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2179 Yoakim Bridge
Healdsburg, CA 95448

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Terra Madre – October 2004

Terra Madre Sessions
Pest Management
This session had four speakers. The first speaker, Clara Nichols, from UC Berkeley shared her research and findings. Her presentation focused on diversifying the system – using weeds and promising plants, polyculture versus monoculture (planting tomatoes with cilantro to curb white flies), using cover crops (use of a corridor in a vineyard) and above and below ground considerations. She also discussed agro-ecosystem management – planned, associated, and bio diversity of the environment. Very helpful.

Two speakers discussed integrating rice and ducks, and an African speaker discussed the Karite tree and the tree worm. If you use shea butter, you may know it comes from these trees. Unfortunately, these precious trees are being cut down for their wood. It takes 25 years for a tree to produce and many worried about the worms found in the trees. They found the worms can be dried and are very nutritional. They then distributed the worms which we all sampled.

The Q&A session was quite a translation feat. Once, a Japanese speaker was asked a question by someone speaking English. The English had to be translated into Italian which was then translated into Japanese. This was done throughout the conference.

Mass Communications
A wonderful panel of writers and leaders from the US. Here is a quick summary of what they shared:

Eliot Coleman – concentrate on serving your local area (within 20 miles), produce excellent food and don't worry about the advertising and PR, feed children well as they know good food

Mas Matsumoto – power of an authentic story -- your ordinary can be very extraordinary to others

Michael Pollan – investigative reporting has taken him to many places but he also added Americans need to spend more for their food!

They fielded questions on pricing, red versus blue states, policies, etc… It was an excellent session and the first time I met Mas. Unfortunately, the room was small so many people couldn't attend. Because it was a US only presentation they did not want to commit a large meeting space for a US only audience. Brian spent the time discussing Islam and Kenya with a woman from Kenya. He soon realized his limited knowledge of Kenya and also the widespread sentiment for President Bush and the Iraq policy.


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