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Michelle Obama’s organic garden makes big agriculture shudder

michelle-obama-organic-gardenA proponent of healthy eating, The first lady wants to encourage Americans  to eat more healthfully.

The new organic garden at the White House is  intended to provide food for White House residents as well as help Americans understand local farming better .  The organic garden is reported to have arugula, cilantro, tomatilloes, hot peppers and other  herbs.

According to Colleen’s Organic Gardening Blog, Whatever the First Family does is considered fashionable and  fans of real food have been delighted by the White House garden, but the agricultural industry has not.  All of this positive PR for organics seems to be a little unsettling to Big Ag. So one group, the Mid America CropLife Association, has sent an email defending chemical ag to Mrs. Obama. 

In part, the letter says:

“As you go about planning and planting the White House garden, we respectfully encourage you to recognize the role conventional agriculture plays in the U.S in feeding the ever-increasing population, contributing to the U.S. economy and providing a safe and economical food supply. America’s farmers understand crop protection technologies are supported by sound scientific research and innovation.”

However, Mid America Crop Life didn’t just send the letter to Mrs. Obama, they also  sent it to hundreds of people who they thought would be sympathetic to their views. Except that to these people, they included an additional note:

“Did you hear the news? The White House is planning to have an “organic” garden on the grounds to provide fresh fruits and vegetables for the Obama’s and their guests.While a garden is a great idea, the thought of it being organic made Janet Braun, CropLife Ambassador Coordinator and I shudder. As a result, we sent a letter encouraging them to consider using crop protection products and to recognize the importance of agriculture to the entire U.S. economy.”


So, it seems organic gardens make Big Ag nervous or shudder. Why is that? maybe it is that as many of us already know, organic food production is growing rapidly and has reached a level of popularity, that is now competitive to big agriculture. For a long time Big Ag had a monopoly on food production in the US and now it is having to rethink some of is strategic planning and that means disruption. Disruption is always painful to large institutions, just look at the banking industry. That being said disruption often leads to innovation so we hope that the First Lady taking the step of putting in an organic garden at the White House is truly a sign that the tides are turning. 

You can see the full text of the letter at La Vida Locavore.

Family in town this week

Been having a nice visit with Virginia at the farm; we worked on making some new top secret products that we are planning to debut this summer.

Things are beginning to keep busy at the farm with the nicer weather:  like for instance the new part of garden……….see pics ………..

Dad is digging up for me on the side of the store.

Excited about next events coming up::  Makan da  Spring Festival on May  3 and 4 ;  Then Dad will go up  to the IAHSE  conference in Springfield on Mon/Tues, May 6 and 7.  Need more products for that.

Busy Busy Busy

Back from Seattle

We had a nice little get away last week. Took some time off and went out west to see Xav and Erica in Seattle.

It was a very short trip just enough time to goto the baby shower and lay out the plans and timeline for how soon we can expect to add more “little-pepper-pickers” to the family roster. Erica said that we needed to wait at least a year before KE could get to work, but Xav said that a year off is just plain laziness. 🙂

We also had time to talk about darn hot peppers and start planning some big ideas for next year. Well thats all for now, gotta get back to tending the farm

Pepperfest – September 1st (11am to 6 pm)

Join us for the Festival of Chiles – the Spiciest Festival Around

pepperfestmusic.jpgSeptember 1st (11am to 6 pm)
827 Vines Road Cobden, Illinois

  • Sample our salsas, pepper jellies and other spicy products
  • Taste a real Southwest Style Cookout
  • Smell the aroma of fresh roasting peppers
  • Enjoy Blue Grass, Tex-Mex and Local Music
  • Meet other Chile Heads and Friendly People

What’s different in Southern Illinois? Join us and see! Come on down, Amigo!

*for more information go to: or call 618-893-1443

Click here to save 10 % at the DARN HOT PEPPERS STORE