Sustainable Food and Fiber Production through Soil

Soil provides food and fibers for us to eat, and clothes to wear. 

The biggest challenge for soil scientists involve the sustainable production of these items. 

FOOD PRODUCTION

wheat farm

All life is dependent on soil for sustenance. Plants acquire their minerals (nutrients) and water from the soil. Animals acquire their nutrients from plants. Soil organisms are critical to transformations of nutrients for food productions. Soil quality determines the natural fertility, water holding capacity which coupled with the climate determines yields.

The impact that not fertilizing can have

plant nutrients move in the soil

planting a garden

Clothing

All clothing materials come from plants and animals soils. Leather, wool, and furs come from animals that humans have raised or hunted. Linen and cotton are woven together from plant fibers, and silk is created using the silkworm (animal) on a silk plant. Clothes that are made from polyester and other types of man made chemicals still come from natural products, like coal (which used to be soil) and petroleum, and still require the air and water filtered by soil and what grows in it.

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