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Farmers Markets Exploding

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In spite of exponential growth, farmers markets still only account for a tiny proportion of U.S. food economy.

Over at Grist, Bonnie Azab Powell reports that farmers markets are growing like weeds all over the United States. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, there are 6,132 farmers markets in the United States, a 16% increase from last year and a 214% increase from 2000. California leads the charge with 580 markets, followed by New York, Illinois, and Michigan. However, only one sixth of......read more

Chicago Food Deserts Down 40 Percent

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City sees increasing access to fresh food, but lots of work still needed

With First Lady Michelle Obama in Chicago to address the city's food desert problem, a report [PDF] released this week shows that the amount of people without easy access to fresh, healthy food is down 40 percent over the last five years. Still, an estimated 384,000 Chicagoans -- mostly African-Americans, 124,000 of which are children -- live in food desert neighbourhoods. There is no......read more

Original Series: Young Farmers

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An up-close look at the kids that are shaping our sustainable food future, presented by Lockerz and SHFT

In case you haven't noticed, there's a giant shift taking place in American food culture. You can see it in the rise in farmers' markets and the exploding popularity of home gardening. And guess who's leading the charge? Kids. That's right, the youth of today are shaping our sustainable food future.  Young Farmers, a documentary web series presented by Lockerz and SHFT, explores......read more

Young Farmers: The Series

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The food revolution is here, and young people are leading the charge

Lockerz and SHFT present Young Farmers, an original web series exploring the growth of 'farm-to-table' values among young people today. In the videos, we visit with 10 budding gardeners, taking a personal look at their lives and the things they grow....read more

Young Farmers: Edgar

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A young Angeleno transforms his passion for plants into a job

For our final episode of Young Farmers, allow us to introduce you to Edgar, a young Angeleno who extended his passion for plants into a job that's as rewarding as any we've ever heard of: converting empty lots into community gardens. Edgar, we learn, is a man who was born to plant; when  his mom was pregnant with him, she craved eating dirt. Yes, dirt. And so Edgar's fate was sealed. Now,......read more

Young Farmers: Morgan

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In the first episode of Young Farmers, Morgan shows off her impressive urban farm plot

Young Farmers, the latest original web series from SHFT and Lockerz, explores the growth of 'farm-to-table' values among young people today. In the first episode, we visit with Morgan and her abundant urban farm plot. Morgan's mindset about food was shifted by her experience living in France, where knowing where your food comes from -- and how it was raised -- is a normal part of life.......read more

Young Farmers: Corbett

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A budding green thumb skates to the community garden to man his plot--and grab an after-school snack

Corbett, our newest Young Farmers subject, comes by his interest in gardening honestly. Raised until the age of six on a farm near Lake Tahoe, the teen green thumb was exposed to the practice of growing food at an early age. Now living in Los Angeles, he tends to a community farm plot right off the freeway that produces everything from corn and peppers to zucchini and tomato. Check out......read more

Young Farmers: Katie

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Under Katie's guidance, a high school garden brings together students of all stripes

We're big fans of school gardens around here. They're a great way to use the schoolyard as a classroom and teach students valuable concepts about food and agriculture. Katie, our latest Young Farmers subject, leads a gardening program at an extension high school in Claremont, California, where at-risk students get a chance to grow their own veggies. By literally getting their hands dirty,......read more

Young Farmers: Aileen

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Aileen, a talented cellist, locates the links between music and gardening

Is gardening an art form? Well, it's a form of creation, so it should be. The difference between growing food and, say, playing in a symphony, is that a gardener's collaborator is nature itself. In this episode of Young Farmers, we meet Aileen, a high school cellist who likens gardening to music. You work hard at both, and in both cases, something eventually clicks, and the next thing you know......read more

Young Farmers: Dwight

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At the campus garden, Dwight explains the art of composting

According to Dwight, a graduating college student and ex-baseball star, composting is just the same as making cookies. Follow the recipe, adding just the right amount of worms, food scraps and hay, then let the bacteria go to work, and the ingredients form themselves into a delicious compost. In this episode of Young Farmers, we follow Dwight to the campus garden, where he informs us how to make......read more

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