Support the Young Armos Farm Incubator – On Tonight’s Rohnert Park City Council Agenda

The Rohnert Park City Council will consider a letter of opposition to the proposed Young Armos Farm Incubator at its meeting tonight at Rohnert Park City Hall, 130 Avram Avenue, at 5 pm. Your comments to the council members in support of the incubator via email or in person could be extremely beneficial for this project, which lies just north of the Rohnert Park city line.

Growing the next generation of farmers, educating and providing extensive means of support for them, has never been more important, nor a greater challenge.

We are faced with an aging population of farmers with few incentives and insufficient support for younger successors to take over, a time when an extraordinary public investment in a new form of social contract with farmers, as both stewards of the land and producers of our food, will be necessary.

The Young Armos project is a significant investment in our sustainable food system for the future.

Writers, farmers and advocates such as Sharon Astyk, Richard Heinberg, Aaron Newton and Bill McKibben have in recent years written extensively of our need to put upwards of 50 million + people back to work as farmers in order to both mitigate climate change in various ways and respond to the end of the age of cheap & easy oil.

Please support this project with a message to the Rohnert Park City Council members.

Here’s a sample letter written by Evan Wiig of the Farmer’s Guild:

Dear Rohnert Park City Council,

We urge your support of the Young-Armos Incubator Farm because it would provide crucial support to beginning farmers in our County, expand the supply of fresh, local, and healthy food in our community, and contribute to a more sustainable local food system. The Incubator Farm is a key component of the Sonoma County Food Action Plan, Sonoma County’s roadmap to a more healthy and sustainable local food system.

With thoughtful planning and partnership with the neighborhood, this project will be a great asset to our community. In fact, research shows that urban farming provides positive social impacts including creating safe places, providing community development, building social capital, and creating cross-generational and cross-cultural opportunities. It provides positive health impacts including increased food access and food security, increased fruit and vegetable consumption, greater food and health literacy, and general well-being. It supports positive economic impacts including job creation, training and business incubation, market expansion for farmers, and increased home values for near-by residents

(“Research: Social, Health, and Economic Impacts of Urban Agriculture,” UC Agriculture and Natural Resources,ucanr.edu/sites/UrbanAg/Research).

With hope for the future of local food and farms,
Evan Wiig
The Farmers Guild

Write to:

gbelforte@rpcity.org                  Mayor Gina Belforte
blumacjazz@aol.com     Vice Mayor Jake Mackenzie
aahanotu@rpcity.org   Councilmember Amy Ahanotu
jcallinan@rpcity.org      Councilmember Joe Callinan
pstafford@rpcity.org    Councilmember Pam Stafford
cityclerk@rpcity.org                                  City Clerk

Refer to Item 9 on the March 8 agenda: “Consideration of Letter Opposing Sonoma County Agricultural and Open Space Preservation District’s Young-Armos Incubator Farm.”

Here’s a link to tonight’s agenda:

http://rpcity.granicus.com/GeneratedAgendaViewer.php?view_id=3&event_id=506

Special thanks to Slow Food Russian River and The Farmer’s Guild for spreading the word.

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