In the words of the Kentucky farmer and writer, Wendell Berry, “Every time you make a decision about food, you are farming by proxy,” The Art of the Commonplace, edited by Norman Wirzba (Berkeley, CA, Counterpoint, 2003). This website, knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com is for people who, in Berry’s words, have not “given proxies to the corporations to produce and provide all of their food.”
Knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com promotes local agriculture by encouraging consumers to eat locally grown foods, which are produced in a sustainable and healthy way, or “organically” grown, so as to preserve and support small farm economies and to ensure a healthy environment for future generations. Although the total quantity of calories produced on farms in North America has increased greatly in this era of industrial agriculture, such increase is rooted in unsustainable growing practices reliant upon heavy use of chemical pesticides, herbicides and fungicides, fossil fuels, and soil and tillage practices that result in considerable soil erosion. When certain foods cannot be grown locally, this site promotes tropical foods that are grown in a sustainable way that “cares for people, land, and water” and are “fair-traded.”
Knowwhereyourfoodcomesfrom.com provides directories of (1) farmers’ markets, (2) local farm to table restaurants, (3) CSA (community supported agriculture) farms, (4) local providers of cheese, honey, pasture grazed meat, yogurt and similar foods that can be produced by small farm economies, (5) food co-ops which promote and sell local foods, and (6) providers of fair-traded tropical foods. We also spotlight (1) recipes using fresh, unprocessed foods, readily available from local agricultural sources, (2) gardening tips, (3) reviews of books and literature, films, art and educational exhibits, which promote local, sustainable, organic agriculture, and (4) current “food news.”
This site is also for people who have become aware of the dismal fact that nearly all animals eaten by Americans come from factory farms and who share the realization, so clearly articulated by Jonathan Safran Foer, in his powerful and personal story on becoming an “engaged vegetarian,” Eating Animals (New York, Little Brown and Co., 2009), that the industrial agricultural model is not sustainable for three main reasons: (1) antibiotic overuse in raising 450 billion land animals each year, (2) the sewerage produced by farmed animals in the United States which is “30 times as much waste as the human population- roughly 87,000 pounds of shit per second,” and (3) the “profoundly cruel systems” which produce meat as a product. Industrial agriculture has “externalized the costs” for environmental degradation, human disease and animal suffering, which will haunt American generations to come, unless we begin to know where our food comes from and farm by proxy in a way that supports farming that cares for people, animals, land and water. We encourage visitors to send us your recommendations of farmers’ markets, community supported agriculture (CSA) farms, and farm-to-table restaurants by visiting the contact us page.