- Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
- Dates: December 9-11, 2010
- Presenters: Jerry Brunetti, Shannon Hayes, Temple Grandin, Woody Tasch, Joseph Aschl, Juli and Kevin Brussell, Dr Heather Darby, Jan Dietrick, Steve Groff, Cody Holmes, Don Huber, Dr Hue Karreman, Mark Kastel, John Kempf, Neal Kinsey, Jack Lazor, Andre Leu, Hugh Lovel, Lawrence Mayhew, Jundith McGeary, Jeff Mcpherson, Jeff Moyer, Glen Rabenberg, Bob Shaffer, Mark Shepard, Howard Vlieger, Dr Adriaan Wiechers, Dr Phil Wheeler, Ron Whitehurst, Bob Yanda and Gary Zimmer.
- Attendee: Kris Olson, LAc
FAIM attended the 2010 ACRES conference and trade show held December 9-11 in Indianapolis, Indiana. You may wonder why FAIM, as an organization that investigates alternative and integrative therapies, has an interest in agriculture. As proponents of natural medicine we believe that a balanced healthy diet yields a balanced healthy person. Much has been written about the negative impact that food additives, trans-fats, GMO foods, corn syrup, excess sugar and junk food have had on our health. Research supported by organizations like Acres USA confirms this and supports the idea that human health begins with the soil. Good soil spawns nutrient-rich plant foods, and also as a consequence, the healthy livestock products that we consume. Therefore, we find it consistent with our mission at FAIM to keep abreast of the latest findings on this subject and to advocate a diet rich in nutrient-dense whole foods.
This year's conference featured some excellent speakers. Keynotes included Shannon Hayes, PhD, who's talk "Real Cows in a Parallel Universe" discussed life on a family farm where every day is an opportunity to reinforce the fundamental lessons of cooperation, compassion and abundance. Temple Grandin, PhD, talked about animal treatment systems and the importance of creating auditable standards for the healthy and humane handling of livestock. Woody Tasch's talk on "Slow Money: Investing Because Food, Farms and Fertility Matter" proposed that we establish a new type of investment structure that puts money directly into sustainable farming and we invest over longer -term horizons in businesses that enrich our local economies.
In addition to these keynotes, many wonderful speakers presented on such topics as soil development, mineralization and balance, animal husbandry, organic and sustainable farming, the effect of food quality on human health, farming practices and others. Over 100 vendors participated in the trade show that highlighted the work of some of the most innovative minds in agriculture today.
Jerry Brunetti gave an excellent talk about the co-evolutionary impact of plants, nutrients, microorganisms and human health. Dr. Arden Anderson proposed that we need to change the food we eat to pull us out of the current crisis in public health. He noted that chronic disease has become the number one killer, even in Africa; and it is a symptom, not a cause. He maintained that most of these illnesses ultimately stem from the lack of nutrient density in our food.
The annual conference was sponsored by the staff at Acres USA. Audio recordings of sessions can be ordered from Acres USA.