A Petaluma farm is adapting the methods of farming popularized in The Omnivore’s Dilemma to the West Coast climate. The animals work all year round, preparing the soil in the fields for the spring planting.
The San Francisco Bay Area may be one of the densest metropolitan areas of the country, but roughly 40 percent of the region's total land area is made up of farms and rangelands.
Panelists at a sold-out forum on November 16 talked about their farming and farm-education enterprises on the San Mateo Coast, San Francisco, West Marin, and Santa Rosa. From food sovereignty to occupying your foodshed, check out the highlights.
Urban Adamah is a one-acre farm and Jewish environmental education center that recently opened in West Berkeley, just a stone’s throw from Interstate 80. Named for the Hebrew word for “earth,” Urban Adamah provides local food banks and community organizations with fresh produce while accommodating 500 visitors a month.
For more than a century, Jeanne McCormack’s family has grown grain and raised livestock on a few thousand acres near Rio Vista. But she and her husband Al Medvitz didn’t take a straight line to ranching. Instead, they detoured through Africa and Asia. Now, they’re in it for the long haul.
Even though foodie culture is an ever-growing phenomenon in the Bay Area, it’s still surprising to many that nearly half the land in our region is dedicated to ranching or farming.
Bayer Farm brings open space and food security to a section of Santa Rosa that needs more of both. With help from the nonprofit Landpaths, people in the Roseland neighborhood are helping each other plant and harvest food, and community.
In the Sunol Valley, beyond the subdivisions of Pleasanton, Fred Hempel grows tomatoes alongside other farmers growing figs, strawberries, and more. It’s all part of an unusual experiment in micro-farming unfolding under the leadership of Sustainable Agriculture Education on land owned by the San Francisco water department.
Organic and sustainable aren’t terms often associated with Richmond, home to a Chevron refinery and a General Chemical plant. But those were two of the most frequently heard words on Saturday, at the first-ever West Contra Costa County Urban Agriculture Summit in North Richmond. Despite pouring rain, nearly 100 people gathered at Sunnyside Organic Seedlings to exchange ideas about bringing new models of food-growing to the area.
It all started with some crooked zucchinis in Bolinas. They didn’t conform to the strict aesthetic standards of the market, so they were snipped from the vine and left to rot. The folks at Marin Organic recognized an opportunity and, and the group’s School Lunch and Gleaning Program was born.
Last year, City Slicker Farms grew and distributed almost 7,000 pounds of pay-what-you-can produce in West Oakland. That number may double in coming years, thanks to a $4 million grant the nonprofit won last week. City Slicker Farms will use the money purchase and develop a 1.4-acre neighborhood farm and park.