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    Affordable and Organic? No way…or is there?

    February 9, 2011 •  no comments.

     •  Blog, News

    What if obesity wasn’t entirely your fault? What if our food has become so void of nutrition that we are simply left starved for vitamins and minerals all the time setting up the constant need to eat? While our food is loaded with calories, it’s not loaded with nutritional content which is what our bodies crave. So are we stuffed and starved?

    With the abundance of cheap food flowing through the food system, real food looks downright expensive, which leads many of us to claim that we can’t afford it. But what if we could afford to eat healthy all the time? What if we could get fresh produce into our school lunch programs?

    If it were as simple as starting a home town farm, would you do it?

    Meet Dan Gibbs, the CEO of Home Town Farms, who contributed this article to the AllergyKids Foundation.

    Read on, get inspired and let’s create the changes we want to see in our food system!

    With increasing numbers of child obesity, rising food costs and over all bad economy, it is not easy for Parents or Schools to provide affordable nutritious meals.

    The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) said a record 40 million Americans, or 1 in 8, may not be able to eat without government assistance. Another big issue is that the majority of produce we are buying is less nutritious than it was in the past. There are two reasons for this, first, most of the nutrients that vegetables and berries have come in the last two weeks of ripening on the vine. In our current system we pick our produce weeks early so that it can ripen on the way to market. The second reason is the moment the produce is harvested it starts to lose nutrients. When you combine picking produce early with the loss of nutrients while transporting the produce to market, you get the negative effect that people must consume more today than they needed to in the past to acquire the same amount of nutrients.

    Home Town Farms has a real solution that can solve most of these problems plus offer additional benefits. We moved the farm back into the city and urban areas using vertical Hydro-Organic growing systems. This is a fancy way of saying controlled growing in living soil. We will build these farms in the center of each community with direct sales to the people. The bottom line is we can offer fresh, locally grown vine ripened organic vegetables and berries at conventional non-organic prices. This will allow every family in America access to affordable “Whole Foods” quality produce at low prices.

    How Do We Help Our Schools and Improve the Quality of Food they feed our KIDS?

    First of all this is not the schools fault!! They are given an unhealthy/low budget and with a small budget come few choices and lower quality food. Now our kids are showing us the unhealthy effect with the fastest increasing rate of child obesity in our history. We have been stuck in an old system that makes it extremely difficult for budgets to go up and food prices to go down; so we changed the system!

    We have specifically designed a model that can help School Districts across the country provide more nutritious better tasting locally grown vegetables and berries to our kids while reducing their food costs and provide a substantial amount of cash that the schools can use any way they see fit. This program does not require any investment or resources from the school other than land. Instead of school districts having to beg or sell their souls for money to companies who supply sweets and other unhealthy food to our kids, they can take control of their future. The Schools can now in a positive way raise the much needed cash and at the same time provide more nutritious food for the kids, a win for everyone!

    Schools and Communities can benefit from commercial vertical organic urban farming, see the list below for some of the benefits

    Benefits to the Community

    Home Town Farms’ farming methods offer many benefits to the communities it serves:

    • Lower costs means that all consumers can afford locally grown organic produce.
    • Higher food nutrient content since produce is vine ripened.
    • Local sustainable jobs; that stay local.
    • Local supply of food in case of food shortages or disruption in the food supply.
    • No chemicals in your food by eliminating the use of herbicides and pesticides.
    • Less processing and handling increases food safety.

    Benefits for the Environment

    The growing technologies we use work above ground and are not dependent on existing ground soil, we use our own living soils. Compared to conventional farming methods, the growing systems that Home Town Farms use generate remarkable environmental benefits.

    • 85% less water required.
    • 90% less fuel consumption.
    • 90% less carbon footprint because of reduced fuel consumption.
    • 80% less fertilizer consumed.
    • 70% less land required.

    Home Town Farms and commercial vertical organic urban farming is not your usual “Clean” or “Green” company or industry but it saves more natural resources and reduces more pollution than any other industry in this country. It also provides additional benefits such as local jobs, improved food quality, reduction in harmful pesticides and herbicides, food security and affordable locally grown organic produce.

    We use existing proven equipment and methods that are combined in a new way that is very profitable which will allow commercial vertical organic urban farming to flourish and spread across this country with out subsides. Everyone and the environment win!!

    If you want to find out more about Home Town Farms or commercial vertical organic urban farming go to www.hometownfarms.com

    Eat Healthy

    Dan Gibbs
    Home Town Farms

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