Farming for the Future
Achieving a sustainable food system is critical to ensuring an abundant and healthy food supply for generations to come. While Maryland boasts a richness and diversity of sustainable farms, they make up a minority of agricultural operations in our state.
Maryland families want healthy, delicious, affordable local food, grown responsibly. Installing a fair system – one that rewards good stewardship and sustainable practices – is the best way to achieve this for Maryland’s future.
- Fair Farms considers sustainable farming to be the production of agricultural products in a way that:
- preserves the environment on the farm and beyond;
- enriches the lives of farmers, their communities, and the population as a whole; and
- restores the health and welfare of farmed animals.
Sustainability in the Larger Food System
- Sustainable agriculture doesn’t stop at the farm gate—it’s part of a larger sustainable food system. Sustainable food distribution systems rely on local or regional networks of sustainable farms. Products are usually sold directly to consumers through farmers’ markets, consumer-supported agriculture, farm shares, and co-ops, or directly to restaurants, food services, and food hubs.
- To successfully pursue sustainability, every farmer needs access to facilities and equipment to harvest, store, process, and sell their products in a fair and efficient way.
- Visionary farmers who practice sustainable farming protect their waterways from runoff and erosion, care for their animals, raise food without harmful chemicals, and make the food available at local farmers’ markets.
- They use techniques like regenerative farming, which produces healthy food while preserving or restoring the health of the soil. By using crop or livestock rotation, composting and other techniques, farmers can maintain a sustainable, pesticide-free environment on their farms.
Fair Farms celebrates farmers and businesses – small and large – that adopt visionary farm practices. Properly managing farmland means investing in practices and policies to preserve and restore farmland for the use, education, and enjoyment of future generations.
- Thank you for making these legislative wins possible!In order to prevent the further spread of COVID-19, the Maryland General Assembly decided to adjourn a few weeks early, on March 18th. We’re thankful that our elected officials acted quickly to protect public health, while also accomplishing a tremendous amount in a short period of time. Thanks to their steadfastness, and your vocal advocacy, ...
- Help Maryland Farmers Fight Climate ChangeTake Action to support the creation of the Maryland Healthy Soils Grant Program (HB1176)! This program would make grants available for voluntary projects that increase carbon sequestration and greenhouse gas emission reductions on farms throughout Maryland. The program would promote dozens of wide-ranging practices that are known to build soil health and sequester carbon—ensuring that farmers ...
- Support Farm to Institution Initiatives in MarylandWith your help, last year Maryland created the Maryland Food for Maryland Institutions Study Group whose goal has been to increase the amount of locally grown food procured by Maryland institutions, providing more market opportunities for our local farming community. Out of that diverse network of stakeholders, came the idea to establish the two important ...
- Media Alert: Little Sesame Launches Second Annual Little Seedlings InitiativeFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Maddy Beckwith email@example.com (202) 302-0375 MEDIA ALERT: Little Sesame and National Young Farmers Coalition Come Together to Support Local Farmers Washington, D.C. (February 12, 2020) At Little Sesame, we are committed to building meals with the highest quality, responsibly sourced ingredients. The ingredients we choose don’t just make delicious food, they support farmers doing things the right way. While ...
- Take Action: Expand Maryland’s Cost-Share ProgramTake Action Now to support the expansion of the Maryland Agriculture Water Quality Cost-Share (MACS) Program (HB687/SB597)! Maryland spends approximately $30 million per year for conservation measures on farms. About 80% of these funds pay for “annual” management practices while payments for cost-effective, longer term practices like pastures and forest buffers are drastically reduced. Farmers interested ...