the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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action alert: protect small farmers and food producers from FSMA regulations

You might not know it, but a legislative battle is being waged over who can produce food, where they can sell it, and when the government can shut them down. The most recent incarnation of this is a modification to the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that will make it possible for the FDA to force small food producers to comply with complex and costly regulations. Thankfully, the Farm & Ranch Freedom Alliance (FRFA) is organizing a push-back against these regulations that will make small food producers vulnerable to capricious government agencies, and, ultimately, harm the diversity of the food on the market.small family farm

Here is the Call to Action by the FRFA:

“We fought hard for the Tester-Hagan amendment to exempt small-scale, direct-marketing farms and artisan food producers from the most burdensome aspects of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). This exemption is essential to the continued vitality of the local foods movement.

“Now the FDA is proposing rules that would make it very easy for the agency to force even small-scale farmers to comply with the onerous FSMA regulations, and all but impossible for these vulnerable farmers to protect themselves. Continue reading


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two hour special on young farmers

from KWMR in partnership with the Post Carbon Institute.
conversation
KWMR 2-Hour Special: Leaders of the Young Agrarian Movement Facing the Future
Monday, Nov. 10th – 12pm to 2pm (Pacific Time)

A collaboration between the Farm and Foodshed Report (Robin Carpenter- Host) and Post Carbon Radio (Bing Gong & Karen Nyhus – Co-hosts) featuring:
 
Severine von Tscharner Fleming - Director of Greenhorns: Young Farmers’ Movement and Agrarian Trust
Evan Wiig - Founder and Director of the Farmers’ Guild
Arron Wilder - Farmer, Table Top Farm, soil scientist, organizer of upcoming January 11th – Young Farmers’ Forum on Succession and Success Stories: The Future of Ranching and Farming in Marin
Molly Myerson - young Bolinas farmer, Little Wing Farm
Mickey Murch - young Bolinas farmer, Gospel Flat Farm & artist

Continue reading


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join rogue farm corps

New Farmers Needed. Be one in a million— Join Rogue Farm Corps in 2015!
Applications are now open for positions throughout Oregon.
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FarmsNext is an entire season of hands-on training and skill-based education in sustainable agriculture for aspiring farmers and ranchers. This immersive on-farm experience combines field training with a mentor farmer, classroom learning with agricultural professionals and expert farmers, tours of local farms, and opportunities for farm-based independent study. Positions available on a diverse network of commercial family farms in four communities across Oregon. No experience necessary to apply. More info here.

FarmsNOW is a two-year advanced training program designed for the student who has a solid foundation of farm experience, and the goal of managing a farm operation. This program will propel beginning/intermediate farmers to the next level of planning, designing and running integrated farming systems. FarmsNOW is for those seeking mastery in the art and business of farming. Candidates must have two years, or equivalent, of vegetable production experience. More info here.

Rogue Farm Corps trains the next generation of farmers and ranchers through hands-on educational programs. Our host farms are located in four clusters around Oregon: the Rogue Valley, the Portland Metro Area, the South Willamette Valley, and Central Oregon.

For complete program descriptions, information on our host farms, and applications, visit our website:http://roguefarmcorps.org


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big data concedes: farmers should own their own data

corniculture(Photo courtesy of Pete Walton, taken at the National FFA Conference)

From NPR: Top agribusiness companies, including Monsanto, DuPont, John Deere and Dow, have moved into the information business, offering to help farmers collect that data and analyze it — for a price.

But some farmers are starting to worry about how that data will be used; whether, for instance, details of their operations will be open for all to see. Others wonder how the data companies will exploit their new-found ability to monitor what’s happening on vast tracts of farmland.

Those concerns led to the new “Privacy and Security Principles for Farm Data,” which were released this week. Click HERE to read more about this issue reported by NPR.


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principle: turn the tables

Sometimes the most compelling way to expose an injustice is to flip it around and visit it upon the powerful.

Remember the great scene from “Erin Brockovich” where the hero brings a glass of contaminated water to a meeting with the companies her clients have accused of contaminating their drinking water. “You claim this water is perfectly safe to drink?” she says. “Okay, drink this,” and she places the glass of water before them. When they refuse, the injustice of the situation is laid bare for all to see. She has “turned the tables.”

People have an innate sense of fairness, but don’t always see the injustices happening around them. By taking an existing unjust situation and dramatically flipping it back upon its source, you can highlight the inherent asymmetry and activate people’s sense of fairness. Turning the tables like this can be an effective means of garnering public support as well as undercutting the moral authority of your target. Click HERE to read more about the principle of turning the tables!

Also, Beautiful Trouble: A Toolbox for the Revolution, is a fantastic activist resource. Check it out! 


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greenhorns featured on michael olson’s radio show, mentioned on wisconsin public radio!

Lauren Markham, author of  The New Farmers, an article in Orion Magazine, recently spoke on Wisconsin Public Radio about the young farmer movement. Have a listen, she gives the Greenhorns a big ole’ shout-out and boost!

Greenhorns were also recently featured with Lauren Markham on Michael Olsen’s food chain radio show to discuss the future of farming. Click HERE to listen to the show (warning: Greenhorns were often cut off for commercial breaks, resulting in many incomplete thoughts.)

 

 

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