This article came up out of the blue in my google alerts this week, and of course I’m thinking: “the universe conspires, yet again!” Seek, and ye shall find. I’ve been increasingly into urban gardening lately and have started running into resources and reflections on all sides that this is something that suits my fancy. Sun, water, life, growth, earth – all good things that have felt especially good to me lately (like, on a cosmic “good” level) and they’ve also been showing up in my writing. I can even get down with the worms. The gentle rotting of food (that I get a waft of every few weeks now when I bike over to the community garden where I pick up my CSA share and drop off my frozen bag of compost) is increasingly tolerable.
So, I get it. I like gardens. But farming? Aren’t we talking, at least in the United States, massive agro-business owned by white folks? Is there any color in there? Any serious urban farming? Anyone who could actually spark a sea-change? Well, enter universe. Check out the clip above, and the full article. And this blog. And who knows? Maybe someday soon I’ll be making a “conspired” trip out to Milwaukee.
“How do you envision a new food system?”
Will Allen: “In the last chapter of my book, I imagine driving in Milwaukee a hundred years from now. I see hospitals that grow their own food in greenhouses and that feed these fresh vegetables to patients the same day they are picked. In inner-city neighborhoods, I see warehouses, rooftops, and green spaces where young entrepreneurs are growing food intensively and feeding the communities where they live. I see young Black men and women who are trained as “agriculturalists” and who are proud of the profession. I see urban waste companies that are in the business of composting, taking discarded food and wood chips and turning it into healthy soil. I see farms on the edge of cities that are growing several crops and serving the communities where they live.
We have a long way to go, but this is the future of agriculture. It is a model that will bring people together. It is farming with a human heart.”