Viewpoint: Conventional farmers take better care of soil health than media portrays

soil in hands

[Editor’s Note: Amanda Zaluckyj is a practicing attorney and farmer’s daughter who shares her family’s story at The Farmer’s Daughter USA.]

In “Can American soil be brought back to life?” Politico reporter Jenny Hopkinson claims soil health has been completely neglected by the American farmer and that activities undertaken to promote it are seen as against farm culture… Yet if the reporter had spent a little more time researching the topic or speaking to more than one farmer, she’d realize soil health has long been a focus — even an obsession — among farmers.

Farmers — both conventional and organic — are already using strategies that improve soil health, such as no-till or minimum tillage, cover crops, crop rotation, and regular soil testing.

According to The Washington Post, as of 2009, 35 percent of the country’s farmland already had some no-till crops. The 2012 agricultural survey shows that of the 279 million tillable acres in the United States, 96 million fall under no-till practices, which is up from 88 million acres in 2010. The adoption of no-till has increased an average of 2.3 percent annually since records were first kept in 1972. The widespread use of genetically modified crops has also made this easier.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: Wrong, Politico: Today’s Farmers Are Obsessed With Healthy Soil

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