Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Feeling a Bit Dumb

For reasons I really can’t explain, I read a Farm Journal. Not something I ever did before and I doubt I’ll do so again because let me tell you it has me feeling somewhat ignorant. Honestly, I only read a few of the articles. Er, okay, I admit it. I started to read a few of the articles and then quit because I had no comprehension of what they were going on about. Obviously I don’t speak farm.

For example, did you know there is a Corn College? Apparently it’s a hot ticket because you can do an early bird registration, $325 for two days, and sessions are filling up fast. There will be hands-on training in the field as well as the classroom and attendance earns Certified Crop Adviser credits. Wouldn’t want to miss out on them now would you?

Something that intrigued me, well, maybe not, is that the same enzyme that helps cows digest grasses is now being implanted into corn cells in order to unlock sugars in the plant’s leaves and stalks for ethanol production. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for biofuels that are more environmentally friendly but do we really want to be messing with inserting animal genes into vegetable matter and all that implies? Another question about this is what happens if cows eat this genetically altered corn? Would they then be considered cannibals?

Here’s an interesting tidbit. In an attempt to cut the sow herd, Canada is offering its hog farmers a breeding animal buyout of $225 per head. In order to qualify, producers must empty one entire barn and can’t restock for at least 3 years. They anticipate 150,000 animals which will not be sold for human consumption. That’s $33,750,000 that the Canadian government is willing to pay for a contrived shortage. The point of it? To drive up pork prices for the farmers.

Just one last thing before I end today’s lesson on farming. Calf scours. Do you know what that is? Do you know the seven causes? I now do and trust me, you don’t want to.

Chat tomorrow, June 12, at TalkingTwoLips from 7-10 EST with a bunch of great Total-E-Bound authors. Stop by and join in the fun. I'm sure there'll be lots of spicy excerpts!


Sandra Cox said...

Early bird registration for corn college,....hmmm.

Katie Reus said...

I have no idea what that is and you're right, I don't want to, lol :)

LynTaylor said...

Hmm .. only dealt with horse scours and your right. Not something to be discussed over dinner ;)

Hate the idea of these scientists mucking around with my food. I always worry that these crops are going to get out of control, plus not to mention what they just might be doing to us.

Amarinda Jones said...

Uh huh...very interesting...were we a bit bored today hmmm?

Molly Daniels said...

I'll have to ask my sis and BIL about that...

Several years ago, a school was having trouble with the coyote population. They were living in the bushes near the school. Us Yanks would kill or relocate the coyotes, right? Canada simply cut down the bushes. WTF???

Anny Cook said...

I read a farm blog... does that count. It's about a family that are chicken farmers...something I know a little bit about as I used to collect eggs for a chicken farmer.

Geez what a varied life I've led.