the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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woman power: home to cameroon’s sustainable farming movement

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Check out Woman Power, an organization started by Cameroon locals Victor (above) and Betty Kubia.

NW Cameroon is a particularly hardworking agricultural region where 90% of the farmers are women and revolution is in the air.

In this region, a culture of chemical farming (imposed during the green revolution) has created a longstanding degenerative cycle for soil health and the nutritional quality of vegetables. As it stands, many women are obligated after so many years to purchase expensive, synthetic products to even get a yield. As one woman from the town of Bafut in NW Cameroon says: “the harvest I get is not enough to pay for the fertilizers and then feed my family of seven and also pay tuition and buy school materials for my children.”

The Kubia’s seek to build the Woman Power Training Center on their own land just outside of Bamenda City strategically close to the three villages of Bafut, Ndu, and Santa. Here nearly 600 women will have access to hands-on workshops on soil health, composting, crop rotation, cover cropping, fallow cultivation as well as many traditional methods. One such method is forming the crescent moon shaped beds that are ideal for handling some 400″ of rain per month during the rainy season.

If you are interested in being a supporting member of this project you have two options!

  1. You may email Andrew at wpcameroon@gmail.com to join their emailing campaign
  2. You may click HERE to learn more about Woman Power and then Donate at least $10 to support building a Woman Power Training Center for alternative agriculture.


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sail freight in the news

  

Maine Sail Freight offers a new way to think about trade

By Severine von Tscharner Fleming

What do we who produce food from the land and sea have in common? For one thing, a changing climate. Changes in the weather have big impacts on the businesses and industries that straddle nature and the market.
Another challenge is that farmers and fisher people are getting older, and both industries are critically reliant on young people entering the work.
But both farming and fishing show there are new ways forward, including alternative value-chains that respect the people and places involved.

Read more over at The Working Waterfront!


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new 2015 programs at the grange farm school

The Grange Programs for new and beginning farmer education as well as opportunities for experienced farmers looking to learn more. Apply now to be one of the first students of an emerging hub for sustainable agricultural education, or register for one of the exciting workshops being offered!
The Grange Farm School is dedicated to teaching the next generation of responsible, innovative, and successful farmers.  We are strong believers in experiential education, and our Practicum Student Program is built upon that philosophy.  A combination of hands-on field work instruction with rigorous academic curriculum provide an environment for students to learn the foundations of integrated crops and livestock operations, business management, industrial arts, sustainable technologies and ecological restoration.

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local food by boat: the vermont sail freight project

Plucked from Civileats

Maritime museums are nostalgic places full of black and white photographs of old sails and rugged seafarers. Ornate boats hint at centuries of technological progress and suggest that craftsmanship has suffered as a result. But the old became new again recently at the Hudson Maritime Museum in New York, when a sailboat arrived to sell agricultural goods from upriver. Visitors caught a glimpse of a river-based local food economy—a vestige of the past and a harbinger of an alternative future.

For the last two summers, the Vermont Sail Freight Project (VSFP) has sailed a boat named Ceres down the Hudson River, carrying all manner of small-scale, artisanal farm products to eager consumers in New York City and at river towns along the way. It has carried everything from grains to maple syrup, honey, carrots, pickles, preserves, herbal teas, goat milk caramels, flour, and beans, selling roughly $50,000 worth of goods in one trip.

– See more at: http://civileats.com/2014/08/27/local-food-by-boat-the-vermont-sail-freight-project/#sthash.028p4VMe.dpuf


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report from manchester

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I’m here from the USA with a focus on charting the organizational work of young farmers across Europe. Throughout this  month I’ll be meeting  social entrepreneurs, farmers, organizers and activists who, undaunted by the complex, multidimensional  ecosystem and broken economy of food, are working together to fix it. Documenting these projects, evaluating,  and sharing ideas between us will speed this up. Our directory and community of cooperative food ventures and initiatives can make us stronger as we apply models from other places to our own towns, and learn as much as we can before repeating mistakes.  Continue reading


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the greenhorn’s summer BUZZ

SPRINGING FORWARD WITH NEW WEBSITE, BOOK, DVD

HUDSON, NY (June 8, 2012) –  From their main street headquarters, the Greenhorns, a grassroots non-profit organization working to promote, support, and recruit young farmers in America, announces a big step forward.
The Greenhorns have gone live with a website redesign. The new site carries the same utility, free literature, and resources for new farmers (and the same URL) as the previous site, but now with more of the Greenhorns’ defining charismatic spark. Most importantly, the new site presents three of the most recent products of their work and makes these accessible to new farmers and their supporters in time for summer’s busy activity.

For the first time, the film The Greenhorns is available on DVD for home viewing. Personal copies of the feature-length documentary showing young farmers, their rosy cheeks and entrepreneurial valor, are available by direct order for only $25. The DVD is also available from the independent and socially conscious film distributor, Collective Eye.

Hot off the press from Storey Publishing comes Greenhorns: 50 Dispatches from the New Farmers’ Movement, an anthology of essays written by 50 young farmers cultivating the new American food system today. The book documents the struggles and joys of making the choice to farm, finding land, credit, tools and friends, tending the flock and the fields, making mistakes and finding purpose; of surviving the first ten years of being a farmer.

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book signing –> portland, oregon

9 may 2012
PORTLAND, OREGON
powell’s city of books, 1005 w burnside
book signing: join book editor zoe ida bradbury as well as contributing essayists katie kullamaud powell, and josh volk for a discussion and book signing of “greenhorns: 50 dispatches from the new farmer movement”. sponsored by powell’s books and storey publishing.
free and open to the public!
7:30pm


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greenhorns spring update!


February already almost done, wobbly weather on the east coast, blossoms started on the west coast. All of us bracing for a big year. The weather certainly is wobbly this season — “lash down the hoophouse matey!”

Good weather source: Accuweather has a farmer option, with estimated soil temp and moisture. In case you haven’t quite gotten your shit together, the Blog‘s got PLENTY of super duper farm jobs on there. Next year, do yourself a favor: find the farm in summer, interview in person, confirm your commitments in December– don’t wait this long, its stressful!

Some big bad news out of the USDA in recent weeks too, right during the middle of Egyptian Riots one GMO after another approved for commerical planting without regulation and without precautionary testing. Read up here:
https://thegreenhorns.wordpress.com/2011/01/31/the-battle-over-alfalfa-continues/
https://thegreenhorns.wordpress.com/2011/02/16/united-in-opposition/

The empire may be striking back, but our daikon forces can penetrate the hardpan, our rippling forearms lift and tip yet more cartloads of manure. If our democracy is contaminated by big business, we must redouble our investment and commitment to our community, our resiliency,  our skills and our place.

One farm at a time: this land is our land, this agriculture is direct action.

(this update is a lengthy one, so keep reading!)

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greenhorns update!

 

Greenhorns are back in the Hudson Valley from the far

reaches of western America, the brimming young farmer

scene filling our cup from Albuquerque to Vashon Island

and back. Maybe you came out to one of the mixers we

held in New Mexico, California, Washington and Oregon

this fall? There’s a very nice video of our Sacramento

Valley mixer we originally posted on our blog.

More to come in the new year!

It’s real winter here now, snow and ice and vermillion

winterberry hugging the shaggy windblown trees

by the wide river. Brrr. Time for work! We’re editing,

budgeting, planning well over fifty events for the year,

grinding coffee at a stupendous rate, taking twilight

walks and turning our daydreams into plans of action.

Oh – and we’re wrapping up Christmas presents!

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