Saturday 28 August 2010

Community Supported Agriculture

I'm very excited that the money has finally come through (from the Lottery-funded Local Food Fund) that enables us to get going with the Community Supported Agriculture scheme, the school farm at the Hewett, and the flour, bread, beans and oats projects.

I'm excited for a number of reasons. Partly because it's been such a long slog - it's more than 18 months since Kirstin from the Soil Association talked to a TN meeting about Community Supported Agriculture, and we all agreed it was something we wanted to do. Partly because there's some paid work in it for me, which is a relief after a long lean time. But mostly because it's about bringing together two things that matter to me - community and food - in such a way that hopefully each allows the other to happen.

Why does Community help the Food part to happen? Well, it's perfectly possible to have a food system without any community, but less easy to have the kind of food system we'd all really like. I care about how the vegetables are grown, how people are treated, how animals are treated, how the soil is improved over time. As a community developing our own food system we can make sure these things are as we would want them to be. And we can support it in practical ways - for example by helping with distribution - which helps to square the circle between what we want and what we can afford.

And why does the Food help the Community part to happen? Well, discovering that is part of the adventure! But I do believe that communities have always drawn together around growing food, harvesting, cooking and eating it. And I'm confident that Transition Norwich is going to be great at finding ways to make that happen around the CSA, the school farm and the other projects.

So, I'm excited. I hope you are too. Come and be part of this food community!

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