During the pandemic, USDA and state agencies have supported the purchase of food from farmers as a way to reduce food waste and to feed the millions of newly unemployed. Prior to the pandemic, various food banks were already buying food from farmers. In a moderated discussion, this conversation will explore these new and old programs and how farmers are participating in them. Participants will also address the implications of these efforts for USDA nutrition policy and programs.
Tuesday, July 28
Owner, Capay Organic
Barsotti was born on his family farm, Capay Organic, one of the first farms to be organic-certified in Yolo County near Sacramento. There he heads up farm management while being active in growing and maintaining over 40 types (60 varieties) of organic fruit and vegetable crops. He is also co-CEO of Farm Fresh To You, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and home delivery service that provides fresh, local, organic produce to consumers’ doorsteps, delivering organic produce boxes throughout the state of California.
Owner, Inaba Produce Farms
Lon Inaba is part of a third generation of family farmers working the rich soil of the Yakima Valley. The Inaba’s started farming in 1907 when Shukichi Inaba immigrated from Japan, bringing along with him Japanese techniques. Today, Inaba Produce has grown to own 1200 acres of land but many of its sustainable practices can be traced back to their beginning. They have maintained a commitment to their surrounding community by diversifying their crops, allowing them to hire local workers nearly year round.
Food Policy Research Director, Food Justice Lab, WV University
Josh Lohnes is a Phd candidate and one of the longer tenured members of the Lab. Josh has a wealth of knowledge on the broad slate of projects and research that the lab has done over the last few years. That position has Josh excited to see how the Lab’s work can contribute to emerging discourses in Food Justice outside of our home here in the mountains. His thesis work deals particularly with the emergency food system and its reliance on charitable, often faith based initiatives.
Executive Director, Appalachian Sustainable Development
Kathlyn became Executive Director of Appalachian Sustainable Development in 2011 after serving for 5 years as its first Business Operations Manager. She uses her strong background in large national project implementations and her experience with food systems development to identify and implement collaborative, cross-sector opportunities to increase the health of the region and to promote collaborative methodologies and approaches. Kathlyn has served on the VA Governor’s Council on Bridging the Nutritional Divide and serves on numerous steering committees and advisory boards including the Central Appalachian Network and The Appalachian Funders Network.
Public Policy and Advocacy Director, Northwest Harvest
Christina Wong studied social work and policy at the University of Chicago and is a graduate of the University of Washington School of Law. She has over 20 years of experience as an advocate for social justice issues, including her work with survivors of interpersonal violence, disability rights, comprehensive immigration reform, and child welfare. Christina provides information and updates on food and nutrition issues and educates state and federal lawmakers about the needs of our clients in order to strengthen and restore our public safety net. She is also the Chair of the steering committee for the Anti-Hunger & Nutrition Coalition.
Executive Director, EcoFarm and author of Big Hunger
Andy Fisher has been a leading force in the food security and food justice movement in the US for the past 25 years. He co-founded and led the primary American food systems alliance, the Community Food Security Coalition, for 17 years. During that time, he led campaigns to gain passage of federal legislation that has brought over $200 million to community groups nationwide for food sovereignty and farm to school projects.
The live session is free, and will be made available to the public after the webinar. Please consider making a donation to support our work.