"It's not that hard to eat right." "I eat only small farm heritages which I have vetted."And for those of in large cities, we do that how, exactly?
Couldn't agree more!"Our Policy on Cuba has been wrong starting with the Bay of Pigs."Absolutely. Kennedy chickened out at the last minute and left us in the lurch!"We need to respect other people's rights of self-determination."And demand that the Cuban people's right of self-determination be respected, as in for example, having a say on who governs the farm."Certainly Cuba today reflects greater economic and social equality than our own country."True. Other than one small family (and members of their close circle) with private jets, a maximum-security estate, their own bank in London (look up Havin International) and absolute power over the lives of 11 million servants, everyone else in the island is equally poor.
This sounds like a good trend to me. Living next to a farm where you can walk and get fresh produce is much better than driving to a supermarket and buying produce made who knows where. And it gives children a good education in how food is produced. What's not to like? Eventually, it would be great to see small neighborhood farms dotting cities, so even city dwellers could stop by a mini farm on their way home to purchase just picked produce for their evening meal. amanandhishoe.com
I don't know where you live but at my Whole Foods nearly all the meat is Step 3 or greater. Step 5 doesn't just mean the animal lived on a farm, but that it was rendered (killed) on the farm where it lived. Most small farmers can't deal with the requirements by USDA to render meat. I'm hugely thankful for Whole Foods' Step system of animal welfare.
I own a farm north of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. A fourth generation farm I grew up delivering food products to north Pittsburgh and assisted my father during my education years becoming a doctor. The farm is now surrounded by urbanization and natural gas development. This land needs to remain a productive farm not because of a family romance, but because we need productive farm land more that we need another housing development. You can build a house anywhere. You can only farm on good soil. In our high speed investing, flying, driving, living culture we will do better to invest some of our money, attention, and value in something very slow: soil and farming. Today we have more small farms under 50 acres than ten years ago. These business do not show up on any investor charts or government statistics. They are too small. Small yet these farms are supporting and feeding local communities. They represent high risk and small returns and they feed local communities and local restaurants and hold communities together. It is a beginning. This will only continue if we value the quality of the food we eat, are willing to pay slightly more for fresh, quality food, and are willing to invest our time, attention and some money for it. Buy local, eat locally grown food and meet the people who grow some of your food. It may not be your life choice, but the quality of your life in many ways depends upon it.
I farm. A very small number of Americans farm, providing most of the food we eat. Farmers are no more greedy than other Americans. Yes, we need new solutions and more thoughtful policies. But America is overwhelmingly a service economy. Most employment is in the service sector. If changes need to be made in order to restore sustainability, won't those changes have to be made by all of us?That includes bureaucrats, teachers, bankers, etc. Are private jets and Manhattan condos part of the problem? Blue states too. Who, after all, consumes all that meat and fracked energy?On my farm we are very careful with water use. Our water is more valuable than the land. Farmers are rapidly discovering that truth.But America is often about excess. Are we willing to restrain excess?
The entire government subsidized farm system starting with the ability to use underage labor to the use of taxpayer dollars to underwrite farming must come to a stop. The myth of the virtuous small town farmer is used to perpetuate billions in farm subsidies and one of the biggest incentives for illegal labor.
Having traveled in rural China over the past 12 years I disagree with the author on several points. First he writes "replacing small rural homes with high-rises, paving over vast swaths of farmland." If 1,000 families move from small rural homes into 30-40 story buildings, farm land is actually created. With average farm sizes in many regions in the east under 1/4 of an acre houses, foot paths and even outhouses take up a significant portion of the arable land, reducing food production. Those same 1,000 families in living a high rise would create more farmland.Second, the author ignores the fact that much of the migration would occur without government action, but those migrants have little access to education or medical resources. You may disagree with the governments methods, but the migration will occur with or without the government.Yes there is a huge migration in China, but it is a natural part of development. Please don't think that somehow trying to survive on a 2 mu (1/8 of a HA) farm that brings in less than $300/year of income is a harmonious life.