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Blog Archive: March 2013

Choosing a CSA farm is somewhat like dating – there are as many personalities of farms as there are personalities of people.  Part of the beauty of CSAs  (short for Community Supported Agriculture) is that they offer more than just food – they offer a relationship, a chance to connect with your food and be part of the farm community.  Yet, CSA-shareholder pairings don’t always work out.  It is important to find one that clicks with your personality and needs.

Fortunately, The Local Beet has done all the footwork for you.  Their new 2013 CSA guide offers a...

Alex and Alison of Radical Root Farm with mentor farmer Peg Sheaffer

Are farms strengthened by competition or cooperation? Upper Midwest CRAFT (Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training) launched in 1997 with a spirit of support, shared resources and networking among the handful of founding farms, but is this cooperative context valid today, with nearly 100 small-scale, diversified farms serving each of our regional metropolitan markets?

If you attended the Good Food Fest on March 15th, you would have been touched by the goodwill and promise that was demonstrated in the working relationship between mentor farmers Matt and Peg Sheaffer of Sandhill Family Farms and beginning...

Urban Livestock Expo

By Martha Boyd, Program Director, Urban Initiative (Chicago)

On February 16th, over 200 visitors convened at the Garfield Park Conservatory to learn about caring for livestock in the city. 

Many people helped make the first annual Urban Livestock Expo a success – the organizers: Advocates for Urban Agriculture (AUA), Angelic Organics Learning Center, Chicago Chicken Enthusiasts, the hosts, the Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance, the 15 presenters, 20+ volunteers AND the standing room only crowd who came to learn from experienced practitioners about keeping chickens, ducks, bees, goats,...

Farm and Learning Center Staff working on Kickstarter campaign.

Although we raised $39,000 and gained 600 backers, ultimately we did not reach our goal in our initial attempt at crowdfunding, with our “Barns Are For People, Too” Kickstarter campaign. The purpose of our Kickstarter campaign was to raise money for repairs on the barns on the farm and to install stairs, lighting, and safety features so that we can safely and warmly welcome larger groups on the farm to learn, grow and connect.  While building community was the desired outcome of our Kickstarter campaign, community building naturally developed in interesting ways simply by working on the...