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This is a pivotal time for agriculture in Southern Maryland, and our farmers depend on the support of consumers and leaders who understand the vital role our farms play in a balanced community, in safe, nutritious food and in a cleaner and healthier environment.

The Stakeholders Project began as a way to explore the changing face of farming in our region and examine the stake we all have in supporting Southern Maryland farms. The project is presented by the Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission (SMADC) and consists of several components. The first is an exhibit presented in conjunction with St. Mary's College of Maryland Facing Fences project and the Smithsonian Institute's Between Fences show. [The exhibit runs 1/17/11 through 3/4/11 at the Boyden Gallery. (Gallery hours: 11 -5, Mon. through Friday.)

The web component of the Stakeholders Project will evolve throughout 2011 and beyond, and will showcase additional farmers and input from the community.

If you are a farmer in Southern Maryland, tell us your story. How has your farm changed in the last 20 years? What are your biggest obstacles today? What do you need most to ensure your farm survives and thrives for generations to come?

Are you a consumer or community leader? What is your stake in keeping agriculture alive in our region? Does it have to do with fresh food, or the environmental benefits farms provide? Is it important to you to keep your dollars in your local economy? Does it have to do with preserving our area's heritage and rural lifestyle? Let us know....

Send your comments to info@smadc.com today.

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The face of farming has changed... the simple sticks used to hang and dry the mature leaf, were once an icon of the crop that dominated Southern Maryland agriculture. The collapse of the tobacco market in the late 1900s threatened the very existence of many farms in the region. With the help of SMADC and support from the community, many local farms are redefining the agricultural landscape in this area and creating a new model of farming that can survive and thrive in the coming years...

Click on the photos above to see individual stories from local farms. Check back later to read more...

 

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We all have a stake in the future of farming...The benefits farms provide extend far beyond healthier and safer foods. Farms and natural areas play an important role in purifying air and water, and in protecting one of our regionís greatest natural assets, the Chesapeake Bay. Supporting farms today helps insure that our children will inherit a healthier planet.

 

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What can you do? With your support, farms can remain a vibrant part of Southern Marylandís future...

  • Support land preservation with your tax dollars

  • Shop at farms, farm stands, grocery stores and markets that sell locally grown products

  • Take the Buy Local Challenge each year in July

  • The So. Maryland, So Good logo designates local farm products... Look for it where you shop and dine

  • Visit www.smadc.com to find out more about the benefits farms provide and how you can support farms in your area

 

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This page is evolving ... please check back!

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Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission