News Feed Item

Report By American Farmland Trust, Conservation Law Foundation And The Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group Furthers Efforts To Build A Sustainable Regional Food System In 6 New England States

BOSTON, March 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- American Farmland Trust, Conservation Law Foundation and the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group released a report today geared toward generating a serious discussion on building a sustainable, regional food system in six New England states.

The report, New England Food Policy: Building A Sustainable Food System, is the result of nearly two years of research and interviews with key players in the food system on how to increase economic opportunities for farmers and healthy, local food choices for consumers.

The states covered by the report include Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

"Today, New England produces just half of the dairy products we eat, less than 40 percent of our vegetables, ten percent of our fruit, and one percent of our meat," said Cris Coffin, New England Director of American Farmland Trust.  "You only have to look at long-term California drought predictions to understand how important it is for New England to improve its food production capacity. 

"We also cannot continue to permanently lose 300,000 acres of farmland like we have in the last 30 years and look at the issue only one segment at a time," said Coffin.  "We have to look at the entire food system-- from field to our kitchen tables and beyond-- if we are to make smart decisions about creating a sustainable food system with the limited state, local and federal resources we have available."

"In New England, we currently import the majority of the food we consume.  We are fortunate to have a thriving network of policymakers, farmers, fishermen, and organizations working to increase our regional food system's sustainability, but there are still many policy barriers that affect our region's capacity to grow, distribute, and consume more of our own food," said Jennifer Rushlow, Staff Attorney and Director of the Farm and Food Initiative at the Conservation Law Foundation.  "This report provides a critical policy focus to existing work and is intended to help foster policies that support a healthy, economically vibrant, just, environmentally sustainable, and resilient New England food system."

The report is also intended to complement the New England Food Vision, a project of Food Solutions New England, which will be released later this spring to suggest ways in which New England might produce at least 50 percent or more of its food needs by 2060.

The report examines public policy issues in five areas: 
— Land: Reducing loss of farmland to development; protecting it permanently; and expanding access to land for new and young farmers. 
— Food Production: Expanding job opportunities for and managing labor costs of farm and food system workers; maximizing the environmental benefits while minimizing the environmental impacts of agriculture; and investing in research, development, and education. 
— Food Safety, Processing, Aggregation, and Distribution: Enhancing the safety, processing, aggregation, and distribution of produce, dairy, meat and poultry, and seafood. 
— Markets: Bolstering New England markets for local food and creating revenue opportunities for farmers, along with opportunities for consumers to buy locally. 
— Waste Streams: Reducing environmental impacts from food waste and supporting beneficial reuse of organic matter.

In addition, the report provides unique research into regional approaches for states to work together toward shared food system goals.

Copies of the report are being made available to food system leaders in each of the states, including food policy councils and nonprofit groups, state departments of agriculture, key state legislative leaders and members of the Congressional delegation.

Over the next nine months, the American Farmland Trust, Conservation Law Foundation and the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group will facilitate webinars based on this report, discuss policy options at regional and state events, and provide technical assistance to organizations and coalitions interested in pursuing policy actions.

"Thanks to a broad coalition of people and organizations, New England is moving toward a more sustainable, regional food economy," said Kathryn Ruhf, Senior Fellow with the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group.  "We stand ready to work with states and other partners to support our farmers, fishermen and food chain partners, value and protect farmland, and produce and consume more of our own food."

The full 210-page report and executive summary are available online by going to: www.NewEnglandFoodPolicy.org.

The American Farmland Trust is the nation's leading conservation organization dedicated to protecting farmland, promoting sound farming practices and keeping farmers on the land.  Learn more about its activities in New England by calling 413-586-4593 ext. 29 or visit: www.farmland.org/newengland.

Conservation Law Foundation protects New England's environment for the benefit of all people.  Using the law, science and the market, CLF creates solutions that conserve our natural resources, build healthy communities, and sustain a vibrant economy region-wide.  Founded in 1966, CLF is a nonprofit, member-supported organization with offices in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

The Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group is a 12-state food system social impact network.  Founded in 1992, NESAWG engages over 500 organizations in food systems change work. NESAWG has been a national leader in regional approaches and solutions to food systems issues.  NESAWG works on public policy at all levels, bringing voices from across the food system spectrum to the table.  NESAWG's work groups focus on issues such as labor in the food chain, infrastructure, research, food safety, distribution, and food systems planning.  It holds an annual conference, publishes reports, leads projects and builds network capacity.

NESAWG will sponsor a regional It Takes A Region Conference November 11-12 in Saratoga Springs, NY on issues related to making our food system strong, resilient and regionalized.  Visit http://www.nefood.org for more information.

AFT will host the Farmland, Food and Livable Communities national conference in Lexington, Kentucky on October 20-22.  Visit www.farmland.org for more information.

Cris Coffin, New England Director American Farmland Trust
Phone: 413-695-4653
Email: [email protected] 
Emily Dahl, Conservation Law Foundation
Phone: 978-394-3506
Email: [email protected]

SOURCE American Farmland Trust

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive advantage. By offering a suite of proven hosting and management services, Enzu wants companies to focus on the core of their online busine...
In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Nick Son, Vice President of Cyber Risk & Public Sector at Coalfire, will discuss the latest information on the FedRAMP Program. Topics will cover: FedRAMP Readiness Assessment Report (RAR). This new process is designed to streamline and accelerate the FedRAMP process from the traditional timeline by initially focusing on technical capability instead of documentation preparedness. FedRAMP for High-impact level systems. Early in 2016 FedRAMP officially publishe...
Join IBM November 2 at 19th Cloud Expo at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, and learn how to go beyond multi-speed it to bring agility to traditional enterprise applications. Technology innovation is the driving force behind modern business and enterprises must respond by increasing the speed and efficiency of software delivery. The challenge is that existing enterprise applications are expensive to develop and difficult to modernize. This often results in what Gartner calls...
WebRTC sits at the intersection between VoIP and the Web. As such, it poses some interesting challenges for those developing services on top of it, but also for those who need to test and monitor these services. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Tsahi Levent-Levi, co-founder of testRTC, reviewed the various challenges posed by WebRTC when it comes to testing and monitoring and on ways to overcome them.
The explosion of new web/cloud/IoT-based applications and the data they generate are transforming our world right before our eyes. In this rush to adopt these new technologies, organizations are often ignoring fundamental questions concerning who owns the data and failing to ask for permission to conduct invasive surveillance of their customers. Organizations that are not transparent about how their systems gather data telemetry without offering shared data ownership risk product rejection, regu...
Bert Loomis was a visionary. This general session will highlight how Bert Loomis and people like him inspire us to build great things with small inventions. In their general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Architect at IBM Bluemix, and Michael O'Neill, Strategic Business Development at Nvidia, will discuss the accelerating pace of AI development and how IBM Cloud and NVIDIA are partnering to bring AI capabilities to "every day," on-demand. They will also review two "free infrastruct...
Qosmos, the market leader for IP traffic classification and network intelligence technology, has announced that it will launch the Launch L7 Viewer at CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley, being held November 1 – 3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The L7 Viewer is a traffic analysis tool that provides complete visibility of all network traffic that crosses a virtualized infrastructure, up to Layer 7. It facilitates and accelerates common IT tasks such as VM migra...
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, discussed how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
Rapid innovation, changing business landscapes, and new IT demands force businesses to make changes quickly. In the eyes of many, containers are at the brink of becoming a pervasive technology in enterprise IT to accelerate application delivery. In this presentation, you'll learn about the: The transformation of IT to a DevOps, microservices, and container-based architecture What are containers and how DevOps practices can operate in a container-based environment A demonstration of how Docke...
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to simplify and streamline our lives by automating routine tasks that distract us from our goals. This promise is based on the ubiquitous deployment of smart, connected devices that link everything from industrial control systems to automobiles to refrigerators. Unfortunately, comparatively few of the devices currently deployed have been developed with an eye toward security, and as the DDoS attacks of late October 2016 have demonstrated, this oversight can ...
Smart Cities are here to stay, but for their promise to be delivered, the data they produce must not be put in new siloes. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mathias Herberts, Co-founder and CTO of Cityzen Data, will deep dive into best practices that will ensure a successful smart city journey.
President Obama recently announced the launch of a new national awareness campaign to "encourage more Americans to move beyond passwords – adding an extra layer of security like a fingerprint or codes sent to your cellphone." The shift from single passwords to multi-factor authentication couldn’t be timelier or more strategic. This session will focus on why passwords alone are no longer effective, and why the time to act is now. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Chris Webber, security strateg...
November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Penta Security is a leading vendor for data security solutions, including its encryption solution, D’Amo. By using FPE technology, D’Amo allows for the implementation of encryption technology to sensitive data fields without modification to schema in the database environment. With businesses having their data become increasingly more complicated in their mission-critical applications (such as ERP, CRM, HRM), continued ...
In the 21st century, security on the Internet has become one of the most important issues. We hear more and more about cyber-attacks on the websites of large corporations, banks and even small businesses. When online we’re concerned not only for our own safety but also our privacy. We have to know that hackers usually start their preparation by investigating the private information of admins – the habits, interests, visited websites and so on. On the other hand, our own security is in danger bec...
Two weeks ago (November 3-5), I attended the Cloud Expo Silicon Valley as a speaker, where I presented on the security and privacy due diligence requirements for cloud solutions. Cloud security is a topical issue for every CIO, CISO, and technology buyer. Decision-makers are always looking for insights on how to mitigate the security risks of implementing and using cloud solutions. Based on the presentation topics covered at the conference, as well as the general discussions heard between sessi...