Don’t miss these items in local food and agriculture news from around our region:
Some of our most cherished sustainable farming practices — from organic agriculture to the farm cooperative and the CSA — have roots in African wisdom. Yet, discrimination and violence against African-American farmers has led to their decline from 14 percent of all growers in 1920 to less than 2 percent today, with a corresponding loss of over 14 million acres of land. Further, Black communities suffer disproportionately from illnesses related to lack of access to fresh food and healthy natural ecosystems.
Please join us for a conversation with Soul Fire Farm Co-Director and Farming While Black author Leah Penniman to learn how you can be part of the movement for food sovereignty and help build a food system based on justice, dignity, and abundance for all members of our community. Please RSVP if you plan to attend.
Friday, November 16, 2018
2:00 to 3:30 pm
Rhode Island Department of Health
Three Capitol Hill, Auditorium (Lower Level)
About Soul Fire Farm
Soul Fire Farm, cofounded by author, activist, and farmer Leah Penniman, is committed to ending racism and injustice in our food system. Through programs such as the Black-Latinx Farmers Immersion, a sliding-scale farmshare CSA, and Youth Food Justice leadership training, Soul Fire Farm is part of a global network of farmers working to increase farmland stewardship by people of color, restore Afro-indigenous farming practices, and end food apartheid. And now, with the new book Farming While Black, Soul Fire Farm extends that work by offering the first comprehensive manual for African-heritage people ready to reclaim their rightful place of dignified agency in the food system.
About Leah Penniman
Leah Penniman is a Black Kreyol educator, farmer/peyizan, author, and food justice activist from Soul Fire Farm in Grafton, NY. She co-founded Soul Fire Farm in 2011 with the mission to end racism in the food system and reclaim our ancestral connection to land. As co-Executive Director, Leah is part of a team that facilitates powerful food sovereignty programs – including farmer trainings for Black & Brown people, a subsidized farm food distribution program for people living under food apartheid, and regional organizing toward equity in the food system. Leah holds an MA in Science Education and BA in Environmental Science and International Development from Clark University, and is a Manye (Queen Mother) in Vodun. Leah has been farming since 1996 and teaching since 2002. The work of Leah and Soul Fire Farm has been recognized by the Soros Racial Justice Fellowship, Fulbright Program, Omega Sustainability Leadership Award, Presidential Award for Science Teaching, NYS Health Emerging Innovator Awards, and Andrew Goodman Foundation, among others. Her book, Farming While Black: Soul Fire Farm’s Practical Guide to Liberation on the Land is a love song for the land and her people.
Registration Open for the Local Food & Specialty Crop Trade Show
The Sustainable Business Network of Massachusetts (SBN) is offering our 8th Local Food Trade Show. The 2019 Local Food Trade Show is designed to facilitate connections and stimulate business relationships between producers and wholesale buyers of local food, with a focus on specialty crop food products in Massachusetts.
Local Specialty Crop Trade Show
Exhibitors will include New England based farmers, produce distributors and local specialty crop producers (products made with 50% or more specialty crops also qualify). Please view the USDA definition of specialty crops here. Please note that crops must be produced in the U.S. or U.S. Territory. This Trade Show is sponsored by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources. Exhibition booths are free for specialty crop farmers and other specialty crop producers.
Local Food Trade Show
This trade show is open to all non-specialty crop food producers including meat and dairy farms, fisheries, baked goods and other added value producers. Exhibition booths are $150.00. *$25 Discount for SBN Members
Who should attend?
Any wholesale buyers, who are interested in purchasing Massachusetts or New England-produced food items. These buyers can be supermarkets, co-ops, restaurants, hotels, institutions, schools, food processors in search of ingredients, distributors, or anyone else interested in local purchasing options.
*This event is intended for commercial buyers, not individual consumers.*
The New England Farm to Institution Summit is designed to identify issues that cut across the sectors and the region, highlight important successes and achievements in farm to institution in the region, develop collaborative strategies to pursue, inspire and engage participants on important and challenging work, and show connections between sectors, states, and supply chain stakeholders.
Do you have an innovative idea, a set of best practices, or a policy proposal to share? Do you want to brainstorm some big solutions with other great food systems practitioners in the region? Join #farm2inst, UMass Amherst, New England Farm & Sea to Campus Network, and Health Care Without Harm by submitting a proposal idea for the New England Farm to Institution Summit by November 16th.