Azure Organic Farm Standoff with State Authorities Sherman County Oregon (374)

Posted by  $  Dobrien 4 months, 1 week ago to Business
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Govt trying to force 2000 acre Organic farm in Oregon to use herbicides
SOURCE URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cK8eFtal5hc


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  • Posted by  $  DrZarkov99 4 months ago
    There are natural herbicides and insects the organic farmers could have used. What this tells me is the "organic" farmers haven't bothered to educate themselves on real organic farming methods. My great grandfather was a North Carolina farmer who never used chemicals, plowed his fields behind a Percheron draft horse instead of a tractor, and was so renowned for his high crop yields that UNC made an archive of his methods. Sadly, I doubt many so called organic farmers bother to research information like this.
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    • Posted by Kittyhawk 3 months, 4 weeks ago
      From an article I read, the farmer has successfully taken organically-permissible steps to reduce the weeds. But the government is now insisting on outright "eradication" rather than "control" of the weeds, and claiming that non-organic pesticides will achieve complete eradication (which I doubt, given their track record of producing herbicide-resistant weeds).
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      • Posted by  $  3 months, 4 weeks ago
        Thanks Kittyhawk,
        Two thoughts or questions? why don't the farmers just spray their own property if it is so effective?
        Second Is it not a violation of his (the organic farmers) private property rights?
        Regards ,
        DOB
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        • Posted by Kittyhawk 3 months, 4 weeks ago
          Those are good questions!

          A question occurred to me: are the conventional farmers in the area being held to the same standard of complete eradication of the offending weeds, or just to controlling them? Obviously, their spraying with herbicides has not been successful in completely eradicating the weeds, or they would have no complaint. So it seems the farmers and the government may be holding Azure Farms to an unfair standard which isn't applied to the other farmers.

          I guess their argument is that they would be successful at eradicating the weeds, but are foiled by new weed seeds coming in from the organic farm. My question then would be: do they have proof of that? Can they show that the herbicides are, in fact, effective at completely eliminating the weeds and not producing resistant varieties? I think if they can prove that the pesticides are effective, and that the weed seeds are in fact coming from the organic farm and not from other conventional farms, they should have the right to compensation for the damage done.

          While the organic farmer owns his own property, he does have a duty not to interfere with other property owners' rights to enjoy their own properties. But I don't think the neighboring farmers have the right to enlist the use of government force to spray chemicals which haven't been proved effective in the long term, but are sure to cause harm to the farmer's economic interests, human health, and likely environmental damage too.
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          • Posted by  $  3 months, 4 weeks ago
            This from a story I just read I do not know if this is accurate .
            http://www.thefarmersdaughterusa.com/...
            Under Oregon law, Chapter 569 establishes the requirements and authorities for controlling noxious weeds. Pursuant to the law, individual landowners are required to eradicate or control the spread of noxious weeds, as that term is defined by the State Weed Board, on their property. If landowners are derelict in their duty to do so, authority is granted under the statute for the county to take action and may charge the expenses for doing so to the landowner.

            In early March of this year, Sherman County contacted the Ecclesia of Sinai at Dufur, which apparently owns Azure Farms, and informed them that they were in violation of the county ordinance because certain noxious weeds were found to be running “rampant and unchecked” on their property. The County gave the farm 30 days to submit a Weed Management Plan, which explained how the farm planned on destroying the weeds and keeping them under control throughout the growing season.

            But instead of submitting a management plan and complying with the ordinance, the farm instead claimed they had a religious exemption, were not subject to the County’s authority because they only answer to a higher power, and were prohibited from using “toxic chemicals” as part of their faith. Furthermore, and for good measure, the farm claimed that it avoided using chemicals because it wanted to protect future generations from the use of all those horrible pesticides.
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            • Posted by Kittyhawk 3 months, 4 weeks ago
              Well, that's interesting and kind of funny, if true. But frustrating for the neighboring farmers, I'm sure. I've never heard of a religious objection to controlling weeds before, haha. They should have agreed to try control the weeds using organic methods, in order to avoid hampering the neighbors' enjoyment of their properties, in my opinion.
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    • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 4 months ago
      More fun to live in a yurt and make fun of people that can feed 1,000s and do math, but can't make compost. Of course the simple knowledge that real apples don't grow on crappy apple root stock is lost on these zealots.

      They ought to go live in a closed community where the benefits of people's fed with artificial produce do not corrupt them.
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  • Posted by oregonflyer 4 months ago
    Like most propaganda, only one side of the story was presented. What it didn't mention is that in Sherman County, most of the farmers around this 'weed farm' are productive wheat farmers and certified seed growers. The "noxious weeds" grown on this organic farm are contaminating the neighboring crops destined for food products and infesting seed crops. Consider this, would you eat bread knowing it had a certain percentage of weed products in it? Would you plant seeds for a crop knowing that a certain percentage could germinate as thistle and other weeds? Would you feed your livestock hay that contained noxious weeds? There was nothing mentioned in the article about the economic damage suffered by the farmers that border the organic farm because it won't control these noxious plants from the contamination to other farms. Everybody wants this to be about corporate farming, but the people that are actually doing the work are not large corporations, just large scale farmers trying to survive, produce quality food crops and keep their farms productive. That they plant GMO is a fact due to the area they farm is not conducive to producing large yield crops, it's considered arid "high desert" that historically was only good for sheep farming.
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    • Posted by Storo 4 months ago
      There is really only one question. Does an individual have the right to do what he wants to do on his own property?
      Organic farmers generally do not use herbicides or pesticides for obvious reasons. They don't have a problem with weeds, their neighbors do. Seems to me the neighbors need to figure out what to do on THEIR property to control weeds, and leave the otherwise peaceful organic farmers alone.
      In either event, I don't believe the government should be out there trying to force these people to do something they do not want to do on their own land.
      The neighbors can either control their own weeds, or switch crops and grow something else. The real problem is their being "certified seed producers" by way of which they make more money than simply growing grain. But then the organic farmers make more money by growing organic crops. Sounds like there are two incomparable efforts going on. But the government should stay the Hell out!!
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      • Posted by oregonflyer 4 months ago
        The question should be: Does a person have the right to do what he wants on his own property even if it is at the financial detriment of others? Where does one person's private property rights supersede those of his neighbors? Imagine if someone sowed your lawn with dandelion, crabgrass and thistle seed and said it was his right to do it? This particular organic farmer is the one growing the weeds as eclectic food. From what I have heard about this story is that this farm is bringing in 'non-native' and invasive species plants to grow as food. The big one apparently is Canadian Thistle, a totally non native and invasive species. Oregon has strict laws against contaminating other farmers fields as it has many farmers that are seed growers. Purity of the products is paramount. I wish I could come up with a good analogy but maybe one would be the Asian Carp in the Mississippi river. Once they got started, they wreaked havoc on the native fish populations and destroyed fishing areas. The same may apply here. This particular person may feel that he has the right to wreak havoc on neighbors farms and ranches in the monetary costs involved with controlling what he won't. These particular farms, at least the larger ones, are measured in square miles, hence the costs involved with controlling what this organic farmer won't is great. This issue is going to end up in court for sure and test the land use laws in Oregon. One remedy would be to charge this negligent organic farmer for the weed control in the neighboring farms which could run into the millions per year depending how far the seed is spread on the winds, but we know that isn't going to happen.
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    • Posted by  $  blarman 4 months ago
      There are definitely two sides to every story, no question. And it is a conflict of rights, no question. The question is what (if anything) should be done about it?
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  • Posted by evlwhtguy 4 months ago
    When are the farmers that are located next to farms that have the genetically altered seeds going to be able to seize their neighbors farm and spray their crops. The big AG companies that make the genetically altered seeds have actually tried to sue the neighbors of farmers that plant their seed...for stealing their property...because the Genetically modified plants cross pollinate with the neighbors crop and the next year the neighbor has some genetically modified content in his crop. He din't do anything...nature did it...but there have been attempts to sue for theft. I don't know where those suits have gone....hopefully thrown out of court.....but the fact that someone can with a straight face attempt such a suit is a sad comment on our legal system.
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  • Posted by Herb7734 4 months ago
    Both sides are lying. The Government is lying more, plus it uses coercion to make its point. Another ploy to demonstrate the power the state has over its citizens.
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  • Posted by  $  blarman 4 months ago
    I will say this much about Canadian thistles: they don't make for good neighbors. I'm fighting with them in my yard because my neighbor doesn't do a thing to control them in hers. And because the roots go down so deep, you can't just pull them up - that only makes the problem worse.

    I finally snuck over into her back yard this weekend with a tank of spray and hosed down everything within six feet of the fence. No grass, just weeds 3+ feet high. (I maintain her front yard including fertilizer and weed control and I have replaced a gate in her fence, so anyone who wants to ding me for trespassing can go ahead.)
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