“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
That quote is from Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac, which was written in 1949.
Nearly 70 years have passed since that line was written, but the same issue still exists. While various farm advocacy organizations have done a terrific job in reaching out to both farmers and consumers regarding the importance of farmland in the U.S., many of us have never made that connection between farm and food: Between farm practices and healthy soil, between healthy soil and clean water.
And fresh air.
And nutrient-dense food.
In their quest to become uber-efficient, our food system has done an excellent job of creating a jumble of food distribution points that can quickly and efficiently ship food across the country on a daily basis. In the process, they’ve also done an excellent job of removing the farmer or rancher from the food-buying equation.
Today, our food system, like so much else, has been corporatized, so we don’t associate what we buy with a farmer or rancher, but rather a corporation, or a food chain, or even a distributor. 68 years ago, Aldo Leopold wrote that the farmer and rancher was lost in the food buying equation, and it remains that way today.
That’s why today I’m challenging you to do something to support the farmers and ranchers in your community; even if that community is 200 miles away. Visit a farmers market, purchase local food from your grocery store, and demand local food if none is available. Support restaurants that serve local food.
Even better, take a drive and visit your farmer or rancher and learn how your food is grown. And make sure to thank them for what they do for all of us, every day.
What did you do? Write and let us know!