic acid or gentamicin was also significantly lower in the E. coli from organic pigs. Resistance to cefotaxime, was not found in any country. The percentage of E. coli isolates resistant to TET as well as the proportion of TET-resistant E. coli was significantly lower in organic than in conventional pigs, except in Sweden where TET-resistance was equally low in both production types. There were also differences between countries within production type in the percentage resistance to individual antibiotics as well as the proportion of TET-resistant E. coli with lower median proportions in Sweden and Denmark compared to France and Italy. The study shows that in each of the four countries resistance in intestinal E. coli was less common in organic than in conventional pigs, but that there were also large differences in resistance between countries within each production type, indicating that both country- and production-specific factors influence the occurrence of resistance.

  14. Antibiotic Resistance in Escherichia coli from Pigs in Organic and Conventional Farming in Four European Countries

    PubMed Central

    Nygaard Jensen, Annette; Kerouanton, Annaelle; Cibin, Veronica; Barco, Lisa; Denis, Martine; Aabo, Sören

    2016-01-01

    Organic pig production differs in many ways from conventional production of pigs, e.g., in antibiotic use, herd structure, feeding regimes, access to outdoor areas and space allowance per pig. This study investigated if these differences result in a lower occurrence of antibiotic resistance in organic slaughter pigs in Denmark, France, Italy and Sweden. Samples were taken from the colon content and/or faeces and minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) of ten antibiotics were determined in isolates of Escherichia coli. In addition, the proportion of tetracycline (TET) resistant E. coli in colon content and/or faeces from individual pigs was determined. In all four countries the percentage resistance to ampicillin, streptomycin, sulphonamides or trimethoprim was significantly lower in E. coli from organic pigs. In France and Italy, the percentage of isolates resistant to chloramphenicol, ciprofloxacin, nalidixic acid or gentamicin was also significantly lower in the E. coli from organic pigs. Resistance to cefotaxime, was not found in any country. The percentage of E. coli isolates resistant to TET as well as the proportion of TET-resistant E. coli was significantly lower in organic than in conventional pigs, except in Sweden where TET-resistance was equally low in both production types. There were also differences between countries within production type in the percentage resistance to individual antibiotics as well as the proportion of TET-resistant E. coli with lower median proportions in Sweden and Denmark compared to France and Italy. The study shows that in each of the four countries resistance in intestinal E. coli was less common in organic than in conventional pigs, but that there were also large differences in resistance between countries within each production type, indicating that both country- and production-specific factors influence the occurrence of resistance. PMID:27362262

  15. Development and testing of a European Union-wide farm-level carbon calculator

    PubMed Central

    Tuomisto, Hanna L; De Camillis, Camillo; Leip, Adrian; Nisini, Luigi; Pelletier, Nathan; Haastrup, Palle

    2015-01-01

    Direct greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture accounted for approximately 10% of total European Union (EU) emissions in 2010. To reduce farming-related GHG emissions, appropriate policy measures and supporting tools for promoting low-C farming practices may be efficacious. This article presents the methodology and testing results of a new EU-wide, farm-level C footprint calculator. The Carbon Calculator quantifies GHG emissions based on international standards and technical specifications on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and C footprinting. The tool delivers its results both at the farm level and as allocated to up to 5 main products of the farm. In addition to the quantification of GHG emissions, the calculator proposes mitigation options and sequestration actions that may be suitable for individual farms. The results obtained during a survey made on 54 farms from 8 EU Member States are presented. These farms were selected in view of representing the diversity of farm types across different environmental zones in the EU. The results of the C footprint of products in the data set show wide range of variation between minimum and maximum values. The results of the mitigation actions showed that the tool can help identify practices that can lead to substantial emission reductions. To avoid burden-shifting from climate change to other environmental issues, the future improvements of the tool should include incorporation of other environmental impact categories in place of solely focusing on GHG emissions. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2015;11:404–416. © 2015 The Authors. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of SETAC. Key Points The methodology and testing results of a new European Union-wide, farm-level carbon calculator are presented. The Carbon Calculator reports life cycle assessment-based greenhouse gas emissions at farm and product levels and recommends farm- specific mitigation actions. Based on the results obtained from testing the tool in 54

  16. Farm to Work: Development of a Modified Community-Supported Agriculture Model at Worksites, 2007–2012

    PubMed Central

    Horton, Karissa D.; Loyo, Jennifer; Jowers, Esbelle M.; Rodgers, Lindsay Faith; Smiley, Andrew W.; Leversen, Eric; Hoelscher, Deanna M.

    2015-01-01

    Background The Farm to Work program is a modified community-supported agriculture model at worksites in Texas. Community Context The objective of the Farm to Work program is to increase fruit and vegetable intake among employees and their households by decreasing cost, improving convenience, and increasing access while also creating a new market for local farmers at worksites. The objectives of this article were to describe the development, implementation, and outcome of a 5-year participation trend analysis and to describe the community relationships that were formed to enable the successful implementation of the program. Methods The Farm to Work program began in November 2007 as a collaborative effort between the nonprofit Sustainable Food Center, the Texas Department of State Health Services, the Web development company WebChronic Consulting LLC, and Naegelin Farm. The program provides a weekly or biweekly opportunity for employees to order a basket of produce online to be delivered to the worksite by a local farmer. A 5-year participation trend analysis, including seasonal variation and sales trends, was conducted using sales data from November 2007 through December 2012. Outcome The total number of baskets delivered from November 2007 through December 2012 was 38,343; of these, 37,466 were sold and 877 were complimentary. The total value of sold and complimentary baskets was $851,035 and $21,925, respectively. Participation in the program increased over time and was highest in 2012. Interpretation The Farm to Work program increased access to locally grown fruits and vegetables for employees and created a new market for farmers. Increased program participation indicates that Farm to Work can increase employees’ fruit and vegetable consumption and thus help prevent chronic diseases in this population PMID:26491816

  17. Farm to Work: Development of a Modified Community-Supported Agriculture Model at Worksites, 2007-2012.

    PubMed

    Thi, Christina A; Horton, Karissa D; Loyo, Jennifer; Jowers, Esbelle M; Rodgers, Lindsay Faith; Smiley, Andrew W; Leversen, Eric; Hoelscher, Deanna M

    2015-10-22

    The Farm to Work program is a modified community-supported agriculture model at worksites in Texas. The objective of the Farm to Work program is to increase fruit and vegetable intake among employees and their households by decreasing cost, improving convenience, and increasing access while also creating a new market for local farmers at worksites. The objectives of this article were to describe the development, implementation, and outcome of a 5-year participation trend analysis and to describe the community relationships that were formed to enable the successful implementation of the program. The Farm to Work program began in November 2007 as a collaborative effort between the nonprofit Sustainable Food Center, the Texas Department of State Health Services, the Web development company WebChronic Consulting LLC, and Naegelin Farm. The program provides a weekly or biweekly opportunity for employees to order a basket of produce online to be delivered to the worksite by a local farmer. A 5-year participation trend analysis, including seasonal variation and sales trends, was conducted using sales data from November 2007 through December 2012. The total number of baskets delivered from November 2007 through December 2012 was 38,343; of these, 37,466 were sold and 877 were complimentary. The total value of sold and complimentary baskets was $851,035 and $21,925, respectively. Participation in the program increased over time and was highest in 2012. The Farm to Work program increased access to locally grown fruits and vegetables for employees and created a new market for farmers. Increased program participation indicates that Farm to Work can increase employees' fruit and vegetable consumption and thus help prevent chronic diseases in this population.

  18. [Dynamics of calving, dystocia and the organization and effectiveness of obstetrical care for cows on commercial farm complexes].

    PubMed

    Bozhkov, I; Stoianov, A; Kolchev, G

    1986-01-01

    A study was carried out on the organization of the obstetrical aid with cows on the large cow complexes in order to raise its effectiveness. Determined was the dynamic of calvings, dystocia, retentio secundinarum, and puerperal endometritis as affected by the time of calving and the character of obstetrical aid as practised on the farms. It was found that most of the calvings (62.6 per cent) take place at night, and 37.4 per cent--in daytime, while within the working day as fixed by the Labour Code--24.8 per cent only. Directly proportional to these were the cases of laboured delivery--60.4 per cent at night and 39.6 per cent in daytime. It was also established that at night obstetrical aid is chiefly rendered by the attendants on duty and the watchmen, which meant that it was unqualified, with bad results: higher rate of postnatal deaths, higher morbidity rates resulting from puerperal endometritis, prolonged period from calving to the first physiologic estrus and prolonged service period, lower conception rates, and higher economic losses. The authors suggest that the organization of labour of vets should take into consideration the productional and biologic processes on the industrial cow complexes, with night duty or two-shift work. These problems should be settled financially and by means of additional personnel as provided by the Labour Code and the new economic approach and its mechanisms.

  19. No effect of the farming system (organic/conventional) on the bioavailability of apple (Malus domestica Bork., cultivar Golden Delicious) polyphenols in healthy men: a comparative study.

    PubMed

    Stracke, Berenike A; Rüfer, Corinna E; Bub, Achim; Seifert, Stephanie; Weibel, Franco P; Kunz, Clemens; Watzl, Bernhard

    2010-08-01

    The organic food sales have been increasing during the recent years. It has been hypothesised that organically grown fruits are healthier based on their higher content of phytochemicals. However, data on the bioavailability of phytochemicals from organically or conventionally produced plant foods are scarce. Two human intervention studies were performed to compare the bioavailability of polyphenols in healthy men after ingestion of apples from different farming systems. The administered apples were grown organically and conventionally under defined conditions and characterised regarding their polyphenol content and antioxidant capacity. No significant differences in the polyphenol content and the antioxidant capacity from the organic and conventional farming system were observed. In the short-term intervention study, six men consumed either organically or conventionally produced apples in a randomized cross-over study. After intake of 1 kg apples, phloretin (C (max) 13 + or - 5 nmol/l, t (max) 1.7 + or - 1.2 h) and coumaric acid (C (max )35 + or - 12 nmol/l, t (max) 3.0 + or - 0.8 h) plasma concentrations increased significantly (P < 0.0001) in both intervention groups, without differences between the two farming systems. In the long-term intervention study, 43 healthy volunteers consumed organically or conventionally produced apples (500 g/day; 4 weeks) or no apples in a double-blind, randomized intervention study. In this study, 24 h after the last dosing regime, the apple intake did not result in increasing polyphenol concentrations in plasma and urine compared to the control group suggesting no accumulation of apple polyphenols or degradation products in humans. Our study suggests that the two farming systems (organic/conventional) do not result in differences in the bioavailability of apple polyphenols.

  20. Soil Microbial Communities associated to Plant Rhizospheres in an Organic Farming System in Alabama

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The microbial communities under different organic crop rhizospheres (0-10 and 10-20 cm) were characterized using fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) and pyrosequencing techniques. The soil was a silt loam (12.8% clay, 71.8% silt and15.4% sand). Soils at this site are characterized as having pH of ~6.53,...

  1. Soil microbial communities associated to plant rhizospheres in an organic farming system in Alabama

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The microbial communities under different organic crop rhizospheres (0-10 and 10-20 cm) were characterized using fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) and pyrosequencing techniques. The soil was a silt loam (12.8% clay, 71.8% silt and15.4% sand). Soils at this site are characterized as having pH of ~6.53, ...

  2. Integrating a complex rotation with no-till improves weed management in organic farming

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    No-till practices are restoring and protecting soil health, and are considered critical for achieving sustainability of global agriculture. Organic producers in the United States would like to no-till, but are concerned about managing weeds without tillage. In conventional agriculture, no-till imp...

  3. Suppressing weed growth after wheat harvest with underseeded red clover in organic farming

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic producers are seeking alternative tactics for weed control so that they can reduce their need for tillage. In this study, we examined cover crop strategies for suppressing weed growth after harvest of wheat. Two cover crop treatments, red clover (mammoth type) or a mixture of oat and dry p...

  4. Underseeding clovers in small grains to suppress weeds in organic farming

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic producers are seeking alternative tactics for weed control so that they can reduce their need for tillage. In this study, we examined the impact of underseeding clovers into small grains to control weeds after harvest. Also, if the clovers winterkill, then control actions would not be need...

  5. A mowing strategy to convert red clover to annual crops in organic farming

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Organic producers are interested in no-till cropping systems. In this study, we found that perennial clover can be converted to corn without tillage. Conversion tactics involved fall mowing in the third year of red clover, followed by between-row mowing of weeds and volunteer red clover in corn gr...

  6. Human-animal chimeras: ethical issues about farming chimeric animals bearing human organs.

    PubMed

    Bourret, Rodolphe; Martinez, Eric; Vialla, François; Giquel, Chloé; Thonnat-Marin, Aurélie; De Vos, John

    2016-06-29

    Recent advances in stem cells and gene engineering have paved the way for the generation of interspecies chimeras, such as animals bearing an organ from another species. The production of a rat pancreas by a mouse has demonstrated the feasibility of this approach. The next step will be the generation of larger chimeric animals, such as pigs bearing human organs. Because of the dramatic organ shortage for transplantation, the medical needs for such a transgressive practice are indisputable. However, there are serious technical barriers and complex ethical issues that must be discussed and solved before producing human organs in animals. The main ethical issues are the risks of consciousness and of human features in the chimeric animal due to a too high contribution of human cells to the brain, in the first case, or for instance to limbs, in the second. Another critical point concerns the production of human gametes by such chimeric animals. These worst-case scenarios are obviously unacceptable and must be strictly monitored by careful risk assessment, and, if necessary, technically prevented. The public must be associated with this ethical debate. Scientists and physicians have a critical role in explaining the medical needs, the advantages and limits of this potential medical procedure, and the ethical boundaries that must not be trespassed. If these prerequisites are met, acceptance of such a new, borderline medical procedure may prevail, as happened before for in-vitro fertilization or preimplantation genetic diagnosis.

  7. Nitrogen cycling and microbial communities within soil microenvironments in integrated organic farming systems in Switzerland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loaiza, Viviana; Pereira, Engil; van der Heijden, Marcel; Wittwer, Raphael; Six, Johan

    2015-04-01

    Soil tilling is part of standard agricultural field preparation practices both in conventional and organic cropping systems. Although used mostly for weed control, it presents several drawbacks including increased soil erosion, soil structure disruption and high soil moisture loss. The use of fast-growing cover crops to overcome weed pressure, in combination with conservation tillage has been identified as a possible management strategy in organic systems, yet the mechanisms by which these practices affect nitrogen dynamics is mostly unknown. In this study we use an existing 4-year-old field experiment that combines the use of different tilling intensities and four different cover crop treatments and analyze overall N cycling using 15N stable isotope techniques, physical fractionation methods, and quantitative functional gene assays. Preliminary results suggest that reduced tillage may promote the formation of large macroaggregates in organic systems. Lower proportions of small macroaggregates and microaggregates went to the assembly of large macroaggregates when a cover crop was present. Macroaggregates constitute the majority of soil volume and consequently contribute the most to overall carbon and nitrogen soil content. There is a trend of higher carbon content across all soil fractions in the organic tillage treatments with mixed and brassica cover crop treatments, although the differences were not significant, added effects may be seen with time. Overall, treatment effects are more pronounced in the 0-6cm soil layer. Ongoing quantitative functional gene expression assays will shed light on the role of microorganisms and contribute to understanding nitrogen availability, stabilization and loss in integrated organic systems.

  8. Influence of farming exposure on the development of asthma and asthma-like symptoms.

    PubMed

    Wells, Adam D; Poole, Jill A; Romberger, Debra J

    2014-11-01

    Based upon age and type of farming exposures, a wide range of studies demonstrate either protective or deleterious effects of the farming environment on asthma. In this review, we highlight key studies supporting the concept that farming exposure protects children from asthma and atopy based on studies performed largely in European pediatric cohorts. Various types of farming in certain regions appear to have a greater effect on asthma protection, as does the consumption of unpasteurized milk. In the United State, where concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) are more common, asthma is increased in children exposed especially to swine CAFOs; whereas, rates of atopy and allergy are lower in these children. We also review studies evaluating the role of farming exposures both as a child and/or as an adult on asthma seen in adults. The importance of microbes in farming environments and the contribution of various components of the innate immune system including toll-like receptors to the underlying mechanisms of asthma related to farming exposures are also reviewed.

  9. Influence of farming exposure on the development of asthma and asthma-like symptoms

    PubMed Central

    Wells, Adam D.; Poole, Jill A.; Romberger, Debra J.

    2014-01-01

    Based upon age and type of farming exposures, a wide range of studies demonstrate either protective or deleterious effects of the farming environment on asthma. In this review, we highlight key studies supporting the concept that farming exposure protects children from asthma and atopy based on studies performed largely in European pediatric cohorts. Various types of farming in certain regions appear to have a greater effect on asthma protection, as does the consumption of unpasteurized milk. In the United State, where concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) are more common, asthma is increased in children exposed especially to swine CAFOs; whereas, rates of atopy and allergy are lower in these children. We also review studies evaluating the role of farming exposures both as a child and/or as an adult on asthma seen in adults. The importance of microbes in farming environments and the contribution of various components of the innate immune system including toll-like receptors to the underlying mechanisms of asthma related to farming exposures are also reviewed. PMID:25086344

  10. Comparison of selected animal observations and management practices used to assess welfare of calves and adult dairy cows on organic and conventional dairy farms.

    PubMed

    Bergman, M A; Richert, R M; Cicconi-Hogan, K M; Gamroth, M J; Schukken, Y H; Stiglbauer, K E; Ruegg, P L

    2014-07-01

    Differences in adoption of selected practices used in welfare assessment and audit programs were contrasted among organic (ORG; n=192) herds and similarly sized conventional grazing herds (CON-GR; n=36), and conventional nongrazing herds (CON-NG; n=64). Criteria from 3 programs were assessed: American Humane Association Animal Welfare Standards for Dairy Cattle, Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM), and the Canadian Codes of Practice (CCP). Data were collected by trained study personnel during a herd visit and included information about neonatal care, dehorning, pain relief, calf nutrition, weaning, record keeping, use of veterinarians, and animal observations. Associations of management type (ORG, CON-GR, or CON-NG) with adoption of selected practice were assessed. Almost all farms (97%) met criteria suggested for age at weaning but fewer CON-NG farmers weaned calves at ≥5 wk of age compared with ORG and CON-GR farmers. Only 23% of farms met program requirements for use of pain relief during dehorning, and fewer CON-NG farmers used pain relief for calves after dehorning compared with ORG and CON-GR farmers. Calves on ORG farms were fed a greater volume of milk and were weaned at an older age than calves on CON-GR and CON-NG farms. Calves on CON-GR farms were dehorned at a younger age compared with calves on ORG and CON-NG farms. The calving area was shared with lactating cows for a larger proportion of ORG herds compared with conventional herds. About 30% of herds met welfare program criteria for body condition score but only about 20% met criteria for animal hygiene scores. The least proportion of cows with hock lesions was observed on ORG farms. Regular use of veterinarians was infrequent for ORG herds. Results of this study indicate that most of the organic and conventional farms enrolled in this study would have been unlikely to achieve many criteria of audit and assessment programs currently used in the US dairy industry.

  11. Organic Rankine cycle receiver development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haskins, H. J.

    1981-01-01

    The selected receiver concept is a direct-heated, once-through, monotube boiler operated at supercritical pressure. The cavity is formed by a cylindrical copper shell and backwall, with stainless steel tubing brazed to the outside surface. This core is surrounded by lightweight refractory insulation, load-bearing struts, and an outer case. The aperture plate is made of copper to provide long life by conduction and reradiation of heat away from the aperture lip. The receiver thermal efficiency is estimated to be 97 percent at rated conditions (energy transferred to toluene divided by energy incident on aperture opening). Development of the core manufacturing and corrosion protection methods is complete.

  12. An ideal limit for the performance of a large, fully-developed wind farm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luzzatto-Fegiz, P.; Caulfield, C. P.

    2014-11-01

    Wind turbines are often deployed in arrays of hundreds of units, where interactions lead to drastic losses in power output. Remarkably, while the theoretical ``Betz'' maximum has long been established for the output of a single turbine, no corresponding theory appears to exist for a generic, large-scale energy extraction system, although models exist for specific turbine designs and layouts. Recent work with vertical-axis turbines indicates that large performance gains may be achievable (Dabiri 2011), making the search for a theoretical upper bound even more compelling. We develop a model for an array of energy-extraction devices of arbitrary design and layout, first focusing on the fully-developed regime. When tailoring the model to reflect current designs, the predicted power output is in good agreement with field measurements. Furthermore, by considering a suitable ideal limit, we establish an upper bound on the performance of a large wind farm. This is found to be several times larger than the output of existing arrays, thus supporting the notion that performance improvements may be possible. Finally, we extend our model to include spatially developing flows, as well as to account for the effect of atmospheric stability, finding good agreement with laboratory and field data.

  13. Development and testing of a European Union-wide farm-level carbon calculator.

    PubMed

    Tuomisto, Hanna L; De Camillis, Camillo; Leip, Adrian; Nisini, Luigi; Pelletier, Nathan; Haastrup, Palle

    2015-07-01

    Direct greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture accounted for approximately 10% of total European Union (EU) emissions in 2010. To reduce farming-related GHG emissions, appropriate policy measures and supporting tools for promoting low-C farming practices may be efficacious. This article presents the methodology and testing results of a new EU-wide, farm-level C footprint calculator. The Carbon Calculator quantifies GHG emissions based on international standards and technical specifications on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and C footprinting. The tool delivers its results both at the farm level and as allocated to up to 5 main products of the farm. In addition to the quantification of GHG emissions, the calculator proposes mitigation options and sequestration actions that may be suitable for individual farms. The results obtained during a survey made on 54 farms from 8 EU Member States are presented. These farms were selected in view of representing the diversity of farm types across different environmental zones in the EU. The results of the C footprint of products in the data set show wide range of variation between minimum and maximum values. The results of the mitigation actions showed that the tool can help identify practices that can lead to substantial emission reductions. To avoid burden-shifting from climate change to other environmental issues, the future improvements of the tool should include incorporation of other environmental impact categories in place of solely focusing on GHG emissions. © 2015 The Authors. Integrated Environmental Assessment and Management Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of SETAC.

  14. Long-term effect of manure and fertilizer on soil organic carbon pools in dryland farming in northwest China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Enke; Yan, Changrong; Mei, Xurong; Zhang, Yanqing; Fan, Tinglu

    2013-01-01

    An understanding of the dynamics of soil organic carbon (SOC) as affected by farming practices is imperative for maintaining soil productivity and mitigating global warming. The objectives of this study were to investigate the effects of long-term fertilization on SOC and SOC fractions for the whole soil profile (0-100 cm) in northwest China. The study was initiated in 1979 in Gansu, China and included six treatments: unfertilized control (CK), nitrogen fertilizer (N), nitrogen and phosphorus (P) fertilizers (NP), straw plus N and P fertilizers (NP+S), farmyard manure (FYM), and farmyard manure plus N and P fertilizers (NP+FYM). Results showed that SOC concentration in the 0-20 cm soil layer increased with time except in the CK and N treatments. Long-term fertilization significantly influenced SOC concentrations and storage to 60 cm depth. Below 60 cm, SOC concentrations and storages were statistically not significant between all treatments. The concentration of SOC at different depths in 0-60 cm soil profile was higher under NP+FYM follow by under NP+S, compared to under CK. The SOC storage in 0-60 cm in NP+FYM, NP+S, FYM and NP treatments were increased by 41.3%, 32.9%, 28.1% and 17.9%, respectively, as compared to the CK treatment. Organic manure plus inorganic fertilizer application also increased labile soil organic carbon pools in 0-60 cm depth. The average concentration of particulate organic carbon (POC), dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and microbial biomass carbon (MBC) in organic manure plus inorganic fertilizer treatments (NP+S and NP+FYM) in 0-60 cm depth were increased by 64.9-91.9%, 42.5-56.9%, and 74.7-99.4%, respectively, over the CK treatment. The POC, MBC and DOC concentrations increased linearly with increasing SOC content. These results indicate that long-term additions of organic manure have the most beneficial effects in building carbon pools among the investigated types of fertilization.

  15. Long-Term Effect of Manure and Fertilizer on Soil Organic Carbon Pools in Dryland Farming in Northwest China

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Enke; Yan, Changrong; Mei, Xurong; Zhang, Yanqing; Fan, Tinglu

    2013-01-01

    An understanding of the dynamics of soil organic carbon (SOC) as affected by farming practices is imperative for maintaining soil productivity and mitigating global warming. The objectives of this study were to investigate the effects of long-term fertilization on SOC and SOC fractions for the whole soil profile (0–100 cm) in northwest China. The study was initiated in 1979 in Gansu, China and included six treatments: unfertilized control (CK), nitrogen fertilizer (N), nitrogen and phosphorus (P) fertilizers (NP), straw plus N and P fertilizers (NP+S), farmyard manure (FYM), and farmyard manure plus N and P fertilizers (NP+FYM). Results showed that SOC concentration in the 0–20 cm soil layer increased with time except in the CK and N treatments. Long-term fertilization significantly influenced SOC concentrations and storage to 60 cm depth. Below 60 cm, SOC concentrations and storages were statistically not significant between all treatments. The concentration of SOC at different depths in 0–60 cm soil profile was higher under NP+FYM follow by under NP+S, compared to under CK. The SOC storage in 0–60 cm in NP+FYM, NP+S, FYM and NP treatments were increased by 41.3%, 32.9%, 28.1% and 17.9%, respectively, as compared to the CK treatment. Organic manure plus inorganic fertilizer application also increased labile soil organic carbon pools in 0–60 cm depth. The average concentration of particulate organic carbon (POC), dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and microbial biomass carbon (MBC) in organic manure plus inorganic fertilizer treatments (NP+S and NP+FYM) in 0–60 cm depth were increased by 64.9–91.9%, 42.5–56.9%, and 74.7–99.4%, respectively, over the CK treatment. The POC, MBC and DOC concentrations increased linearly with increasing SOC content. These results indicate that long-term additions of organic manure have the most beneficial effects in building carbon pools among the investigated types of fertilization. PMID:23437161

  16. Thermal plasticity in farmed, wild and hybrid Atlantic salmon during early development: has domestication caused divergence in low temperature tolerance?

    PubMed

    Solberg, Monica Favnebøe; Dyrhovden, Lise; Matre, Ivar Helge; Glover, Kevin Alan

    2016-02-16

    In the past three decades, millions of domesticated Atlantic salmon Salmo salar L. have escaped from farms into the wild. Their offspring display reduced survival in the natural environment, which demonstrates that gene-flow is likely to have a negative effect on wild populations. However, inter-population differences in introgression of farmed salmon have been observed, and the underlying ecological mechanisms remain enigmatic. We hypothesised that domestication-driven divergence in tolerance to low temperatures during early development may contribute to lower survival of farmed salmon offspring in the wild, which in turn, may influence patterns of introgression among populations exposed to different temperature regimes. We reared the offspring of 35 families of wild, farmed and hybrid origin at three temperatures (3.9, 5.6 and 12°C) from the onset of exogenous feeding and throughout their first summer. Thermal reaction norms for growth and survival were investigated along the gradient. The main results of this study, which is based upon the analysis of juvenile salmon from five wild strains, two farmed strains and two hybrid strains, can be summarised as; (i) salmon of all origins were able to successfully initiate feeding at all temperatures and similar survival reaction norms were detected in all strains across the temperature gradient; (ii) deviating growth reaction norms were detected between strains, although this result was most likely due to an overall lack of growth in the lower temperature treatments. This study revealed no evidence of domesticated-driven divergence in low temperature tolerance in Atlantic salmon during early development. Although the potential interaction between low temperature and other river-specific factors cannot be excluded, our results indicate that the reduced survival of farmed offspring in the wild is not explained by farmed salmon displaying impaired abilities to initiate feeding at low temperatures. We therefore suggest

  17. The use of vermicompost in organic farming: overview, effects on soil and economics.

    PubMed

    Lim, Su Lin; Wu, Ta Yeong; Lim, Pei Nie; Shak, Katrina Pui Yee

    2015-04-01

    Vermicomposting is a process in which earthworms are used to convert organic materials into humus-like material known as vermicompost. A number of researchers throughout the world have found that the nutrient profile in vermicompost is generally higher than traditional compost. In fact, vermicompost can enhance soil fertility physically, chemically and biologically. Physically, vermicompost-treated soil has better aeration, porosity, bulk density and water retention. Chemical properties such as pH, electrical conductivity and organic matter content are also improved for better crop yield. Nevertheless, enhanced plant growth could not be satisfactorily explained by improvements in the nutrient content of the soil, which means that other plant growth-influencing materials are available in vermicomposts. Although vermicomposts have been shown to improve plant growth significantly, the application of vermicomposts at high concentrations could impede growth due to the high concentrations of soluble salts available in vermicomposts. Therefore, vermicomposts should be applied at moderate concentrations in order to obtain maximum plant yield. This review paper discusses in detail the effects of vermicompost on soil fertility physically, chemically and biologically. Future prospects and economy on the use of organic fertilizers in the agricultural sector are also examined.

  18. Effect of different organic farming methods on the phenolic composition of sea buckthorn berries.

    PubMed

    Heinäaho, Merja; Hagerman, Ann E; Julkunen-Tiitto, Riitta

    2009-03-11

    The effects of different organic cultivation methods on the berry phenolics of two Finnish sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides L. ssp. rhamnoides ) cultivars, 'Terhi' and 'Tytti', were studied in an experimental field at a coastal area in Merikarvia, western Finland. Cultivation methods included different fertilizers (designed for organic cultivation), mulches (organic and plastic), and land contours (flat land versus ridged beds). Two experiments were conducted: The first, a fertilization experiment, allowed for the estimation of the effects of cultivar, fertilizer, land contour, and all of their interactions. The second experiment, a mulch experiment, allowed for the estimation of the effects of mulch, land contours, and their interactions for the cultivar 'Tytti'. Berry phenolics were analyzed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with ultraviolet (UV) detection. The results suggest that there are significant differences between the cultivars and cultivation methods. The concentrations of quercetin derivatives 1-3, isorhamnetin 3,7-diglucoside, quercetin-3-glucoside-7-rhamnoside, quercetin 3-glucoside, isorhamnetin 3-glucoside, and flavonoid derivative 3 were higher in 'Tytti' than in 'Terhi', while concentrations of isorhamnetin-glucoside 2 and 3 were higher in 'Terhi' than in 'Tytti'. Flat land increased the concentrations of isorhamnetin 3,7-diglucoside, isorhamnetin-glucoside 1, quercetin derivatives 2 and 4, and condensed tannins. Mulch did not have any significant effect on the concentrations of phenolic compounds. These results indicate that the phenolic accumulation in berries of studied sea buckthorn cultivars seems to be mainly dependent upon cultivar selection and soil structure.

  19. Development of Johnston's organ in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Eberl, Daniel F; Boekhoff-Falk, Grace

    2007-01-01

    Hearing is a specialized mechanosensory modality that is refined during evolution to meet the particular requirements of different organisms. In the fruitfly, Drosophila, hearing is mediated by Johnston's organ, a large chordotonal organ in the antenna that is exquisitely sensitive to the near-field acoustic signal of courtship songs generated by male wing vibration. We summarize recent progress in understanding the molecular genetic determinants of Johnston's organ development and discuss surprising differences from other chordotonal organs that likely facilitate hearing. We outline novel discoveries of active processes that generate motion of the antenna for acute sensitivity to the stimulus. Finally, we discuss further research directions that would probe remaining questions in understanding Johnston's organ development, function and evolution.

  20. How Somatic Adult Tissues Develop Organizer Activity.

    PubMed

    Vogg, Matthias C; Wenger, Yvan; Galliot, Brigitte

    2016-01-01

    The growth and patterning of anatomical structures from specific cellular fields in developing organisms relies on organizing centers that instruct surrounding cells to modify their behavior, namely migration, proliferation, and differentiation. We discuss here how organizers can form in adult organisms, a process of utmost interest for regenerative medicine. Animals like Hydra and planarians, which maintain their shape and fitness thanks to a highly dynamic homeostasis, offer a useful paradigm to study adult organizers in steady-state conditions. Beside the homeostatic context, these model systems also offer the possibility to study how organizers form de novo from somatic adult tissues. Both extracellular matrix remodeling and caspase activation play a key role in this transition, acting as promoters of organizer formation in the vicinity of the wound. Their respective roles and the crosstalk between them just start to be deciphered.

  1. Accumulation of heavy metals in dietary vegetables and cultivated soil horizon in organic farming system in relation to atmospheric deposition in a seasonally dry tropical region of India.

    PubMed

    Pandey, J; Pandey, Usha

    2009-01-01

    Increasing consciousness about future sustainable agriculture and hazard free food production has lead organic farming to be a globally emerging alternative farm practice. We investigated the accumulation of air-borne heavy metals in edible parts of vegetables and in cultivated soil horizon in organic farming system in a low rain fall tropical region of India. The factorial design of whole experiment consisted of six vegetable crops (tomato, egg plant, spinach, amaranthus, carrot and radish) x two treatments (organic farming in open field and organic farming in glasshouse (OFG)) x seven independent harvest of each crop. The results indicated that except for Pb, atmospheric deposition of heavy metals increased consistently on time scale. Concentrations of heavy metals in cultivated soil horizon and in edible parts of open field grown vegetables increased over time and were significantly higher than those recorded in OFG plots. Increased contents of heavy metals in open field altered soil porosity, bulk density, water holding capacity, microbial biomass carbon, substrate-induced respiration, alkaline phosphatase and fluorescein diacetate hydrolytic activities. Vegetable concentrations of heavy metal appeared in the order Zn > Pb > Cu > Ni > Cd and were maximum in leaves (spinach and amaranths) followed by fruits (tomato and egg plant) and minimum in roots (carrot and radish). Multiple regression analysis indicated that the major contribution of most heavy metals to vegetable leaves was from atmosphere. For roots however, soil appeared to be equally important. The study suggests that if the present trend of atmospheric deposition is continued, it will lead to a destabilizing effect on this sustainable agricultural practice and will increase the dietary intake of toxic metals.

  2. Effects of Tissue Culture and Mycorrhiza Applications in Organic Farming on Concentrations of Phytochemicals and Antioxidant Capacities in Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) Rhizomes and Leaves.

    PubMed

    Min, Byungrok R; Marsh, Lurline E; Brathwaite, Keegan; Daramola, Adebola O

    2017-04-01

    Tissue culture and mycorrhiza applications can provide disease-free seedlings and enhanced nutrient absorption, respectively, for organic farming. Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) is rich in phytochemicals and has various health-protective potentials. This study was aimed at determining effects of tissue culture and mycorrhiza applications alone or in combinations in organic farming on phytochemical contents (total phenolics and flavonoids [TP and TF, respectively], gingerol and shogaol homologues, phenolic acids, and carotenoids) and antioxidant capacities (DPPH [2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl] radical scavenging, oxygen radical absorbance (ORAC), and iron-chelating capacities [ICC]) in solvent-extractable (Free) and cell-wall-matrix-bound (Bound) fractions of ginger rhizome and Free fraction of the leaves in comparison with non-organics. Concentrations of the phytochemicals and antioxidant capacities, except for carotenoids and ICC, were significantly higher in organic ginger rhizomes and leaves than in non-organics regardless of the fractions and treatments (P < 0.05). Mycorrhiza application in organic farming significantly increased levels of TP, TF, gingerols, and ORAC in the Free fraction of the rhizome (P < 0.05). Furthermore, the combined application of tissue culture and mycorrhiza significantly increased concentrations of TF and gingerols and ORAC in the Free fraction of the rhizome (P < 0.05), suggesting their synergistic effects. Considerable amounts of phenolics were found in the Bound fractions of the rhizomes. Six-gingerol, ferulic acid, and lutein were predominant ones among gingerols, phenolic acids, and carotenoids, respectively, in ginger rhizomes. The results suggest that organic farming with mycorrhiza and tissue culture applications can increase concentrations of phytochemicals and antioxidant capacities in ginger rhizomes and leaves and therefore improve their health-protective potentials.

  3. Comparison of Greenhouse Gas Emissions between Two Dairy Farm Systems (Conventional vs. Organic Management) in New Hampshire Using the Manure DNDC Biogeochemical Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorich, C.; Contosta, A.; Li, C.; Brito, A.; Varner, R. K.

    2013-12-01

    Agriculture contributes 20 to 25 % of the total anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally. These agricultural emissions are primarily in the form of methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O) with these GHG accounting for roughly 40 and 80 % of the total anthropogenic emissions of CH4 and N2O, respectively. Due to varied management and the complexities of agricultural ecosystems, it is difficult to estimate these CH4 and N2O emissions. The IPCC emission factors can be used to yield rough estimates of CH4 and N2O emissions but they are often based on limited data. Accurate modeling validated by measurements is needed in order to identify potential mitigation areas, reduce GHG emissions from agriculture, and improve sustainability of farming practices. The biogeochemical model Manure DNDC was validated using measurements from two dairy farms in New Hampshire, USA in order to quantify GHG emissions under different management systems. One organic and one conventional dairy farm operated by the University of New Hampshire's Agriculture Experiment Station were utilized as the study sites for validation of Manure DNDC. Compilation of management records started in 2011 to provide model inputs. Model results were then compared to field collected samples of soil carbon and nitrogen, above-ground biomass, and GHG fluxes. Fluxes were measured in crop, animal, housing, and waste management sites on the farms in order to examine the entire farm ecosystem and test the validity of the model. Fluxes were measured by static flux chambers, with enteric fermentation measurements being conducted by the SF6 tracer test as well as a new method called Greenfeeder. Our preliminary GHG flux analysis suggests higher emissions than predicted by IPCC emission factors and equations. Results suggest that emissions from manure management is a key concern at the conventional dairy farm while bedded housing at the organic dairy produced large quantities of GHG.

  4. Dermal exposure assessment to pesticides in farming systems in developing countries: comparison of models.

    PubMed

    Lesmes-Fabian, Camilo; Fabian, Camilo Lesmes; Binder, Claudia R

    2015-04-29

    In the field of occupational hygiene, researchers have been working on developing appropriate methods to estimate human exposure to pesticides in order to assess the risk and therefore to take the due decisions to improve the pesticide management process and reduce the health risks. This paper evaluates dermal exposure models to find the most appropriate. Eight models (i.e., COSHH, DERM, DREAM, EASE, PHED, RISKOFDERM, STOFFENMANAGER and PFAM) were evaluated according to a multi-criteria analysis and from these results five models (i.e., DERM, DREAM, PHED, RISKOFDERM and PFAM) were selected for the assessment of dermal exposure in the case study of the potato farming system in the Andean highlands of Vereda La Hoya, Colombia. The results show that the models provide different dermal exposure estimations which are not comparable. However, because of the simplicity of the algorithm and the specificity of the determinants, the DERM, DREAM and PFAM models were found to be the most appropriate although their estimations might be more accurate if specific determinants are included for the case studies in developing countries.

  5. Dermal Exposure Assessment to Pesticides in Farming Systems in Developing Countries: Comparison of Models

    PubMed Central

    Lesmes Fabian, Camilo; Binder, Claudia R.

    2015-01-01

    In the field of occupational hygiene, researchers have been working on developing appropriate methods to estimate human exposure to pesticides in order to assess the risk and therefore to take the due decisions to improve the pesticide management process and reduce the health risks. This paper evaluates dermal exposure models to find the most appropriate. Eight models (i.e., COSHH, DERM, DREAM, EASE, PHED, RISKOFDERM, STOFFENMANAGER and PFAM) were evaluated according to a multi-criteria analysis and from these results five models (i.e., DERM, DREAM, PHED, RISKOFDERM and PFAM) were selected for the assessment of dermal exposure in the case study of the potato farming system in the Andean highlands of Vereda La Hoya, Colombia. The results show that the models provide different dermal exposure estimations which are not comparable. However, because of the simplicity of the algorithm and the specificity of the determinants, the DERM, DREAM and PFAM models were found to be the most appropriate although their estimations might be more accurate if specific determinants are included for the case studies in developing countries. PMID:25938911

  6. Effects of Insect-Proof Net Cultivation, Rice-Duck Farming, and Organic Matter Return on Rice Dry Matter Accumulation and Nitrogen Utilization.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xin; Xu, Guochun; Wang, Qiangsheng; Hang, Yuhao

    2017-01-01

    Insect-proof net cultivation (IPN), rice-duck farming (RD), and organic matter return (OM) are important methods to realize sustainable development of rice production. A split-plot field experiment was performed to study the effects of IPN, RD, and OM on the rice yield, dry matter accumulation and N utilization. Results showed that compared to inorganic N fertilizer (IN), wheat straw return, and biogas residue return increased the rice yield by 2.11-4.28 and 4.78-7.67%, respectively, and also improved dry matter and N accumulation after the elongation stage (EG), dry matter and N translocation, and N recovery efficiency (NRE). These results attributed to an increase in leaf SPAD values and net photosynthetic rate (Pn) after the EG. Compared to conventional rice farming (CR), RD promoted the rice yield by 1.52-3.74%, and contributed to higher the leaf photosynthesis, dry matter and N accumulation, dry matter and N translocation, and NRE. IPN decreased the intensity of sun radiation in the nets due to the coverage of the insect-proof nets, which declined the leaf Pn, dry matter accumulation and translocation, N absorption and translocation, and NRE compared to open field cultivation (OFC). The rice yield of IPN were 2.48-4.98% lower than that of OFC. Compared to the interaction between CR and IN, the interaction between RD and OM improved the rice yield by 5.26-9.33%, and increased dry matter and N accumulation after the EG, dry matter and N translocation, and NRE. These results indicated that OM, RD and the interaction between RD and OM could promote dry matter accumulation and N utilization, which was beneficial to improve the rice yield.

  7. Effects of Insect-Proof Net Cultivation, Rice-Duck Farming, and Organic Matter Return on Rice Dry Matter Accumulation and Nitrogen Utilization

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xin; Xu, Guochun; Wang, Qiangsheng; Hang, Yuhao

    2017-01-01

    Insect-proof net cultivation (IPN), rice-duck farming (RD), and organic matter return (OM) are important methods to realize sustainable development of rice production. A split-plot field experiment was performed to study the effects of IPN, RD, and OM on the r