Do you ever consider your small family farm to be a small fish in the big sea of Mega Farm sharks? You are not alone! No really, you are not alone in the idea that small farms are an important part of the world's food system, despite what the media might say. Because we are a small voice in the world of food production, it is often hard to get our point across without a larger platform. One of the largest and most vocal platforms that small farmers have on their side is Farm Aid.
Farm Aid was created when Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert back in 1985 (Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001) to raise awareness about the loss of family farms. They also wanted to raise funds to help farm families keep their land. Fast forward to 2011, and Farm Aid is going strong. To date, it has raised $39 million dollars:
to promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture. Farm Aid is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to keep family farmers on their land.
There is much more to this non profit organization than a concert of amazing musicians, however. Their motto: Family farmers, good food, a better America; relates to anyone who grows food, from the city gardener, to the small acreage family farmer, growing for the farmers market.
This year's concert, Farm Aid 2011, is scheduled for August 13, in Kansas City, KS. The event brings together farmers, artist and people who believe in the importance of family farms, to create a visible connection between small farmers and good food.
Next: The Good Food Movement: How Farm Aid is helping spread the word - and so can you.