the sunnier side of biodiesel.

a small swath of a large-ish planting of high-oil sunflowers suitable for use in the production of biodiesel. the field is owned by cropp ( organic valley ) which happens to own organic logistics which hauls organic products on trucks that run on, you guessed it, biodiesel.

this is an experimental crop to help quantify biodiesel yields from this particular high-oil variety of sunflowers.

update – sources in the know have told me that cropp ( organic valley ) planted 27,000 flowers per acre over 14 acres or 374,000 sunflowers! as indicated it’s a high-oil "industrial" variety which is certified organic.

our local, organic bees didn’t get the memo about colony collapse disorder.

like their bee brothers and sisters around the world, our local, organic bees are thriving while much of the rest of the population is suffering from colony collapse disorder.

i’ve heard more than one local bee keeper theorize that the culprit is high fructose corn syrup produced from genetically modified corn containing bacillus thuringiensis, but apparently the data doesn’t fully support that conclusion.

whatever the reason, we’re thankful to have what seems to be a nearly unlimited supply of yummy raw honey fit for a pooh.

organic tomatoes – tasty and full of flavonoids.

fans of organic farming have long maintained that organic farming practices produce a healthier soil and healthy soil yields tastier and healthier foods. but scientific data to support the healthier part of the claim has for the most part been lacking. however, a recent issue of the acs’ journal of agricultural and food chemistry published the results of a ten-year comparison of the influence of organic and conventional crop management practices on the content of flavonoids in tomatoes which found that organic tomatoes have almost twice the quantity of antioxidants (called flavonoids) that help to prevent high blood pressure and strokes.

the UK-based soil association has long touted the results from a study that showed that UK-grown produce has shown a 12 to 76 per cent drop in important nutrients over the past 50 years, a fact that they theorize is related ot the rise of "conventional" farming practices so i wouldn’t be surprised to see more data soon on the health benefits of eating food grown in healthy soil.