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Category: Buy Local Challenge

As California’s green glow is fading, will the Mid-Atlantic pick up the slack?

As California’s green glow is fading, will the Mid-Atlantic pick up the slack?

A few weeks ago, I wrote about how climate change is predicted to impact agriculture, according to USDA’s climatologists. The short answer for us is a longer growing season, more rain (with heavier rain events) and hotter summers. The short answer for California and the Southwest is much hotter with more drought conditions. Those thoughts were on my mind when I read two articles this week about drought conditions in California. Alex Park and Julia Lurie reported in Beyond a…

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Scaling up to meet the demand for local food in Maryland

Scaling up to meet the demand for local food in Maryland

Recently, you may have seen a number of posts from me about food hubs and the growth potential for local farm-to-table farmers. I guess that others have the same thought in mind. At the Future Harvest CASA conference last week, there was standing-room only for a session entitled “Scaling Up.” Fortunately, the organizers chose two great aggregators and two great farmers (who sell to aggregators) to speak. The session was facilitated by Jon Berger, Mid-Atlantic Regional Coordinator for the Real…

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I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Locally-Sourced Ice Cream!

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Locally-Sourced Ice Cream!

By: Mindy Waite I recently learned that July is National Ice Cream Month and July 21st is National Ice Cream Day. Like most Americans, I latched onto the excuse to order up this “sometimes” treat and started my search for local ice cream. Alas! It turns out that there aren’t any producers in Southern Maryland that are selling ice cream made with local farm milk. Just look at the map of the Maryland Ice Cream Trail to the right, and…

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A farm region without farmers?

A farm region without farmers?

What would it be like to be a farm region without farmers? A friend of mine recently directed me to a Tedx YouTube video of this dynamic young farmer, Lindsey Lusher Shute, who happens to be the Executive Director of the National Young Farmers Coalition.  In her talk, Building a Future with Farmers, Lindsey compared the revenue from her 25 acre vegetable farm with a corn operation which used to occupy the farm before she and her husband bought the land….

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Better than a sweater!

Better than a sweater!

In the classic holiday movie Miracle on 34th Street, Alfred says to Santa “Yeah, there’s a lot of bad ‘isms’ floatin’ around this world, but one of the worst is commercialism. Make a buck, make a buck. Even in Brooklyn it’s the same – don’t care what Christmas stands for, just make a buck, make a buck.” The movie was released in 1947, but many people today still bemoan the commercialism of a holiday season intended to promote peace, goodwill, and…

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With disdain for the 10,000-mile diet

With disdain for the 10,000-mile diet

In a recent Farm Forum post on Maryland FarmLINK, I mentioned  a new book “The Locavore’s Dilemma: In Praise of the 10,000-Mile Diet” which dismissed the local food movement as an upper middle class food movement. Of course, the book’s title is intended to counter Michael Pollan’s “Omnivore’s Dilemma” which advances the notion that folks should try to find local food sources because they are fresher, you get to know the farmer and how he/she is raising the food, and…

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Why I broke my Buy Local Challenge pledge!

Why I broke my Buy Local Challenge pledge!

When he presented the Buy Local Challenge resolution last week, Governor O’Malley noted that maybe the bar should be set a little higher. The Pledge currently reads “I pledge to eat at least one thing from a local farm every day during Buy Local Week!” I agreed with the governor and this year I pledged to eat ONLY local food for a week. On Tuesday, I broke the pledge. It was easy when pledge week started on Saturday. I had…

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Eating our way into a better economy!

Eating our way into a better economy!

As the Buy Local Challenge is about to begin this Saturday (July 21st), it might be good to reflect on the importance of buying locally grown food. Of course, vegetables and fruits raised and harvested within a few miles of your door tend to be fresher and taste better than the average food product that travels 1,500 miles, on average. However, people tend to forget about the economic benefits. If every household were to purchase just $12 per week of…

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The Buy Local Challenge may be one of the biggest adventures of the summer!

The Buy Local Challenge may be one of the biggest adventures of the summer!

Last June, I retired from my job of 32 years and took the summer off to enjoy gardening. As a “foodie” and charter member of Calvert Eats Local, I decided to take the Buy Local Challenge in July. However, I took a radical approach to the Challenge! The Buy Local Challenge asks people to make a pledge to include local products (produce, eggs, meat, fruit, wine, etc.) in our meals for one week (to learn more, go to www.buy-local-challenge.com). Just…

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Slow money

Slow money

I must confess that when I first heard about ‘slow money’, I was not impressed and only mildly curious. It does not sound particularly appealing or make fiscal sense. If ‘slow money’ is an investment philosophy, why would anyone chose it? I discovered that the answer depends on your value system. The stock market is where most people build a nest egg for retirement. The stock market is also used by pension funds for investing money, even if their individual…

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