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Agriculture (General/Chat)

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  • Drinking Fountain? Go ahead, take a drink from the Drinking Fountain.

    Halsey Taylor is one of the leading manufacturers of drinking fountains today. Company founder Halsey W. Taylor invented the non-squirting drinking fountain. In 1896, Taylor's father died from typhoid fever. This illness is principally spread through contaminated drinking water. Several years later, while working as a plant superintendent for the Packard Motor Car Company, Taylor realized numerous workers were becoming sick with dysentery. He believed contaminated drinking water was the chief reason for the spreading illness. Taylor determined to develop a drinking fountain that was sanitary and would not contribute to the spreading of various illnesses. By 1912, he had...
  • Growing pains: how Oregon wound up with way more pot than it can smoke

    04/20/2018 1:27:43 PM PDT · by Responsibility2nd · 57 replies
    The Guardian ^ | 04/19/2018 | Lily Raff McCalou
    Trey Willison, a cannabis farmer in Eugene, first started worrying last May about there being too much marijuana in Oregon. He had sold all his “clone” plants to other growers, who were using them to cultivate yet more marijuana. “You start doing the math on that and it just didn’t make sense how people could be growing that many plants,” Willison said. Fast-forward nearly a year and Oregon does indeed have a glut of marijuana; there are over 1m lb of usable but unsold marijuana, according to the state tracking system. That’s more than 128m “eighths” of weed, and almost...
  • Fighting Solar Farm proposed for beautiful hilltop & ridge

    04/19/2018 10:38:20 AM PDT · by George from New England · 11 replies
    We are at the Florida county level, trying to fight a land purchase by an electric utility, to install acres of solar panels, on pristine hilltops and highest land in Florida. 350 acres. My posting is to solicit any freeper input as in has this happened in your area of the world. Our group wants to limit the solar farm to the lower elevation land areas, between the hillsides. What we are up against is corrupt politicians. State Senator Wilt Simpson bought this pastureland in 2016, after the county passed restrictions on housing development. He seems to have gotten fantastic...
  • Is Heinz’s new “mayochup” just innovation gone wrong?

    04/13/2018 2:34:27 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 79 replies ^ | 04/13/2018 | Staff
    [Photo: courtesy of Kraft Heinz] _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ As if our nation weren’t polarized enough, a new condiment is threatening to divide us even further: On Wednesday, Heinz announced potential plans to bring “mayochup” into the world. It’s half ketchup, half mayonnaise, and if you ask some people, 100% wrong. The food-processing company announced Thursday it’s contemplating selling the new product, provided it garners enough interest. It launched a public poll on Twitter, asking Americans to make the hard decision for them: “Want #mayochup in stores? 500,000 votes for yes and we’ll release it to you saucy Americans.” The reaction is mixed....
  • Why archaeologists are arguing about sweet potatoes

    04/13/2018 9:30:13 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 75 replies ^ | 04/13/2018 | Staff
    A Japanese variety of sweet potato Pixabay _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________ At some point, sweet potatoes crossed the Pacific. This much we know. As for the rest—How? When? Why?—we’re just not sure. Or, to be more clear, some people are sure they’re sure, and others disagree. Sweet potatoes have been at the center of a massive archaeological debate for many decades now, and a new paper in Current Biology has only stoked the flames. It uses genetic data from sweet potatoes and their relatives to establish a phylogenetic tree of their evolution, thereby demonstrating that the tubers existed in Polynesia before humans lived...
  • OKC Blasts Announcer Who Said Westbrook ... 'Out Of His Cotton-Picking Mind'

    04/12/2018 1:54:03 PM PDT · by Responsibility2nd · 51 replies
    TMZ ^ | 04/12/2018
    The OKC Thunder has issued a statement condemning the comments ... "We find the term used by Brian Davis on our broadcast last night to be highly inappropriate and offensive." "We’ve discussed it with the announcer and let him know that. He assures us it was not meant in any sort of offensive or derogatory manner and he apologizes." "Nonetheless, he’s been told the use of that term in any manner is unacceptable." An NBA game announcer is in hot water after saying Russell Westbrook was playing so well Wednesday night ... he was "out of his cotton-picking mind." Dude....
  • Specific bacteria in the small intestine are crucial for fat absorption

    04/11/2018 1:59:51 PM PDT · by Red Badger · 27 replies ^ | 04/11/2018 | University of Chicago Medical Center
    The small intestine, where most vitamins and other micronutrients are digested and absorbed. Credit: Wikimedia Commons ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Although the vast majority of research on the gut microbiome has focused on bacteria in the large intestine, a new study—one of a few to concentrate on microbes in the upper gastrointestinal tract—shows how the typical calorie-dense western diet can induce expansion of microbes that promote the digestion and absorption of high-fat foods. Several studies have shown that these bacteria can multiply within 24 to 48 hours in the small bowel in response to consumption of high-fat foods. The findings from this...
  • Scientists discover hybrid swarm in global mega-pest

    04/06/2018 11:27:07 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 31 replies ^ | 04-06-2018 | CSIRO
    Globalisation and increased movement between countries and continents means movement of agricultural pests is becoming more common. Global trade means global pests. Credit: CSIRO __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ CSIRO scientists have confirmed the hybridisation of two of the world's major pest species, into a new and improved mega-pest. One of the pests, the cotton bollworm, is widespread in Africa, Asia and Europe and causes damage to over 100 crops, including corn, cotton, tomato and soybean. The damage and controlling the pest costs billions of dollars a year. It is extremely mobile and has developed resistance to all pesticides used against it. The other...
  • Horse meat ban praised by animal-rights activists, but it’s only temporary

    03/29/2018 10:55:18 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 33 replies ^ | 03-29-2018 | Nicole Cobler
    WASHINGTON — Horse meat production won’t resume in the U.S. anytime soon, a victory for animal-rights advocates under the spending bill signed last week by President Donald Trump. The $1.3 trillion spending deal, which funds the government through September, renewed the country’s horse slaughter ban. Just months ago, animal-rights activists feared the ban could be in jeopardy. The measure includes language that prohibits the U.S. Department of Agriculture from spending money on inspecting horse slaughter facilities. Without inspections, horse slaughter plants can’t operate, so they’ll remain closed as they have for more than a decade. “I think we’re all kind...
  • Legislation would mean Grade A eggs could sit in stores much longer

    03/29/2018 4:55:44 AM PDT · by SandRat · 25 replies
    Sierra Vista Herald ^ | Howard Fischer Capitol Media Services
    PHOENIX — What's the difference between a Grade A egg and one that's labeled Grade AA? Pretty soon it could be as much as three weeks. The state Senate this week gave final approval to legislation that allows Grade A eggs to remain available for sale for up to 45 days after they were packed. That's nearly twice as long as currently permitted. In fact, the cartons for these eggs won't use terms like "sell by'' or "buy thru'' — the language in the current law. Instead they will be marked "best by'' or "use by.'' Consumers who want to...
  • Chef Butchers Deer Leg in Front of Animal Rights Activists at Toronto Restaurant

    03/28/2018 11:18:21 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 84 replies ^ | March 28, 2018 | By Debra Heine
    Antler animal rights protest, Toronto, Canada. (Image via Twitter.) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Animal rights activists were in for a grisly surprise over the weekend when protesters in front of a popular Toronto restaurant were treated to a live demonstration on how to properly butcher the hind quarter of a deer. Chef Michael Hunter is co-owner of Antler, a restaurant that serves "local seasonal and wild foods" that are native to Canada, "such as bison, boar, rabbit, duck and deer." When vegan protesters returned to his restaurant for the fourth time in recent days with signs bearing messages like "animals are not ours...
  • Amazon Jungle Once Home to Millions More Than Previously Thought

    03/28/2018 6:20:07 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 12 replies ^ | By Erin Blakemore | By Erin Blakemore
    Forget small nomadic tribes and pristine jungle: the southern Amazon was likely covered in a network of large villages and ceremonial centers before Columbus. Geoglyphs in the southern Amazon are evidence of a once-thriving population. Photograph courtesy of University of Exeter ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Before Spanish invaders conquered South America, sparse groups of nomadic people clustered around the Amazon River, leaving the surrounding rain forest pristine and untouched. Or did they? New research suggests a very different story—an Amazonian region peppered with rain forest villages, ceremonial earthworks, and a much larger population than previously thought. The research, funded in part by the...
  • Brewing hoppy beer without the hops

    03/20/2018 11:19:39 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 41 replies ^ | March 20, 2018 | University of California - Berkeley
    A more sustainable pint of craft beer possibly coming to a pub near you +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Hoppy beer is all the rage among craft brewers and beer lovers, and now UC Berkeley biologists have come up with a way to create these unique flavors and aromas without using hops. The researchers created strains of brewer's yeast that not only ferment the beer but also provide two of the prominent flavor notes provided by hops. In double-blind taste tests, employees of Lagunitas Brewing Company in Petaluma, California, characterized beer made from the engineered strains as more hoppy than a control beer...
  • Would you eat HUMAN MEAT? Fears raised over lab-grown flesh

    03/14/2018 10:04:24 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 53 replies ^ | 14th March 2018 | By Rachel O'Donoghue
    PEOPLE have been asked whether they would consider chowing down on human meat after science boffins starting growing flesh in a lab. Celebrity atheist Richard Dawkins recently tweeted asking his followers’ thoughts on starting a cannibal diet. Linking to an article about lab-grown flesh, the evolutionary biologist wrote: "I've long been looking forward to this," he wrote. "What if human meat is grown? Could we overcome our taboo against cannibalism?” He went to say the scientific breakthrough will be an “interesting test case for the consequentialist morality versus ‘yuck reaction’ absolutism.” The question of whether people would eat artificially created...
  • Trump demands aides pump up anti-China tariffs

    03/13/2018 5:30:06 PM PDT · by Mariner · 4 replies
    Politico ^ | March 13th, 2018 | By ADAM BEHSUDI and ANDREW RESTUCCIA
    President Donald Trump is getting ready to crack down on China. Trump told Cabinet secretaries and top advisers during a meeting at the White House last week that he wanted to soon hit China with steep tariffs and investment restrictions in response to allegations of intellectual property theft, according to three people familiar with the internal discussions. During the meeting, which hasn’t been previously been reported, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer presented Trump with a package of tariffs that would target the equivalent of $30 billion a year in Chinese imports. In response, Trump urged Lighthizer to aim for an...
  • Oxytocin-enforced norm compliance reduces xenophobic outgroup rejection

    03/12/2018 8:14:35 AM PDT · by foundedonpurpose · 29 replies ^ | April 7, 2017 | Nina Marsh, Dirk Scheele, Justin S. Feinstein, Holger Gerhardt, Sabrina Strang, Wolfgang Maier and R
    Oxytocin-enforced norm compliance reduces xenophobic outgroup rejection Nina Marsh, Dirk Scheele, Justin S. Feinstein, Holger Gerhardt, Sabrina Strang, Wolfgang Maier and René Hurlemann PNAS 2017 August, 114 (35) 9314-9319. Edited by Bruce S. McEwen, The Rockefeller University, New York, NY, and approved July 10, 2017 (received for review April 7, 2017) Article Figures & SI Authors & Info PDF Significance In the midst of rapid globalization, the peaceful coexistence of cultures requires a deeper understanding of the forces that compel prosocial behavior and thwart xenophobia. Yet, the conditions promoting such outgroup-directed altruism have not been determined. Here we report...
  • To combat iguana problem, researchers bash in reptiles’ heads

    03/12/2018 7:31:07 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 53 replies ^ | 03-08-2018 | Susannah Bryan
    Researchers are on a critical mission in the heart of Broward County — bashing in the brains of iguanas in an attempt to eliminate the reptiles that have overtaken South Florida. A 15-member team from the University of Florida is using a tool called a captive bolt gun that sends a bolt into the brain, similar to what is used in the livestock industry. They’re also smashing the creatures’ heads against solid objects, including a truck and boat they’re using to track them down. “Most of what we’re doing is blunt force trauma,” said Jenny Ketterlin, a wildlife biologist and...
  • Argentina’s farm of horrors: Latest shocking animal mutation discovered

    03/09/2018 7:03:23 PM PST · by Gamecock · 33 replies
    Express ^ | 3/9/18 | MATTHEW KIRKHAM
    The discovery was made when the piglet was spotted next to its mother after she gave birth to eight young in the rural area of Santo Domingo in Santiago del Estero Province in northern Argentina. However, the human-like piglet died a few hours later due to breathing difficulties. Pig and goat breeders Walter Oscar Velez and wife Roxana Noemi Villarreal, who also produce charcoal at their farm, said that they are at a loss for an explanation. It is the latest in a number of horrific mutations in the country which is at the centre of a row over the...
  • Things To Worry About

    03/08/2018 11:41:23 AM PST · by blueunicorn6 · 39 replies
    A Whole World Of Troubles | 3/8/2018 | blueunicorn6
    So far, these are some of the things posted today on Free Republic that we should all worry about: 1. Global warming drowning San Francisco. 2. A big volcano erupting somewhere. 3. The poles flipping. 4. Global warming starving fish. 5. Giant canaries swooping down and grabbing people. OK, I made the canary one up. What other earth-ending problems did I miss?
  • Bay Area's Pampered Backyard Chicken Trend Ripe for a Backlash

    03/08/2018 11:22:38 AM PST · by nickcarraway · 41 replies
    San Franciscco Chronicle ^ | Wednesday, March 7, 2018 | Filipa Ioannou
    They walk like chickens, they cluck like chickens, and they cost $350 a bird. Last week, a viral Washington Post story chronicled the life and times of the Bay Area's well-heeled pet chickens and their luxe digs, calling the birds "the Silicon Valley elite's latest status symbol." "Egg-laying chickens are now a trendy, eco-conscious humblebrag on par with driving a Tesla," the Post reported. The catalogue of surreal luxuries that followed would not be out of place on a reality television show: The Real Chickens of Silicon Valley. One woman, whom the Post dubbed the "chicken whisperer," offers her consultation...