reminder: mendocino farm hack this weekend!

posted December 2, 2014

Here is the updated schedule: Mendocino Farm Hack

mendocino

Mendocino County will host its first FarmHack at the Little Lake Grange and Ridgewood Ranch in Willits, CA this December 6-7. This weekend long event will bring together business owners, engineers and mechanics, farmers and home-scale producers to learn about the possibilities of ethanol production and use. A series of workshops, panel discussions, and demonstrations will provide a comprehensive knowledge of this renewable, sustainable fuel source with an emphasis on how we as a community can collaborate and reduce our waste stream and our petroleum addiction.

For more information, contact:

Mendocino Alcohol Fuel Group at (707) 960-0717, mafginfo@gmail.com, mendocinodeb@gmail.com



iowa city: the next ecopolis??

posted December 1, 2014

Ecopolis Iowa City: Community Forum Launches Regenerative City Initiative

by Jeff Briggers, Huffington Post

image via huffingtonpost.com

A broad range of community members in Iowa City, Iowa kicked off the “Ecopolis Forum” today, a groundbreaking series of monthly winter conversations on creating the first regenerative city of the arts, food, renewable energy, and commerce in the heartland.

Featuring nationally acclaimed farmer and permaculture expert Grant Schultz, the founder of Versaland in rural Iowa City, the first event included a multimedia show on local farm, food and permaculture possibilities for the river town, with a brief showcase on regenerative city efforts in Germany and Australia.

“An Ecopolis cycles resources,” Schultz said to a crowd meeting at the downtown business, Beadology. “Private enterprise and public services can always agree, efficiency centers on cycling resources.”

Laying out a design for a regenerative showcase in the riverfront district of Iowa’s former historic capital, which gained national attention for its community response torecord flooding in 2008, Schultz called on participants to rethink Iowa City’s sense of place and nature, as well as imported sources of food, sprawling transport systems, and an aging grid dependent largely on fossil fuel energy and subsequent waste in enduring periods of record drought, flooding and changing climate.

Schultz issued a timely challenge to creative cities like Iowa City to take the lead in local food, farm, energy and transportation initiatives that positively enhance rather than undermine our environment.

“By April, 2016, we need 90% of the residents of Iowa City to have access to a community garden plot within 16 blocks (one mile) of their residence,” Schultz said. “Growing food is a human right.”

Read the rest of the article HERE!


food chains: new film focuses on the hands that pick the food

posted November 30, 2014

Watch the trailer for the new documentary Food Chains! Here’s the scoop:
“There is more interest in food these days than ever, yet there is very little
interest in the hands that pick it. Farmworkers, the foundation of our fresh
food industry, are routinely abused and robbed of wages. In extreme cases they
can be beaten, sexually harassed or even enslaved – all within the borders of
the United States.

“Featuring Eric Schlosser and Eva Longoria, and narrated by Forest Whitaker,
Food Chains reveals the human cost in our food supply and the complicity of
large buyers of produce like fast food and supermarkets. Fast food is big, but
supermarkets are bigger – earning $4 trillion globally. They have tremendous
power over the agricultural system. Over the past 3 decades they have drained
revenue from their supply chain leaving farmworkers in poverty and forced to
work under subhuman conditions.

“The narrative of the film focuses on an intrepid and highly lauded group of
tomato pickers from Southern Florida – the Coalition of Immokalee Workers or
CIW – who are revolutionizing farm labor through their ingenious Fair Food
program, which partners with growers and retailers to improve working
conditions for farm laborers in the United States.. Their story is one of hope
and promise for the triumph of morality over corporate greed – to ensure a
dignified life for farm workers and a more humane, transparent food chain.

“Food Chains premiered at the 2014 Berlin Film Festival and screened
subsequently at the Tribeca Film Festival and Guadalajara Film Festival.”

Find a theater near you: http://bit.ly/1sf9XqY

Food Chains can also be pre-ordered at iTunes:  http://bit.ly/1x5CToH

Official website: http://foodchainsfilm.com/

Facebook.com/FoodChainsFilm
@FoodChainsFilm


farming apprenticeship at growing heart farm!!

posted November 30, 2014

ghf

Growing Heart Farm (growingheartfarm.com) is hiring a young farmer or farming team to operate 1.5 acres in cultivation for the 2015 growing season.  Private 2 bedroom apartment provided on our 41 acre farm 1 mile from metro north train station in Wingdale, NY. We are open to a range of experience levels, however, this position is ideal for a farmer looking to graduate from apprenticeship and take the reigns of their own operation.  We have an established Manhattan based CSA and some small local markets. Infrastructure includes drip irrigation, fencing, horse barn, 2 small greenhouses, coolers, delivery van, BCS, mower, and general implements, etc.

We have incubated 5 seasons of young farmers and we just received our soil tests, which mark substantial improvements in soil fertility.  The fields are currently in cover crop having just finished our growing season.  The farm hosts numerous events including farm to yoga (pics) and a variety of other retreats largely attended by visitors from New York City and surrounding areas.  Please visit our Website or Facebook page to get a better sense of our community.  We are very collaborative and open to new ideas as we explore new models of sustainability.

please contact lewis (at) growingheartfarm.com with inquiries.


ferguson action releases demands

posted November 29, 2014

image via america.aljazeera.com

Ferguson Action has released their demands for racial justice, divided into “Our Vision for a New America” and “National Demands.”

The demands are ambitious and utopian, but also simple and straightforward because they deal with the basic rights of a human being in a civil society. They provide practical policy responses the systemic injustice that has been so fully revealed in the public eye over the last couple of years, but also probe at our assumptions of how the state, the police force, and the citizen are meant to interact.

Read the full list of demands HERE.


ethical foods magazine: ripe & ready to be read

posted November 29, 2014

There’s a new resource for learning about how to grow good, sustainable food, who’s growing it, and how you can better understand your place in the new ecosystem we’re all trying to build: EthicalFoods Magazine.

Ethical Foods is looking out for your health, the renewability of the earth, and sharing farmers’ insights with the world. So they have articles about the challenges of organic certification and difficulties faced by urban farmers, as well as profiles of individual farms, and interviews with people farming the land right now. They also have a Sustainable Kitchen Guide, to help newcomer green up their own cooking process.

But don’t let us tell you about it: check it out yourself.

And of course you can follow them on Facebook and Twitter.



“we are beginning to see the power of food as an issue”

posted November 28, 2014

Food Power!

Mark Bittman’s article in the New York Times, Nov. 25, 2014.

There are four basic ways to change the food system. I talk about three of them a lot: The first is to eat differently, focusing on good food and especially plants; the second is to bring change to your work, whether that means becoming a farmer or helping other people eat better through your role as a teacher, doctor, artist, techie, lawyer or journalist. The third is to work locally to effect change in, for example, school systems or municipal politics.

The fourth is the toughest: Change the system that governs everything, including food. This means changing dominant economic theories and practices, and indeed the nature of capitalism itself. That isn’t happening anytime soon.

But incremental changes are possible within that system.  Click HERE to read more of this fantastic article! (more…)


mendocino farm hack, dec 6-7.

posted November 28, 2014

When: 12/6/2014

Where: Grange Ag School. 16200 Willits Road. Willits, CA 95490

Mendocino County will host its first FarmHack at the Little Lake Grange and Ridgewood Ranch in Willits, CA this December 6-7. This weekend long event will bring together business owners, engineers and mechanics, farmers and home-scale producers to learn about the possibilities of ethanol production and use. A series of workshops, panel discussions, and demonstrations will provide a comprehensive knowledge of this renewable, sustainable fuel source with an emphasis on how we as a community can collaborate and reduce our waste stream and our petroleum addiction.

For more information, contact:

Mendocino Alcohol Fuel Group

(707) 960-0717

mafginfo@gmail.com, mendocinodeb@gmail.com