Tag Archives: Agri-Business

Urban Farmer Wins $500,000 “Genius” Award

At 6 feet 7 inches tall of urban Farmer Will Allen commands attention when he speaks. “The next generation of farmers aren’t going to come from rural family farms because those farms don’t exist anymore. The next generation of farmers are going to come from the cities,” states Allen.  When we think of the current economic crisis and the “fact” that jobs aren’t coming back the way they used to be before the housing bubble burst, one is faced with the frightening dilemma of actually being free.

“Stop looking for a job and MAKE a job for yourself. That means doing what you love most … and what better cause than to “feed my sheep” or teach others how to create healthy food for themselves, how to commune cooperatively with greater quality of life.

Will Allen grew up on a farm outside Washington, D.C., played professional basketball for a time after college, mostly in Europe. In 1993, he left a job with Procter & Gamble and bought a roadside farm in Milwaukee’s economically depressed north side — the last remaining registered farm in the city — and got local teenagers involved.

Two years ago, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation “genius” grant. The grant recognizes Allen’s work bringing affordable fresh produce and quality grass-fed meats to the urban poor and educating communities about sustainable farming. The Chicago-based MacArthur Foundation awarded Allen $500,000 over the next five years to use however he wishes. Allen, 60, also received $100,000 in 2005 from the Ford Foundation on behalf of urban farming work. co-founded Growing Power in 1993 in Milwaukee to help teach inner-city kids about the origins of their food.

This may be one of the most important Post I’ve discovered. Please … please … visit YouTube and view some of the short videos about various projects taking place at Growing Power:

YouTube Video: Meet Will Allen

YouTube Video on:  Vermicompost
Website:  Vermicompost

YouTube Video on: Aquaponics
Website: Aqualponics

YouTube Video on Clean Water & Aqualponics <click here)

Dreams Change

“Cultivators of the earth are the most valuable citizens.”  Thomas Jefferson knew the important role farmers and producers play in our great Nation.  With the security of America’s energy sources slowly dwindling we must focus on ensuring the sustainability of our great Nation.” ~www.rcdnet.org

Created by God

I haven’t been posting much lately. The reasons are many … but the main reason… is that I discovered time had run out on my dream of owning a farm. I’ve always been a very active guy with a lot of energy. But I’m 56 now and I have to be realistic. While growing fresh fruit and vegetables replenishes my body-mind, I have to ask myself, how much more manual labor do I want to do as I age?

Urban Farming is more of a realistic goal for me now. There are so many ways to do it. There are even grants for it. The rewards can be as small as insuring the health of you and your family, to building a small cottage industry. Perhaps that’s another reason urban farming is so attractive … the reality that wherever there’s a problem, if you think a few steps past “the problem” and look for a solution, you can get paid!

Manufacturing comes out of agriculture. All the “value added” products that farmers and ranchers produce created the foundation for the industrial revolution. People needed shoes and cowhides supplied the leather. Urban dwellers needed fresh lemonade so bottles were made and artist were hired to create the labels. Trucks were bought to fill the store shelves. Carpenters built the stores, and so on …

My only worry is that as we enter this newest period of “change”, huge, greedy corporations like Monsanto will be able to close the doors before the open. Obesity is the second greatest cause of cancer in the world today. The potatoes in your big chain grocery stores today have so much sugar in them, that you cannot even cook the same potato-based recipe that you could just 13 years ago!

Monsanto created Roundup. [<-Please read the Slate.com Roundup article] You know, the herbicide that kills weeds and grass? Yeah. Well, they found a way to insert RoundUp into the plant growing in the field, making it resistant to insects and other pests. The only small problem is that WE’RE EATING IT. [SEE: Millions Against Monsanto ]

Think Genetically Modified Food is no problem? Tasteless tomatoes and other gas-ripened food that sit on selves like wax time bombs waiting for trusting, uninformed mouths to gobble them down … is that what you really want? Monsanto created  Agent Orange! You know … the “herbicide” used in Vietnam that eventually killed thousands of former G.I.s who walked through the stuff? They didn’t even eat or drink that product and cancer ran rapid through their ranks. HOW in the world are we feeling so secure about eating yet another of their products simply because “they” put it on the local store self?

Grow your own food. You’ll be healthier, wiser, more spiritually alert, and … you’ll find ways … to “get paid.”

This is a Great Time

CornelWestblackboard In “Race Matters”, theologian Cornel West wrote:

“The greatest problem facing the black community today is nihilism. Nihilism is … the live experience of coping with a life of horrifying meaninglessness, hopelessness, and (most important) lovelessness.”

Until the early 1970’s black Americans had the lowest suicide rate in the United States, but now, black people lead the nation in the rate of increased suicide.

“… There is a change…” In fact, MAJOR changed occurred. African Americans now have some of the highest suicide rates in the nation.

The changes that have influenced culture and class over the last 25 years did not occur by accident.  The resulting black on black terror, the disruption of the black business community, mass addiction, and the general distruption of black social life was very effectively designed.

The proper reaction? Self-pity is just another clog in the wheels of addiction and disempowerment. Anger? Pure foolishness. Far better to remember the quote:

“Every problem is an opportunity in work clothes.”
– Henry J. Kaiser

This blog will look at not the problems … but the MANY opportunities that are currently staring us in our collective faces. Greenfreed believes that opportunities are currently boundless. Not just for blacks, but for all of us.

  • Instead of blaming the illegals, let’s look at what they’re teaching us.
  • Instead of blaming whites or Jews or Asians … greenfred encourages a higher, more spiritual step … link, network and befriend as many people as you can. Isolation leads to poverty.
  • Instead of crying about the loss of industry in a given area, lets look at the fact that the infrastructure is still there! The gas, water, and plumbing is still there. Working with unimaginative City Councils to open up existing green space for urban farming is just one of the MANY opportunities that can bring new revenue to communities and empower people.

…. Besides … “it’s ALL spiritual…”
Have fun, be happy, create love, and if you look two steps beyond any problem, you can get paid.

Peace