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  • Joshua Lewis

Co-Mo Collective #16

Hello all! Thank you for joining us and tapping into our Co-Mo Collective Series! Here is what we are spending time, energy and thoughts on geared towards optimizing a life of moving and living courageously!

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Photo of the Week: Coach Betty


Weekly Workout:

Every 2 minutes for 10 minutes:

+ no rest


Every 2 minutes for 10 minutes:

+ no rest


For time:

Row 500 meters

75 double unders or 200 single unders

Row 500 meters


Quote I'm pondering :

“It’s time you realized that you have something in you more powerful and miraculous than the things that affect you and make you dance like a puppet.” – Marcus Aurelius

What I'm reading, listening, watching or eating: What happens when there are no more small farmers? Literally. My guess is your food companies and farms will be monopolized and you will be at the mercy of the hands that feed you. Scary thought. Good thing is there are numerous holistic farmers battling to keep this from happening but the battle is a tough one. One of the largest challenges is succession planning for current farmers. A few key points here...

  • The average farmers age is nearing 60 years old

  • The average age of "new" farmers is 46 years old

  • 70% of farmland will change hands in the next 20 years

Lets paint a picture here...


Your parents inherited their parents (your grandparents) farm. In exchange they gave them a percentage of the milk check and let them stay in their house rent free for their life. Your parents worked hard on the farm, investing all their extra hard earned dollars into the farm and its growth. The farm represents 99% of their net worth and retirement plan. As farming methods changed over the years, inputs increased (pesticides, fertilizers, insecticides), equipment cost sky rocketed, their debt increased, GMO crops were introduced to grow in poor soil quality (therefore needing more inputs above), their seed and input dealer slowly transitioned them to mono-cropping for better "yields" and land prices went through the roof. On top of it milk prices have collapsed as they neared "retirement". The farm has seen a net profit loss for the last 10-15 years.


Situation 1

There are 3 siblings. 1 kid wants the farm, the other two do not. The farm appraises for 450k and each share is worth 150k. The kid that wants the farm has to come up with 300k to buy out the siblings. Questions to ask: how does it get fairly appraised, all while keeping everyone happy? how does the kid (that has worked the farm for his entire life) that inherits the 300k in debt get financing or afford that payment plus taxes?


Situation 2

None of the kids want the farm. You list the farm for 650k even though its appraised at 450k. Why? Because you need enough money to retire on. You figured if you sold for 450 minus 30k in realtor + legal fees, minus 120k in farm credit debt, you are left with 300k for retirement, hence the 650k asking price. The farm never sells, the farmers get older, the property declines more in value and it just sits.



Situation 3

The farm sells for 650k to a wealthy out of state investor with no connection to local community. He gets local approval from the town board for a subdivision and builds another housing community, erasing more prime farmland.


Situation 4

A young farmer buys your farm for 650k, his dream comes true, he goes heavy into debt and fails. The bank takes the farm, liquidates and sells for 50 cents on the dollar.


Situation 5

A CAFO (confined animal feeding operation) farmer buys the land to spread liquid manure on, builds a liquid manure pit or another CAFO building to house another 1000 cows and equipment therefore decreasing all real estate residential property near by, and ruining soil, water and air quality.




As margins decrease for CAFO farms, the only way to stay in business is to continue to expand and grow. The bank is more than happy to lend them the money because if they do not, (ie deny his loan application) his farm will not survive, meaning he will not be able to afford the current payment on the current line of credit, meaning the bank gets the farm back which is the last thing they want. A major lose for the bank.



Not one of these solutions creates a win/win for the small farm to survive.


The positive though is there is a solution. Small farm (or large) using regenerative agriculture. Its profitable, heals the planet, humane to animals and has a low barrier of entry from a financial perspective, needing as little as a few acres to get started. This TED talk and Film coming out this Fall is a good starting point for those interested in learning more about this topic.

"There is only one option, I repeat to you, only one option left to climatologist, and scientists.....and that is to do the unthinkable....and to use livestock, bunched and moving, as a proxy for former herds and predators and mimic nature. There is no other alternative left to mankind"

-Allan Savory Savory Institute: Kiss the Ground: 2020 Film Trailer Even if you do not plan on becoming a farmer, which most will not, that is 100% OK, this topic will still have a direct impact on you. No soil = no life, its that simple. Support your local farmer that is using these practices. Its a basic supply and demand formula. If large industrial farm demand decreases they either adapt or die. If small regenerative ag farm demand increases, there are more opportunities and with more opportunity comes the benefits from the new farming methods.

Random:

MMA Fighter Vs Pro Climber : Grip Strength and Rock Climbing Challenge

Elite rock climber Magnus Midtbo challenges MMA fighter Andreas Lodoen for possible revenge in a challenge that tests grip strength, muscle ups and rock climbing.

Have an amazing weekend everyone!

Josh

P.S. 100+ supporters have purchased a handmade, naturally harvested Beaver Stick in the last 2 months supporting Golisanos Children's Hospital in Syracuse NY and Asher's College fund, grab yours today and be reminded that good health and happiness is a blessing!

P.S. + Headquarters is rocking and rolling. We are accepting new clients that want to build a resilient body and be a part of a movement (no pun intended) that is making this world a better place! Inquire at Co-Movement.com

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