the irresistible fleet of bicycles

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soul foods, not whole foods (staying abreast of the riots in Baltimore)


Just because Spring is the busiest time of year for farmers doesn’t mean that we’re not taking the time to keep a close eye on the riots in Baltimore. We know that the entrenched system of labor exploitation and land abuse that makes it to be a small farmer in this country is exactly the same system of greed, racism, and oppression that devalues black bodies and black life.  We understand that the success of our (and, in fact, all progressive) movements are not separate but intrinsically linked.

Whole Foods came out last week in support of The National Guard Last week. No surprise here, but we’d like to suggest that, in response, you choose not to support them. Check out this handy (though not complete) list Black Farmers to Buy from Instead of Whole Foods.

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click your bit for dairy farmers

seriously. There are about 800 of you reading this posting today.

If those of you who are not in the middle of planting a field could please  click over to Farm Aid and help them make this comment campaign a success?
The farmers among us are STRAPPED hustling to plant in between deluges of rain. So we need all computer hands on deck.

Here is Farm Aid’s Message to you:

Family farmers are some of the hardest-working people I know. Too many of them know what it’s like to risk their land, their homes, and their livelihood, and nobody is more dedicated to doing whatever it takes to succeed. But sometimes hard work isn’t enough to survive, and that’s when family farmers turn to Farm Aid.

Right now dairy farmers are looking to Farm Aid to speak out for them, and I’m asking you to stand with us. The USDA is asking for public comments as it decides what to do about the dairy crisis — send a message right now and tell them farmers need a fair price for their milk. Continue reading

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greenpeace has released a new report

on Nestle’s actions in the rainforests of Indonesia.  You can download the full report HERE.

Nestlé uses palm oil to make a wide array of its products including Power Bar, Coffee Mate, Nestle Crunch Crisp, and Maggi Soup mixes. In the last three years, Nestlé’s use of palm oil has nearly doubled.

A growing demand for palm oil globally is fueling the destruction of rainforests in Indonesia to make way for expanding palm plantations. Fire is often used to clear forests, causing massive, polluting blazes. Illegal canals are cut into ancient peatlands, draining water and releasing methane and other potent greenhouse gases. Continue reading

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conservation stewardship program

if you’re part of an organization you can sign on to this letter to Secretary Vilsack from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition.

Please consider adding your organization’s name to our letter urging Secretary Vilsack to make critical improvements to the Conservation Stewardship Program and to initiate a 2010 Sign up as soon as possible.

The letter urges Secretary Vilsack to:
•    ensure that the program effectively rewards sustainable and organic farming systems
•    base CSP points and payments on environmental outcomes rather than on when a practice was adopted
•    provide a minimum CSP payment for small farms
•    better define a resource conserving crop rotation to ensure high environmental standards
•    reinstate incentives for the transition of cropland to pasture based production

Deadline COB March 10th.

Click HERE to sign on and read the full letter.

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farm aid petition

Farm Aid is collecting your signatures until Friday!  Here’s a note from them:

As a Farm Aid supporter, you know that nobody is more committed than we are to helping family farmers keep their land and their livelihood. While we encourage federal efforts to assist farmers, the fact is that not all government policies are created equally — and neither are all farms.


That’s why we need you to join the thousands of others that have already taken action. Urge the federal government to stop giving taxpayer money to destructive factory farms today! Continue reading

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Farmworkers are speaking out against abusive grape concerns

via United Farm Workers:

We’ve been telling you about the outrageous behavior of Giumarra–the world’s largest table grape company, whose labels include Nature’s Partner. Giumarra harvests approximately 1 out of every 10 bunches of grapes picked in the US. Because the company is so huge, their behavior helps set the industry standard. Instead of being an industry leader, Giumarra helps set the standard of routinely abusing their workers.FL11744492890

On Labor Day, we launched a petition that a delegation will hand in to Giumarra/Nature’s Partner. The petition demands that this huge corporation treat the workers laboring in their fields with dignity and respect and stop retaliating against UFW supporters. Continue reading


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