In last week’s newsletter, John mentioned that I was at the FARFA Conference and since then I've fielded lots of interesting questions about who and what the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance is. So here’s a quick review of FARFA for those of you who are interested.
FARFA, founded by Judith McGeary, an attorney and sustainable farmer, is based in Austin, TX, and is active in Texas food freedom and farming issues. FARFA promotes common sense policies for local, diversified agricultural systems. They advocate on behalf of the thousands of small-scale farmers and ranchers who produce food using sustainable/regenerative methods, which means they also work for the millions of consumers who care about protecting and rights and traditional freedoms … people like you. By protecting independent producers, they protect the safety, quality, and availability of our food.
They have a record of success at the national level as well as in Texas, where they are based. With the support of their members, allies, and friends, their achievements include:
Leading the fight against National Animal Identification System regulations that would have created massive bureaucracy, raised the cost of food, and interfered with private ownership of livestock, poultry, and horses.
Getting a key amendment to the federal Food Safety Modernization Act to exempt small-scale local producers from regulations that would have driven them out of business.
During the most recent Texas Legislative Session, they worked to pass 5 new bills that make it easier for small producers to make a living, including one that makes the state’s Cottage Foods Law one of the least restrictive in the country.
FARFA, along with its educational arm, the Council for Healthy Food Systems, hosts an annual Farm & Food Leadership Conference, gathering hundreds of producers, advocates, local food enthusiasts, chefs, and homesteaders for 3 days of learning, sharing, and networking.
Do you care about the quality of your food?
Do you care about the sustainability of farming and the health of our planet earth?
Do you want the freedom to choose your own foods?
Do you want our small family farms to be able to survive?
Do you believe the FDA (and other government agencies) have over-regulated our food supply?
Do you believe that domestic animals should be treated well and allowed to live a healthy, natural life?
There are many more such questions, but you get the idea. If you believe in any of these or just the general philosophy that eating nutritious foods is good for our physical and mental health, you should seriously consider joining the Farm & Ranch Freedom Alliance. They’re working for all of us. Let’s support them in that work. I’m proud to be helping Judith and Teresa in their endeavors as their administrative assistant.
This Week's Markets
The Elgin Farmers Market is a year-round market that will remain open every Thursday. Pre-orders are encouraged.
The Taylor Farmers Market is a year-round market that will is open every Saturday. Pre-orders are encouraged. Live music most Saturday's from 11 -1.