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The Russians Prove Small-Scale Organic Farming CAN Feed The World

The Russians Prove Small-Scale Organic Farming CAN Feed The World

Friday, 05 April 2013 14:39

“On a total of 8 million hectares (20 million acres) of land, 35 million Russian families grow food in small-scale, organic gardens on their Dachas (a secondary home, often in the extra urban areas). Because growing your own food happens to be a long-lived tradition in Russia, even among the wealthy.

Based on official 1999 statistics, 92% of Russia's potatoes, 77% of its vegetables, 87% of its fruits, 59.4% of its meat, and 49.2% of its milk were produced by these 35 million Dacha families (105 million people, 71% of the country's population).”


Read more: http://reclaimgrowsustain.com/content/russians-proving-small...

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I tend to agree with this guy.

Can more natural farming feed the world? With some basic technology sure.


Off topic

Hey emalvini I saw this and thought of you.. you may want to post this and do a live view http://www.foxnews.com/science/2013/05/31/giant-asteroid-to-...

The article also points out

that in the US alone, lawns take up 40-45 million acres of land. Canada is the same.

All those that are in favor

All those that are in favor of this system there is nothing preventing you from living the system. Give it a shot. I produce food on an indusrial scale...around 100k people. At the same time i provide dozens of families with jobs directly. We build schools and roads. We have 30 % of our land on virgin forest. All of this is only possible because each person specializes in what they are good at.

GMO's are not food. That is

GMO's are not food. That is what you produce. How much chemicals do you dump on your GMO's to get them to grow? How long do you think that can last? And producing things that cause cancer gastro intestinal disease diabetes and a host of other disease is not justified because you built a few roads and jobs...

Do you use immigrants to work your fields? How much do you pay them?

End The Fat
70 pounds lost and counting! Get in shape for the revolution!

Get Prepared!

Who Defines what Food is???

Some people define dogs as food and others as pets, should we allow the government to make it easier and define it for us? Obviously not, so if I decide that GMOs are food, that is my definition. Yours can vary, and I respect that. For that reason I also plant some conventional crops because people like you demand it, thus creating a good price in the market for me to plant it.

Sugar causes diabetes, pig lard causes heart disease, cigarettes cause cancer, coffee is addictive and causes increase in your heart rate, Big Macs can cause people to become fat....but we don't ban them, we allow people to decide for themselves.

Of course I use immigrant workers, I am an immigrant. But I don't live in the USA, I left because the opportunities for agriculture were gone. I think farming in the USA isn't as profitable because of government influence. Let's try and make it freer. The court system needs to product farmers that have their crops cross pollinated by their neighbors and not attacked by Monsanto. The act of planting transgenics is not the problem, but the lack of consequences if something bad occurs afterwards. I can agree with you that plants that cross pollinate should be banned or restricted, but not by law, but by simple economics. If it is very risky to plant transgenics because your neighbor will sue you, you won't plant them. You see, I can reason and come to a solution based on principle and not emotions.

"we allow people to decide for themselves"

How do people decide for themselves if the information is bullshit? You mention the Big Mac. When the average Joe eats one, if they have any guilt, it is from government propaganda on the fat content. They don't know they are eating an abused antibiotic filled cow who stood shoulder to shoulder in feces with other cows who could barely walk but still make it to the school lunch program.

If they did, yeah, then they would probably make an intelligent choice. Average Joe has no clue yet on how corrupt the food system is. But the learning curve is accelerating. I'd venture to say it is way ahead of the political curve.

Industrial farming will die. It is dieing. Eat local and know the story behind your food is on fire. People like you might want to adjust for the market shift or go out of business.

Am I missing the point here?

How is this news? I grow veggies in 100 sq.ft. and have so much I have to give some away to neighbors that I don't can. In fact, everyone on my road is giving veggies to each other to the point that some people say "No thanks, we have plenty!" There is one neighbor that caught on to all this excess grown and stopped growing their own garden because they are given so much throughout the summer they didn't need to grow anything and get enough to can!

We can feed each other no problem. Everyone that gardens always has more than they need. The U.S. can feed the entire planet if we were allowed to. But noooo, the stupid guberment pays farmers to NOT GROW FOOD! This has been going on since I was a kid in the 60-70's. I'm sure it was going on before then. It is stupid.

If the governments get out of the way, we can feed ourselves and others just fine!

How is it news?

Check out all the households who bought into the propaganda of perfectly manicured lawns sprayed with chemicals so that john deere could sell millions of overpriced lawnmowers. Not everybody is us man. That is what libertarianism always forgets.

I think you are right.

good post

Wonderful post

It's about controlling the government, and not allowing the government to control us.

Yes we can feed ourselves and others. My county's jail has a summer and winter garden, and produces 40% of it's food.

Our high schools, middle schools and elementary schools, and charter schools, all have gardens producing food for school lunches.

Our senior center, many community organizations are growing food, and my priest announced a couple weeks ago, we will be growing food for our soup kitchen.

I am turning away strawberries and snap beans from my neighbors, who are looking at me with begging eyes PLEASE HELP ME and take some of this delicious organic home grown food off my hands.. but we all have gardens, orchards, and an abundance.. canning is going on at the Grange.. my shelves are too loaded with jars from bumper crops since 4 years ago...

Now if I can just get them to give me their squash flowers.. rather eat the flowers than the squash at this point.

You post made me smile. THANK YOU for what you do.

The farmer I was renting my land to a number of years ago

Was laughing about the fact he made $19,000 profit by being paid to not grow corn on land he leased and did not own. The next year I rented it to an organic farmer.

If you need help with all the

If you need help with all the strawberries, I can handle that for you. It shouldn't take me long to eat them all. :)

More Recent Information From Russia (>50% from small plots)

This is from a forestry dissertation:

"Gorbachev’s perestroika, the subsequent disintegration of the USSR, and Russia’s liberal reforms radically altered the picture. As the state withdrew support to agricultural producers in the early 1990s, kolkhoz and sovkhoz production dwindled. Yet, at the same time, land became more readily available for household producers, which resulted in a sharp increase in the number of household producers and their output. It is recognized that the maintenance of adequate levels of food security over the transition period of 1990s was largely due to the proliferation of household plots (Sedik, Sotnikov, and Wiesmann 2003).

"In 2003, 34.8 million families (66% of all households in the country) owned gardening plots (subsidiary plot, allotment, garden, or dacha) and were involved in growing crops for subsistence (Rosstat 2005b). By 2005, 53% (by value) of the country’s total agricultural output was coming from household plots (which in 2006 occupied only 2.9% of agricultural land), while the remaining 47% (by value — Rosstat 2006) came from the agricultural enterprises (often the former kolkhozes and sovkhozes) and individual farmers, requiring 97.1% of agricultural lands (Rosstat 2007b). Therefore, just as predicted by Chaianov (Kremnev 1920) almost a century earlier, household production is currently 38 times more efficient in terms of land use than the “official” agriculture (i.e., requires 38 times less land area to produce 1 ruble worth of output), and also requires no governmental subsidies or support. For all these reasons, this traditional sector of Russian agriculture deserves the name of primary agriculture."

I believe that many of the statistics cited can be found in the following handbook:

I visited the Russian Far East

in the early 1990's when the S was in the process of hitting the F
during the collapse of the Soviet system and visited dacha fields
near Vladivostok.

Typically, the fields were smaller than a 100x100 ft. lot and people
were literally surviving on them as the value of currency had collapsed,
little was available in state-run shops.

The equivalent land in the US would have been swallowed by suburban
sprawl but in this case had been maintained as open space and was
easily accessed from the city by train.

Cuba has also gone big time into organic/small scale intensive agriculture
and now imports just 16 percent of its food - something like 70+ percent of all
the fruits and vegetable consumed in Havana are produced less than thirty
miles away. Here's what they were doing five years ago and it's expanded
greatly since:


Just Think How Much More Food

they could grow on the same amount of land using synthetic pesticides fertilizer or even.... GMO's


I lived over there for a couple years, and they put bug killer on everything. They sell it in bulk in markets by scooping it into baggies and people just shake it out in clumps on the plants and it's blowing in their faces while they just suck it in. Same goes for exhaust smoke from the buses--clouds around there heads, no problem. Hell, I don't even think they have any idea it's unhealthy. Ha ha ha! They smoke like chimneys and drink cheap vodka, then chase it with raw pig fat :)


..I remember the "infomercials" that illustrated/advertised how the "oldtimers over there" worked hard, drank, smoked and lived to 100+ years of age.....Was that just an "urban legend" or was it true?

I've also met a few expatriates from there that have subscribed to the diet of alcohol fatty(rich) foods, and their contention that there is a method to this "madness" and how much of our "low-fat-government-urged" existence is nothing but a sham.....that cancer is a result of A-Bomb tests that blew over the USA Heartland and resulted in the Fed Govt needing to create a "scapegoat" for the resultant cancer deaths caused by those A-Bomb "tests".....Any thoughts on this?...based upon your having lived there?

"Beyond the blackened skyline, beyond the smoky rain, dreams never turned to ashes up until.........
...Everything CHANGED !!


I can tell you that Russian men don't live very long. Get your googelator going :) Life's not so good for people. It's better than in the past, but it's still a tough place to live with not so many great opportunities. The government and oligarchs rule over them much more than us. They are not treated well.

About cancers here, I think a lot of that has to with gluttony, sloth, and stress. Maybe bombs--IDK.

No It's not

In their meta-analysis, McGill’s Verena Seufert and her colleagues examined 66 previous studies. Their results are bound to disappoint organic advocates. Overall, they found that organic methods produce 25 percent less food than conventional farming on the same land area.



The Russians Prove Small-Scale Organic Farming CAN Feed Russians. Not all of them, but most.

Not to nitpick, but is data from 14 years ago even relevant?

Specialization is crucial for

Specialization is crucial for development. If no one specializes in food production we all become peasant farmers. Before you protray this as some new glorious discovery i ask ypu to go and visit a country with peasant farmers and then tell me what you think and if you would want that life.

Why "peasant" farmers?

Being a farmer and being a peasant don't have to coincide with specialization. I think that's putting the cart before the horse. It's more likely that you would find a peasant farming because their labor is easier to exploit then a person becoming poor just because they are a farmer. Growing stuff will always be a last ditch effort for survival for good reason-it works.

If a farmer becomes poor from farming, it's probably because of regulations imposed on them, taxation or being a sucker for taking on debt. Where you say specialization is crucial for development, I'd say diversification is crucial. Do we continue specializing until there are only a few channels of food production left? Relying on 2% of the population to feed the other 98% sounds like a volatile situation to me, when you consider the fact that if you don't have access to food, you die.

Specialization is one of the

Specialization is one of the key factors for development. Consider the following scenario...

You live in 1850, colonizing the west, you have your plot of land and you are going to farm it. You get up at 4:00 am to milk the cow for your milk during breakfast and so your woman can make butter and cheese with what is left over. Then you feed the livestock like pigs and chickens. Your children are homeschooled because there are no schools available or any teachers nearby. So you take up some time to homeschool the children the best you can. Then you have to go out and get fire wood by chopping some trees down and then splitting each one. After that you have to go hunting for some meat. You are a subsistence farmer.

Or you can wake up in the morning, take the kids to school, go to work, on your way home stop off at the local store, buy some wood that the wood chopper cut, buy milk produced from the dairy farmer, cheese from the cheese factory, pick up your kids and be home by 6pm, with time left to watch some awesome MSM and go to bed in some 1000 thread count sheets produced in Egypt...

Go ahead and plant your garden, I do. I think it is awesome and you get some great veggies out of it. But don't allude yourself thinking that if we just get enough small farmers we can produce all of the food the world needs. Either we dedicate more human resources to small farms as you have stated, or we produce using industrial farming.

In 1850

farmer's still milked cows by hand, fed livestock without machinery, and wood was cut by hand with cross cut saws. Even if the dedicated dairy farmer was twice as efficient because he was specialized in his discipline and spent his life producing milk for the community, and other trades were similarly as efficient, it's hardly their specialization that lead to development, it the innovations that were made since then.

Innovations b c people had

Innovations b c people had more free time due to specialization.


You win this round Brigger :)

In terms of quality

Not to mention energy efficiency small scale local production
beats stands up to anything that industrial agriculture can produce.

In those countries that still have strong bases of peasant agriculture
- Croatia and Georgia come to mind - the quality and variety of
food is impressive.

And it is specialized in the sense that the plant and animal varieties
and means of raising them are uniquely adapted to the locality where
they are grown.

Yeah they live as if they

Yeah they live as if they were in 2000bc. Peasant farmers produce all konds of food but that is it. It is a highly intensive practice that consumes huge amounts of human resources. Those that work that life have shorter life spans due to no health care wood burning stoves poor water supply no sewege no heating etc