ACRES U.S.A.: You seem to be in possession of information we would have given our eye teeth for a couple or three years ago when we were writing Fertility from the Ocean Deep, namely, your several years of experience working directly with Dr. Maynard Murray. Could you fill us in on what you found out and what you know about the man?
BOB CAIN: Dr. Murray and I first met in late 1976. I was in Fort Myers working for Yoder Brothers, their growing facilities there. I had graduated from college and was working in management there, and someone had mentioned to me the work that Dr. Murray was doing with seawater. I was quite interested in it, so I contacted him at the Sunland Center, and he invited me out to chat. The friendship was immediately entered into by both of us—we liked each other quite a bit and became very close friends very quickly. I think he enjoyed my open mind and my very quickly understanding what he was doing and the technology behind the sea energy agriculture. Basically, I had at that point in my life already lost three people who were very close to me to cancer, and in helping them to survive I had done a lot of research into different new technologies. All of it seemed to be based on minerals and the nutrients that were missing, so when I heard what Dr. Murray was doing it just made perfect sense to me.
ACRES U.S.A: So you went to work with him?
CAIN: Well, at that time his Seaponic Farm in Fort Myers was abandoned, and he was very interested in opening it up again. I had the misfortune of being laid off by Yoder Brothers in the spring of 1977 due to some very cold weather in the north and some frost that hit us in Fort Myers; so I agreed to take on Dr. Murray's farm. We worked about four months in getting it cleaned up and in operation and started our first crop that spring.
ACRES U.S.A.: What were you growing?
CAIN: We primarily grew tomatoes. Dr. Murray had the most experience with them and felt that they would be the quickest cash crop that could provide revenue.
ACRES U.S.A.: Was this crop grown in seawater, or were you manufacturing your seawater from sea solids?
CAIN: At that point in time Dr. Murray did not have any sea solids in south Florida, so we got our heads together and decided that at high tide I could send a tanker truck out to the end of Captiva Island and gather seawater. We used that as the basis of our nutrient solution.
ACRES U.S.A.: How much did you have to cut it?
CAIN: We actually had to sit down and redo the hydroponic formulas because of the fact that the seawater we were using wasn't perfect. It wasn't collected far enough out—three or more miles off-shore. So we used 120 gallons of this seawater in 1,000 gallons of well water.
ACRES U.S.A.: And you gave the crop that much a couple of times a day?
CAIN: Yes, it was a gravity system. We just opened up valves. It was very well designed. Dr. Murray was just brilliant in a lot of areas, and he had designed an entire system.
ACRES U.S.A.: Later on the farm was sold to Don Jansen, wasn't it?
CAIN: Yes. Basically I operated the farm. I developed the operation and we were selling directly through Publix, which was buying up everything we could produce. Eventually Dr. Murray sent me out to Baja California to reestablish the source for the sea solids. I went out there and found a source, so consequently some shipments started to come out of there that I think went to Don Jansen. At that time Dr. Murray basically discouraged me quite strongly from starting a business distributing the sea solids.
ACRES U.S.A.: He discouraged you? Was there some reason for that?
CAIN: Well, Dr. Murray felt that because he had the process patented, he needed to keep it very close to himself and his family because his dream was that Con-Agra or a very large chemical farm organization would come in and pay him a great deal of money for his patent rights. So when he discouraged me from starting the business, I decided to move on to other things and left Fort Myers and moved up to North Carolina, where I continued with my organic gardening.
ACRES U.S.A.: You went on to other pursuits, but you apparently came back to your original passion. How did that happen?
CAIN: I was very interested in reestablishing the trace minerals and one day decided to get on the Internet and see if I could buy some sea solids. I did an extensive search and found nothing except David Yarrow's article that had been published in Acres U.S.A. I contacted David, and he said that he had received more responses to that article than anything else he'd ever written. He encouraged me to bring this material back into the United States and make it available to the readers of Acres U.S.A., if not the entire agricultural community, so I went back to Mexico and reestablished my connection with miners and the mine. I've been at it now for three years.
ACRES U.S.A.: Approximately at that, time I made contact with Tom Valentine to republish a little book that he'd put out on the Murray process, and I thought that Fertility from the Ocean Deep would enlarge upon the subject and expand it considerably.
CAIN: It certainly did. I think you did a wonderful piece of work publishing that.
ACRES U.S.A.: So now that you've gotten back into the business, you are distributing, ocean solids from the Baja?
CAIN: Yes. We have a product that's called SEA-90, and it is sea solids from exactly the same place where Dr. Murray found them 50 years ago. You mentioned in your book about the beds being flooded in the 1980s and ruined. Actually, they were flooded and covered with a small, thin layer of silt, but the wonderful thing about these deposits is that they are continually regenerated, because it's an estuary where the water flows in and deposits seawater every year. It didn't take very long for new deposits to build up on top of that layer of silt, and the deposits are quite extensive there—I think Dr. Murray estimated 9 million tons in just one of four locations, so there's plenty to supply the needs of farmers.
ACRES U.S.A.: You're bringing it into the United States now and distributing it to farmers?
CAIN: That's correct, to farmers and gardeners. It's being applied both to the soil, granularly, and also as a foliar spray because it is 100 percent water soluble. My goal, based on my work with Dr. Murray, is to improve the nutritional quality of the food that's grown in the United States, so we're trying to have the material available at a cost that gardeners and farmers can afford. We want to have as much of it used as possible.
ACRES U.S.A.: Are you seeing any application on pastures?
CAIN: We have seen both granular and foliar application on pastures and the case reports we're getting right now certainly support what Dr. Murray reported in his book about the animals only going to the areas where they sense that the minerals lave been applied and eating the grass down to where there's nothing left. There are even some reports of them eating the soil itself. We have heard of situations where a son is a non-believer, so to speak, and the father puts it on the pasture, and then the son comes back and says "Dad, I know exactly where you put those sea minerals because the grass is all gone in that area. You were right!” That type of story is coming in more and more often.
ACRES U.S.A.: What kind of a distribution are you getting?
CAIN: We've shipped one million, three hundred thousand pounds since the first of this year.
ACRES U.S.A.: So in effect perhaps we've touched off a new era?
CAIN: Oh, I certainly hope so! Most of the people who have purchased it—even in truckload quantities—are really just putting it out there on a trial basis. Once they see the results that I'm sure they will, they'll be ordering multiple truckload orders. I have seen several individuals who bought 50 pound bags come back later to buy 2,000 pounds.
ACRES U.S.A.: This would have application for row crops and grape arbors and just about anything, wouldn't it?
CAIN: Absolutely. It can be spread directly on the soil surface or used as a foliar spray, and both ways it's extremely useful in our main goal-to remineralize the soil so that the earth will take care of itself, so to speak.
ACRES U.S.A.: What kind of a mix do you use for the foliar applications?
CAIN: We're putting as little as one teaspoon per gallon, or two pounds in a hundred gallons, and encouraging people to add a small amount of fish emulsion to add some nitrogen and some chelating properties to the mix.
ACRES U.S.A.: With the soil application, do you attempt to reduce it to a liquid form, or are they putting it on as a solid granule?
CAIN: Most are putting it on as a solid granule. I've had some contact from people who use liquids in the Midwest, but we don't really have that aspect of it rolling yet. With the granular application, people are spreading between 250 and 550 pounds per acre. A few test plots have been supplemented as high as 2,000 pounds per acre, but because of the cost of fuel going up so much, it's just not economically feasible for most farmers to apply more than 550 pounds per acre in the first application.
ACRES U.S.A.: You are also a beekeeper. Didn't we suggest last year that you look into the matter of giving bees some water with trace minerals in it, that maybe it would help in getting them through the winter and away from some of these diseases that wipe out whole colonies?
CAIN: Right. We had talked about that, and I put the minerals into my pond in my garden area and found that the bees were using that as their primary water source. I personally had no problems with mites or any of the diseases that have wiped out so many bee populations. My bees were extremely healthy. They swarmed and have started to repopulate the area—I'm an urban gardener. Several years ago, before I got the beehive, I noticed one honeybee in my garden, and that became my primary inspiration for starting beekeeping again. This year, even though I only have the one hive, which is fairly minor in the amount of bees because of the swarm that occurred, I have multiple honeybees every day. I see them in the garden fertilizing my different plants.
ACRES U.S.A.: Perhaps this will encourage other beekeepers around the country to try that to get through the winter, because so many of them are taking such tremendous losses.
CAIN: I think it would definitely be of benefit for them to experiment with this. I mean, if the ground that's producing the flowers that the bees work has been remineralized with sea minerals, then obviously the bees would be getting the minerals in the pollen. The way beekeeping is done today, however, it's going to be very difficult for the bees to work many fields that are remineralized. Unfortunately, they're going to be working a lot of fields that are poor in minerals.
ACRES U.S.A.: What other applications have you been able to make now?
CAIN: We've run experiments in California in which SEA-90 was mixed into compost by a major organic compost producer. This was done specifically for an organic walnut grower who is very, very aware of the need for minerals in his tree crops. He basically incorporated 550 pounds per acre into the compost and did it during the mixing process so that it was actually dissolved into the compost before it was spread onto his 200 acres.
ACRES U.S.A.: If you put it on the soil surface, is it necessary to incorporate it, sort of sheet composting with it?
CAIN: That would be an excellent way to do it, but it is 100 percent water soluble, so if it goes out on the soil surface, after one good rain it's gone.
ACRES U.S.A.: Now one of the questions everyone comes up with when this subject arises: "Isn't the salt going to be toxic to the crop and ruin your acres?” You've heard the story about the waves that came in during Katrina? It says that for miles the ground is ruined because all of the seawater. What do you think about that?
CAIN: I'm not sure that we've got the complete data on what happened with Katrina. With the areas in Indonesia that were affected by the tsunami, it's been quite well written up now that the crops grown after the seawater receded have done better than they've done in 10 years—bumper crops are being reported. I think from Katrina we may eventually hear some reports to that effect.
ACRES U.S.A.: Were the granules put into the compost, and what did you use, a windrow?
CAIN: Exactly. They were mixed in, and when it was actually spread on to the field, this grower said he saw a few of the larger granules of the sea minerals, but all the rest had already been pretty much dissolved into the compost. I think this is an excellent application method, perhaps better than just spreading it directly on the soil surface.
ACRES U.S.A.: What kind of results are you seeing on athletic fields—turf or football fields, baseball grounds, playing fields, golf courses?
CAIN: We have sold quite a large quantity to turf and landscape people throughout the country. They're finding that the grasses are subsequently more drought tolerant; they show a definite change in color, too—they look greener and seem to be quite a bit healthier than the grasses that are not treated.
ACRES U.S.A.: Then the salt is not deleterious to the soil in your opinion, if it's diluted enough?
CAIN: Absolutely not—and most of your turf grasses and pastures are the most salt tolerant of all the crops that we would apply the sea minerals to, but we're really sticking with the quantities that Dr. Murray promoted, even lower from 250 pounds per acre, so we're well below any limits that would be in any way considered dangerous. Throughout the United States, at least in the Eastern United States and in the far West, we're finding very significant sodium deficiencies in the soil, so they actually need sodium, a very important element, as you know, for soil structure and for plant growth on a cellular, biological level.
ACRES U.S.A.: But you wouldn't want to put Salt Lake water on the ground without a heavy dilution: would you?
CAIN: No. What we're finding is that the reason the minerals Dr. Murray found are so useful is because of the total balance of all the elements of the periodic table that are available. The sodium is high, but it's not just sodium, the fact that it has this complex nature seems to have a very positive effect.
ACRES U.S.A.: We've always wondered about this—yes, there is sodium in salt, but there are potassium salts and every other kind of salt. Aren't the latter raising the salt profile and therefore are not as dangerous as people in the commonsense point of view seem to think?
CAIN: In some areas, I've had reports from farmers who have a very heavy clay soil, and in areas where they've applied some of these potassium salt fertilizers and ammonium nitrate and such things, they do have hot spots where they can't get much to grow. At this time we are doing some research with those people applying our SEA-90 sea minerals to see if it has a neutralizing effect. But we're still waiting for data to come in.
ACRES U.S.A.: Has there been any interest from any of the republics of learning in connection with .this new source of fertility?
CAIN: I have been contacted. Our sea minerals are being used in the University of Kentucky's experimental gardens and on a research farm at a prison in southern Illinois. But as far as the major educational facilities, we have not yet had any contact from any of them, but we are certainly putting out feelers and would love to have some agricultural research done. We hope to get going on that in the next year.
ACRES U.S.A.: Are any of your consumer customers attempting to run more or less replicated plot tests and that sort of thing?
CAIN: Absolutely! I'm encouraging people to apply bands of the minerals. We've had corn fields with minerals applied to one section or one set of rows and then another set of rows where they haven't. We've done experiments side by side, a lot of garden experiments with the minerals in place in one side and nothing in the other. All of the results are falling in line with what Dr. Murray reported and what we expected to see higher disease and insect resistance, higher productivity, better taste, better shelf life.
ACRES U.S.A.: OK. Let's return for a moment to your relationship with Dr. Maynard Murray and your experience in running the hydroponic seawater farm in Fort Myers, Florida. Murray was a good talker—if he had time, he'd sit there and talk your ear off. I'm sure he must have had some little Socratic sessions with you. Can you tell us anything about them?
CAIN: When we were first getting the farm up and running, Dr. Murray came to visit practically every day on his way home from work and shared with me all of his past experiences in operating the farm. A lot of that first-hand information was published in Sea Energy Agriculture. He was probably one of the most intelligent men I'd ever met, in the sense that it seemed like he had total, complete understanding of cellular biology and how it related to human health. In going over all of his life's work with me and talking about his experiments in Illinois, when he first started working with seawater, and then his travels and autopsying sea animals throughout the world, it became clear that as a physician, Dr. Murray really did care about people and he really did want to cure them. I think he was very frustrated by the limitations of what was available to him in medical science to cure people, so he looked on a cellular biological level to find out what was wrong. Thus he came to an absolutely miraculous, marvelous discovery in finding that trace minerals as contained in seawater—the full spectrum of elements in the periodic table are all necessary in some way to our physiological well-being, our immune systems and our mental health.
ACRES U.S.A.: Murray did his experiments up there in Chicago in a basement with grow lights, and then he had field experiments going with Ed Heine, which we also covered in our Fertility from the Ocean Deep book, but he truly had a passion for this idea, didn't he?
CAIN: His passion was with him until his dying day, I would say. He just would get so excited when we talked and he shared this information. He had such a youthfulness about him when he talked about this subject! It was his life's work and his love and his passion. It was really marvelous to see his eyes light up when he started talking about it. We actually traveled around south Florida arid spoke to a number of different groups about the work we were doing, trying to drum up support and get people interested in it—to Kiwanis, rotary groups and such. It was really quite marvelous to see him talk and hear him express all his knowledge and try to do it in a way that was understandable for people, because obviously he could go way above most anyone's head very quickly with his knowledge of biochemistry and so on.
ACRES U.S.A.: He would be very proud, I think, to see how this whole ocean fertilization idea is being enlarged and sweeping across the country. Would you agree?
CAIN: Oh, no doubt about it! I committed myself at a very young age to this idea and this process and then took a 25-year sabbatical—and I still have the same energy and feelings about it as I did when Dr. Murray and I worked together in the late 1970s.
ACRES U.S.A.: By next year, perhaps you'll have some solid numbers and case reports on all aspects of this, because right now you're really waiting for the first important crop to come in.
CAIN: Yes. One thing that's interesting regarding case reports. I've had a number of Acres U.S.A. readers who have been doing studies in radionics for many, many years and have contacted me and bought the minerals. They have basically told me that they've never, ever had a substance respond to their test the way that the sea solids have. I sent one farmer in Kentucky a small sample, and he did a test with carbon. The reactions he saw were so substantial that he immediately bought a truckload and called four of his closest friends throughout the United States, who each bought a truckload, which is 48,000 pounds. So there's a lot of work that's being done, and a lot of people are getting involved in doing trials with the product.
ACRES U.S.A.: Here it is under our feet, a whole ocean full of it, and yet we remained unaware of it all these years. Isn't that ironic?
|Dr. Maynard Murray's
and Charles Walters'
the Ocean Deep
are both available from
Acres U.S.A. Bookstore
CAIN: It is. But back in 1979, when I went to get the sea minerals and start this business—which wasn't successful at that time—I basically had five farmers (and Don Jansen may have been one of them), and they all wanted a carload at that time. That was a substantial amount, but it was all the interest I had nationwide. Since we started this process again three years ago and you published an article about us in Acres U.S.A., I have probably 500 or more people who have bought anywhere from 50 to 48,000 pounds and are actively using material right now. I think the time is finally right, and people have heard about this for any number of years. Some people read the book 25 years ago and never knew where to get the minerals, while people who have just discovered the book call me up and immediately place an order.
ACRES U.S.A.: The book's republication seems to have kicked open the door.
CAIN: Absolutely. I think the movement towards grass-fed beef is also an important factor. Think about pastures and how mineral-deficient they must be, since most of them had been cropped to the point where grain or vegetables couldn't be raised on them anymore, so they were converted to pasture. The grass-fed beef industry is just an open door waiting for this technology, I believe.
ACRES U.S.A.: We can guarantee you that there's no cobalt in the soils out there and probably no yttrium. There are probably half a hundred trace nutrients that are supply missing. They are gone.
CAIN: Basically, what farmers have been doing is putting their cattle out on pasture to provide roughage and then providing the minerals in supplements.
ACRES U.S.A.: They're providing some of the minerals in supplements.
CAIN: Some of the minerals, right.
ACRES U.S.A.: If they had a complete inventory of the minerals, we speculate that this bovine tuberculosis in Michigan would simply go away. The trouble is that most of those cows are hungry, and the absence of the various trace minerals expresses itself in these various syndromes.
CAIN: If there are .any farmers who are confronting that issue in Michigan, I would encourage them to contact me so that we can do some research studies with them.