Tag Archives: Farming

Motown, a Food Farm?

This week we turned our gaze to Detroit with the help of guest-hosts Jack Hyland, a U of M a student of art and design, and Shan Sutherland, a Masters of Architecture student at the Taubman College of Architecture and Planning.  Shan has worked on a number of architecture projects in Hamtramck and Detroit and we kicked off the show by grilling him about Power House Productions, an organization that has built a number of community installations by cannibalizing materials from abandon structures; including Squash house, a “sculptural sports arena and greenhouse.” Shan also told us about Afterhouse, a “semi subterranean passive geothermal greenhouse,” built on the foundation of an abandoned house.

Shan then moved from the hot seat to the host seat with the arrival of Jeff Pituch, a member of the board for the Michigan Urban Farming Initiative (MUFI), which focuses on sustainable agriculture in Detroit’s North End.

We were interested to hear from Jeff how MUFI is able to operate as a 100% volunteer organization with no large-scale funding.  It turns out that small targeted grants and a knack for winning Facebook liking competitions (their Facebook group has more likes than ours), make up the majority of their funding.  We discussed the challenges and opportunities that arise when operating entirely with volunteers.  We also discussed their challenges remaining in place in an area undergoing “redevelopment.”

This week we listened to some great Detroit music, including The Dramatics, whose message “Whatcha See is Whatcha Get” describes IHIH perfectly (as long as change the word see to hear)…

Michigan’s Wine Industry, Uncorked

Our second segment in the three part series, “Please, Drink Sustainably” takes our hosts Alex Truelove, Becca Baylor, and Rebecca Hardin to the vineyards of Michigan with the help of Black Star Farms‘ managing member and winemaker, Lee Lutes, and principal and co-founder of 5 Lakes Energy, Liesl Clark.

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A Cultural Shift to Conservation: Craft Beer in Michigan

In this first episode of our three part series called “Please, Drink Sustainably,” our guests Kris Spaulding, co-founder of Brewery Vivant, and Brian Tennis, owner and operator of the Michigan Hop Alliance taught hosts Harry Rice, Becca Baylor, Ed Waisanen, and Alex Truelove all about the sustainability innovations in beer production happening right here in the mitten.

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Cherries of Change: Adaptation by Michigan Farmers

20151030_132737It’s the finale of our three part series on climate change. This week our hosts Becca Baylor, Ed Waisanen, and Alex Truelove investigate the implications of climate change on agriculture, especially on cherries in northern Michigan.  They are joined on the phone by Jim Nugent, the director of the Leelanau Conservancy; Nikki Rothwell, the coordinator of the Northwestern Michigan Horticultural Research Station; and in studio by Dr. Paige Fischer,  Assistant Professor in the School of Natural Resources and Environment.
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Climate Change in 2014, Tu B’shevat, and SNRE’s Food Olympics

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On this week’s show, we discussed current environmental news, climate change with Alexandra (Lexi) Brewer (MS ’15), Tu B’shevat (Birthday of Trees) with Nick Bruscatto (MS ’16), and the SNRE Food Olympics with Rebecca Baylor. We also discussed the upcoming and exciting events happening around SNRE and the University of Michigan!

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Agroecology

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Dr. Marney Isaac, University of Toronto

It is 2015 and we are back! To kick off the new year on It’s Hot in Here, our hosts Rebecca Hardin and Sam Molnar discussed Agroecology with Dr. Marney Isaac, Assisant Professor and Canada Research Chair in Agroecosystems & Development at the University of Toronto.

Bio: Dr. Marney Isaac, Assistant Professor and Canada Research Chair in Agroecosystems & Development, conducts interdisciplinary research on plant strategies and the nutrient economy of agroecological systems while concurrently charting the human dimension of agroecosystem management. Her research provides mechanistic insights into the ecological principles, nutrient cycles, and plant-soil interactions that govern the structure and function of agricultural landscapes, with particular attention on identification of strategies for environmental services, system resilience and sustainable livelihoods. Her research approach makes use of a diverse set of technical tools and employs various temporal and spatial scales: from mechanistic manipulative trials at the rhizosphere scale to large agroecosystem dynamics. She also supervises an international research program investigating agrarian management networks and environmental governance, with an emphasis on understanding innovation in large social-agroecological systems. She has published widely in environmental science, agronomic and multi-disciplinary journals including Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, Agronomy for Sustainable Development and Ecology and Society.

Here is her website: http://blog.utsc.utoronto.ca/misaac/


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In addition to agroecology, we followed up with the SNRE MS students after their trip to Peru for the international climate negotiations at the United Nations Conference of Parties (COP20) in Lima, Peru. The SNRE students that we had on the show included second-year graduate students from the School of Natural Resources and Environment COP20 student delegation. We discussed their exciting experiences at one of the most prominent climate talks in the world.

Our show this week maintained a theme of innovation and taking new approaches to protect the environment and manage land. This segment was a wonderful start to the new year and we are excited for all that 2015 has to offer.

Buzzzzzz…What’s that Sound? It’s the UM Bees

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Honey – it’s delicious, nutritious, and one of the most labor-intensive food products known to man. That is, if we give credit where it’s due – to bees and those who work to keep them flourishing!

This week: Rich Wieske, maker of meade and pollinator of the City of Detroit with Green Toe Gardens and Mike Bianco UM Bees Minister (one among many!) and bee activist join us in the studio to share their wealth of knowledge and buzzing passion for reversing one of the most disquieting developments of our time – the disappearance of the honey bees. Jim Johnson, Jennifer’s uncle and backyard beekeeper, joins in the conversation too, with his account of the sacrifices burgeoning beekeepers must sometimes make to keep their hives happy over the recently brutal winter months.

Listen in and learn what intrepid beekeepers like Rich, Mike, and Jim are doing to cultivate more and better hives of happy bees.

Interested in starting your own hive(s)? Check out a beekeepers association nearest you:

At the University of Michigan: UM Bees
The Northern Bee Network
The Southern Michigan Beekeepers Association

The Michigan Beekeepers Association
The Central Ohio Beekeepers Association

Food Gatherers & TedxUofM

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For over 25 years, Food Gatherers has worked to alleviate hunger and eliminate its causes in the Ann Arbor community. Priya Khangura talks to us about Food Gatherer’s innovative programs, including its food rescue operation, local food bank, school produce pantry, and farm. Listen in for some inspiration to join Food Gatherers in their fight against hunger and food waste, and visit their volunteer page for more info.

In the second half of the show, the most excellent Tedx University of Michigan team joins us to offer a preview of the 5th Tedx U of M event: Against the Grain, where this year IHIH’s own Jennifer Lee Johnson presents on the importance of retheorizing gender and sustainability in relation to the fishing industry on Lake Victoria.

Autumnal Preservation, Big Cat Conservation, and a Poultry Celebration!

Oct 18 2013 IHIH

Oct. 18, 2013: Listen to learn about food preservation, wildlife conservation in South Africa, and organic poultry farming in Michigan

– How to preserve your fruits and veggies with Rachel Chadderdon

– Pre-vet student, Andie Haugen’s, experience working with wildlife in South Africa

John Harnois, native Detroiter and local farmer, shares stories of raising happy hens and loyal customers

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Turkeys, Travel, and Teleportation

Just in time for the mass exodus from Ann Arbor, SNRE’s own Shelie Miller, a specialist in life cycle assessment and energy, shares insights on sustainable transit.  Beyond the typical modes, she entertains our questioning of tele­por­ta­tion as surely the MOST sustainable transit form! 😉  Turkey man and local farmer John Harois is also in the studio to tell us about his magnificent birds. We hear all about why Kat’s dad drives from afar for these delectable pavos. A turkey slayer also calls in with the gruesome details. It is hot in here!