We’re biking across America to capture stories of the
Local Food Movement – 
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Nick Swetye talks Roundup

Posted by Robert DuBois | Jul 09, 2010

Heard of Glyphosate? Perhaps not.

Most home-owners know it as a simple spray that kills weeds in the yard, most farmers know it as an herbicide that kills weeds, allowing their crops to grow strong. It’s also known as Roundup, and it’s used on about 90 percent of soybean crops, and 70 percent of corn and cotton crops.

Over the last few years, Round Up’s efficacy has started to slip; for some, the herbicide is no longer working. So, what’s a farmer to do? One solution is to roll back to weed-killers that preceded glyphosate – in our current system, a debatably reasonable remedy – but let’s bring to the fore a crucial point that has lurked in the shadows of the Roundup conversation: the potential health and environmental implications of using these chemicals.

We caught up with Nick Swetye of the Green Triangle, a permaculture-based organization in Cleveland, about his view of Round Up, herbicide-resistant weeds, and the potential health and environmental implications of rolling back to older chemicals as a Roundup replacement.

Please share your reactions.


Nick said on Sunday, July 11, 2010:

Nick here – thanks for posting :P

I want to make one clarifying point because I think I heard myself say that it was Aztecs who were cutting off the hands of those with the amaranth seeds – to be clear – it was the Aztecs’ conquerors – the Spanish who were doing the lopping. As to the connection between the Spanish conquerors and these large chemical companies – I merely find it interesting how Amaranth, one of the most prolific and nutritious plants of the global plant kingdom, has been actively resisting empire for 500 years.

Thanks again guys, and have a great rest of your summer!

Kathy said on Wednesday, July 14, 2010:

No captioning for the video, the text is only an intro, no text for deaf and hard of hearing. If you can put an intro why not put the text of the message as well?

Robert said on Thursday, July 15, 2010:

Hey Kathy,

Yes! Thanks for the suggestion to make bikeloc more accesible. We’re working on getting some video text together, and will post it as soon as we can.

As a reminder, we do all of the work on our website on the road, which is why we’re sometimes a bit slow about posting blog updates, etc.

Paul said on Sunday, November 07, 2010:

This is a good story and a good video. I find it interesting how so many people are now going back to the local farming community and raising those people up and supporting them. Local foods, grown with sustainable methods, supported by local communities that realize that without a healthy food source and responsible people growing that food we are nothing. We are evolving as we come full circle.



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