Sustainability in Agriculture

Farm to Table. Locally Grown. Sustainably Made.

These buzzwords are becoming more than marketing phrases – they are becoming the demands of consumers. Consumers understand now more than ever that climate change isn’t a probability anymore; it’s a reality – and one that needs addressing right now.

 The wind turbine powers the irrigation system at Scheufler Farms

The wind turbine powers the irrigation system at Scheufler Farms

With this sobering fact comes an increased awareness of where food and goods are sourced and how they are grown and made.

Thus far, this concept has shared a relatively small niche, with organic only sharing a small space next to conventionally grown vegetables. Farmers’ markets have traditionally been a quaint, fun place to take the family Saturday morning.

 Tomatoes from the garden, prepping for salsa!

Tomatoes from the garden, prepping for salsa!

 The finished product of Scheufler salsa

The finished product of Scheufler salsa

All of this is changing, though. Locally grown veggies and proteins appear on the menu of upscale restaurants and whole stores are dedicated to selling organic products.

The problem with most of these buzzwords is they lack clear definition. What exactly does “local” mean, anyway? In the city? The state? The country? And what really is “sustainable” – and sustainable for who? The people working in the fields? Who own the land? Who live downstream from the farmland?

 Precision agriculture in large-scale farming

Precision agriculture in large-scale farming

There are many opinions and interpretations of the correct answers to these questions, though I suspect nobody quite has the correct answer. Keep an eye out for posts featuring a "Sustainability Spotlight" - this is a post featuring an interview with an individual farmer about their views on sustainability in agriculture. I have the great pleasure of knowing personally farmers across the spectrum of "sustainability" definitions who practice a wide variety of agriculture techniques.

I am excited to share stories of how different people define sustainability and what each person is doing to make the Earth better for the next generation of farmers.

The answer to the question about sustainable living is a big one. It’s going to take lots of ideas and innovation. Thanks for joining me on this journey.

With love from Peas and Hoppiness.