I would check with some animal science people and have them find out for
sure but I don't think there have been any 0157 cases with pigs. I would
think their role in an orchard would be after harvest anyhow. It would be
the sheep or cattle for grazing and the poultry for insect control that I
would be interested in hearing what you find out. Please share any answers
you come up with on the list.
From: Steve Diver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: email@example.com <firstname.lastname@example.org>; Charles
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 7:31 PM
Subject: Animals, Orchards, E. Coli
>In response to Benbrooks post, I have a related question regarding
>manure and E. Coli and orchard grazing systems.
>Agroforestry is the integration of woody plants and crops and/or
>animals. The idea behind intercropping is that you get two
>agricultural products from the same area, thus increasing total
>yield. In addition, there are usually beneficial biological
>interactions between the two systems.
>Agroforestry has generated a lot of interest in sustainable
>agriculture among forest people, tree growers, graziers, etc.
>For good reason. It is a land-use farming system that has multiple
>uses and benefits.
>So here is the scenario:
>What about grazing sheep in apple orchards? Does the
>bad strain of E. coli, or any strain of E. coli have a particular
>association with sheep? Or does the E. coli have a species
>specific link to cows, hogs, chickens, geese, guineas, whatnot?
>>From an agroforestry perspective grazing sheep in an orchard would be
>a progressive model of sustainable food production. The sheep graze
>down the cover crops and therefore help manage the orchard floor
>vegetation as well as contribute biological fertility to the soil.
>But due to recent publicity, talking to apple growers about manure in
>the orchard is like yelling "fire" in a crowded theater.
>Here I refer to publicity linking E. coli to raw apple cider.
>Unfairly, the orchard in Oklahoma linked to E. coli sickness was
>blamed for apple drops, yet they don't pick drops nor do they graze
>animals. In fact, there has never been a positive test of E. coli
>from any apple cider on the farm. Yet this sort of publicity
>surrounding raw apple cider sales has the industry running scared.
>Now growers are getting notices that pasteurized apple cider will
>probably become mandatory in the near future, so get prepared to
>spend another $15-25,000 on pasteurization equipment or stop selling
>So, on one hand those in agroforestry see opportunities to
>integrate trees and animals to create beneficial interactions
>and yield more than one agricultural product from the land.
>But on the other hand, concerns about E. coli need to be addressed
>with solid information so the apple growers and peach growers and
>fruit growers will know what is real and what is phoney.
>Likewise, there is interest in using weeder geeze in orchards to
>chomp on the dreaded plum curculio larvae.
>Likewise, there are opportunties to run the pastured poultry pens
>What is the answer to the use of animals in orchards, to the
>occurence of animal poop in orchards, to the use of applying
>raw manures to orchards?
>Is there a best management practice that says you can graze
>orchards until 30 days or 60 days before harverst? In other
>words, does E. coli breakdown outdoors etc.
>What about using raw poultry litter as a fertilizer for orchards?
>I know several growers who would really like to know the
>answer to these sorts of questions. Can anybody point to
>resources or guidelines?
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