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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Voices From the Farm: Green Hills and Sheep Thrills

Lambing was over, and our flock had given us another very good year, our 6th consecutive year for a 200%+ lamb crop! We were ecstatic! Highlights were, Big Mumbo at 9 years of age had quads, but one fetus was being reabsorbed. Big Jumbo, also 9 years, slacked off to having twins this year. However, some of our younger ewes were coming into their most productive years and picked up the slack!
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There Is No Planet B

On the one hand, I can say that Organic Consumers Association was being opportunistic by broadcasting their message – COOK ORGANIC NOT THE PLANET – at the “Forward on Climate Rally” to stop the Keystone pipeline. On the other hand, it felt great to be met by the smiling faces of OCA, who stationed themselves as “meet-and-greeters” when we got up to street level at the Smithsonian metro station. OCA was there in solidarity to join forces with Sierra Club, 350.org, the Hip Hop Caucus and more than 90 other organizations.
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Buy local? Why local? Time for the REAL story!

Getting our food from the farm to the consumer – the “supply chain” – is certainly not as simple as it was the past. Once upon a time, the consumer, his/her family, and the local community WERE the growers and a supply chain didn’t exist. Transportation from the field and barn to the kitchen was a matter of feet or yards, not miles. What once was a simple connection with one or two stops along the way, has become a spaghetti-like tangle of connections, links, and cross-links to get fresh fruits and vegetables to your plate.
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Salmonberry: Food, Medicine, Culture - Part 2

The Chinook believe that when salmonberry was first discovered, the Coyote was instructed to put its berries inside the mouth of every salmon he caught from the river to ensure continued good fishing. This is how the name “Salmonberry” originally came about long ago.
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Terry Carkner, Terry's Berries, on Growing Organic Berries

Terry’s Berries is a 25 acre organic farm located on the edge of Tacoma in the Puyallup valley where Terry and Dick Carkner have been farming for over 25 years. The Carkners are committed to growing high quality, fresh food for healthy people and to bridging the gap between the consumer and the farmer.
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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.
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Tilth Producers of Washington: Growing Forward

The weekend started out mild and sunny and finished with a “blustery day.” Regardless of the weather – late fall sunshine or cool, brisk November overcast – the more than 650 people who attended the 2012 Tilth Producers of Washington Annual Conference enjoyed warm friendship, made new acquaintances, and dined on some of the best locally produced organic food available.
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Preserving Our Farmland: PCC Farmland Trust and Jubilee Biodynamic Farm

What does farmland protection have to do with what’s on your dinner table? Or maybe it should be put this way: What does what’s on your dinner table have to do with farmland protection? Think about it… Today, the typical American prepared meal contains, on average, ingredients from at least five countries outside the US. What if we had to grow our food “back home?”
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Good Apple Karma

Take a drive north on Highway 97 and you will pass along the Columbia and Okanogan Rivers between tiers and tiers of orchards growing all kinds of fruit, from stone fruit – apricots, nectarines, and peaches – to apples, pears, and cherries, and the occasional quince. Just a few miles north of Tonasket WA you’ll find River Valley Organics. What’s is it that makes River Valley Organics so special? A unique combination of karma and heart.
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