Issue of The Seed Piece:
Journey For Justice
Great Trials Potatoes Available to Share.
Recipe: Beet and Carrot Soup.
Special Offer: Great Organic Fertilizer
Offers and FREE Stuff
Mailbox: Our Small Strong World
Prairie Farm Display at the Organic Seed Growers Conference.
Last week Jim, Peter and Caleb braved the quirky snow in Seattle and
the Olympic peninsula to attend the organic seed community's bi-annual
conference, this year in Port Townsend, Washington. You can click to the Organic Seed
Alliance website for the Conference Proceedings and soon they
will have loaded video recordings of several great organic seed
sessions for you to view and enjoy from home.
Journey For Justice
Over fifty Plaintiffs will be present in Federal District Court in
Manhatten next Tuesday January 31, to hear our legal team, led by
Daniel Ravicher of the Public Patent Foundation, present Oral Argument
in the landmark organic community lawsuit, Organic Seed Growers and
Trade Association et al v. Monsanto. The topic to be argued will be
Monsanto’s motion to dismiss which Monsanto filed back in July in their
attempt to deny family farmers access to the court system.
The Plaintiffs filed a strong written rebuttal
in August asserting Monsanto’s motion lacked merit and was little more
than a corporate delaying tactic. In late December Federal Judge Naomi
Buchwald granted our request for Oral Argument on the motion to dismiss.
OSGATA v. Monsanto is a historic pre-emptive lawsuit filed last winter
under the Declaratory Judgment Act. The
lawsuit seeks to gain court protection for family farmers who through
no fault of their own and because of Monsanto trespass, become
contaminated by Monsanto’s transgenic/GMO seed.
cases of GMO contamination, not only is the value of the farmer’s
organic crop extinguished, but in a perverse legal injustice, the
farmer would then be subject to a patent infringement lawsuit by
Monsanto for ‘possessing’ Monsanto’s transgenic technology without
having paid royalty on that ‘possession.’
With this lawsuit, family farmers
are fighting on the front lines trying to defend ourselves from an
aggressor that seeks to control the seed system and at the same time we
are trying to preserve your family’s right of access to good clean food
Our plaintiffs are not seeking
one penny from Monsanto. Early on, our
lawyers asked Monsanto for a binding legal covenant not-to-sue and
Monsanto refused. This refusal made clear to all that Monsanto was
unwilling to give up its option to threaten and pursue innocent family
farmers for patent infringement in the case of their contamination of
our organic crops. Monsanto has left us no
choice but to petition the court for legal protection.
We will argue for this court protection
through the assertion of four separate self-standing legal arguments. We have a strong case and we are prepared to
prove that the patents given to Monsanto by the US Patent Office were
improperly granted and that Monsanto’s transgenic patents are invalid.
For those of you in the greater NYC area, we
ask you to consider attending the Citizen’s Assembly on January 31
which is being organized for outside the courthouse. Please
bring your friends and show your support for innocent family farmers
who need the protection of our court system. Please
learn more and RSVP the Citizen’s Assembly by clicking here.
Also, we encourage everyone to sign
from our friends and co-plaintiffs at Food Democracy Now! lending your
support to the cause of our family farmers in this battle. It will take
you less than one minute to sign on.
Jim is President of lead Plaintiff Organic
Seed Growers and Trade Association. He
will be in the courtroom along with plaintiff farmers from twenty other
states and provinces including Oregon, California, New Mexico,
Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota, Saskatchewan, Wisconsin and
& Megan Gerritsen
need your help. Please sign the petition above and RSVP if you can
attend the Citizen's Assembly. Thanks!
Beautiful red fingerling potato
with golden flesh lightly splashed with red. Delicious roasted or
Widely known as one of the best
tasting potatoes anywhere. Golden and buttery German variety.
|Great Trials Potatoes Available to
the help of Peter and Caleb and our crew, we've finished cleaning and
grading out our supply of trials organic potatoes. The good news is we
now have some of our favorites to share with you.
* French Fingerling
* Yellow Finn
These varieties will be part of our offerings
in the upcoming February, March and April Potato
Samplers of the Month.
Additionally, they are available as organic eating potatoes for you to
prepare in your kitchen, as well as organic (but not certified seed)
seed potatoes for you to plant in your garden.
Check them out on our
Wood Prairie website - we have newly
listed these organic potatoes. You may call or click now to order some
but you better
hurry because they are available only while limited supplies last.
Click here for our Wood Prairie Organic Kitchen Potatoes.
Very dry and floury golden fleshed
potato with delicious flavor. Originally grown in Finland.
is the potato that made Maine famous. Round White variety released in
1932, this somewhat moist heirloom sets the standard for taste and
|FREE North American Potato Variety
our last Seed Piece issue
we provided you with a valuable link
to a downloadable exhaustive Compendium of World Potato Varieties put
together by the good folks at Washington State University. This time
around we offer to you an excellent free download from Dr Richard Chase
of MSU and our friends at the Potato Association of America which
compliments the WSU work. Entitled North
American Potato Variety Inventory
, this list of 339 potato
varieties contains important supplemental information, such as
Parentage, Breeder, Year of Release and citation of Published
Release Data as it appeared in the American Potato Journal. Jim
Potato Association of America. Building
America's farmer libraries.
Beet and Carrot Soup
Photo by Angela Wotton
and Carrot Soup
tsp coriander seeds, toasted
c extra-virgin olive oil
hot red pepper flakes
lb trimmed beets
peeled and cut into 1/2" pieces
T red wine vinegar
toasted coriander seeds in spice grinder or mortar and pestle
Heat oil in a heavy pot over medium heat until it shimmers. Cook
shallots with thyme, bay leaves, and red pepper, stirring occasionally,
until tender, about 3 minutes. Add carrots, beets, ground coriander, 1
tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper and water. Bring to a boil, then simmer,
covered, until vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes.
Organic Fertilizer Offers
and FREE Stuff!
Despite the frozen ground and snowy weather
here in Maine it’s time to think about organic fertilizer for this
year. Healthy plants, good yields and happy farmers grow from
sufficient organic fertility and Wood Prairie is here to help.
Offer #3. FREE
Long Handle Tool Collection.
Earn a FREE
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) when you buy
two (2) 1000 pound
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. Please use Promo code WPF 1113
Offer items above must ship with order and entire order must ship by
May 8, 2012. Offer may not be combined with other Specials. These
offers end Friday 2/3/12 so hurry! Please
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Fish Meal in
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Mailbox: Our Small Strong World
a semi-retired independent small grains researcher. I'm trying to move
to Vermont this spring. (Maine? And if those don't work
out...Bulgaria!) I have been doing historic and genetic work on small
grain varieties that organic and low-input farmers use - sometimes for
decades! In conversation with Dr. Heather Darby some very interesting
things have surfaced. I found the video
of you in NYC holding up a small bag of wheat.
On your site I found that you grow 'AC Barrie' but also on the cover
crops page you grow "FBC Dylan'. I've very curious how both of these
(or any other) have done for you. I am also interested in which variety
was in that bag in New York City. Please let me know. I hope to have
something ready about all this for the Vermont Grain Conference in
March, but will happily send you a copy if you don't make it there.
Lopez Island WA
Currently we grow both AC
Roblin and FBC Dylan
Hard Red Spring Wheat. I brought a bag of both to the Occupy Farmers'
March in NYC for the seed swap and I don't remember which one I grabbed
out of my coat pocket to hold up at Zucotti Park. And yes we have grown
AC Barrie, and had good experience with it as well. Lots of organic
farmers grow Barrie in New England with success. We opted for Roblin
because it is equally good milling quality as Barrie and is a week
earlier. That's valuable to us because we like to get our wheat
harvested before we begin to dig potatoes in September and Roblin's
All three varieties have done well for us in Maine
and I can recommend them. Interestingly, I've spoken with farmers in
north Florida and New Mexico who had good luck with some Roblin seed
they got from us.
Also interestingly, last week my two sons and
I were in your neck of the woods in Port Townsend WA attending the
Organic Seed Growers Conference. One day we had a bus tour and
took the ferry to Whidbey Island and then onto the WSU Research Station
in Mount Vernon, now run by our friend and courageous organic advocate
Dr. Steve Jones. Despite the five inches of snow in the Skagit Valley
we did see several fields of overwintering cabbage plants - being grown
out for seed - poking up through the snow.
Washington State support for organic is strong
and reminiscent of what we saw in Denmark. They are making a wise
investment in the future of agriculture and it was satisfying to see.
May the rest of our country learn from the good thought in Washington.
Wood Prairie Farm Quick
& Megan Gerritsen
Certified Organic, Direct from the Farm