At Food-filled Farm Aid, Music Isn’t Only Focus

They are among the most difficult to employee. If the government says our economy works well, when we have five or six percent unemployment, because that’s our policy, at least they can eat.” But according to Ken Blackwell, who is the Senior Fellow for Family Empowerment at the conservative Christian lobbying group, Family Research Council, programs like food stamps prevented people from being truly empowered. Like us on Facebook “I think through empowering others and creating self-sufficiencythere within lies the path to sense of worthiness,” Blackwell told CP. “When I was growing up, there was fundamental belief, that there were times in people’s life when they needed a hand upthere were temporariness to hose programs, where they were structured so that they didn’t breed so that they didn’t breed dependency.” Blackwell also suggested that there was “nothing more Christian” than “not locking people into a permanent dependency on government handouts, but making sure they are participants in their own upliftment and empowerment so that they in fact through the dignity of work and can break from the plantation of big government.” For Cook, though, providing food stamps for the poor had strong Biblical support. “In the whole kind of Biblical frame, God made three provisions for hungry people,” said Cook. “One was the tithe, which was literally a tax, because the government was the same as the religious order, and allowed widows and orphans to eat.” “The second provision was that there would always be Sabbath and jubilee, where every seven years and 50 years, there was land redistribution. This provision was to prevent class of people that were currently hungry,” Cook added. The last, Cook said, was gleaning where corners of the field were deliberately not harvested so poorer members of the community could gather the remainder and use it to feed themselves. “Here, hungry people have access to food as a matter of right, not as a matter of charity,” said Cook, attempting to bring the connection back to contemporary American context. In contrast, Blackwell argued that charity, not policy, would be the driver that kept the poor fed. “America is such a compassionate nation, nothing in history that suggests that churches and communities and our families would let people die of hunger, there is absolutely nothing,” said Blackwell. “We are not lacking in churches in church communities across this nation in making sure that basic human needs are met without creating another government program that establishes rules that have very low expectations for self-discipline,” said Blackwell. “I think we should have an honest debate and discussion in the church community[on a host of social issues] Christians have been in the forefront, without government prodding or dominance.” Cook’s biggest worry though, was that the food stamp cuts would offset the thousands of hours and dollars that these very church ministries spend annually supporting their communities through soup kitchens, bread lines, and food pantries.

Solis) 3. Paul Ryan’s Budget Would Let States Kick People Off Of Food Stamps His budget would turn the food stamp program into a block-grant program for states. It also would encourage states to limit the amount of time that the unemployed can access food stamps and limit food stamp eligibility mostly to workers. (AP Photo/Dinesh Ramde) 4. Paul Ryan’s Budget Would Cut Medicare His budget would cut Medicare spending and turn the program into a subsidized private-insurance program. This would translate into less health care for seniors, according to the Washington Post’s Ezra Klein, as well as more expensive health insurance, according to the left-leaning Center for American Progress. (AP Photo/Jeff Barnard) 5. Paul Ryan’s Budget Would Repeal Obamacare If it stays in effect, Obamacare would reduce the number of uninsured Americans by 27 million by 2023, according the Congressional Budget Office. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File) 6. Paul Ryan’s Budget Would Deny Welfare Benefits To People Who Aren’t Working His budget would limit eligibility for the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) welfare program mostly to people that are working. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) 7.

Jason Greenslate, Food Stamp Surfer, Responds To The Haters

“Farm Aid’s mission is about family farmers, and economic opportunity for family farmers is a really big priority of ours,” said Glenda Yoder, associate director of Farm Aid. “We also support good farming practices and rewarding farmers for those practices. So our Homegrown criteria call for food that is sourced from family farms that meet an ecological standard, and that returns a fair price to the farmer.” Willie Nelson, Neil Young, Dave Matthews and John Mellencamp lead the star-studded lineup this year, along with Jack Johnson, Carlene Carter, Toad the Wet Sprocket and about 10 other artists. The annual concert is the chief moneymaker for the Farm Aid organization Nelson co-founded in 1985 and leads as president. The beneficiaries of the organization’s year-round efforts are always featured prominently at the shows, with a Homegrown Village providing concert-goers a chance to meet local farmers, learn agrarian skills, and eat food from vendors who meet strict criteria set by Farm Aid. This year the village is being set up on the expansive lawns of the state park surrounding the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The action there gets going before the 10-hour concert. The village offers plenty of activities to help people get in touch with their inner farmer. There’s a daylong group potato-stamp art project; workshops on making butter, bacon, cheese, lemon vinegar and llama wool bracelets; and a demonstration of how to grow shiitake mushrooms on logs in your own backyard. The Farm Aid organization has raised more than $43 million since 1985 to support programs that help small family farms, expand the Good Food Movement and promote locally grown food. Farm Aid has made grants of more than $2.5 million in the Northeast during the past 28 years, according to the organization. Roger Allison, who started Patchwork Family Farms in Columbia, Mo., with a Farm Aid grant 20 years ago, said Farm Aid has been a lifesaver for the family farmers in his organization who raise hogs in a natural way, unconfined, without antibiotics. “Thank god for Willie Nelson and Farm Aid,” Allison said at Saratoga after driving 23 hours to bring his truckload of savory meats. “It has really instilled hope in independent family farms all across the United States. We love Willie.

Stepping up to the plate to reduce food waste

This is a terrible waste, not just of the food itself, but of the resources that go into producing that food. Consumer food waste is a developed-world problem. A recent report by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) revealed that 31 to 39 percent of food waste at retail and consumer levels occurs within the middle- and high-income areas of the world, compared to just 4 to 16 percent in developing nations And the further along the food chain a product is wasted, the worse this becomes for the environment, because production, processing, packaging, transport, storage and cooking are likely to have already taken place. Wasted food eats up our agricultural land, drinks up our freshwater and pollutes our atmosphere. And in a world with a rapidly-growing population, it also creates the potential for competition and conflict over valuable resources. UNEP urges a “reduce, reuse, recycle” policy: reducing food waste, wherever possible, at every stage of the supply chain; reusing wasted food by distributing it to the needy, through food banks, for example; and recycling through composting rather than inefficient landfill. None of this needs to be costly. UNEP has identified areas where significant savings can be made, and new economic opportunities can be grasped, in tackling this ongoing issue. Meanwhile, the Natural Resources Defense Council is calling for the United States to catch up to the rest of the world in addressing food waste, starting with an overhaul of food labeling policy in the United States. The date label that is most misinterpreted is the “sell by” date. This date is not intended for the consumer at all, but is a guide from manufacturers to help retailers manage stock rotation. NRDC recommends making “sell-by” dates invisible to consumers. In their place should be a clear, consistent labeling system that provides useful guidance for consumers, and distinguishes between safety-based and quality-based dates.