food

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Could New England Produce Half the Food It Consumes?
by Ben Tettlebaum

What if New England produced half of the food its residents need? Is such a vision possible? Based on the amount of acreage in farmland, our region currently produces only about 10 percent of the food we consume. The latest agriculture census numbers point to challenges to achieving significant growth in producing our own food.…

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There He Goes Again — Governor LePage Says “No” to Maine-Grown Food
by Ben Tettlebaum

Last week, Maine Governor Paul LePage vetoed a bill that would help Maine farmers and fishermen bring more of their food to institutional markets: “An Act To Support School Nutrition and Expand the Local Foods Economy” (LD 1431). The Maine legislature recently passed the bill unanimously in the Senate and with a supermajority in the…

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Cute, Trendy Backyard Chickens are Spreaders of What?!
by Emily Long

In recent years, chickens have come home to roost in backyards across the country. While the numbers are hard to document, cities and towns all over the U.S. are taking up the issue and modifying their laws to allow backyard chickens. Nearly every week in the news, a story appears reporting another town or city considering amendments to local laws that would allow backyard chickens. However, in 2012 an outbreak of salmonella that was traced back to several backyard flocks, made at least one NPR blogger wary of the recent trend – dubbing backyard chickens “cute, trendy spreaders of salmonella.”

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Could Backyard Chickens Be an Answer to Food Insecurity in Woonsocket?
by Max Greene

Two weeks ago, I wrote about bringing backyard chickens back to Rhode Island and paid special attention to the ongoing effort to repeal Woonsocket’s chicken ban. A few days later, the Washington Post ran a feature-length article on low-income Woonsocket residents’ struggles to feed their families. My last post focused on the ways that historical…

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Local Farms Need Local Markets
by Walker Larsen

Local food is all the rage, but how do you affordably and conveniently get that food from the local farm to the local table? It’s a question a lot of people are asking — and one we at CLF Ventures (CLFV) are working to answer. CLFV explored some emerging models that seek to connect small…

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Let’s Bring Backyard Chickens Back to Rhode Island
by Max Greene

All over Rhode Island, people want to keep backyard chickens. The trouble is that the law often doesn’t let them. Until 2010, Providence banned chicken-keeping entirely. That year, a coalition of residents worked together to overturn the ban. These efforts paid off – now, chickens peck away happily at sites ranging from Southside Community Land…

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Financing a Growing Appetite for Sustainable Food
by Jo Anne Shatkin

CLF and CLF Ventures couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities for innovation in financing that build our regional food system. We’re working to foster greater investment in the innovations that will transform our communities, make us more self-sufficient and resilient to climate change, and build a sector that will sustain us over the long…

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The Rhode Island Local Food Forum: Getting Food Policy Right in RI
by Max Greene

Last week I attended the Ninth Annual Rhode Island Local Food Forum, organized by Farm Fresh Rhode Island. The forum’s theme was “Center of the Plate,” reflecting its focus on local protein production. Particularly enlightening was a panel discussion whose moderator, academic chef Bill Idell, posed questions that resonate across the region.  These questions ultimately…

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Good Food for All Families: New Hampshire’s New Roadmap to End Childhood Hunger
by Christophe Courchesne

Grounded in our Colonial history, America’s harvest feast – Thanksgiving – is a quintessentially New England holiday, a time to be grateful for our region’s rich agricultural traditions of hard-fought bounty and community-minded collaboration. As we head off to celebrate with our families (as the famous New England poem goes), it is worth remembering that…