Tobacco kilns, no longer used, dot the countryside in Southwestern Ontario. Many of the residents that grew-up in tobacco country relied on seasonal earnings for their livelihoods. I worked during tobacco seasons to contribute to my University Tuition. While many employed in the tobacco industry were just trying to make a living for their families. Cancer spread among the users, workers, farmers and residents of Tobacco Country. Not only due to the use of tobacco, but also the chemicals and poisons (DDT and Round-up) used to increase crop production. I remember, as a child, running out to see the field in our back yard when the crop dusting airplanes dropped their toxic concoctions over head.
Then, the harmful effects of smoking were documented, the demand for tobacco and tobacco products decreased. Huge tobacco companies were sued. The kilns and fields were abandoned.
Now the sandy fields are turning to alternative crops. Some farmers tried peanuts, ginseng, lavender and hops. The newest and biggest money maker is “Weed” as it has now been legalized in Canada for non–medicinal use. The hope is that cannabis can cure cancer, epilepsy, or even dementia. If not, at least it will help ease the suffering of other diseases including PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).
NATIONAL MAMMOGRAPHY DAY – Third Friday in October