Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Farm Aid Staff Love Your Emails

After the show, we really enjoy hearing from folks. This is a favorite that came to us a few days ago.

"To the Farm Aid Crew-

Just want to take a moment out of my busy day and say I think its great what you guys are doing. I have never heard of you guys until I passed a bus on the highway this morning with "farm aid" on the side and powered by bio diesel. I was intrigued so when I got home I went to the web to find out more. As a fourth generation family farmer, I couldn't help but smile when I stumbled on to your web site. Being in the small town of Easton Connecticut, which was once a strong farming community, I get chills down me when I drive by what was once a family farm and see it filled with million dollars homes. Being so close to New York city the land is so valuable it has made farming here nearly extinct. As land values go up, most farmers give into the temptation and sell knowing that they can't possibly make as much in a lifetime as they can by selling the farm for. As for me, our family farm was founded in 1912 by my great grandfather, as he and my grandfather and father all had a battle to keep the farm going , I am faced with a war almost daily to keep it going. I personally can't wait for 2012 where the farm will reach the 100 year anniversary. Once again thought it would be nice to hear from a farmer who is truly thankful for all you guys do every day to help us.

Irv Snow
Snows Farm "

Thanks Irv! And keep up the good work!!


  1. Anonymous12:36 AM

    May I offer a consumer's reply to the letter from Mr. Snow?

    Dear Mr. Snow,

    Hello. :) Like you, I recently stumbled across the FarmAid site. Although I've never personally worked on a farm , I've spent my entire life in Pennsylvania Dutch farm country, Southeastern PA (ironically, near an 'Easton' PA). When I was a child, my grandmother raised our own personal flock of chickens, and our neighbor was an old fashioned dairy farm. But now we're plagued by that same problem: of old farms being sold off and turned into developments. My husband and I even went out of our way to avoid those 'developments' when finding a home to purchase. The whole thing makes me queasy too.

    But the real reason I wanted to offer a reply from a consumer, is because of how I've just spent my last three weeks. I too just now landed on FarmAid's site, but in a completely round-about way. The anti-factory-farm movement is alive and well, and still coming from grass roots. Three weeks ago, I stumbled across a label for humane farming (the 'Free Farmed' label which I see is also explained on FarmAid's site). Once I saw and realized what was possible --- my accidental discovery of this 'movement', I went off in search of other possibilities. From that 'Free Farmed' label, I researched other humane farming certifications. I learned about organics and the value of the USDA organic label. I also found my way to the 'localharvest' database, the 'eatwell' database, and the Cornucopia Institute's score sheets for organic dairies (Cornucopia fights for 'economic justice for family-scale farming). It's almost humorous that after three weeks of research, I've just now found most of those same links gathered together in one place on FarmAid's site.

    Food purchasing for this household has changed dramatically in these three weeks. No more factory-farmed products in this house, especially dairy or meat. Period. (And may I say I'm especially annoyed about these horrendous factory-farmed eggs. My first pet was one of my grandmother's chickens. I now stand in supermarkets, reading ingredient labels and passing by just about anything that has 'eggs' as an ingredient. I'm that ticked off.) I've sourced the farms we'll be buying our dairy/eggs/meat from, and learned how to find organics in the supermarket for anything I can't get directly from the farms. I've also begun visiting the farms as well. I'm determined that our five-year-old daughter will learn, and see, as I did growing up, that cows are supposed to be in the field, not in some cramped, crowded feedlot somewhere.

    My best friend and her husband are joining us in this, as well as another couple that my husband works with, and since I managed to track so much of this through the internet, my mother and aunt will be using my research results too. Consumers *do* want these things ... for the preservation of the farms; for the care of the animals; and for the care of the land. We just have to learn how to find them again. And from everything I've read in my last three weeks being glued to this computer, the movement *is* actively growing. What's more, when I mentioned those friends/family/co-workers, they were not passive. They actively wanted to switch their purchasing ways as well. In fact, today, as I was leaving a supermarket as I was scouting our which organic milk they stocked, I heard a woman behind me saying to her husband, "For a few pennies more, I got the organic onions." I turned around, gave her a thumbs up, and said, "Good for you. Seriously, good for you." The woman smiled and said, "Yeah, sometimes I wonder just what chemicals they’re trying to poison us with."

    So, in short, what I really wanted to say to you, is that the movement really is there among the consumers, and it *is* growing.

    --Pearl A. (Who tomorrow will be packing up daughter and mother, and heading off to a small, certified humane, family farm known for its cheeses.)

  2. Gee you're just mighty fine Irv!