This question is mostly for those of you who make a living agriculture, have relatively large farms( not only a homestead, but an actual production farm ), and use conventional methods( monoculture, synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, etc ).
I’m studying sustainable agriculture, and while I appreciate the knowledge I’m getting, I can’t help but notice that in this “scene”, many people seem hostile not only to conventional farming methods, which I understand, but by extension, hostile to conventional farmers. This strikes me as being kind of ridiculous, especially because many of these folks just go off and start homesteads all the while telling organic/ permaculture/ biodynamic is the future or agriculture.
So what I’m asking is, how many of you conventional farmers would give thought to implementing more sustainable practices on your farms? Things that “scale up”, so to speak, from small-scale permaculture. Obviously it would be completely unrealistic to think that a farmer with 500 acres is going to build swales and hugulkulture beds, but something like keyline rending is wholly doable on a large scale. Or silvopasture, or perennials that fulfill the same role as certain staple harvests like hazelnuts and chestnuts in place of corn or soy. I don’t know if any of you have heard of Mark Shepherd and New Forest Farms, but I’m more or less talking about his approach; people can grow most of their annual veg in small scale permaculture or organics, but most of those approaches don’t taken into account in staple harvests. So how can staple harvests be produced more sustainably by larger farms?
I guess I’m just wondering what members of the general mindset is towards this stuff. Are these practices things that you guys would like to do in an ideal world but don’t have the means to right now, or is it more like you generally merely disagree with it outright? If there were more people out there who were doing large-scale sustainable agriculture, would that potentially make any of you interested? I’ve talked to some people from a group “ve called the” Savanna Institute here in the Midwest which helps large scale farmers implement more sustainable practices that are still compatible with large scale agriculture, so I guess there’s at least some interest in it, but I believed I’d ask reddit too.
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