2017 was quite a year! Here are some highlights:
On September 30, Seed the Commons held the first counter-celebration to World School Milk Day. Since the launch of World School Milk Day in 2000, this was the first time that an event was held to oppose it or to highlight the problematic nature of school milk programs. It was also the launch of our campaign to #GetMilkOut of San Francisco school meals, a powerful project to oppose the control of Big Ag over what we eat, starting in our own city. Read more.
Food Justice Education
Seed the Commons continued to build awareness around the injustices inherent in our corporate-dominated food system and about the central role of food systems in social and environmental issues. I spoke about the need for radical food activism at events such as the Farmed Animal Conference: Food Justice For All, San Jose’s first VegFest and the POC: Food Justice, Advocacy and Animal Rights Conference, where Seed the Commons was honored as the recipient of the People’s Award.
For Earth Day, we organized one of the thirty-five #LandRightsNow mobilizations that took place in twenty-seven countries. Ours was the only event on the West Coast and it featured a discussion and video screening on indigenous and community land rights. For the 2nd year in a row, we celebrated Cesar Chavez Day by offering a vegan tamale and food justice workshop, this time in partnership with the non-profit cooking school 18 Reasons. Building awareness goes hand in hand with building connections, and we look forward to many more fruitful collaborations in 2018.
Veganic Growing and Advocacy
Reclaiming food systems in the hands of the people should not come at the expense of non-human animals. Seed the Commons counters the myth, currently promoted by food and environmental movements, that animal exploitation is a necessary component of small-scale, sustainable farming.
Last year, we offered a series of veganic gardening workshops, which we will offer again in 2018. We continued to improve our resource center Veganic World, adding more profiles of veganic farmers. I spoke about building a veganic movement at a variety of events, and at the international environmental conference Soil Not Oil, Seed the Commons founders joined two veganic farmers for a panel on veganic farming and decolonization. We also started a small veganic plot in a community garden in San Francisco, and we laid the groundwork for a veganic greenhouse and local food resiliency hub in East Palo Alto.
People’s Harvest Forum
In December, we held our third annual People’s Harvest Forum, where all of this comes together. Attendees gathered for a sunny weekend of great food, great connections, and a veritable syllabus on the state of our food system and how to transform it. Speakers included veganic growers from Oregon, Kentucky, California and Illinois (pictured l-r), and provided invaluable insights on next steps we can all take to build a people's food system and a better world. Photos and videos will be shared soon on social media.
This year, we will build on our successes and grow our campaigns, and we invite you to get involved! We are currently looking for volunteers for all of our programs.
To volunteer, please email us with a few words about your interests, skills and availability.
To support our work, please donate here. We do a lot with very little resources, so even the smallest donation makes a big difference.
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Wishing you a wonderful 2018,