"Cultivate a relationship with your food and the farmers who feed us, and discover what’s fresh and in season in Southern Wisconsin.
"Experience the growing season at farms across Southern Wisconsin in these 5-minute audio farm visits by Julie Garrett! Photo galleries, recipes and stories help you make the most of the growing season when you visit us online. We'd love to hear your feedback & suggestions. Enjoy!"
5 Minutes on the Farm website
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"Some remarkable changes have taken place in the food and farming landscape since the book was published in 2006. Consider this handful of statistics, each in its own way an artifact of the 'where-does-my-food-come-from' question:
"There are now more than 8,000 farmers markets in America, an increase of 180 percent since 2006. More than 4,000 school districts now have farm-to-school programs, a 430 percent increase since 2006, and the percentage of elementary school with gardens has doubled, to 26 percent. During that period, sales of soda have plummeted, falling 14 percent between 2004 and 2014.The food industry is rushing to reformulate hundreds of products to remove high fructose corn syrup and other processed-food ingredients that consumers have made clear they will no longer tolerate. Sales of organic food have more than doubled since 2006, from $16.7 billion in 2006 to more than $40 billion today."
Excerpted from Michael Pollan's “The Omnivore’s Dilemma 10th Anniversary Edition”. Read the full article here.
"Wisconsin leads the nation in number of organic dairy and beef farms. That's not per capita — that's total numbers of farms for the humble Dairyland.
"Wisconsin is also second in the nation for total number of organic farms — 1,228, behind California's 2,805. (New York is third at 917.) We're second only to California for total acreage in organic production, and we're home to more organic farmers than any other state.
"Why is it our state has emerged as an organic leader?
"'It's because of our heritage of dairy farms and small-scale farms, which is amenable to organic management,' said Steve Pincus, who along with his wife, Beth Kazmar, operates Tipi (pronounced teepee) Produce, a 76-acre certified-organic farm near Evansville."
Written by Jennifer Rude Klett for the Journal Sentinel. Read the full article here.
"The Free Farm Stand, located in the Mission district of San Francisco, distributes free food through gifting organic fruits, vegetables, and locally made breads every weekend.
"The food is sourced from produce that goes unsold at farmer’s markets, and from neighborhood and community gardens, and also from public and private fruit trees. Additionally, they help grow food on donated land. The Free Farm Stand builds community and provides a meeting place for locals on tight budgets.
"Most learn about the Free Farm Stand by word-of-mouth as there is little to no press and barely enough information online to even deduce the time and place of the weekly event. On distribution days people start arriving around noon and request a number which will be used to admit groups of ten at a time. Many folks picnic or sit in circles on the grass and talk while they wait their turn. There is no sense that this is any sort of hand-out or cattle call, but rather a way to connect to the community, get needed food, and foster a sense of belonging."
Written by Chelsea Rustrum, and excerpted from the book It's a Shareable Life. Read the full article here.
"These Black farmers don’t stop at healthy food. They’re healing trauma, instilling collective values, and changing the way their communities think about the land.
"In 1982, the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights extrapolated the statistics on land loss and predicted the extinction of the Black farmer by the year 2000.
"They were wrong. While the situation is still dire, with Black farmers comprising only about 1 percent of the industry, we have not disappeared. After more than a century of decline, the number of Black farmers is on the rise.
"These farmers are not just growing food, either. The ones you’ll meet here rely on survival strategies inherited from their ancestors, such as collectivism and commitment to social change. They infuse popular education, activism, and collective ownership into their work."
Written by Leah Penniman for YES! Magazine. Read the full article here.
"A partnership between a Boston health clinic and a local grocery shows what economic development can do when it makes community health a priority.
"Three years ago, they began to talk: Was there a way they could create jobs, grow their local economy, and reduce blight, all while helping people live longer and healthier?
"The result is a level of community outreach and on-site education built on the expertise of both BNHC and Vicente’s. The health center offers a range of primary care, urgent care, dental, vision, and mental health services, along with teen programs and nutrition counseling. Clinicians write “veggie scripts” for patients as part of efforts to promote heart health and weight reduction. They urge patients to enroll in free nutrition and cooking classes, taking advantage of an on-site demonstration kitchen. Guided supermarket tours help people better understand nutrition labels and make healthy ingredient substitutes. In addition, the store is testing incentive programs that both encourage healthy choices and keep food affordable."
Written by Bob Van Meter for YES! Magazine. Read the full article here.
Edible Backyard is a local show featuring local kids competing to cook the best meal with local foods. Check out their most recent video below, and then check out their website: http://ediblebackyardshow.weebly.com/
"CHESTER — A federal official toured the nation’s only non-profit grocery store Friday morning, calling it a successful example of improving food access to low-income communities.
Fare and Square is a 16,000 square foot non-profit grocery store owned and operated by Philabundance. Constructed in a vacant store at 9th and Trainer streets in Chester, the store has been in operation for about four months with 69 employees, 82 percent of which are Chester residents. Undersecretary of Agriculture Kevin Concannon toured the facility Friday, eager to learn about the store’s operations."
Read the full article on Fare and Square's Website here.
"While important work is being funded through the agency’s local foods grants, it’s important to note that $34.3 million for local food is only a drop in the bucket of the USDA’s overall 2016 budget of $156 billion. Allocations for commodity crops will be $14.2 billion next year, plus $8.2 billion in crop insurance, both programs favoring conventional, industrial agriculture."
By: Leah Penniman, for YES! Magazine. Read the full article here.
Each week we post articles, poems, and essays that relate to food sovereignty, health & wellbeing, and eating culture.