Is Hydroponic – Organic?

Urban Farm Lifestyle

  Healthy Regenerative Lifestyle 

Is Hydroponic – Organic?

The debate continues on whether fruits or vegetables grown hydroponically instead of in soil, should be allowed the organic label? The USDA says yes!

David Proctor

 

 
  
 
 
 
From Seed To Fork, Egg To Plate.

    We may not live on a farm, but we can grow where we live.

 

 

 

 


Is Hydroponically Grown, Organic?

by David Proctor


January 24, 2019

Urban Farm Lifestyle Magazine    Published Weekly


The occupations of many small farmers rely on being able to get a higher price for a superior product.
 
Hydroponics is a system that allows plant nutrients to be accessed by the plant through water that the plant is in. No soil is involved with the transition of nutrients to the plant.  It is a very effective system, uses less water than soil-based agriculture and allows plants to be grown inside without a lot of land, without most pest and competing weeds.

 

Hydroponic Greenhouse

Hydroponic Greenhouse

I really enjoy having fruit and vegetables that are out of season but I do not think that substantially more should be paid for a product that doesn’t live up to the same quality as organic.

You have to keep in mind that a hydroponic system feeds the plant.  Organic feeds the soil that feeds the plant.

I never really thought too much about whether hydroponically grown fruit or vegetables was organic or not.  Until I started patronizing the organic aisle and paying a premium for the produce, meat, and dairy.  You think you are getting a product that is either grown in the soil or is eating what has been grown in the soil organically.

Monticello

Monticello

So, what is organic and who puts that label on things that we pay more for?  Organic labels are placed by inspectors who are controlled by the USDA National Organics Program (NOP), United States Department of Agriculture.  The USDA takes into account guidelines established by the National Organics Standards Board (NOSB).

In 1995 Organic was defined by the NOSB as “an ecological production management system that promotes and enhances biodiversity, biological cycles, and soil biological activity. It is based on minimal use of off-farm inputs and on management practices that restore, maintain, and enhance ecological harmony”

Soilless environments weren’t really being considered as organic nor did the rest of the world consider hydroponics as organic.  Everything went along well until the popularity of eating healthy and eating organic started to take off.

When money is involved, things start to change quickly.  Other countries started to import their products to the US since they could get a better price with their hydroponically grown produce and being able to use the organic label that other countries would not allow.  Mexico, Canada and Holland all import tomatoes, peppers, berries, lettuce and other fruits and vegetables as organic in this country, but can’t sell as organic in their own country, because they are hydroponically grown!

Don’t get me wrong, I love hydroponics.  Hydroponics was the key element in my farm plan to feed my animals.  But I never considered that I would call that organic. 

How often do you see in the organic aisle the label hydroponically grown organic?  I am not against the hydroponic industry nor am I here to demonize the hydroponic growers.  The problem is the USDA has not lived up to maintaining the standards of organic and has been allowing these growers to be certified because of money and influence.

Grown In Soil

Grown In Soil

In fact, I have used a hydroponics system for growing my jalapeno plants.
 
As I said before, do we feed the plant or feed the soil.  The most natural way and the healthiest way is to feed the soil that feeds the plant.  If you think that soil is inert and is just there to support the plant, till we feed it with Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium, then you may not get this article at all or wonder what the big deal is.
 
The true test is in your taste buds.  During the seasonal time of year for locally grown fruits and vegetables, try tasting a true organic against a hydroponically grown and see if you can tell any difference.

Fruit & Vegetables

Fruit & Vegetables

How many wines have you bought that said they were made from grapes grown hydroponically?

Samuel Adams advertises that they make their beer from hops that are grown at one location in Germany. The soil on this farm, provides the taste that is found with the Hallertau Mittlefruh hop.

The debate goes on. If you want a say in it, I would normally say you can vote with your dollars, but if you don’t know what you’re buying because the labels don’t tell you what you are really purchasing then that process is hardly effective.
 
If you want to help send a message you can contact, you state and local representative or you could even sign a petition to keep the soil in organic.

http://www.keepthesoilinorganic.org/sign-petition


Check It Out!

 

What does organic really mean? Everything you ever wanted to know about what it means to be organic.:


Quick Tip

How Does Hydroponics Work?

How Does Hydroponics Work?


Bibliography:

Dixon, Linley, Ph.D. “Is Hydroponics Organic?” Cornucopia Institute. N.p., 11 Mar. 2015. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

“Should You Buy Hydroponic Vegetables?” Rodale’s Organic Life. N.p., 30 Mar. 2015. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

“Keep-soil-in-organic.” Keep-soil-in-organic. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

Damrosch, Barbara. N.p., 19 Feb. 2014. Web.

“Green City Growers Main Navigation.” Green City Growers. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2017.

Dykstra, Jim. “Hallertau: Hop Nobility and Its Bostonian Knight.” The Beer Connoisseur, The Beer Connoisseur, 3 Aug. 2015, beerconnoisseur.com/articles/hallertau-hop-nobility-and-its-bostonian-knight.




Posted in Health, Magazine Issues, Plants Tagged with: ,

Living Soil

Urban Farm Lifestyle

  Healthy Regenerative Lifestyle 

Living Soil

Our soil is one of the most important natural resources that our country has.  To be able to keep this valuable resource, we need to feed the Soil, not the Plant!

 

 

David Proctor

 

 
  
 
 
 
From Seed To Fork, Egg To Plate.

    We may not live on a farm, but we can grow where we live.

 

 

 

 


Soil Ecology

by David Proctor


January 17, 2019

Urban Farm Lifestyle Magazine    Published Weekly


We reap what we sow. 

This applies to our attitude and actions as much as to what is planted.

To be able to maintain our high quality of living, we must manage our soil resources better.  One way to do that is to plant cover crops.

“Living Soil” is a film that documents this subject very well.  This film was produced by Chelsea Myers, founder of Tiny Attic Productions, LLC which is located in Columbia, Missouri.

This film did an outstanding job of documenting the reasons behind our need for paying attention to our soil health and how our agriculture has to be in tune with ecology.
 
Nowhere in nature does monocropping come natural, nature wants diversity.

 

Monocropping

Monocropping

In agriculture, the predominate method of growing crops is to plow the field, then disc the field to break up the dirt and make it level and smooth for planting.

The field is sprayed with herbicides and pesticides so when the seeds are planted and germinate, the seedling will have a chance to grow without competition with weeds nor be eaten by pest.

The fields are fertilized with N-P-K, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium.  All derived from petroleum.

The crops grow, sometimes with the help of irrigation, then are harvested.  If growing season permits, another crop is planted as the one is harvested, and sometimes a third crop is planted, such as winter wheat. 

Then the process starts all over again in the spring.

Tractor - Seeding

Tractor – Seeding

This process has kept the United States as the leading food producer of the world, but at a huge cost.
We have worn out our soils, have lost huge amounts of soil into our streams and rivers.

A change needs to be made in how our farmers treat the land.  No till planting along with growing cover crops, and utilizing grazing practices, needs to be encouraged throughout agriculture.
 
When the seeds are drilled into the field, little disturbance to the field occurs.

The fields need to have a cover crop growing, that will help keep the soil in place and aerated, so moisture can be absorbed.

Another plus of having a cover crop is nitrogen fixation.

The cover crop is grazed and knocked down by herbivores and the resulting field is ready for the new seed crop to emerge.

The result is a sustainable and a natural symbiotic relationship occurring.  The idea of the “soil is just a container for the plants” has to removed from the thought process.  We must rethink this thought to be; feed the soil, not the plant!

Symbiotic

Symbiotic

This is why, in my opinion, hydroponics will never replace the quality of food that can be grown in the soil.  Hydroponics is not organic, in my opinion.

The reason I believe this, is due to the lack of the symbiotic relationships. This has been removed or at least not as complete, as when plants are grown in the soil with naturally occurring microbes.

The sun and the soil are what gives flavor, and the nutrients to our food. 

We need to protect our soil as if our lives depend on it, because it does, for us and our future generations.

The documentary “Living Soil” is well worth watching!


Check It Out!

 

Living Soil

Living Soil 1:00:22


Quick Tip

 

Dr. Jerry Hatfield

Dr. Jerry Hatfield 1:38


Bibliography:

Wright, Chelsea, director. Living SoilVimeo, Nov. 2018, vimeo.com/298616093.




Posted in Health, Magazine Issues, Plants Tagged with:

Nutritional Yeast

Urban Farm Lifestyle

  Healthy Regenerative Lifestyle 

Nutritional Yeast

I personally prefer to get most of my protein by eating grass fed beef, but….

David Proctor

 

 
  
 
 
 
From Seed To Fork, Egg To Plate.

    We may not live on a farm, but we can grow where we live.

 

 

 

 

 


What Is Nutritional Yeast?

by David Proctor


January 10, 2019

Urban Farm Lifestyle Magazine    Published Weekly


I personally prefer to get most of my protein by eating grass fed beef, but if you are not into eating meat, or maybe you would like an additional source of nutrition, you should consider nutritional yeast.

 

What is nutritional yeast and how is it different from regular yeast?

 

Dough

Dough

“Nutritional yeast is a highly nutritious vegan food product with various potential health benefits. It can be used to add extra protein, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to meals. Studies suggest that nutritional yeast may help protect against oxidative damage, lower cholesterol and boost immunity.”  Nov 30, 2017     healthline.com

“Nutritional yeast and active dry yeast are not interchangeable ingredients. …Nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast that is used, especially by vegans, to thicken sauces and mimic the flavor of Parmesan cheese. Active, dry yeast is an activated yeast usually included in breads to make them rise.” Nutritional Yeast vs. Active Dry | Livestrong.com

Active yeast, known as brewer’s yeast, is used to make bread rise and is used in beer and other foods. 

Bread

Bread

“Nutritional yeast is a species of yeast known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae.” This yeast has been heated and dried so it is no longer active.

Nutritional Yeast

Nutritional Yeast

What makes nutritional yeast good for you, is that it is a good source of protein, fiber, B vitamins, potassium, calcium, iron, zinc, phosphorus, selenium and molybdenum.

Be sure to get non-fortified version so you do not get synthetic vitamins.  About a
teaspoon to a tablespoon a day will add a great amount of nutrition to your diet.

Some suggested ways to consume nutritional yeast, besides just plain eating it is to place on eggs, popcorn, instead of using butter or salt, in risotto, and soups.
 
Nutritional yeast is sometimes considered to be a superfood because of all the high-protein, low-fat, nutrient-dense food that is packed with vitamins and minerals.

If you are looking for a nutrient dense addition to your diet, then you might want to consider nutritional yeast.
Check It Out!


Check It Out!

The Amazing Benefits of Nutritional Yeast  3:10
Dr. Eric Berg DC
Published on Jun 13, 2016


Quick Tip

 

15 Reasons To Love Nutritional Yeast

15 Reasons To Love Nutritional Yeast


Bibliography:

Dresden, Danielle. “Top 5 Nutritional Yeast Benefits and How to Use It.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, Oct. 2018, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323245.php.

Julson, Erica. “Why Is Nutritional Yeast Good for You?” Healthline, Healthline Media, Nov. 2017, www.healthline.com/nutrition/nutritional-yeast.

Cespedes, Andrea. “Nutritional Yeast vs. Active Dry.” LIVESTRONG.COM, Leaf Group, www.livestrong.com/article/537679-nutritional-yeast-vs-active-dry/.




Posted in Health, Magazine Issues Tagged with:

New Year Focus

Urban Farm Lifestyle

  Healthy Regenerative Lifestyle 

New Year

We are now truly focused on what is ahead for us all in 2019… 

 

David Proctor

 

 
  
 
 
 
From Seed To Fork, Egg To Plate.

    We may not live on a farm, but we can grow where we live.

 

 

 

 


2019 – New Year

by David Proctor


January 3, 2019

Urban Farm Lifestyle Magazine    Published Weekly


We are now truly focused on what is ahead for us all in 2019.  We have not seen such low unemployment in decades, the New York Stock Exchange is still in extremely high territory and inflation is still under control.  What is their not to like going into this New Year?

We can focus on political likes and dislikes, and many will.  For a moment, stop and think of where you are at and how lucky we are to be living in the United States.
Life is not easy and also comes with many challenges, but we are a truly blessed country.

Try not to think about what you don’t have, but stop and think about all the things you do have and an abundance of, like the best health care in the world, the best schools, low cost of energy, the list goes on.

That is a look at the macro around us.  The micro is ourselves and what we plan to try and achieve this year.

May I highlight a few ideas that I am working on for myself.

The first positive thing I want to do this year is each day, try and focus on the 80/20 rule (Pareto Principle).  What is the one (20%) positive thing that I can do each day that will supply the (80%) majority of all positive results.

I think the greatest application of this principle is in attitude or frame of mind that we make our decisions in.  A pour attitude can bring on a downward spiral, even in the best of situations.

The second thing I would like to focus on is one thing that I do not feel comfortable doing and that is public speaking.  One of the best things I did in High School was take public speaking.

Microphone
Public Speaking

I am not sure if they even offer that class in today’s schools.  It is difficult for me even after having training in the practice of public speaking, I can only imagine what it is like for the generations that have not had that opportunity.

The third thing I want to achieve this year is to finally have at least one chicken.  I know that sounds a little strange, but I want to have a chicken for eggs and to eventually eat.

Chickens

I would like to have at least one chicken!

The fourth thing I would like to get back into is working out at least one day a week with a trainer.  The trainer I had last year in Greensboro, NC was the best.  Jessica (my trainer) was able to get me to a point of physical well being that I had not been at or may never had been at.

Thor
Thor

The last thing I want to throw onto the list is to finish with reinventing myself.  As you all have read, I wanted to be a farmer/rancher since I was a little kid.

I ended up in the telecommunications field, which has lasted for over 40 years.  About every ten years I have had to reinvent what I did for a living.

Even though I reinvented myself in the telecommunications field, from Installer/Repairman, Cable Splicer, Outside Plant Construction, Central Office Equipment Installation, Engineer, Project Manager to what I am doing today, e-commerce and consulting.

All of these things,I hope to be a means to my ends, and that is to farm. I plan on keeping up with the corporate business that I have had for so many years, but I would like to see more clients be animals rather than people, overtime.

Cattle
And Have At Least One Cow Someday!

So, you have my hopes and ambitions for 2019.  What are yours?


Check It Out!

 

Consulting

New Consulting Web Site


Quick Tip

 

  1. Follow your heart
  2. If you don’t believe in yourself, no one else will
  3. Don’t give up

Bibliography:
N/A




 

Posted in Animal Husbandry, Chickens, Health, Magazine Issues Tagged with:

End of Year

Urban Farm Lifestyle

  Healthy Regenerative Lifestyle 

End of Year

End of Year.  This is when we assess where we have gone this last year and where we think we want to go next year. This issue will highlight a few of the places we have gone this last year and close with where we want to go.

David Proctor

 

 
  
 
 
 
From Seed To Fork, Egg To Plate.

    We may not live on a farm, but we can grow where we live.

 

 

 


Year End

by David Proctor


December 27, 2018

Urban Farm Lifestyle Magazine    Published Weekly


This has been a really different year for myself.  A true fork in the road.  I have high hopes for 2019 and the opportunities that are out there.

I hope your last year was a fork in the road for you. We have to keep learning and trying new things, some maybe out of our comfort zone.

One of the articles that I brought to you was on 3D Ocean Farming.  What a fascinating concept, to be able to farm in the open waters! Volume 4 Issue 29

 

3D Ocean Farming

3D Ocean Farming

Another trending concept is taking the farm off the land and into a box! Or as it is call “Farm In A Box”, which is container farming using hydroponics. Volume 4 Issue 6

Farm In A Box

Farm In A Box

Then this brings us to the concept, is or should food that is grown hydroponically be labeled organic? Volume 4 Issue 4

Hydroponic

Hydroponic vs Organic

Not only how we grow our food and label it, we also looked at the food itself, such as raw milk. Volume 4 Issue 23

Raw Milk Laws

Raw Milk Laws

Plus, we looked at the molecular aspects of food = GMO in Volume 4 Issue 10 – Genetically Modified Organism.  When not just natural selection is used to make changes in food, but actual DNA from a like or unlike organism is used to change the natural molecular makeup of the plant or animal.

GMO

GMO

In the end, this is about our health, our family’s health and our community’s health.

Health includes, physical, and emotional, besides what we have ingested.  That is what I have tried to bring to each of the readers.  Do not take for granted the food that you eat, make a point to know where it came from.  Do not take for granted your neighbors and their well-being.  It takes a community to raise a family, and a community to take care of the old.

Remember the past, live in the present, and plan for the future! Have a Healthy Regenerative Lifestyle.


Check It Out!

Virginia Beach

Volume 4 Issue 25 – Trip To The Beach


Quick Tip

 

Super Foods

Volume 4 Issue 45 – Healthy Living Quiz


Bibliography:
N/A




Posted in Health, Magazine Issues, Plants Tagged with: , , , , , ,

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