Gardening Articles: Edibles :: Small Fruits & Berries

Creating a Nation of Farmers

by Charlie Nardozzi


It is well-known that there are serious problems with our food system. It’s heavily dependent on fossil fuels, making it vulnerable to rising gas and oil prices. It contributes to pollution and global warming because food is shipped an average of 1500 miles before it reaches consumers. And food production is concentrated on large farms that are far away from (and have little or no contact with) the people eating the food. While these and many other problems are well known, the solutions often feel out of reach for the everyday citizen.

A new book, A Nation of Farmers, by Sharon Astyk and Aaron Newton (New Society Publishers, 2009), not only highlights the problems, but also offers practical steps that anyone can take. Harkening back to Thomas Jefferson’s phrase that America should be a “nation of farmers” because it would be the best way to preserve our democracy, the authors call for the creation of 100 million new farmers to reconnect people with their food and create a more sustainable food system. The book combines essays and factual information plus interviews with the movers and shakers in the alternative agriculture community, such as Gene Logsdon. There are even recipes to try at home. If you’re looking for inspiration, practical ideas, and a good winter read, try this book.

For more information on this book, go to: A Nation of Farmers

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