Celebrity foodie is crusading for the health of NZ soils

Celebrity Kiwi cook Annabel Langbein is on a mission to preserve the quality of New Zealand soils for future generations because good food begins with good soils.

Celebrating the food we grow is central to everything she does, says the writer and self-publisher of 27 cookbooks who has and presented her own TV show, The Free Range Cook.

“The chain of goodness begins with healthy soil and finishes with healthy animals, healthy people and healthy environments.”

Annabel will be one of the keynote speakers at the biannual NZ Society of Soil Science Conference in Napier next week, where the theme is `diverse soils – productive landscapes’.

With soil health increasingly at risk in the modern world, she says she has learnt through her own experiences just how important it is to be informed and involved.

“I started making my own compost when I was 14 and I also studied horticulture at Lincoln University, but for all this, it’s only in recent years that I have started to understand that creating healthy strong soils that will enable the uptake of important nutrients takes a lot more than compost,” she says.

“The health of our soils is at the heart of our continued prosperity as a species.”

The soil science conference – from December 3 to 6 – will feature presentations from a range of key researchers, industry leaders, consultants, regulators and land managers on all things soil related.

Society of Soil Science president Dr Dave Houlbrooke says the challenges for food production in New Zealand are greater than ever, and therefore the need for quality soil science has never been greater.

He expects the upcoming conference will generate some fascinating insights into the state of the soils on which food production is heavily reliant, the connection between soils, farming systems and the products that they deliver, as well as a sense of some the exciting research that will help shape the future of soil and landscape management.

Source:  Society of Soil Science

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