Tuesday, February 17, 2009

No Farms No Food

I've seen this bumper sticker around town and on the road. It's a great slogan. But I wanted to know more about where it came from and just who's slogan it is. I did an on-line search to find out... (I just love the internet for connecting with the things that really matter to me!) and I found out the it belongs to the American Farmland Trust. The mission of American Farmland Trust is to help farmers and ranchers protect their land, produce a healthier environment and build successful communities. To that end, the campaign of No Farms No Food, is all about supporting local food and farms.

The message is simple and couldn't be more clear—America's farms and ranches provide an unparalleled abundance of fresh, healthy and local food, but they are rapidly disappearing.

Eighty-six percent of America’s fruits and vegetables are grown near metro regions, where they are in the path of development. And every hour we lose 125 acres of farm and ranch land. That's why supporting local food and farms is more important than ever!

A few weekends ago, I took a class sponsored by the ASAP (Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project) on Starting a Market Garden Business. One of the many things I was surprised to learn is that 96% of the food that is grown in our Western North Carolina Region goes away, into the global food supply. That fact just amazed me. Add to that the fact that most of the food in our local stores has come 1000's of miles to get to us. No wonder food costs are soaring and much of the produce at the local grocery looks like it's been to the war and back! What is that all about?

No Food No Farms offers 2 ways to get involved...
1. Get the Free Bumper Sticker and display it. Spread the message in your community that you support local food and local farms by displaying a free No Farms No Food bumper sticker from American Farmland Trust. Request yours today!

2. Take the Keep It Local pledge and stand up for local food and farms! As consumers, we make a difference when we support local food and farmer's markets. Make a commitment to local food, farms and ranches and take the Keep It Local pledge now!
I must say that this excites the local foodie in me! I have ordered my bumper sticker and made the pledge. I invite you to do the same. If you can, make a donation to support the work of the American Farmland Trust.

After you take the pledge you too will get a letter like I did with some more great resource information.

Dear Beth,

Thank you for making a commitment to your local farms and ranches by taking American Farmland Trust’s Keep It Local Pledge. We hope you discover a new favorite food, make new connections with local farmers and ranchers and gain a deeper appreciation for what it takes to get a meal from farm to fork.

Here are some resources to get you started:

Find farms and ranches in your area. Map the distance to your home to find those within your pledge distance. Subscribe to their CSA, find them at a farmers' market or go to the farm if they have pick-your-own operations.

Search for restaurants that buy from local farms and ranches. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about where the food is from. A lot of restaurants take pride in providing fresh ingredients and will be glad you asked!

Learn what’s fresh in your area—and how to cook it. When you start eating local, you might come across new varieties of fruits and vegetables that you’ve never seen before. Your taste buds are in for a treat! Experiment and share recipes with other local food enthusiasts.

American Farmland Trust is committed to protecting farm and ranch land and increasing the availability of fresh, local foods. Support our work by donating today. Your gift will go a long way to help in our work with policy makers, communities and producers to save the land that sustains America.

Sincerely,

Your friends at American Farmland Trust

5 comments:

MN_homesteader said...

While this is great, I think the best thing to do first is grow your own food and then buy locally produced food. Either way I ordered a bumper sticker and pledged to buy local.

Anonymous said...

Beth,
Yesterday, I was driving and saw one of those bumper stickers in Virginia.
Jane

Roses and Lilacs said...

Hello Beth. I stumbled onto your site by accident while researching seed catalogs;) You have a very interesting site and I admire your dedication. Oddly, the reason fresh produce is shipped into our areas is because it cheaper than local. Of course this time of if we want fresh, we take what's available.


I have a gardening blog. Mostly flowers but some fruit and veggies. Not much to write about now but beginning in April most of my posts will be garden related.

It was nice visiting you.
Marnie

shibaguyz.com said...

Congratulations on joining the Farmland Trust! The Shibaguyz have been on this for a while now since we hope to be farmers soon enough as well. It's a great cause and the newsletters are a great resource.

awood said...

Beth,
Thank you so much for including American Farmland Trust on your blog. We always appreciate the support! You have an excellent blog, keep up the good work and sign up for our newsletters if you are interested in keeping in touch. Thanks again and have a bountiful spring.
Allen