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Farm Labor Dilemma

Touch the Soil News #749 (feature photo – Benjamin Gisin, Touch the Soil News) As any gardener knows – planting, tending, watering and harvesting food crops– is not accomplished without diligent effort. While industrial crops like corn, soybeans, wheat and hay are heavily mechanized, vegetables and fruits are not. For home gardeners it is hard to imagine what it would take to harvest just one acre of intensely planted broccoli or carrots. It is therefore not hard to understand when large produce growers explained to Congress last year that America can import labor or import all its fruits and vegetables. John Oxford, a Vice President of one of the largest…

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Grow A Row – Is This a Window into the Future of Food?

Touch the Soil News # 127 The non-profit  “America’s Grow a Row” was started by a non-farmer – Chip Paillex – some 14 years ago in New Jersey. Back in 2002, Chip and his daughter rented a small 30’ X 30’ plot and started planting food crops for the first time in his life. One day they saw a three-line article in the paper that said if you ever have extra produce, “grow-a-row” for the hungry and bring it down to the food pantry. Chip Paillex – Founder of Grow A Row (photo courtesy of Grow A Row) Moved by the simplicity of the message Paillex and his daughter began…

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The Urban Farm Collective – Cornerstone to a New Food Chain (Part 1 of 2)

Touch the Soil News #122 Food and access to food has been the subordinate child of a chaotic Wall Street with demonstrated insensitivities to planetary ecology and human health. It should not be surprising then that not-for-profit ventures – as relates to food – are exploring beyond the mentality of the corporate board room. From Left to Right – Ari Rosner, Janette Kaden (Founder of UFC), Holli Prohaska (Current Director) Thanks to Holli Prohaska, who worked with us in getting this story together, we get an inside look at the Urban Farm Collective (UFC). The UFC organizes people wanting to work for food, organizes access to land and organizes what…

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