Village Farming in the Amazon Jungle: Penpe, Suriname

Ice Cream Bean Seed Pod - Open

You won’t find a lot of Big Ag in Suriname; in fact, you won’t find a lot of big anything there. With a population that barely eclipses the half-million mark — most living along the northern coastal area — the largest venture in South America’s smallest country is bauxite mining. And while there are some export food crops, primarily rice and bananas, start heading deeper into the Amazon Jungle and soon the scale of farming operations shrinks.
Read more: Village Farming in the Amazon Jungle: Penpe, Suriname

Brain Food to Fight Off Depression

Do you have a happy brain? Mine has had its ups and downs, but just hearing that the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) annual meeting last month included a workshop called “Prescription Brain Food” boosted my happiness. And in an apt play on words, speaker Drew Ramsey, MD, said, “It’s time to send your patients to
Read more: Brain Food to Fight Off Depression

Organics in Romania: the Promise of Export Markets

A reduced inventory in Brasov’s organic food shop

Known primarily for its spectacular castles and fortresses—not to mention the legend of Vlad the Impaler—Romania is also a country abundant in arable farmland. Romania’s allocation of organically-farmed land may seem small but its rate of growth indicates that there is both interest and intent in adopting the practice.
Read more: Organics in Romania: the Promise of Export Markets

From Local Farms to Corner Stores: Increasing Access to Healthy Foods

SeaTac International Market

With an eye to the future, a federally-funded program is underway that is designed to help Americans eat healthier foods and fend off ailments stemming from obesity, including heart disease and diabetes by bringing together retailers, farmers, and consumers. Seattle’s Healthy Foods Here (HFH) program operates synergistically.
Read more: From Local Farms to Corner Stores: Increasing Access to Healthy Foods

Beyond Fair Trade Coffee: A Business Built on Partnerships

Jeff Ericson at his Camano Island headquarters. (Photo by Matt Land)

From its picturesque location at the end of Washington’s State Route 532, things are looking good at Camano Island Coffee Roasters (CICR). Founded in 1999 by Jeff Ericson and his nephew Dan, it all started with a one-pound roaster in a barn.
Read more: Beyond Fair Trade Coffee: A Business Built on Partnerships

Somali Bantu Farmers Put Their Skills to Work in Washington

Eddie Hill, Seattle Tilth Farm Programs Manager, hydrates some plant starts

Starting over can mean different things to different people, depending on the nature of the change. It often entails a journey: physical, emotional or both. For a group of Somali Bantu refugees who have settled in the South King County part of Washington, it has been nothing less than an odyssey.
Read more: Somali Bantu Farmers Put Their Skills to Work in Washington

Mangoes in Mali: An Essay on Fruit and Friendship

Mangos in Mali

Whenever I eat a mango, no matter where I am or from which country the mango came, I think of Africa. It is still my favorite fruit.
Read more: Mangoes in Mali: An Essay on Fruit and Friendship

Challenges to Agrodiversity in Poptun, Guatemala

The Poptun market

Hombres de maíz. Men of corn. More than just a description, it’s the basis of the Mayan belief system. Popol Vuh, the Mayan’s eight hundred year-old narrative of creation, teaches just that: humankind is created from corn.
Read more: Challenges to Agrodiversity in Poptun, Guatemala