Local Grains: Taking Back Our Wheat

Our “National Hymn,” America the Beautiful, opens with the image of endless skies over fields of ripe golden grain that reach to purple mountains on the horizon. Poet Katharine Lee Bates would probably be appalled to realize that she was eulogizing one of the worst examples of mono-cropping in existence – second only to the carpeting of Iowa with corn.
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Somaliland Farmers Learn Math, Reading, and Agricultural Skills

Ferhan, 33, was still a young man when he dropped out of school to help his father in the family’s fields. He quit the third grade and instead of learning to read and write, he learned to plow and harvest. Ferhan’s father passed down traditional methods of agriculture to his son, techniques that Ferhan’s father had learned from his father.
Read more: Somaliland Farmers Learn Math, Reading, and Agricultural Skills

Crossing the Chasm with Viva Farms

Big agriculture is big business; too big, too distant, too reliant on the latest technology, and too focused on profit over good food. Expecting complex technology and genetic engineering to solve the problems of climate change, extreme weather patterns, water shortages, and dwindling supplies of fossil fuels, is not the answer. It is time to go back to the land, to restore our natural resource base and re-invest in our people.
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PCC Natural Markets - Co-ops in the 21st Century

Walk into any of the nine PCC Natural Markets in Puget Sound and it’s clear your not in your parents’ (or grandparents, if you’re young enough) food co-op! No more cozy slightly run-down food markets with barrels of flour and bags of rice on the floor, around which barefoot children played tag while their parents debated politics and planned social actions against “the establishment.” Today, the PCC (as it’s fondly referred to here in Seattle) is every bit the contemporary supermarket. So what is so special about the nation’s largest natural food co-operative?
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Food like 'mi abuela' made - Mendoza's Mexican Mercado

In the face of daunting competition, an economic recession, and the unrelenting pressure by Walmart and other big box stores, small businesses continue to open and to flourish. Meet Sonia and Carlos, owners of Mendoza’s Mexican Mercado – they have the entrepreneurial drive that combines the old and the new to bring new flavors to cities like Seattle while at the same time providing familiar “food from home” for those relocated here from countries like Mexico. These family businesses are the “American Dream” – business ownership and community support.
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Ina Denburg - and GoodFood World - Occupy Wall Street

Ina Denburg, our Healthy Eating contributor, joined farmers, food justice activists, community gardeners, and others for a “re-localized” food system in a rally organized by Food Democracy Now and the OWS food justice committee.
Read more: Ina Denburg – and GoodFood World – Occupy Wall Street

Last Ditch Effort

We offer the following interview with Devon Peña to highlight issues that are facing farmers across the US as well as around the world. Challenges like farm worker shortages – is it an immigration issue or worker welfare issue? Or corporate control by Big Ag, Big Food, and Big Org (as in organics)? Or commodity speculation by the world’s stock markets which is driving the cost of basic food stuffs beyond the reach of millions? Or factory farming that have mastered the “art” of growing and killing animals faster and on a larger scale than ever before? We’ll bring you information on all those issues this week, and we start with a “food commons.”
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Who will feed the starving masses?

We took GoodFood World on the road this week and it gave us a chance to discuss the big news of the last week: the alternative food system’s response to an article that appeared in the New York Times, Genetically Engineered Food for All, by Nina V. Fedoroff. Another salvo across the bow of agro-ecology and the organic movement, the article is just part of a propaganda blitz that has been going on for years, paid for – of course – by Big Ag and Big Food.
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Food Insurance: Seed Banks

Food varieties extinction is happening all over the world—and it’s happening fast. In the United States an estimated 90 percent of our historic fruit and vegetable varieties have vanished. Of the 7,000 apple varieties that were grown in the 1800s, fewer than a hundred remain.
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Let's All Plant a Garden!

It’s been a cool, late spring here in Puget Sound, which means there’s still time to plant a garden. In fact, we’ve just gotten the tomatoes we bought at the Seattle Tilth Edible Plant Sale in the ground! Buying starts and seeds from local growers and at local sales ensures that you get plants that are climate-appropriate. There are some plants that just don’t do well in our short summers!
Read more: Let’s All Plant a Garden!