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Things you can do to Impact Food Justice and the Environment
FRESH recognizes that food injustice is a systemic issue, and as individuals we can sometimes feel powerless. Here are five ways that you can impact food justice and the environment on an individual level, based on our food justice workshop.
Purchase Fair Trade
When something is Fair Trade Certified, it meets a standard that supports workers and the environment. From Fair Trade Certified: “Today’s global market enables – often encourages – compromise at the expense of farmers, workers, and fishermen… All businesses that work with us are held to rigorous Fair Trade standards which drive income sustainability, community and individual well-being, empowerment, and environmental stewardship.”
Buy From Minority and Women Owned Businesses When Possible
People of color and women were excluded from owning property for the majority of the United States history. Owning and passing down property is the main way families gain wealth. Therefore, these groups still experience a wealth gap in the United States, despite the fact that these policies have changed. You can use your capital to support women, people of color, and local cooperatively owned businesses and start to combat this wealth gap.
Purchase Organic, Local, and Small Food
When you think about buying organic, I bet the first thing you think about is being healthy. While that can be true, buying organic does so much more! In conventional farming, farm workers often inhale or otherwise ingest the pesticides that are sprayed on the plants, causing long term harm. Synthetic pesticides and fertilizers also have a huge impact on the soil and the surrounding environment. Profits from the conventional farming system go to large food and farm product corporations like Dow Chemical and Monsanto (now Bayer). Use your dollars to support organic, small, or local!
Acknowledge History and Express Gratitude
Sometimes you can’t find the thing you need at a minority owned business or afford to purchase local, fair trade or organic food. And that’s okay! As we’ve learned, the system keeps many people from being able to purchase “just” food. Take time to acknowledge where the food comes from, the land where it was grown and the people who labored to bring it to your plate.
Soul Fire Farm’s Guide to Taking Action: Soul Fire Farm, an Afro-Indigenous centered community farm, constantly updates their page with current food justice demands and petitions as well as their guide for action steps for food sovereignty.
Indigenous Solidarity ToolKit: Use this resource guide compiled by Ari Sahagún and Jay Saper to read more about how you can contribute to justice for Indigenous communities. The guide lists primer readings, more in-depth information, readings on decolonization as it relates to social justice as well as economic justice and compiles active decolonization efforts.
Native Land Map: Use the Native Land map to view a map of Indigenous lands, find the land(s) you occupy for land acknowledgement.
“My Self Discovery Through Food Justice”: A personal testimony on food justice and self discovery from our Assistant Director, Julie Garay!
FRESH New London
Call us: 860-574-9006
Write to us: PO Box 285, New London, CT 06320