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A makeover for milkweed, for the sake of butterflies
by Calvin Woodward

The Associated Press    Translate This Article
2 August 2018

On 2 August 2018 The Associated Press reported: For generations, North American farmers have despised milkweed and done their best to rid their lands of it. 'I hate to have milkweed in my strawberry field,' Nathalie Leonard says from her farm by the Quebec village of Lac-du-Cerf. So why does she have 60 acres of milkweed growing on purpose? It's for the sake of butterflies -- the iconic monarchs. And for a chance to turn milkweed into profit. Global Good News service views this news as a sign of rising positivity in the field of science, documenting the growth of life-supporting, evolutionary trends.

The milkweed makeover began when researchers in Quebec transformed the plant's silky fibers into a high-end insulation material for winter clothing and advanced other commercial uses for it, like sound insulation and absorption for oil spills. Winter coats stuffed with milkweed fiber reached outdoor retailers in 2016, fetching $800 or more apiece. The Canadian Coast Guard tried milkweed garb and liked it. And as a side benefit, the distinctive honey from milkweed fields is prized. ... Now, more than 100 farmers in Quebec [Canada] and about a half dozen in Vermont [U.S.] are producing milkweed ...

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