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New food emerges

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Quinoa may become rotation crop for wheat

By Kirsten Peters

This summer has been filled with acrimony about the federal budget, with red versus blue politicians squaring off to hurl criticisms at each other.
For a lot of us, turning on the news has felt like an exercise in masochism.
Imagine my pleasure, then, at going to a recent meeting where Americans from quite different walks of life were gathered to learn together about something we all need – a nutritious food supply.
On a recent and beautiful summer morn’ without even a breath of wind, a diverse group of citizens gathered on land belonging to Washington State University.
Those assembled ran the gamut from older farmers in jeans and work boots who came to the event in diesel pickup trucks to younger men and women with long hair who came on bicycles or in hybrid vehicles.  
What had brought us together was the chance to tour WSU’s organic fields and orchards.
Large public universities across the nation that are termed “land grant” institutions have long promoted agricultural and engineering research, as well as educating citizens about how to apply new research to solve day-to-day problems.
The land grant system is something the federal government did right a zillion years ago, an investment in education that has paid out dividends to many generations – including ours.


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