“Farmland Without Farmers,” a lovely article by Wendell Berry in the The Atlantic (HERE), tells the story of how industrial agriculture has changed the Kentucky landscape and agrarian culture he grew up with. The contrast between the farmers of his parents’ generation, who understood the nuances and personalities of their land, and the industrialized farms of today, is profound. For Berry, the “problem of industrial agriculture is that it does not distinguish one place from another.” In fact, it destroys the individuality of place in order to realize the cost efficiencies of mechanized agriculture.
A sidebar to Berry’s article links to another, earlier piece (HERE) in which Michael Pollan, the food activist, describes how Berry inspired his investigation of how our food is produced – and so indirectly had a profound impact of our food consciousness. Pollan:
“When Berry says ‘eating is an agricultural act,’ … [h]e’s saying you have political power in your every day actions. When you decide what you’re going to eat, what you’re going to buy, you have real influence. That’s why this idea has the potential to resonate with so many people. It’s certainly one of the reasons it’s resonated with me: I know I can act today. Three times.”
That’s the impulse behind GreenerDailyLife.com. We act when we make routine everyday purchases of food, cosmetics, clothing, and so on. We vote with our wallets, on the kind of economy we want and, through that economy, the kind of world we want to live in. As “consumers,” our greatest power to change the world is in what we choose to buy every day. Let’s exercise that power.
Get Personal With Your Food
LocalHarvest.org is a fantastic resource for better food. Use it to find farms, farmers’ markets, CSAs, and events near you. Consider joining a CSA, community supported agriculture group, where you can buy a share of a local farmer’s crop this year. Learn more HERE. If you’re lucky, as my family has been, you’ll get to know your farmer and his/her farm, and you’ll feel a wonderful sense of connection with your food.
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