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What Does Access to Food Tell Us?

Touch the Soil News #783 (Feature photo courtesy of the Trussell Trust) In the U.S. we have a habit of covering over and not acknowledging a problem. Take hunger for example. On the economic news front, it is all about how prosperity is returning to the nation. Economic statistics, however, are all about averages – not real circumstances. For example, if my neighbor makes $1 million a year, and three other neighbors only make $35,000 a year, the average for the four households is a robust $276,000 a year. It covers up the truth that three out of the four neighbors lived in poverty. In the small country of Wales…

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What Africa Can Teach the World About Food?

Touch the Soil News #440 A few years back, an individual with a degree in economics was discussing farm economics with Touch the Soil. His conclusion was rather sobering: “Good farm economics is hundreds of people farming a thousand acres. Poor economics is one farmer farming several thousand acres.” Fast forward to Nairobi – the largest city in Kenya, Africa – some 6.5 million people in the metro area – where almost 50 percent of the population lives in poverty. The city recently passed an initiative to foster urban agriculture not only for its production, but potential in creating employment and solving health problems. Interestingly, Nairobi city has a director…

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Sole Food Street Farms – An Interesting Take on Urban Food and Social Enterprise

Touch the Soil News #220 A few years back, while on the lecturing circuit, Susan and I met Michael Ableman. Ableman is author of three books and has spent a lifetime working and developing local and sustainable farms. Much of his life has been spent working in non-profit food enterprises. Today, Ableman is involved in one of the more unique urban food enterprises in the world. Working in Vancouver, Canada, Ableman started Sole Food Street Farms. The enterprise is a non-profit, financing its operations not only with the sale of produce, but donations as well. This year, Sole Food Street Farms created an urban orchard of 500 fruit trees –…

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