Okay, I don't know what that subject header means but I like the sound of it. Anyhoo, here are the beans that were grown on our farm this year...
On the right, soybeans destined for a life as tofu in Japan. On the left, otebo beans destined to became Branston Baked Beans in Britain. (Love that alliteration!)
Otebos look like something between a cannellini bean and a white kidney bean.
Soybeans look like... dried peas for pea soup!
We have plans to take most of our farmland out of production. We currently have 50 of our 86 acres rented out to another farmer. Our woodlot adds another 13 acres, and the remainder of our land isn't farmed. There are various programs that help fund alternate uses for farmland, like ALUS and Ducks Unlimited. We have visions of adding ponds, and a pollinator sanctuary. Plus ALUS has a grasslands restoration project we may be able to participate in. Somehow I don't think the world will suffer much from the loss of our 50 acres of soy and otebo beans! One farmer we know said we had to keep the land in production for our children. (Er, we don't have any kids! And I'm pretty sure the cats and dogs don't give a hoot.)
We've been talking to Ducks Unlimited about putting in a pairing pond (about 1/2 acre in size) and later a larger pond (about 9 acres) where the ducks would raise their offspring. There won't be any duck hunting on our land, though. "Phew!" say our Muscovys.
All of this will probably take some time, but the process is fun. Next year our front fields will be sown with hay and kept that way indefinitely, while the back fields will undergo changes over time.
Occasionally one of the dogs will take a dump in the bean fields, and I can't help but laugh at the thought of Japanese tofu and British baked beans having a little bit of Sophie and Tristan's SPECIAL fertilizer!