Tomorrow's Table Joins ScienceBlogs


After a short blogging break, Tomorrow's Table is back at its new home here at ScienceBlogs. On this weblog I will discuss topics related to food, farming and genetics.

I am a Professor at the University of California, Davis where I study the response of rice to diseases and flooding. For more on my research, please see my lab website here. You can also take a look at series of posts called "Blogging from Bangladesh" that I wrote about one of my rice projects.

I teach a class called Genetics and Society that aims to educate students in the basic concepts of genetics and the process of scientific discovery. Students debate the present and future impact of genetics on society (e.g. stem cell research, genetically engineered crops etc). We talk about what GMO really means and who we can trust when it comes to science. We even talk about things you can scratch from your worry list.

I am co-author with my husband, Raoul Adamchak, an organic farmer, of "Tomorrow's Table: Organic Farming, Genetic and the Future of Food". Seed magazine selected "Tomorrow's Table" as one of the best books of 2008 (thanks Seed!). Organic Gardening Magazine "found the book insightful and well-documented." Read other reviews here. If you don't have time to read the book, take a look at an article I wrote on food, farming and genetics for the Boston Globe.

I will be blogging on these subjects. Once in awhile I will re-post from my old blog. I hope to see you here.

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Great! I look forward to reading more about how the goals of organic and the technology of biotech can complement each other. Your previous blog made for fascinating reading.

This is fantastic! Welcome to scienceblogs.

I was just beginning to decide where I want to do my graduate studies in mycology (which seems to invariably fall under the umbrella of plant pathology). How wonderful it will be to read about related science on my favorite site!

By the way, I'm thinking masters at San Fransisco State University (Dr. Dennis Desjardin just published another paper dealing with bioluminescent fungi, my favorite subject), and perhaps Phd at UC Berkeley (I hear they have a great mycology lab).

Anyway, so glad to have you here. Looking forward to reading your posts.

Welcome to scienceblogs! I'm an undergraduate from Davis, so I'm definitely going to be reading your blog often. Hope the recent storm didn't ruin any of your research crops...

I just heard about this from Biofortified! I'm delighted. The book has been really helpful to me in discussions around the internet.

As if I didn't already spend enough time over here at ScienceBlogs and need another reason :)


Hi Pamela, welcome to Science Blogs!

I went to UC Davis for graduate school (in Physics). One of my roommates out there was in the Plant Pathology dept. Also, my uncle is a plant geneticist who worked for a while with rice, in part with UC Davis. So, as my daughter's kindergarten teacher says, we have a "connection" :)

Nice to meet you,
Jennifer Whalen

Cool that you have moved to ScieneBlogs! I hope to read more of your posts.

My teenager currently has his heart set on making it in UCDavis to study biology, so I'm glad to see your blog.

Hello, Professor Ronald! Isis sent me here. Best wishes in your research.

By Gingerale (not verified) on 18 Oct 2009 #permalink

Welcome to SciBlogs!

By Physicalist (not verified) on 19 Oct 2009 #permalink

Welcome to ScienceBlogs. I plan to learn much from you.


By Gilgamesh (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

Agri-genetics blogs?! Subscribed.

I own a farm, renting it out. I'm very interested to see where you go with this. Welcome!!!

By Somnolent Aphid (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

Hello Pamela Ronald, I like food.

By ThirtyFiveUp (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

Welcome to Science Blogs - I'm especially excited to see a food-related blog. (And maybe to get first post on your first post? Why yes, I am a bit of a dorky loser sometimes.)

Howdy Pamela,

I look forward to reading you in the future. Farm and livestock related issues get too little attention compared to their importance, and there is way too much misinformation out there. Welcome to ScienceBlogs!

By Vitreosity (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

As a visitor from Pharyngula, let me welcome you.

By littlejohn (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink


Are there any particularly interesting aspects to farm science?

Also, it seems like many people are terrified of genetic engineering, even when applied to produce more & better crops. (not me!) I wonder if this fear is at all reasonable.

looking forward to your recipes... thanks for being here

Cool! I have lots of questions about organic food etc. that I would like science based answers to... unfortunately I can't think of them at the moment!

Hooray! I read about you over at Pharyngula and I look forward to learning more from your blog on this very important subject. I was just asking some of the scientists whose blogs I follow here to comment on GMOs and the knee-jerk "controversy" that follows the mention of the name "Monsanto". Could any company really be that eeeeeevil? And if pharmaceutical companies are called "Big Pharma" can we just call agribusiness "Big Farmer"?

By Pareidolius (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

Well you've got your first fan! I am also an organic grower (of 1/4 acre of veggies), but need to know more about GMOs, plant breeding and what sustainable will really look like. I'll be checking in here regularly.

By skepville (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

You can't have a husband who is an organic farmer! You are enimeez! He is sleeping with the enimee! GMO research is eeevul and rotz ur teeths!

(just thought I'd welcome you properly)

By Tsu Dho Nimh (not verified) on 21 Oct 2009 #permalink

Welcome aboard! Since you're an expert on rice and flooding, how well do you think rice would hold up to being under a significant depth of muddy, somewhat salty water for the better part of a year? Presumably the rice plants would die, but what about seeds? Could they be expected to sprout at some point once the flood water receded? I ask because a lot of creationists think that this is exactly what happened and it seems to me we'd be living in a very different world if it had indeed been entirely flooded just 4,000 or so years ago. Perhaps you could blog on this at some point?

Sounds great! As a biology undergrad, I'm really interested in these subjects and look forward to reading your blog :)

By Andy Diamos (not verified) on 22 Oct 2009 #permalink

Hi! I'm looking through your various links, and I'm interested to see your focus on rice submergence and Bangladesh. Is this primarily related to freshwater monsoonal flooding, or also concerned with (via storm surges and sea level rise) salt water as well? I was also curious if in your work you've dealt at all with the Bangladeshi tension between sedimentation land gains vs. inundation due to SLR. It's my understanding that the latter is still outpacing the former.

Anyway, looking forward to your blog.

Though it is evidently not in your field, I hope you find space to discuss the merits or otherwise of fish farming: the use of hormones and anti-biotics; pesticides in feed; cow sheep and chicken parts in fish feed. All those disturbing things that people turn a blind eye to when comparing the price of wild vs. farmed fish.

oh my!! i had no idea that I had so many comments until I checked the blog today. Thank you all for your welcome.

Jonathan, I had a new electrical powered bicycle ready for you expecting you to be the first commenter. Sadly, though you were not the first...

I am delighted that anonymous enjoyed the Long Now talk

I am glad that there are some organic farmers enjoying the blog and yes I am sleeping with the enimmee (when I am not up at night blogging). I will try to get my husband, the organic farmer, to guest blog.

I look forward to addressing rice questions from creationists- that will be a new one.

Yes the sub1 rice is useful for freshwater monsoonal flooding.. It is not salt tolerant.

Sorry, I dont know much about fish farming but can always learn

With this blog, I can see that I am going to have a difficult time keeping up with my laboratory research- but it will sure be fun.

Thanks everyone. What a nice welcome.

I am so glad Pharyngula introduced your blog to its readers! My husband and I raise grass-fed beef (specially planted grasses) with no chemicals used on our farm and no meds used in our beef (they are healthy, they don't need meds). We'll be interested in reading your blog, daily!

By dieselrain (not verified) on 22 Oct 2009 #permalink

Welcome :)

By Peter McKellar (not verified) on 22 Oct 2009 #permalink