Wednesday, February 16, 2011

We may be on a roll

here in Sonoma County.

Yesterday things began to move ahead in using county-owned land to grow food.

The land is out there -in parks, the open space district, water agency land, and General Services controlled land.

County officials are working to identify land that could be used for community gardens, small farms of 10 acres or so which could do much to boost the county's produce totals and make growing it almost affordable for farmers, and larger parcels of rangeland.

Yes, I know, there are people who might question these uses environmentally - but the facts are in: organic farming and well-managed rangeland increase carbon sequestration. And anything we do to increase local sourcing of food is an eco-justice plus.

Two of the stars of next week's countywide food forum
are mentioned in the news story - Dr. Mary Maddux-Gonzalez, our county public health officer, a champion of win-win solutions, and Stephanie Larson, our head of UC cooperative extension here, whose office will be doing the assessment. Getting to know these two women has been a plus for me as a member of our Food System Alliance.

And I know that the Forum will be identifying more do-able goals for improving our food system for everybody.

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