Recent Posts

Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Aug 7, 9:11am

    This season, the city of Akron is getting involved in the urban agriculture movement with a new program called Akron Grows.  Eight city-owned vacant lots have been turned into community gardens, and community members can acquire plots in which to grow food for a small fee of $20-$30.  “We recognize, especially in today’s economy, the need for people to put affordable, fresh food on the dinner table; the city itself also has a need to put vacant lots to productive use.  I’m excited to watch Akron Grows spur community involvement a

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Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Aug 6, 1:23pm

    One particularly interesting facet of the local food movement is the diversity of backgrounds from which people approach it.  High school teachers, professors, gardeners and government workers are just a few of the groups that see the value of eating local.  A meeting that took place last week at the New Harvest Community Arts Center and Café in Columbus was a microcosm of the diverse world of local food.  Then following are the people who attended the meeting, in the order that they introduced themselves around the table:

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Mary Holmes's picture
Mary Holmes Aug 4, 11:13am

It may not fit the traditional definition, but there is some very exciting economic development happening in Lake County this summer that is of special interest to folks who love local food. This week, the first fruits of the Hispanic Growers Project will arrive at farmers’ markets in Painesville, Lake Farm Park, and Mentor as a result of a wide collaboration and the hard work of five Lake County families.

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Leah Miller's picture
Leah Miller Aug 4, 10:20am

Looking for some new or different seeds for your Fall garden activities or planning for next year's Farmers' Markets? You might want to check out the Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, Iowa. I had the opportunity to visit them in June. I was familiar with their catalog and heirloom vegetable seeds.

Michelle Ajamian & Brandon Jaeger's picture
Michelle Ajamian ... Aug 4, 9:50am

I'd be interested in how this may run parellel with what is going on in rural areas. I gew up in the inner city and find many of the same issues exist in rural communities, particularly here in Appalachia. I look foward to reading more about this project.


Leah Miller's picture
Leah Miller Aug 3, 1:16pm

The following is a brief summary of the House version of comprehensive food safety bill that passed in July. If you are involved in grain or livestock at farm level, direct marketing to farmers market, restaurants or grocery stores, you might want to follow what is in the House version and what is being proposed for the Senate version. A comprehensive food safety bill that gives the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) additional new authorities to take preventative steps to stop foodborne illnesses passed the U.S.

Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Jul 28, 12:27pm

    As one of approximately 70 OARDC Research Internship Program (ORIP) interns, I have been traveling to nearby cities and interviewing people involved in the local food movement, then writing their stories for this website.  One of the most exciting things about my internship is the ability to see progress in the local food movement occurring right in front of my eyes.  My most recent opportunity to see progress in action was during a trip to Columbus last week.  Two of my fellow interns and I went to lunch at the New Harvest Community Center and Café

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Amalie Lipstreu's picture
Amalie Lipstreu Jul 28, 10:41am

In order to better meet your needs, please take three minutes to complete the survey using the link below.  Your response will help us better plan a local food policy planning and networking event on November 12th at the Ohio Department of Agriculture. If you know of others that should complete this survey, please forward the link.

Thank you!

Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Jul 28, 7:47am

    Seleshi Asfaw came to the United States from Ethiopia in 1997 to escape an oppressive regime.  Once he arrived in Columbus, he saw the difficulties that Ethiopians and other East African immigrants faced: language barriers, loss of cultural knowledge among children, and the nutritional difficulties that come with access to a completely new set of foods.  In reaction to these problems, Asfaw formed Ethiopian Tewahedo Social Services, which offers English classes, after-school programs, parenting classes, and instruction in Amharic, a major Ethiopian language.&nbs

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Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Jul 23, 1:45pm


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Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Jul 22, 11:42am



Braddock Farms, one of the largest projects run by the non-profit Grow Pittsburgh, is a farm run on a stretch of vacant lots on one of the main streets of the suburb of Braddock.  It sits in the shadow of the last steel mill in Braddock, a town that has lost 90% of its income and population. The area is dotted with overgrown vacant lots, and the mayor, an enthusiastic supporter of the local food movement, hopes to turn them into useful growing spaces.  The existing farm is now in its second full growing season.

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Steve Bosserman's picture
Steve Bosserman Jul 22, 10:17am

The front page of the July 21st edition of the Columbus Dispatch announced "Schmidt's Restaurant rescues Oktoberfest" with the full article in the Metro section.  It brings to mind the fragility of local food systems in an urban setting and how difficult it is for them to establish and gain sustainability.  An annual food festival sponsored by an anchor institution, e.g., schools,

Susan Smalley's picture
Susan Smalley Jul 22, 5:09am

Good morning all:

I'm wondering how familiar anyone in our group is with eXtension.  I have been watching its development but not really involved.  This afternoon I plan to join their 30-minute webinar on Moodle Courses.  Another webinar that may be relevant to our work is Using Ning Groups to Improve Learning in Extension Programs, scheduled for 7/29.  I'm thinking that there may be several possibilities for linkages and leverage:

Steve Bosserman's picture
Steve Bosserman Jul 20, 8:51pm

During a recent discussion about the formation of an Ag-Bio Cluster Leadership Council, a question was raised about the kinds of projects to be considered for inclusion in the portfolio: Are they food-related only?  Can they include advanced energy, especially if related to agriculture?  What about those that expand local, distributed manufacturing?  Is more weight to be given to those projects that encourage land use for multiple purposes?

Michelle Ajamian & Brandon Jaeger's picture
Michelle Ajamian ... Jul 19, 12:48pm

This text came from a good firend, Bob Sheak  is a retired Sociology  professor and voracious reader. He is kind enough to send me his notes from anything to do with Ag from time to time.


Bear Braumoeller's picture
Bear Braumoeller Jul 17, 12:16pm

Greetings all,

Michelle Ajamian & Brandon Jaeger's picture
Michelle Ajamian ... Jul 16, 2:07pm

Not sure how to attach a file here so I am pasting notes from the July 8 Athens Food Policy Council meeting-


Steve Bosserman's picture
Steve Bosserman Jul 13, 10:02pm

The July 6th edition of the Cleveland Plain Dealer included two articles about urban farming.  The first one, "Cleveland's for-profit urban gardens are growing", focused on the profit potential for those in the Cleveland metropolitan area who already are or might consider getting into urban farming as a viable business opportunity.  The second, "Many say the timing is right for urban f

Callie Hopkins's picture
Callie Hopkins Jul 13, 8:03am

an average-looking street next to a park in the West End of Pittsburgh,
a red door stands.  This would not ordinarily be a source of interest,
but this door is not surrounded by walls, nor does it lead into a house. 
It is merely a frame and a front door standing alone, and it leads not
into a comfortable living room, but into a small member-owner farm.

Steve Bosserman's picture
Steve Bosserman Jul 12, 1:53pm

Last week, Carol Goland, Executive Director for the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA), emailed an announcement about upcoming events
in conjunction with OEFFA's 30th year celebration to be held at Whole
Foods in Columbus on July 23rd through the 25th.  The line-up

Casey W. Hoy's picture
Casey W. Hoy Jul 8, 2:09pm

You may have already seen this, but in case you haven't, the entrepreneurs in agriculture group should certainly be aware of a new project in NE Ohio.  The project is described in a post to the Advance Northeast Ohio Partners group.  If you are in NE Ohio and haven't done so already, please consider joining the Advance Northeast Ohio Partners group.  And if you know of individuals in NE Ohio who would be key leaders that could serve on a leadership council for this regional effort, please