Week 1 lecture - The Sacred Beginnings
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Week 1 lecture - The Sacred Beginnings

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  • I’m a huge advocate for local food. Right now my main passion is backyard homesteading. Starting a farm in WA next year. I’ve been advocating for chickens, goats, and bees for Summit County residents for the last 2 years.
  • I love growing food and incorporating it into a landscaping setting. Experience – permaculture, Colorado Master Gardener, started off in garden design, working for HC3 for the last 6 years, established several local food programs in the community – Summit Garden Network, Food Policy Council, and Summit CSA for CMC students. I am also taking a Certificate Program in Sustainable Food and Farming at UMASS Amherst. I am working on a sustainable food track for CMC. I am also a hobby photographer and love photos so you’ll see a LOT of photos in my slides. 5 MINUTES
  • Have the class list things they’ve learned in other classes, films they’ve watched, farms they’ve visited, books they’ve read, websites they’ve visited…
  • Remember to emphasize communication and to check canvas email and announcements for the most up-to-date info on deadlines and changes.
  • Sustainability – what does this mean to you? Anyone have a definition? A general definition in relation to food is “following agricultural and food system practices that that do not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their food needs” Who is familiar with the 3 E’s of Sustainability? Who can explain this diagram to the rest of the class?
  • How do these apply to food or agriculture?
  • Pair people who are familiar with the 3 E’s with those who aren’t. 10 minutes.
  • Have the students brainstorm both successes and problems associated with agriculture and foodtoday. Have them list them in categories – economic, environment, and community.
  • Hedden contrasts foodsheds with watersheds by noting that “the barriers which deflect raindrops into one river basin rather than into another are natural land elevations, while the barriers which guide and control movements of foodstuffs are more often economic than physical.” Hedden describes the economic forces that influence where foods are produced and how they are transported to the cities in which they are consumed.
  • Foodsheds can include: the land it grows on, the route it travels, the markets it passes through, and the tables it ends up on…
  • Industrial model. What is involved in both of these processes? What is involved in each step that will impact the environment, economy, and social equity?
  • How complicated is your foodshed?
  • Is your foodshed closed loop?
  • What does your foodshed value?
  • How many connections does your foodshed make? How does it benefit your community?Incubator Farms – Support for beginning farmers; access to land in exchange for “rent” in the form of farm fresh products; can be one or more parcels of land with one or multiple producers are farming and marketing farm products through their own new farm business enterprise with access to trainings and assistance. Plant a row programs – nationwaide initiative that encourages gardeners to grow a little extra and donate fresh product to local hunger-relief organization (food banks). Food Venture Centers – shared-use kitchen incubator help local businesses launch and grow without overwhelming initial investment and intensive certifications. Kitchens fully equipped and available for hourly rent…
  • What are the inputs and outputs and do they balance? Provide benefits? Create pollution?
  • Does your foodshed support ALL people, cultures, and concerns…?
  • Does it strive for a triple-bottom-line that meets the goals of the 3 E’s?
  • Is it local?
  • Does it tell a story?
  • Is it inclusive?
  • Going back to this industrial model – Again, what is involved in each step that will impact the environment, economy, and social equity?
  • Discuss the foodshed process for each type of carrot. You may want to refer back to this during your Follow Your Food Assignment later in the year.
  • This model will pop up numerous times in our lectures as we continue to evaluate certain food systems.
  • What has been happening – over time it has become more normal to purchase baby carrots at the grocery store; you can find them any time of the year; you can count on them always being in the store; they are already peeled and washed = convenient; convenient packaging they even have them in little packages for kids; industrialized model is normalized – you don’t need to think about the transportation or inspection… that makes it all possible but you trust that its all safe and you know that its there; baby carrots may also be cheaper than FM carrots. Underlying Structures – true cost isn’t reflected such as the cost to the environment or human health; cheap labor becomes necessary to uphold the cheap prices… which leads to human rights and immigration issues. Mental Models: Belief cheap and convenient is better; predictable is safer; I don’t really know who grows my food but it doesn’t matter to me; migrant workers don’t deserve or want the same rights.
  • How is this model different from the industrial model we explored with the carrot? Which do you predict to be more sustainable?

Week 1 lecture - The Sacred Beginnings Week 1 lecture - The Sacred Beginnings Presentation Transcript

  •  Find a partner.  Brainstorm at least FIVE successes and problems associated with agriculture and food today. Write separately on sticky notes.  Stick each success or problem in appropriate category – economic, environment, and social.
  •  Abundant food supply in the developed world  Fresh fruits and vegetables available year-round  Cheap food  Luxury foods such as coffee, tea, chocolate, and spices easily available around the world  Effective food preservation technologies (refrigeration, freezing, canning, packaging)  Convenience foods  Mechanization produces high labor efficiency  Improvements in soil conservation  Availability of agricultural inputs for quick solutions to productions problems
  •  Continuing soil loss  Food safety (e. coli, antibiotic resistance, toxins and pesticides)  Water pollution  Habitat loss  Continuing hunger  Air pollution; odors  Failing farms  Declining communities  Water depletion  Energy use  Obesity  Climate change  Chronic diseases linked to agricultural chemicals  Farmland loss to development
  • food•shed ['food,shed] - noun: a region or area from which a population draws its food
  •  “Foodshed” – used 80 years ago in “How Great Cities are Fed” by W.P. Hedden  Describes the flow of food from producer to consumer  Geographic area where vegetables, fruits, nuts, oils, meat, and grains feed citizens within the region  Answers the question: “Where does my food come from?”  Can include:  Farmer’s Markets  Community supported agriculture  Sales to local restaurants and institutions  Farm-t0-table programs
  •  Historically – eating within a LOCAL foodshed was the ONLY way families gained access to food!  17th and 18th centuries – food was grown in an area of less than 50 miles  Connection to foodshed and land  Ate seasonally  Ate what was available  Grew, cooked, preserved, canned…
  •  US’s Foodshed is global – international grocery chains  Lost connection to the food and the land  Someone else is growing it, harvesting it…  Increase in food waste  Increase in food miles – distance 1,500 or more…  Food available anytime of the year, almost anywhere  Soil degradation, pollution… - environmental costs  Inhumane treatment of workers  No local dollars to support local economies – disappearing small farms…
  •  More sustainable ways of producing, distributing, and consuming food  Global to regional – decrease in miles  Industrialized to small farms – decrease in scale  Emphasis on:  Fresher foods  Local economy  Connection with farmer (or grow your own)  Reduction in resources (packaging and fuel)  Direct to consumer (cut out the middle man)  Reduction in pollution  More environmentally sustainable methods
  •  Farm  Production  Processing  Packaging  Distribution  Marketing  Retailing  Table
  • CSA’s Farms Food Banks Home Gardens Community Gardens Farm Stands Farmer’s Markets Meat Dairy Honey Co-Ops
  •  Farm  Production  Processing  Packaging  Distribution  Marketing  Retailing  Table
  •  Farm  Production  Processing  Packaging  Distribution  Marketing  Retailing  Table
  • EVENTS What happens? What is generally UNSEEN PATTERNS & TRENDS What’s been happening? What are the trends? What changes have occurred? UNDERLYING STRUCTURES, ORGANIZATIONS What influences the above patterns? MENTAL MODELS: Assumptions, values... What assumptions do people have about the above? L E A R N I N G
  • EVENT: Purchased bag of baby carrots PATTERNS & TRENDS: Normal Any time of year Convenient Industrial Low prices UNDERLYING STRUCTURES: Cost doesn’t reflect environment or human health Cheap labor is necessary Human rights and immigration issues What subsidies make this possible? MENTAL MODELS: Cheap and convenient are better no matter what Predictable and uniformity is safer It doesn’t matter who grows my food or how they are treated