Herb, who I first heard at the Future of Foods for the Kootenays Conference in Nelson in the Fall of 2007 ditched the PowerPoint and went with an interactive format “presentation” to a standing room only crowd. Coming from the states just as the Agricultural Land Reserve legislation was coming into effect, (mid 70’s). The mid 70’s were a hothouse of innovation in habitat, patterns of settlement, energy conservation, then the eighties came along and all this work dropped right off. Herb was involved in co-operative housing and intentional communities around farmland in the lower mainland, as well as running a ten acre farm just out of Vancouver that was producing $100,000 an acre high value produce – from this grew Farm Folk – City Folk, which herb was involved with until about ten years ago.
Herb asks if anyone is feeling depressed after Claire’s previous presentation, when only a few put up their hands, he says, “good, because it is much worse than all of that”. Local food is at an absolute critical state – because of the industrialized state of the food system.
- It is not organic vs conventional – for the history of the world it has only been organic
- How dare Monsanto arrogantly assume that we need to be saved by their technology and GMO crops
- Small farmers have to be registered and jump through so many hoops yet the “big” companies are above the law – they create the law.
- California was the “breadbasket” only because of free water and cheap oil
- Economic system is all backwards – not resilient, not working.
- Based on corporate greed and false money
- Poor food goes to poor people – (food banks receiving donations from large business).
- Local economies based on local food systems.
- A movement needs people behind it, when it has people then the politicians will move to the movement.
Herb always provides a light hearted look at the serious issues of food security and sustainable agriculture.