the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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H2 worker

An important film on farm worker exploitation, released in 1990.

H2 Worker h2 worker
Directed by Stephanie Black, 1990

Winner of the Grand Jury prize at the Sundance Film Festival, H-2 WORKER reveals the systematic exploitation of Caribbean laborers by the Florida sugar industry from World War II through the 1990s. Each year more than 10,000 foreign workers were granted temporary guest worker (“H-2″) visas to spend six brutal months cutting sugar cane near Lake Okeechobee. They were housed in overcrowded barracks, denied adequate treatment for frequent on-the-job injuries, and paid less than minimum wage. Faced with deportation and soaring unemployment in their home countries, workers had little recourse but to silently accept these humiliating conditions.

Clandestinely filmed in the cane fields and around the workers’ barracks, H-2 WORKER exposes this travesty of justice, which remained a well-kept secret for decades.

Originally released in 1990, today H-2 WORKER provides an invaluable resource to understanding current debate over guest worker provisions of immigration legislation. While Florida’s sugar cane cutters have been replaced by mechanical harvesters, guest worker programs have expanded in agriculture, hotel, restaurant, forestry, and other industries. H-2 WORKER illuminates how our foreign worker program continues to benefit employers at the expense of vulnerable, underpaid workers.


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open food network

ofn

Help change the way our local food systems work by empowering local farmers and consumers with an open-source solution that connects producers with food hubs.

The Open Food Network is an open source, online marketplace that makes it easy to find, buy, sell and move sustainable local food. It gives farmers and food hubs easier and fairer ways to distribute food, while opening up the supply chain so eaters can see what’s going on.

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factories into farms

In Japan, Idled Electronics Factories Find New Life in Farming
Struggling to Compete with Rivals in South Korea or China, Fujitsu, Toshiba and Others Try Selling Vegetables, Too
By Eric Pfanner and Kana Inagaki, July 6, 2014

Picture 1

AIZU-WAKAMATSU, Japan—Haruyasu Miyabe used to oversee a computer-chip production line at a Fujitsu Ltd. plant here. One day last year, the plant manager told Mr. Miyabe to prepare for a career change.

“Starting tomorrow, you are going to make lettuce,” he recalls being told.

Amid troubled times in the Japanese electronics industry, Fujitsu shut one of the three chip-making lines at the plant in 2009. Now, in a sterile, dust-free clean room that once built the brains of high-tech gadgets, Mr. Miyabe and a staff of about 30 tend heads of lettuce.


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the wild west of weed has a water problem

Some drought-stricken rivers and streams in Northern California’s coastal forests are being polluted and sucked dry by water-guzzling medical marijuana farms, wildlife officials say — an issue that has spurred at least one county to try to outlaw personal grows.

State fish and wildlife officials say much of the marijuana being grown in northern counties under the state’s medical pot law is not being used for legal, personal use, but for sale both in California and states where pot is still illegal.

This demand is fueling backyard and larger-scale pot farming, especially in remote Lake, Humboldt and Mendocino counties on the densely forested North Coast, officials said.

“People are coming in, denuding the hillsides, damming the creeks and mixing in fertilizers that are not allowed in the U.S. into our watersheds,” said Denise Rushing, a Lake County supervisor who supports an ordinance essentially banning outdoor grows in populated areas.

“When rains come, it flows downstream into the lake and our water supply,” she said. Many affected waterways also contain endangered salmon, steelhead and other creatures protected by state and federal law. Click HERE to read more about this dilemma.

 

 

 


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salvadoran farmers successfully oppose monsanto seeds

What does Monsanto do with their expired seeds? They try and pawn them off on other countries through packages offered by US aid. When the farmers of El Salvador uncovered the requirement that monsanto seed be purchased as part of the aid package, they banded together to block the stipulation. Unfortunately, strings are attached to this stipulation. Click to read more about this effort to oppose GM seed—–>

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