Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Saving the Land that Sustains Us

One of the things that we became interested in early in our farming career was the preservation of agricultural land. The Farmer went on a bus trip to Pennsylvania and Maryland to see how they've preserved their farmland using Purchase of Development Rights, and (his preference) Transfer of Development Rights. Since then (off and on) he's served on our county's committee to preserve farmland.

Our farm is situated in a triangle between 3 cities. Until the recent recession, sprawl was happening (in our direction, from all 3 sides) at an alarming rate. It's slowed somewhat, but we are still in that triangle. And we still speak to folks all the time who think nothing of selling a perfectly good house to buy 10 acres out in the country and build a new house.

We are still concerned about the sprawl and about the recent attacks on animal agriculture. But we're very (!) encouraged by the growing awareness that our food sources are important.

I found this video clip from the American Farmland Trust on a food blog I occasionally read. When "foodies" are talking about saving farmland, I get excited.

I have occasionally been known to comment that raising our own food here in America is an issue of national security. The moment we outsource our food production is the moment we become vulnerable in a way I don't like to even think of.

What do you think? Is it important to protect farmland from development? If so, how should we go about it?


  1. Preserving our farmland should absolutely be a national priority! Great post, Lona - very timely.

  2. I just started reading your blog here. Very interesting! I think it is important to protect farmland for development. I wonder if some type of preservation law could be enacted similar to those that protect wildlife areas and swamp lands?

  3. Thanks for stopping by my blog! That's one of the reasons I'm so passionate about eating local, in season whenever possible. My dad was a farmer until he and his partner decided they could make more money by selling their farm than by raising crops on the land. So sad.

  4. Thanks for commenting (and stopping by to visit). I appreciate your input...


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