Urban Roots and New Economies

January 25, 2013 Comments Off on Urban Roots and New Economies

“It’s time for us to get together and talk about how we get more healthy food to people, how we bring our community back using local food, how we improve our community health using local food, and how we create new jobs. . . . We need to change our food system and the answers are in the room.”

– Stephen Arellano

I’ve been closely and excitedly watching and participating in the local food and urban agriculture movement as it grows both here in New England and in my native Michigan. Detroit has certainly been catching national attention, in part due to exposure via films such as “Urban Roots” and the good and ongoing work of the likes of the Detroit Black Community Food Security Network and the Fair Food Network. And my lesser known and native Flint is doing its own to grow what my friend Stephen Arellano has called “a human scaled economy” rooted in a reclamation of old industrial and abandoned residential lands for the purposes of equitably feeding the community, not just through good food, but through a grounded education and good profitable work.

Amidst the many concerns about our current state of affairs, there is so much hope and goodness in this new food movement to address everything from poverty to food insecurity and injustice to community fragmentation.  And this is a good time if you are interested in learning more; check out events like tomorrow’s Food for Change Summit in Flint, the Urban Farming Conference in Boston on February 9th, or the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group Conference in Saratoga Springs, NY from February 10-12.

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