Sacramento’s urban farm movement thriving

SN&R’s Sena Christian wrote about Soil Born Farms and the local urban farm movement in SN&R’s “Food Revolution” cover story on May 29, 2008.

We’ve been thrilled to see the urban farm movement thriving lately in the Sacramento Valley. Our region—with its nutrient-rich soil, warm climate and plentiful water—seems a perfect place for this burgeoning “grow local/eat local” movement to flourish and replicate.

We need it to do so.

In this time of global climate crisis, rising food prices and increased awareness of “food miles” (i.e. how much energy it takes to get your food to you), the notion that we should support local farms and eat healthful, locally grown foods whenever possible has finally begun to catch on.

That’s where Soil Born Farms comes in.

The nonprofit, which opened its first urban farm in north Sacramento in 2000, recently planted the first seeds at its new 25-acre farm on the American River Ranch. Among other things, Soil Born is dedicated to getting their bounty out to underserved Sacramentans through farmers’ markets and other means.

Recent word that local mega-developer Angelo Tsakopoulos may support this movement is extremely encouraging, since he and his partners own a whopping 40,000 acres in the region. According to The Sacramento Bee, Tsakopoulos recently took Soil Born’s Shawn Harrison on a tour of his properties, so the pair could consider potential sites for future urban farms.

Ultimately, it’s Harrison’s goal to have urban farms popping up all around our region, to do nothing less than redefine how our region feeds itself. Now that’s a seed worth planting.