What is Farm Aid?
25 years of great music, supporting farmers, and strengthening America
Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp organized the first concert in 1985 to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001. They have raised more than $37 million to promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture. It is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to keep family farmers on their land. There mission is as follows:
Promoting food from family farms is part of their mission. They stage America’s longest running annual concert event which unites farmers, artists, consumers and concerned citizens to build a powerful movement for good food from family farms. Throughout the year it promotes food from family farms through inspiring and informative TV, radio, mail and web campaigns.
The Good Food Movement is growing the number of Americans reaching for and demanding family farm-identified, local, organic or humanely-raised food. Their grants build connections between farmers and consumers creating new markets for family farmers.
Helping farmers thrive is another part of their mission, through 1-800-FARM-AID begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 1-800-FARM-AID end_of_the_skype_highlighting and www.farmaid.org, and staffers refer farmers to an extensive network of family farm organizations across the country. The referrals support farmers seeking to make transitions to more sustainable and profitable farming practices, and also provide immediate and effective support services to farm families in crisis. They also make grants to farms and rural service organizations to strengthen this network of resources for farmers.
Taking action to change the system, as they work with and provide grants to local, regional and national organizations to promote fair farm policies and grassroots organizing campaigns to defend and bolster family farm centered agriculture. By strengthening the voices of family farmers themselves, they stand up for the most resourceful, heroic American, the family farmers who truly work the land.
Why family farmers need help
Family farmers in the United States are under extreme economic pressure year in and year out as thousands are forced off their land each and every year. This crisis in OUR farm country is threatening the very existence of the American family farm. As these farms are forced out by large, factory farms, the quality of our food, health, our environment and our food security is in danger.
Why these farmers are important
Independent family farmers are the pillars of their communities. They grow high quality food, are active in civic life, and are essential to the economic vitality of both their hometowns and of the nation, as well as our stomachs. As stewards of the land, these farmers work to protect the soil, air, water, and biodiversity in addition to producing high-quality, healthy food for everyone at a reasonable price.
You can look them up on their Facebook Site as well as Twitter for continuous updates. If you can’t attend or won’t be attending this year, you can show your support by getting gear or donating to the cause at theFarm Aid Dot Org Web Site. This is a good cause and is right in line with our goals to achieve better food and better farming practices. Go Farm Aid 2010 25!