Consumers deserve credit for driving the growth in local and organic food sales.
But if we’re serious about growth on the scale we need if we want to revitalize our rural communities—and realize the potential of organic regenerative agriculture to address climate change—it won’t be enough to just buy local.
We’ll have to become more than local food consumers. We’ll have to become local food citizens.
Anthony Flaccavento, organic farmer, rural development consultant and author, started a CSA in the mid-1990s. We asked him to outline some of the progress and challenges involved in building strong local and regional food systems.
Flaccavento says we’ve come a long way. But we still have a long way to go.
To get there, we’ll need what the Green New Deal is calling for: major investment, along with policy changes that will support sustainable farming and regional food systems, while breaking the stranglehold of Big Ag monopolies that undermine farmers, rural communities and the ecosystem.
Read ‘Progress from the Bottom Up: How Farmers, Consumers and Value Chains Put Local Foods on the Map’
SIGN THE PETITION: Consumers Want a Green New Deal
On average, someone in the United States gets an antibiotic-resistant infection about every 10 seconds. About every 11 minutes, someone dies.
That’s according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And as the Washington Post reported this week, those numbers confirm that deadly superbugs pose a worse threat than previously thought.
According to the Post, while antibiotic resistance is particularly deadly for patients in hospitals and nursing homes and those with weak immune systems, it’s now also threatening people undergoing common surgeries and therapies, such as knee replacements and cancer treatments.
Why are antibiotics becoming less and less effective? Because their overuse causes bacteria to evolve into “superbugs” capable of resisting them. Doctors share some of the blame, for over-prescribing antibiotics.
But the other leading cause of antibiotic resistance is the overuse of antibiotics in industrial factory farming.
To fatten up animals faster, and to keep them “healthy” in crowded, filthy environments, factory farm animals are routinely fed antibiotics—including some that are critical for treating humans.
What can you do? Boycott all industrial meat products. And help us pressure Congress to end the routine use of antibiotics in industrial meat production.
Read ‘Deadly Superbugs Pose Greater Threat Than Previously Estimated’
TAKE ACTION: Tell Congress: Healthy Farm Animals Shouldn’t Get Antibiotics that Sick People Need!
Ever search for “CBD” on Amazon.com? If you’ve bought any of the products that come up, including the site’s “Best Seller,” it’s likely you’ve been fleeced.
According to Amazon.com’s drug and paraphernalia policy, “Items containing CBD/cannabinoid or full spectrum hemp oil, including topical products, are prohibited from listing or sale on Amazon.”
And yet, when you search “CBD” on Amazon.com, this policy doesn’t come up—but dozens of products do.
When the Organic & Natural Health Association tested the Amazon.com products associated with the search term “CBD,” only one contained CBD.
Where CBD oil comes from and how it was produced matters.
Until Amazon cleans up its act, dietary supplement purchases are just too important to leave to the reckless online retailer.
TAKE ACTION: Tell Amazon to stop selling fake CBD oil!
This week, the American Public Health Association (APHA) and the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future (CLF) issued a joint statement calling for a “precautionary” moratorium on CAFOs, also known as factory farms.
The groups pointed to an “array of negative health impacts, including respiratory disease, mental health problems, and certain types of infections, and said that “government oversight and policies designed to safeguard the health of individuals and the environment from these operations have been inadequate.”
The statement came during the same week that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned that the antibiotic-resistance crisis—a crisis linked to the overuse of antibiotics in industrial meat production—is much worse than previously thought.
In a press release, the director of CLF’s Food Production and Public Health Program said this:
“It’s critical that we work diligently and swiftly to close the knowledge gaps related to the public health and environmental challenges associated with this method of food animal production.”
Much of our work is about closing the “knowledge gaps.” All of the communications we put out, the lawsuits we file, the policies we advocate for, the campaigns we launch—it all has to do with providing you, the consumer, the information you need so you can make informed choices about the food you eat.
Exposing the health and environmental consequences of supporting a degenerative industrial food and farming system is a big part of our job. The same goes for shining a light on the multiple benefits of an organic regenerative food system.
Our work, and its impact, isn’t always easy to quantify. It isn’t always sexy.
But it’s critical. As is our need for your continued financial support. As we approach year’s end, we are facing a budget shortfall. Please consider making a donation today. Thank you.
Make a tax-deductible donation to Organic Consumers Association, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit
Support Citizens Regeneration Lobby, OCA’s 501(c)(4) lobbying arm (not tax-deductible)
Click here for more ways to support our work
Soon after the launch of the national coalition of U.S. Farmers & Ranchers for a Green New Deal, NowThisNews reached out to us about producing a video featuring farmers and climate change.
The NowThis news team traveled to the midwest to meet with farmers who are dealing with the direct impact of global warming—including unprecedented flooding—and who believe that with the right policy changes, they can not only recover, but they can lead us back from the brink of climate disaster.
If our policymakers and investors give them the tools, these farmers can build healthy soil that stores carbon and produces nutrient-rich food, while also improving their own economic prospects.
Yet so far, despite promises from both the Obama and Trump administrations, the policy changes family farmers need haven’t materialized.
The farmers interviewed for this video hope a Green New Deal will change that—but they know it will happen only if they embrace change, and demand their rightful seats at the policymaking table.
Watch 'Meet the Farmers Facing the Climate Crisis
Learn more about the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers for a Green New Deal
TAKE ACTION: Support the national coalition of U.S. Farmers and Ranchers for a Green New Deal!
Eco-restoration is “the great work of our time.”
That’s what one of the participants in last year’s land-restoration camp said about her experience at the Vía Orgánica Ranch, a regenerative teaching farm and ranch near San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
What’s an “ecorestoration camp?” The best explanation is here, in this video produced by OCA’s Vía Orgánica project in collaboration with Ecosystem Restoration Camps and Regeneration International.
Want to participate?
Join Vía Orgánica and the Ecosystem Restoration Camp Movement in Mexico, February 21 - March 1, 2020, at the land-restoration camp at Vía Orgánica Ranch.
Volunteer to camp, work, study, connect with the earth and meet new friends in this beautiful ranch near San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Camp activities will include restoration work such as tree planting, composting, seed collecting, earthworks, cooking, listening to music, campfires, making new friends and much more.
Ecosystem restoration is a growing global strategy to naturally draw down and sequester carbon from the atmosphere and store it in our soils, forests and vegetation to reverse global warming.
Learn more and sign up
Watch this beautiful video filmed on site at the last Vía Orgánica Ecosystem Restoration Camp
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
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