I could use some help and advice. I'm inthe process of purchasing a farm in
central Kentucky that I'd like to convert to sustainable, organic certified
Currently the " bottoms" are planted to tobacco, corn, and soybeans that are
managed conventionally and have had typical applications of pesticides, and
I am concerned about the amount of time that it takes to break down such
elements in the soil.
I'm told that there can be up to a three year waiting period before such
treated soils would be deemed acceptable for organic certification.
This comment appeared on the list that has caused me a great deal of
angst...since it mentioned soil must be tested for some 300 chemicals etc.!
<< The crops used to produce American Growers Foods' products have all been
Certified Chemical-Free by Farmers Research & Development, a non-profit
agricultural research firm, located in Dakota dunes, S.D. Farmers Research &
Development president Mike Weckwerth, stated that the soil and crops must be
tested and found to be free to the limits of detection as of May 1, 1998, from
more than 300 chemicals targeted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
and Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The testing is conducted on the soil-
-- before the crop is planted, at harvest and at delivery to the grain
processor. All testing is performed by independent laboratories using EPA and
FDA specified methods. >>
This is a bit scary for most small scale growers because it sounds very
expensive and may be beyond their means.
Further local Cooperative extension apparently can not do such extensive
Is there perhaps a list of these 300 chemicals? products/brands that contain
them, crops primarily used on, estimated break down period in the soil etc.
I know I can't afford thousands of dollars for such tests. Does anyone perhaps
know of labs that are set up to do such tests at low cost? and is the labs
results tested or certified by EPA ? are test results fairly standard given
the tests, standards, machinery, and proper calibration or could there be
widely different results from different labs?
Are there any cover crops etc. that can be used to remediate such fields more
quicky? any cultural procedures? Look forward to your comments.Thanks so much.
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