I am going to try to do blog posts here and at other sites where we are part of an on-line community around regional food security and business. Here's a start.
Since we returned from a Permaculture Certification course on August 31, we've been busy getting ready for harvest and the opening of Shagbark Seed & Mill Co. We've been pushing to get our seed cleaner and mill in place in early October and equipment in place to harvest crops in the coming weeks.
I've attached to this posting the graphics from my presentation on the history of our project and how it relates to our USDA grant from yesterday's Leadership Council meeting. They may help keep the project in perspective and please feel free to share them if it would help to engage others in our efforts. I would agree entirely with Rod and Stu's assessment, it was a great start yesterday and we very much appreciated the talent, commitment and energy in the room. I'm looking forward to working with you all!
This locavores thing is really catching on but at the same time, most farmers don't have the luxury of time to spend hours at a Farmers market, peddling their products. What's needed are smarter ways to connect the suppliers/producers with their customers. Casey Hoy's ant colony study keeps coming to my mind and with all these new technologies/softwares for communicating with each other, there must be a way. My wife and I have become connected to Tina Wagner and Brad Masi's City Fresh program this year.
Ag-Bio Cluster Leadership Council: During September 2009, the Agriculture-Biosciences Cluster Leadership Council will convene its first meeting. This group is chartered by the Fund for Our Economic Future (FFEF) to develop business opportunities within the agricultural and biosciences sector throughout the 16-county area of Northeast Ohio. To fulfill its purpose, the Leadership Council will establish an ongoing portfolio management process that enables Council members to solicit and field business cases, evaluate each one for likelihood of success and risk
On Aug. 17, the Dayton-area local foods group, Miami Valley Grown (MVG), conducted our first chef-farm tour. MVG was started by the local OSU Extension office and is not supported by the EERA community development educators, with input from Ag, FCS, and even 4-H.
I wanted to forward this article about "The Green Taam" to the meat processing and other working groups of Local Food Systems. Amalia and Ariella participated in many of the Mobile Processing Unit (MPU) meetings and discusions which were held at OARDC this past year. The Cleveland Jewish News featured their new enterprise in a recent edition.
William Melver, here, president of AGRA. Please join me in promoting soy beans as real, people food in Ohio. It could be an important movement that can create a new industry with lots of new jobs in Ohio.
Carl Skalak owns Blue Pike Farm, an acre of income-generating vegetables and flowers in downtown Cleveland named after and extinct Great Lakes fish. Skalak has been growing onions, sugar snap peas, heirloom tomatoes and much more on E. 72nd St. north of St.
In five vacant lots across the city of Cleveland, things are growing. Not just fruits and vegetables, although there are plenty of those, but also the knowledge and experience of the high school students who tend the gardens. Employed by the Cleveland Botanical Garden’s Green Corps program, these students plant, weed, water and harvest in the gardens while learning about agriculture.
You could call Kwodwo Ababio a lot of things: friendly, a great cook, active in the local food movement, passionate about the future of Linden. Just don’t call him a community activist. “I’m not a community activist, I’m just active in my community,” Ababio stressed during a meeting at New Harvest Café. “I’m an artist, and the community is my canvas.”
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
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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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