Urgent Evoke

A crash course in changing the world.

LEARN2: Food Security in Affluent Communities

In the upper-middle class town of Winchester in the second most food secure state in the United States, food security right now is not much of an issue.

However, in the future if we continue as we are concerning food, feeding yourself, even as an affluent citizen of the United States, may become difficult. This may be especially true of affluent suburban neighborhoods where there is very little local agriculture. Sure, we have local farms and a weekly farmer's market during the summer where farmers from the area come sell some of their crops, but this is not enough. Most of these farms grow fruits and vegetables. They do not grow the cereals that would be necessary to support the community.

The solution to this, I think, would be farmpunk. It would be beautiful to see the useless perfectly manicured lawns so common in rich communities be turned into small personal farms that would supplement the household's food, if not fully supply it. This would greatly reduce the community's dependence on imported foods, providing the food security that may be needed as the food supply lags behind its demand.

I think a way to make this easy for affluent community to do would be to create a farmpunk kit that is trendy and easy to use. It would have all the resources a suburban person would need to start a minifarm in their yard, along with detailed guides and daily plans. If this caught on, it would turn into a great business and would revolutionize food security in developed countries.

Do any of you have thoughts on how to develop local food securit in affluent and developed communities?

Views: 46

Comment by Caroline Meeks on March 12, 2010 at 7:46pm
Practically everyone here in Winchester pays for a service to mow and fertilize their lawns. We do it because our neighbors do, because its expected of us. It would be great if those same services put in food crops instead, and that was what everyone did, it was what was expected and accepted.
Comment by Amos Meeks on March 12, 2010 at 10:30pm
Exactly. They would still be paying poor mexican immigrants to landscape their lawns, as they do now, but at least it would be creating food instead of just wasting energy and time to make something look good. Especially when gardens look so much better anyways.
Comment by Brian Ballsun-Stanton on March 16, 2010 at 12:58pm
Remove the stigma of gardens.

Basically, without a significant disruption to the food networks, local gardens will never be a form of conspicuous consumption. (As manicured lawns /are/ a form of conspicuous consumption, we'd have to establish a meme to destroy the perception of value there.)
Comment by Amos Meeks on March 16, 2010 at 1:13pm
I agree, and I think this can be accomplished either by making it fun and trendy, or through something like a Victory Garden when things start to get real bad.
Comment by Carlo Delantar on March 20, 2010 at 12:43am
Great post, Check my video post about a guy who fell in love with fishes. He discusses how we can make things that will compliment everything that gets affected by its own project for the good.
Comment by Daniel LaLiberte on March 21, 2010 at 12:57am
Gardening is work and we tend to let others do it if they can be more efficient at it. I think Brian is right, but we may well see a significant disruption to the food network for a variety of reasons.

I wrote a bit about gardening in my 2020 vision: http://www.urgentevoke.com/profiles/blogs/2020-vision-more-sustainable. For grains, I wonder if there is something we can do with bamboo, a form of very tall grass.
Comment by Daniel LaLiberte on March 21, 2010 at 9:44pm
I just wrote Bamboo for food. Thanks for inspiring my learning.


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