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E-M:/ LISTENING SESSION FOR FARM BILL 07



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Enviro-Mich message from Cynthia Price <skyprice@gmail.com>
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Pasted below is an invitation to a listening session for a
Kellogg-funded initiative to allow citizen input to the 2007 Farm Bill
rewrite. This listening session, Dec. 8 in Benton Harbor, is sponsored
by the Community Food Security Coalition (CFSC) and the National
Family Farm Coalition, and is part of the Healthy Food & Communities
"prong" of the initiative.

There is a national "prong" having to do directly with stewardship,
environmental protection, and conservation practice. It's spearheaded
by Environmental Defense and has, for example, strong representation
from Sierra Club. However, there are no plans currently for them to
hold a listening session anywhere near Michigan. So, as you can see
from the wording below, they will take input on those topics as well
at this session.

There is a draft "blueprint" or platform that CFSC has put out -- in
this case, specifically on the Healthy Food & Communities section --
which they suggest reading before making comments. I can forward that
at your request. I believe there will be a way to comment directly
through e-mail or the initiative's web site if you can't make this
session. Either way, I'd be happy to send you the approximately 100 KB
file.

Last time I pasted something in and sent it to E-Mich I had problems
with it but I did send a test of this to myself and it worked -- so I
have my fingers crossed.

Cynthia Price
Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems Council


How the Next Farm Bill can Strengthen our Farm and Food System
Join us for a Listening and Idea-Generating Session
Thursday, December 8, 2005
   10:00 am-1:00 pm
(a light lunch will be provided at the end of the session)
MSU South West Michigan Research and Extension Center (SWMREC)**
1791 Hillandale Road
Benton Harbor, Michigan
                   Bring your ideas about how public policy can best:
·         Support fair access to healthy, affordable, and locally
produced food.
·         Promote new opportunities for farmers to sell their goods to
schools, universities, hospitals, corporations, and all public
institutions.
·        Protect the land, environment, and other food-producing
natural resources.
·         Rebuild and restore regional food and agriculture systems to
enhance the economic livelihoods of family farms and rural
communities.
   The Community Food Security Coalition, a national non-profit
organization, is holding listening sessions over the next few months
across the United States to hear the views of farmers, consumers,
young people, senior citizens, and others who wish to secure a
livelihood from agriculture or to purchase healthy and affordable
food. Your opinions and contributions will guide and focus a "policy
blueprint" on Healthy Foods and Communities.
   The Farm Bill, federal legislation that generally gets rewritten
every 5 years, has ten titles that affect everything from commodity
payments to conservation measures, nutrition programs, credit and
rural development, trade, forestry, energy, and research.
   U.S. 6th District Representative Fred Upton has been invited, to
recognize his leadership on Farm to Cafeteria legislation (which
addresses many of the goals of the session).
Sponsored by: Benton Harbor Fruit Market, Community Food Security
Coalition, and the National Family Farm Coalition
RSVP and for more information: Rebecca Kessinger, National Family Farm
Coalition; 269-461-4177; 269-208-4070
**Directions to the meeting from Interstate 94:
1.   Exit from I-94 at the US-31 S / NAPIER AVE  (EXIT 30)
2.   Turn LEFT onto US-31 / E NAPIER AVE, go 2.6 miles on E NAPIER AVE
3.   Turn RIGHT onto HILLANDALE RD, 1791 Hillandale will be on your
left, at the top of the hill. After you turn into the driveway, go to
the building on the right.

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