Tag Archives: local food

Reviving Neighborhoods with Aquaponics


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At Sustainable America, we are focused on ways to double or triple the amount of local food produced on urban farms and in what are known as “controlled environment agriculture” efforts, which include hydroponics, aquaponics and, more recently, aeroponics. We see lots of opportunities to develop the market for CEA systems in the thousands of abandoned factory buildings, warehouses, shopping malls and school buildings across the country.

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How to Eat Local in Winter (Infographic)

In many parts of the country, locally available fresh produce is strictly limited by the seasons. But despite the dearth of fresh produce in winter, you can still round out your diet with locally sourced foods like the 10 listed in our infographic below. You might have to do a little research to find them all in your area, but your effort will be deliciously rewarded.

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6 Ways to Green Your Super Bowl

Growlers of beer

This year’s Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey is already being celebrated as the greenest Super Bowl in the league’s history. Beyond the lucky few that will watch the event live and see these initiatives underway in person, the vast majority of Super Bowl viewers (over 100 million worldwide!) will watch and celebrate at home. Wondering what you can do to make this your greenest Super Bowl ever? Here are six easy tips for greening your Super Bowl at home.

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8 Food and Fuel Trends We Love

peppers, green beans, potatoes at a farmers market

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‘Tis the season for trend lists as everyone tries to predict the next big thing for the year ahead. We’ve culled through the lists to compile our own tally of trends that relate to the issues Sustainable America supports: sustainable food and fuel. The good news is that finding encouraging trend predictions was easy—now let’s work together to make them come true!

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The Sustainable America 2013 Gift Guide

Wrapped present

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If you’re still shopping for holiday gifts (and who isn’t), we’ve put together a great collection of gift ideas that will help anyone on your list live the sustainable lifestyle. We’ve got ideas for locavores, cooks, bike commuters, and anyone who likes to save money on gas (um, that’s everyone, right?)—as well as a few last-minute gifts you can whip up in your kitchen in a pinch.

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Desperately Seeking (Black-Eyed) Susan

Gardeners plant a garden on land they found through Shared Earth

Gardeners plant a garden on land they found through Shared Earth.

Did you know there are 10 million acres of front and back yards in America—enough to produce 43.5 million tons of food—but only 35 percent of U.S. households grew food in 2012? Growing where you are gives people the power to eat healthier and revitalize their communities, but many gardeners lack the land they need, and those with the land don’t always know what to do with it.

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New Meaning for “Airplane Food”

Farmers market at JetBlue Terminal at JFK airport

A pop-up farmers market at the JetBlue terminal at New York's JFK airport. Photo: JetBlue

While rushing to board your next flight, you might not expect farmers’ markets and urban farms among the airport’s fast food joints, mani-pedi stations, and newsstands. At four U.S. airports, however, travelers are encountering exactly that. Check out how the local food movement has arrived at airline terminals in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

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INFOGRAPHIC: Grow Where You Are

After our recent interview with Dan Susman about Growing Cities, his new documentary about urban farming, we were inspired to translate the movie’s core message—”Grow where you are!”—into a digestible guide. Whether it’s planting a windowsill garden, joining a community garden or even building a backyard chicken coop, there are numerous ways to move from relying on factory farms to growing food for yourself and your community, even in a big city.

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Urban Farming Goes Multi-Locational

One of the critical hurdles that farmers in urban areas face is access to affordable land for growing food. The concept of a multi-locational or decentralized farm is an elegant solution to growing food in diverse urban and suburban settings. It seems that more and more farms are using the multi-locational model. We found quite a few successful operations in Canada in particular.

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Farmers: Coming to an Office Near You

workplace csas

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For people who work late hours and have families to manage or long commutes, finding the time to shop at farmer’s markets or pick up a CSA box is often not feasible. So a lot of people who otherwise would love to have easy access to local fresh food get left out of the equation. A growing number of organizations are trying to bridge this gap by bringing CSAs directly to workplaces, which is a boon to all involved: workers, employers, and local farmers.

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By the Numbers

Currently 50 million households suffer from food insecurity, meaning that family members cannot always meet their basic food needs.

10 million people a year could be fed through the recovery of just one-fifth of food waste.

Only 2% of food waste is composted or otherwise recycled—62% of paper is recycled.

Consumers throw out about 40% of the fresh and frozen fish they buy.

The U.S. produced 208 pounds of meat per person in 2009—60% more than Europe.

Low income commuters spend a much higher proportion of their wages on gas—8.6% versus 2.1% at $4 per gallon.

Food prices rose 35-40 percentage points between 2002–2008.

Americans consume 25% of the world’s produced oil, but our nation holds less than 3% of the world’s proven oil reserves.

The International Energy Agency says greenhouse gas emissions rose 3.2% last year, with a 9.3% increase in China offsetting declines in the US and EU.

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