Thursday, April 27, 2017

Musings: Pushing Organics

It's troubling to see Kauai Dr. Lee Evslin use his column in the local newspaper to promote organic food as inherently more pure than its conventional counterpart, and some sort of silver bullet for attaining good health.

In this case, he's advancing the idea that various chemicals known as endocrine disrupters are responsible for everything from America's obesity epidemic and slow sperm to ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease in children. And, as he intones, “the same suspects are on the list: pesticides, flame-retardants, plasticizers and cosmetics.”

Though Evslin admits that he's talking about “a new scientific theory,” which means it's not yet proven, he has no problem offering a dangerously simplistic “bottom line” solution to what ails us: “Store your food in glass containers, stop buying water in plastic bottles and eat organic whenever possible.”

Evslin totally glosses over all the non-food sources of pesticides, including treatments for home and garden pests, pet flea and tick products and even water, which is treated with chlorine, a restricted use pesticide.

What's more, he fails to understand that organic food also is packaged in plastic, grown using pesticides and carries pesticide residues. But in any case, according to the US Department ofAgriculture, these residues are considered holistically and present no cause for concern:

The PDP data show, overall, that pesticide residues on foods tested are at levels below the tolerances established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and pose no safety concern.

EPA [Environmental Protection Agency] makes a safety evaluation for pesticides considering all possible routes of exposure through food, water, and home environments when setting the maximum residue (tolerance) level of pesticide that can remain in or on foods.

EPA is required to periodically re-evaluate pesticide registrations and tolerances to ensure that the scientific data remain up to date.

Evslin also seems to be unaware that pest-resistant GMO crops, which cannot be labeled organic under USDA standards, are actually working to minimize pesticide use. One compelling example is Bt eggplant, which has enabled farmers in Bangladesh to reduce their pesticide applications by 80 percent.

I want to believe that Evslin is well-intentioned. Sadly, he is not well-informed. Every time a well-fed, well-heeled Westerner starts beating the organic drum, he is helping to close the door to GM technology that is working to address environmental issues and help hungry people in developing nations to achieve food security. Though Evslin no doubt can afford the high price of organics, he seems to have forgotten that many of his own neighbors are struggling to feed their families. The last thing they need is some short-sighted doctor guilt tripping them for not buying organic.

Meanwhile, a number of organic certificates used on both domestic and imported products — primarily from China and Africa — are fraudulent, according to the USDA.

Evslin also likes to throw stuff out there without any citations, so the curious and/or critical are unable to check his apparently dubious sources. A case is point is his claim that “Glyphosate is patented as an antibiotic and as an herbicide and has been shown to affect our intestinal bacteria.”

GMO Answers has an interesting segment on why Monsanto pursued that patent, while noting “to date, nobody has demonstrated that glyphosate is an effective antimicrobial agent for treating human or animal infections.” It's really quite specious for Evslin to make that particular assertion.

If Evslin plans to keep inserting himself into the conversation about food and pesticides, he really needs to be more thorough in his research and careful with his facts. That is, if he wants to be taken seriously, which I'm sure he does.

On a related topic, I noticed anti-GMO acivist Jeri DiPietro, who presides over the group Hawaii SEED, advocating in a newspaper article for “the precautionary principle,” which The Garden Island defines as “an approach to risk management that requires proponents of an activity to prove its safety in the absence of a scientific consensus.”

Jeri's complete rejection of the scientific consensus in support of GMO food safety aside, there are several problems with the precautionary principle, as I learned with attending the American Academy for the Advancement of Science meeting earlier this year. As Gary Marchant, an Arizona State University professor and expert on the legal issues around genetic engineering, noted:

There has always been a degree of precaution in regulations. To make the precautionary principle the regulatory standard, it has to be quantified legally, which requires a very detailed definition. But it's never been properly defined and all efforts to do that have failed, even in Europe. So we have these very vague definitions of precaution being used in absurd and inconsistent ways.

Speaking of absurd, it's never been more cool to make like you're a farmer or blue collar worker — just wear the $425 jeans and forego the actual dirty work!
And finally, I'll leave you with this video montage showing some of the March for Science events around the world, starting with little Kauai. Gosh, who knew supporting science could be such fun?!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Musings: On the Gamut

I feel a little sorry for Maui, having a chemtrail believer and anti-GMO campaigner leading its fight against the rat lungworm virus.

I'm talking about its state health officer, Dr. Lorrin Pang. He's been a bit distracted in recent years, which may help explain why he failed to recognize or head off a real and serious health threat on his island.

Still, as one friend observed upon seeing a news photo of him picking through leaves in search of the semi slugs that spread the disease, “Finally they have Lorrin Pang doing something productive.”
It's also been interesting to see some of the anti-pesticide folks avidly embrace poison — sales of rat traps and slug bait are booming — once they feel threatened by a pest.

In following up on last week's water forum on Kauai, the truly telling part came when panelists were asked whether they condemned or condoned last October's vandalism at the Blue Hole diversion last October. Adam Asquith, Kui Palama and Hope Kallai didn't consider it vandalism at all; indeed, they felt it was justified.

While I respect Kui for the well-researched work he's done to uphold traditional Hawaiian rights, which included a prolonged (and ultimately successful) court case following his 2011 arrest for hunting pig on Gay & Robinson land, Adam more typically incites others to do the dirty work rather than risk a run in with the law himself. As for Hope, why was she even on that panel? How is she qualified to be talking about Kauai water issues?

In any case, those who condone the vandalism of a fully permitted water diversion that serves a public utility's hydro plants are standing on shaky moral and legal ground. One, KIUC customers will foot the bill for the damage. Two, the vandalism was poorly executed and ineffective in achieving its goal, though it did dump debris into the stream. Three, it was stupid, especially since the state and KIUC are already working to establish flow standards for that stream and revise the diversion so it doesn't take 100 percent of the stream during low-flow periods.
Rubble dumped in stream from vandalism.
In other words, a solution based in law and science was already in the works before vandals got into the act. Moral of the story? Educate yourself before jumping to conclusions and taking matters into your own hands. And it's always wrong for people who should know better — Adam and Don Heacock — to use misinformation to provoke others to do something foolish.

Speaking of doing something foolish, the state Legislature is still considering HB 2, which would allow the construction of tiny homes on agricultural lands. As written, the bill currently applies only to Hawaii Island, but it sets a terrible precedent for allowing the proliferation of housing — and sub-standard housing, at that — on ag land. The bill is set for a conference committee hearing today, where hopefully it will be put to death.

Rep. Cindy Evans, who introduced the measure, deserves an F grade for promoting a really stupid approach to her island's housing shortage. As a leader, she should be finding solutions to the housing problem, not allowing non-farmers to profit by building shoddy shacks on their ag parcels. Talk about a cop out.

Continuing on the “something foolish” track, the Lege is also considering two bills that would allow online brokers, like Airbnb and VRBO, to collect taxes for the state. Problem is, only one would require operators to prove they are in compliance with county laws, while the other allows owners to self-certify.

Now, why would the Lege want to undermine the hard work of county planning departments, which are already struggling to enforce the existing vacation rental ordinances?

Speaking of which, Kauai County recently scored an enforcement victory when Judge Kathleen Watanabe found the county acted properly in shutting down Rene Campos' illegal TVR in Kilauea. Though attorney Jonathan Chun argued the conversion of a guest house to a TVR was “grandfathered,” the judge didn't buy it. Planning Director Mike Dahilig praised the action, using strong language in a a county press release:

“I would like to acknowledge our legal team in defending our enforcement actions to stop those wishing to cheat our land use laws because they are tempted by the large sums of money these vacation rentals can yield. Illegal vacation rentals like these take valuable housing out of the long-term housing market for our local residents, and is precisely why our vacation rental laws need to be respected.”


And finally, Joni Kamiya managed to win over one of the activists protesting her participation in the Honolulu March for Science on Saturday. Turns out he didn't actually know what he was talking about, and like so many other misinformed activists, wrongly equates Monsanto with all things GMO.

Education is a wonderful thing, so long as a mind is open enough to accept it. 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Musings: Cowed by Anti-Science Bullies

I suppose it was inevitable that controversy should intrude into Saturday's March for Science-Hawaii.

Though the international event is intended to be a non-partisan celebration of the scientific method and scientific innovation, it seems that some folks just can't handle the presentation of viewpoints that oppose their own, especially when the facts aren't on their side. 

Yes, the anti-TMT (Tirty-Meter Telescope) and anti-GMO activists are all huhu that the Hawaii March organizers dared to invite speakers who represent the science side of these two issues. And in their typical “my way or the highway” approach to things, some of them are calling for a boycott –oh, boo hoo; your absence won't even be noticed — and/or actively trying to discredit and smear the participants they don't like.

Not surprisingly, their ranks include the Sierra Club's Nate Yuen and failed politician Gary Hooser, who huffed:
Uh, for starters, Joni Kamiya is hardly an “industry hack” — she's a health professional and the daughter of an Oahu papaya farmer — and it's kind of hard to see how the Alliance for Science can be a “Monsanto front group” when we don't get any money or other support from Monsanto. But then, when you have nothing real to criticize, you just make stuff up.

And truly, what could be less progressive than Hooser and his faux progressive group HAPA trying to stifle freedom of speech, open discussion, science and the presentation of various points of view? But as I've noted ad nauseum, the antis are afflicted with psychological projection, which is defined as:

Projection is a psychological defense mechanism in which individuals attribute characteristics they find unacceptable in themselves to another person. For example, a husband who has a hostile nature might attribute this hostility to his wife and say she has an anger management problem.

Of course, Hawaii Center for Food Safety had to chime in:
Sure, Ashley Lukens, come on down. Science deniers are always welcome at a science march. Sort of like the KKK crashing a civil rights rally.

Of course, this is nothing new. But what's really sad is how the University of Hawaii, which is hosting the March event, is cowering in the face of this controversy, rather than standing up to these bullies. Per usual, the antis started attacking Joni on the Hawaii March for Science Facebook page, which had posted an announcement about her planned speech, just as it acknowledged the other speakers in tomorrow's line up at UH.

Joni responded to correct the lies and other science-defenders joined in, pointing out the misinformation and lack of science that drives the anti-GMO stance.

The organizers —neophtyes to the ugliness that characterizes the anti-GMO movmement — were appalled and began deleting some of the nastier comments. This was followed by them asking Joni not to talk about GMOs or pesticides during her 5-minute talk.

Or as a friend quipped:

Dear Galileo -
We are looking forward to your speech at the Vatican. We all agree on the value of science. Just please don’t mention your idea about the earth going around the sun.
Love, the Catholic Church

Now, Joni hadn't actually planned on talking about GMOs or pesticides, but nobody likes to be gagged, especially at an event that is supposed to be about defending science.

But here's the really troubling part: the UH organizers said they didn't want any hot topics. Huh? Uh, guys, that's what the March for Science is all about. Defending scientific integrity and the increasingly critical need for evidence-based decision-making at a time when ignorant, anti-science demagogues and their sheep are making like beliefs and opinions are more important that facts.

Sadly, UH has been intimidated by the anti-GMO activists for quite a while, ever since Walter Ritte ranted and raged about GM taro in yet another one of his ill-informed self-promoting tirades. Never mind that the research involved Chinese taro, and was being conducted by a Chinese woman. It wasn't Haloa (the taro plant from which Hawaiians believe they are descended) at all. But UH was so cowed that it not only stopped the research, but destroyed all the lab work so that it couldn't be continued or replicated elsewhere.

That's a pretty sad stance for a publicly-funded university to take. And it's even sadder when you consider how far UH has fallen since the College of Tropical Ag (CTAHR) dean asked Dennis Gonsalves to come up with a solution to the ringspot virus that was destroying Hawaii's papaya industry. 

In response, Dennis developed the ringspot-resistant papaya — the world's first public sector GMO food crop. Now UH has very little biotech research going on, and it keeps it down low to avoid the wrath of the antis.

I'm certain UH would not tolerate bullying in its classrooms, or among its faculty. So why does it allow the activists to bully its professors, its deans, its March for Science organizers, the people it has invited to speak at events it is hosting?

Unless the people in Hawaii stand up to this bullying, it's only going to get worse. And if the highly educated professionals at UH are too afraid to stand up to the bullies, then it really doesn't bode well for the future of science-based research and policy-making in the Aloha State.

Still, at the end of the day, Joni will be speaking at the March for Science and the antis will not. So let them stew at home in their own toxic juices as those who support science, not fear-mongering, stand up for what's right.

Events are planned on every island. Join the March nearest you, and stand up for science, agriculture and the values of the Enlightenment.

For a little extra inspiration, I'll leave with you this video from Neil deGrasse Tyson: "When you have people who don't know much about science standing in denial of it and rising to power, that is a recipe for the complete dismantling of our informed democracy. "

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Musings: Own It

Only Jessica Else and The Garden Island would treat a couple's eviction from the Kalihiwai Community Garden as “news.” I mean, gosh, cutting down a banana tree without permission? Heinous!

But in scanning that tripe, I was struck by this statement from the Board of Directors of Malama Kauai, which oversees the garden in Kalihiwai (and has co-opted the publicly-funded “community farm” in Kilauea by conferring its own name on the project):

It is our kuleana to hold members responsible for respectful behavior and our community garden rules are one way we do this in Kalihiwai.

How curious, that the Board demands “respectful behavior” from its gardeners, but does not hold its new executive director, Megan Fox, to the same standard. 

The Board's statement also noted that the couples' actions were not “the pono way of dealing with such a situation in our small community.”

Hmmm. Is the Board even aware of Megan's own disrespectful behavior, her own ugly history of failing to “[deal] with things in a pono way in our small community” — a community with a long memory, a community she has worked to polarize?

I'm talking about Megan's role in the anti-GMO movement, her participation in the mob mentality that surrounded the GMO/pesticide regulatory Bill 2491. And more specifically, her attacks on longtime Kauai flower farmer Johnny Goriness and his business,Tropical Flowers Express. As Joni Kamiya noted in her blog at the time:

When the issue of Bill 2491 hit the island of Kauai last year, some farmers, who know the agriculture issues in Hawaii, spoke out.  Johnny was one of them.  Others stood in the background instead of taking the risk of being a target.  Little did he know that he was not dealing with local folks, and was barraged with disrespect and hate for submitting testimony for the bill and for a letter in The Garden Island paper.

One of those disrespectful haters was Megan Fox, who arrived on Kauai from San Jose in 2013. Like so many other malihini looking to belong, she jumped on the anti-GMO bandwagon and quickly began trashing anyone who dared to disagree:
Even rabid anti Joanna Wheeler recognized that wasn't “the pono way of dealing with such a situation in our small community.”

But Megan went ahead and left disparaging remarks about Tropical Flowers Express on Yelp:
Yelp later removed at least one of her reviews “for violating our Content guidelines or Terms of Services.”

Now, I think just about anyone would consider it disrespectful for a JOJ — just off the jet — to trash talk a local who has devoted his life to agriculture. Especially when that JOJ knows zero, zip, zilch about farming:
But Megan didn't stop at Johnny. She also attacked others who are pillars in the Hawaii ag community, including Jerry Ornellas, Kirby Kester and Dennis Gonsalves:
Of course Megan, who is now trying to pass herself off as a "farmers advocate" on Kauai, would love to sweep her past under the rug. Which is why, when Joni recently posted about the attacks on small farmers and I referenced Megan's behavior, Megan contacted Facebook to complain, prompting FB to delete the comments for not meeting its "community standards."

When I emailed Megan about her actions to wipe out the FB comments, she replied:

I'm not sure what happened to you to be so vindictive and hateful but I really hope you go back to finding aloha for others and not continue to be so focused on dredging up negative hate. 

Yes, that's how the antis twist things. When you highlight their self-described "negative hate" you suddenly become the hater who needs to find aloha for others. WTF?

Megan continued:

Our community needs to build bridges, overcome the past and work together towards common future to benefit all. There ARE things we can agree on, and focusing on moving those things forward is much more beneficial than mud slinging and gossip. Why you're so against that I will never know.

I replied:

If you’re interested in "building bridges, overcoming the past and working toward a common future to benefit all," you would have taken that opportunity to apologize to Johnny Gordines. Instead, you sought to have me censored by complaining to FB to get the comment removed.

Let me turn your question around: what happened to YOU to be so vindictive and hateful during 2491? To the extent of trying to destroy a good man’s business.

I’m definitely not against finding common areas of agreement and moving forward, though I certainly don’t see you or any of the other antis working toward that. But it really grates to see people who were actively working to harm small farmers now claim to be all peace and love and ag advocates, no less.

Please drop the sanctimony and self-righteousness. It rings hollow.

To borrow a line from sovereignty and social justice movements, "there can be no reconciliation without addressing the past." 

Regardless of how one feels about GMOs, there's no denying that the anti movement sowed an ugly divisiveness in the community that chillingly mirrored the Twilight Zone classic "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street." 

And yes, it does grate to see antis now making like nothing nasty ever happened as they try to recreate themselves as "aloha aina warriors" and "agvocates."

If people like Megan want to enjoy a position of leadership and respect in the community, they should start by issuing an apology and showing a little humility. And since they love to throw around Hawaiian words like "pono" and "malama aina," here's one they should learn: ha'aha'a.

Yes, let's all move forward — from a place of the antis acknowledging and taking responsibility for their bad behavior, their false accusations against farm workers, their polarization, their lies. 

And don't come back with "Monsanto is evil." We're not talking about Monsanto. We're talking about real harm done to real farmers and ag workers in your own back yard. Own it.

Especially if you plan to start holding others to "respectful and pono behavior."

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Musings: Dishonest Debate

Even as the GMO battle still rages, a new brouhaha is brewing. This time, it's all about water.

We've already seen it bubbling up on Maui, where folks are challenging A&B's longstanding diversion of East Maui streams, in part through litigation that exposed deficiencies in the revocable permit process that the Legislature addressed last session.

Kauai activists have also tried to pump it up as an issue, first with unsuccessful attempts to have Lihue declared a ground-surface water management area and later through vandalism and false claims about the Wailua diversion.

Now, in a throwback to the 2013 Earth Week “pollinators and pesticides” panel that gave Kauai anti-GMO activists Gary Hooser and Fern Rosenstiel a platform for pushing Bill 2491, Kauai Community College is hosting a Thursday afternoon panel discussion on water.

It's not completely clear who is actually sponsoring the event, though Josh Fukino, an instructional support specialist at KCC, sent out the emails solicting speakers. What is clear is that it's not intended to be an honest debate:

There will be only one question presented for discussion and the goal is to come up with some solutions that all stakeholders can agree upon.

The waters of Wailua, Waikoko, Ili'ili'ula, Wai'aka, "iole, and Waiahi are taken and used by a few entities. But the public at large, and certain people and places with standing, have constitutionally protected rights to those waters in their free flowing state and for other uses. What do you reccomend [sic] be done to assure that these constitutional rights are fullfilled, within the lifetime of some of the kupuna asking for them (<5 font="" years="">

Sorta like asking, when did you stop beating your wife? Is everybody supposed to agree, with no debate, on the premise that people have constitutionally protected rights to waters in their free flowing state? What's more, it's not likely to “come up with some solutions that all stakeholders can agree upon” because the key stakeholder — Grove Farm — is not participating, largely because they correctly perceived it as a witch hunt.

Other participants include Adam Asquith, who was a player in both the water management area bid and inflammatory emails that were circulating prior to the Wailua diversion vandalism.

The week's events began yesterday with a talk by defeated state House candidate Tiare Lawrence, who was billed as a “Maui Aloha 'Δ€ina warrior and HAPA Community Organizer” speaking about “Maui water struggles and protection of coastal resources.”

Never mind that she has no expertise on those topics. This is all about pushing an agenda, a particular point of view, at a publicly-funded community college. And how, exactly, does that help students develop critical thinking?

Speaking of which, Big Island Sen. Josh Green — a foe of modern agriculture — is eying a run for lieutenant governor. Is he seeking the job because it involves so little work that the current occupant wants out due to boredom?

Whatever, it seems like a great idea to get him out of the Senate, where he takes bizarre anti-science positions, such as “fixing” farming by restricting its access to agricultural chemicals.

Hmm. Maybe he could work on classifying homelessness as a medical condition, so doctors can prescribe housing. How might that work? (And parenthetically, how much would it cost?) That should keep him busy with something useful for a while.

And finally, Jan TenBruggencate has an interesting piece on mosquitoes in his Raising Islands blog. As he noted:

Mosquitoes are not native to Hawaii, but we’ve got them, and new evidence is that they’re growing increasingly dangerous.

Hawaii now has eight mosquito species, he reports, and they're spreading a number of diseases, including dengue and Zika, which has already caused severe birth defects —most commonly, a deformed brain — in dozens of American babies. And Hawai`i has had 16 reported cases of Zika, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

In other words, real danger, real threat. Yet as Jan notes:

Not to make too much of this, but two key weapons in attacking mosquito-borne illness are targeted insecticides and genetic modifications to impact mosquito populations. And in Hawai`i, both insecticides and genetic modification are being targeted by activists for entire bans or limitations on use of these products and technologies. Thus far, the Legislature and the courts have held off these movements.

So does it really serve the public interest to highlight these misguided movements with lop-sided presentations at KCC? 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Musings: Oh, the Irony

I love irony, especially the unintentional sort, which the Urban Dictionary defines as “bulldada.”

It's frequently apparent in the “anti” crowd, which, as I have oft noted, seems devoid of introspection:
Yes, Andrew Kimbrell and Ashley Lukens, if only you would let the scientists speak. Because the suppression of science — aka, following the anti-GMO playbook — is indeed a real buzz kill.

Here's another choice example, from Gary Hooser's Hawaii Alliance for Progressive Action. They got to waxing philosophic about their recent crop of Kuleana Academy cadets:

The discussion on what it means to be pono calls on these graduates to make a commitment to exercise that power with courage and integrity, and to question that power at each turn. It invites this community of graduates to call each other out if someone acts in way that is not pono. [But be prepared to be trashed and ostracized if you dare question the antis' power structure, tactics or funding sources.] 

Stepping up is not easy. It takes courage, strength of character, and a strong moral compass. By nurturing a community of thoughtful and accountable leaders, we are investing in a pono future for Hawai‘i.

And you do that by refusing to reveal HAPA's funding sources and violating federal laws regarding lobbying and the support of partisan politics by nonprofit “public charities?” Uh, guys, if the seed is bad, it ain't gonna produce good fruit.

Meanwhile, Hooser demonstrates his own lack of integrity:
Then there's the irony of America's increasing appetite for organic food, as stimulated by the antis, who are heavily funded by the organics industry:

Once a net exporter of organic products, the United States now spends more than $1 billion a year to import organic food, according to the USDA, and the ratio of imported to exported products is now about 8-to-1.

Many of these organic imports are grown in the European Union, where more than 140,000 farmers are meeting Europe's weaker organic standards on 12.6 million acres of farmland.

One of the biggest exporters is Romania, which relies on cheap labor — the average pay is $485 per month. Another big exporter of organics is China, where both standards and safety are suspect. Once you start factoring in the carbon load, the weaker standards and the labor exploitation factors, organics get an even uglier profile. But hey, main thing the American consumer can pretend to be pure and righteous while chanting the mantra: support your local farmer. Even if he/she is Romanian or Chinese.

Some folks in a recent comment thread on this site got into claiming that GMO food is bad because it's making everyone fat. Hmm. So will they support genetically engineered gut microbes that appear to reduce obesity?

And what about the irony of paying more for a product with the “Non-GMO Project” sticker when there isn't even a GMO version of that particular food, like almonds? Greg Jaffe has a good blog post on that subject.
Or the irony of Simon Russell, president of the Hawaii Farmers Union United Haleakala Chapter, bemoaning the fickle, fearful consumers — you know, the kind the antis cultivate — who are cutting back on local lettuce and kale purchases because they're afraid of consuming the rat lungworm parasite:

“We can put robots on Mars. Why can’t we get rid of rats?”

Mmm, we can, Simon. But it's going to require either the extensive use of rodenticides — you know, the poisons you hate — or a helluva lot of live trapping and killing.

And let's not forget the irony of all those folks who would farm — if only all the land wasn't already poisoned — and their pals, the well-intentioned, but clueless, who figure all they need is Google, a government grant and their other non-farming comrades in Hawaii Farmers Union United:

Anybody interested in a north shore community garden. There are ag lots for sale near dole plantation. The biggest parcel is 18.37acres. At $70,000 per acre, that comes to $1,285,900. If 50 people want to split that, it comes to $25,718 per person. For the money you get 16,803sqft of farm land. Thats almost 1/2 an acre for $25k. We can get a board together with leaders and rules, maybe some kind of community building at the farm. Maybe we can have individual plots or just make a big, permaculture style food forest. Not to live there, just a farming project
Yeah, and all ya gotta do is sell 25,718 bunches of kale at $1 each to make your money back! Oh, the market is flooded because everyone else is growing kale, too, but nobody's buying it because of rat lungworm? Oops....

Of course, sometimes irony morphs into an outright oxymoron, as in:

Center for Food Safety | Fact Sheets

I'll leave you with this updated version of the Alanis Morissette classic: