By MJ Deschamps
With fast fashion and quick turnover key commercial ingredients of today’s garment and apparel industry, excess textile production is prompting the sector to gravitate towards more recycling and re-use of materials, to conserve energy, increase sustainability and lower raw material costs. (more…)
The organic farming debate is about more than just yields
Yields from organic farming may not match those produced by farmers who use synthetic fertilizers and pesticides, but there are other good reasons to buy and support organic — its health benefits, the good that it does for farm workers, even its animal-welfare rules.
So, at least, say executives of the Organic Trade Association, a Washington-based group that represents about 6,500 organic farmers, producers, retailers and suppliers.
“Yield is only one window into organic farming,” says Laura Batcha, executive vice president of the trade group. Organic farming is “good for the environment. It’s good for local economies. It’s good for the farmer incomes.” A 2008 USDA survey of organic production found that organic farms had average annual sales of $217,675, compared to the $134,807 average for U.S. farms overall. Overall, the U.S. organic industry, including fiber as well as food, generated about $31 billion in 2011, up from just $1 billion in 1990. Despite the U.S.’s sluggish economy, organic food and farming remain growth businesses.
I went to see Laura and Christine Bushway, who is CEO of the organic trade group, at their offices on Capitol Hill to talk about several issues, including the push to require labels on food containing genetically modified organisms, the Farm Bill and food safety, including a recent incident of mad cow disease in California. But we talked a lot about yields because it’s in the news: A recent survey of 66 research studies published in Nature, which found that organic yields lag those of conventional farming, has stirred up a bit of a brouhaha. [See my blog post Organic food is not as green as you think, and the comments.]
Just eight months ago, a one-acre plot at the Denver Green School was an unused athletic field, but now that land has come to life with food-bearing vegetation.
“We have harvested over 3,000 pounds of produce from this ground,” said Megan Caley, a coordinator for Sprout City Farms, which partnered to create the garden.
“Kids are eating healthier,” said Frank Coyne, of the public school. “They are excited to eat the tomatoes on the salad bar, they are excited to eat the cucumbers.”
(WATCH the program’s video below, or READ the story in News-7 Denver)
Finally, all non-organic cotton isloaded with pesticides, and those pesticide chemicals can promote Parkinson’s disease, dementia and other brain disorders (http://www.naturalnews.com/027098_p…). The only cotton that’s free of pesticides is100% organic cotton, which is available from a few specialty stores and online retailers.
Mantrameds sustainable medical apparel encourages you to reduce, reuse & recycle on this Thanksgiving holiday! This great article from Organic Authority gives tips on reducing your waste before, during and after turkey day!
Written by Abbie Stutzer
Thanksgiving is not about stuffing your face and unbuttoning your pants to allow your stomach that extra inch of space. Nor is it about wasting oodles of food, paper products and energy. Shocking, I know. The renowned holiday is really about being thankful for what you have, family and good food prepared with care — and consciousness.
It’s easy to overlook that last part. We’re all hurried and rushed, and spend most of our holiday prep time thinking about meal presentation rather than preparation and clean up. The following tips, ideas and general advice can help you stay conscious this Thanksgiving. Enjoy the day and take pleasure in knowing you did everything in your power to produce a sustainable meal!
Thanksgiving Day Preparation
Get it Done in One Trip
Make your list, check it twice, and have your mom look over it so she can remind you of that one item you will inevitably forget. Getting all of your holiday shopping done in one trip will save gas, wear and tear on your car and time.
Break Out the Good Dishes
Don’t use plastic utensils or paper plates, and cook with reusable containers and pans. Sure, dish washing is a chore, but these “convenient” dishes create a ton of waste. Use cloth napkins, too. Also, post meal clean up can be done with a homemade, green cleaner and an old towel.
Recycle every last plastic container, cardboard box and wine bottle.
Put plant waste, coffee grounds and tea bags in your compost pile.
Decorate with Nature
Fill clear vases with pinecones, acorns and colorful leaves and use as an earthy centerpiece. Popped open your organic wine bottles already? Take the corks, carve a small slit in the cork, and place a piece of paper with a guest’s name to create unique, upcycled place settings.
Use the Whole Turkey
That expensive free-range, organic turkey gave its life to feed you and your family and friends — you better use the whole thing. Kathy Bechtel of Italian Food, Wine, Health and Fitness has a great post dedicated to how to use the entire bird.
Use Organic and Local Veggies
A no-brainer, but easy to forget if you’re in a rush at the store. Try to buy fresh rather than canned. Use traditional Thanksgiving food (cranberries, yams) and make unconventional side dishes.
Meat-Free Meal Options
These awesome holiday recipes are vegetarian-friendly. Serve as this year’s Thanksgiving entree (the butternut squash gnocchi looks amazing — and it can be made vegan) if you and your family don’t eat meat, or serve as unique side dishes to complete your turkey.
Enjoy A Real Green Christmas!
Mantrameds’ South Carolina office moved early Fall to W. Antrum Drive in Greenville. We have a great display room that has remained sparse until today. Pictured below are some of the materials that go into Mantrameds scrubs.
To the right are miniature hay bales. The two brown ones are Texas Organic Cotton, which accounts for 50% of our poly/cotton blend. The orange hay bale with tiger paws is one of Jack Miller’s favorite souvenirs. He bought it at a fundraiser for the agriculture department at his alma matter – Clemson University. To learn more about Texas organic cotton, go to http://www.texasorganic.com/
The plastic pyramid in the center of the table is made of display canisters from Repreve Recycled Polyester, which makes up 50% of Mantrameds fabric. These canisters show the 3 stages of the recycled polyester process. The plastic is melted down and chopped into small beads. These are melted down into flakes, which are then extracted into polyester yarn. To read more about Repreve Recycled Polyester, go to http://www.repreve.com/
The left side of the table displays Mantrameds’ newest literature. As of last week, we have an updated catalog, story-teller hangtags, discount cards, and star-shaped badge pulls. To request a new catalog or inquire about Mantrameds scrubs, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember, Mantrameds scrubs are made in the USA using sustainable practices. Buy a pair for the green nurse in your family this Christmas!