I guess I’ve been searching for inspiration lately. I found some today while reading John Ikerd’s book Small Farms are Real Farms.
“Small farms allow people to fit their uniqueness to their ecological niche and to the unique tastes and preferences of consumers. Small farms are management intensive–they allow farmers to rely more on themselves and less on borrowed capital and rented land. [Hmmm..we’re still trying to figure that one out.] Intensive management allows farmers to break away from chronic crisis–to get off the treadmill of larger and fewer which requires the survivors to run faster and faster just to stay in the same place. Small farms can be real farms–where farmers have the time and the money to take care of their families, [again, trying to figure that one out..] their land, and their communities. Small farms allow people to live in harmony again, with themselves, their neighbors, and the things of nature. Small farms can be farmed sustainably, thus benefiting farm families, rural communities, the natural environment, and society in general.
There is a better way to farm and a better way to live. It’s time for a revolution in American agriculture. The time for quietness has passed.
Sustainability requires diversity, flexibility, site specificity, and decentralized decision making. Farms of the future must be as small as the ecological niches to which they must conform to be in harmony with the diversity of nature. Farms of the future must be as small as the market niches to which they must conform to be in harmony with the diversity of human nature. The only farms with a future will be farms that are sustainable–that are economically viable, ecologically sound, and socially responsible. The inevitability of the industrialization of agriculture is a lie. Sustainable small farms are better alternatives than getting bigger, giving in, or getting out. The American public must be told the truth. It’s time for a small farm revolution in America. The time for quietness has passed.”
-John Ikerd 1999
How’s that for inspiration?