From the Executive Director
CT NOFA and the Big Issues
"Because organic methods of farming, gardening and land care are among the most powerful tools we have for addressing the most serious problems with Earth's life support systems: the rapid loss of biodiversity, the great excess in the global flow of nitrogen and climate change."
"In one sentence, why are organic methods so important? " asked Cynthia Rabinowitz, one of CT NOFA's founding board members in 1982 and now a volunteer on the NOFA Organic Land Care Standards Committee, the other day. She is preparing a lecture about the importance of organic food for a local cancer center.
Later I emailed her this quote from the top of a yogurt container with a more traditional reason: "The president's cancer panel recommends reducing cancer risk by choosing food produced without pesticides, chemical fertilizers, antibiotics and growth hormones. Learn more at Stonyfield.com." Stonyfield Farm was started by Samuel Kaymen after he was the founding president of NOFA from 1971 to 1981. However it took nearly 30 more years for the government to recognize the value of organic methods.
| Shannon Raider-New CT Farmer Program Coordinator|
For most of those 30 years, CT NOFA has been promoting local and organic food. As we learn more about the importance of organic food, farming and land care to human and planetary health, it is even more important that CT NOFA continues to
· Speak up for and promote organic practices,
· Educate farmers, gardeners and land care professionals in organic methods and
· Educate consumers in the value of organic food, farming, fiber and land care.
CT NOFA needs your memberships and contributions to continue and ramp up this important work. Just this week, I was asked to participate in the working group that is developing Ag Policy recommendations for the new governor. I'll certainly talk of the importance of organic methods for both mitigating and adapting to climate change. Click here to see the full report.
I'll also strongly support the importance of community farms and gardens, smaller farms and the protection of farmland.
How you can help:
We are excited to see how interest in our Gleanings e-news has grown in the past year. Over 3,400 people now get this email newsletter because of their interest in our work and in being connected with Connecticut's growing organic community.
However, only about 700 of Gleanings readers are CT NOFA members. Their regular support plays an important part in our ability to fulfill our mission. Many of them also contribute to our Annual Appeal.
Even a small donation ($10 or more) from a 1000 or so of our readers would make a big difference in our ability to train and encourage more beginning farmers, connect consumers with Connecticut's organic farms, support Connecticut's growing community farm movement and provide technical assistance to growers and organizations.
Go here to join or renew your membership in CT NOFA and here to make a donation.
Please email or call me if you have questions or suggestions.