California Food Systems Alliance Network: “Ag Innovations Network (AIN) supports communities in convening Alliances and provides capacity-building services and tools to support Alliances becoming strong and independent bodies supporting their local communities. Ag Innovations Network provides ongoing support services and tools to the network of Alliances and is also providing capacity building services to a broader range of food and agriculture collaboratives. Our Alliance program is guided by the needs and interests of our Alliances as well as our Producer Advisory Council. The Alliance Program is supported by the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program administered by the California Department of Food and Agriculture and Columbia Foundation, as well as a wide range of local foundations, business and individuals in the Alliance counties.”
Commun-I.T. (Cave Juncation, CA and Orlando, FL): “Commun-IT is a pilot project of COCo (the Centre for Community Organizations) that focuses on the use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) by English-speaking community groups in Quebec. We aim to guide, support, and empower community groups to take advantage of Information and Communications Technology in order to better realize their missions. We work collaboratively to build the capacity of community groups, tech professionals, and the public.”
Compass Green Project (Willits, CA): “Compass Green is a school garden on wheels. It is a fully functional greenhouse built in the back of an 18ft. box truck that grows vegetables, grains, and herbs and is powered by waste vegetable oil. We teach practical farming tools and raise awareness on sustainability through presentations, workshops, and greenhouse tours at schools, and events across the country. We feel that everyone, regardless of demographic and age should have access to sustainability education and delicious healthy food. Our curriculum is focused on Bio-intensive methods of sustainable farming—producing the maximum yields with the minimum amount of resources. With an ever-increasing population and an alarming decrease in farmable soil, we feel it is important to share practical solutions to turn our situation of agricultural scarcity into one of abundance. Compass Green will inspire people across the country to be creative and utilize any and all space they can to grow food.”
Earth People United (Yreka, CA): “Our mission is to connect people to the natural and spiritual world, and to bridge the wisdom of the Ancient Ones with the world of today, so that the diversity of life can flourish for future generations.”
Ecology Action (Willits, CA): “Since 1972 we and our colleagues have been researching and developing GROW BIOINTENSIVE®, a high-yielding, sustainable agricultural system that emphasizes local food production and is based historically on intensive gardening systems.”
Frey Vineyards (Redwood Valley, CA): Biodynamic wines in Mendocino County.
Fully Belly Farm (Guinda, CA): Family style fruit/vegetable production in central California.
Harley Farms (Pescadero, CA): Goat dairy outside of the Bay Area.
Hidden Villa (Palo Alto, CA): “Hidden Villa is a nonprofit educational organization that uses its organic farm, wilderness, and community to teach and provide opportunities to learn about the environment and social justice. Hidden Villa stretches over 1600 acres of open space in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains, about 40 miles south of San Francisco. Our mission is to inspire a just and sustainable future through our programs, land and legacy.”
Homeless Garden Project (Santa Cruz, CA): “Homelessness and joblessness go hand in hand. Lack of job skills, recent work history, social support network and low self esteem all make the transition out of homelessness more difficult. The integrated approach of the Homeless Garden Project’s programs addresses all of these needs.”
Massa Organics (Chico, CA): Organic rice, grain, nut, and pig production in Central California.
Occidental Arts and Ecology Center (Occidental, CA): “OAEC is a non-profit education center, organic demonstration farm and intentional community located in western Sonoma County, 65 miles north of San Francisco, on 80 acres that encompass wildlands of meadows and mixed oak, fir and redwood forests. Much of the Center’s work is in response to the challenge of how to create ecologically, economically and culturally sustainable communities that are democratic and serve as a counterpoint to privatized and corporatized society.”
Outstanding in the Field (based out of Santa Cruz, CA): “Our mission is to re-connect diners to the land and the origins of their food, and to honor the local farmers and food artisans who cultivate it. Outstanding in the Field is a roving culinary adventure – literally a restaurant without walls. Since 1999 we have set the long table at farms or gardens, on mountain tops or in sea caves, on islands or at ranches. Occasionally the table is set indoors: a beautiful refurbished barn, a cool greenhouse or a stately museum. Wherever the location, the consistent theme of each dinner is to honor the people whose good work brings nourishment to the table.”
Petaluma Seed Bank (Petaluma, CA): Heirloom seed and garden store in a beautiful old bank.
Phat Beets Produce (Oakland, CA): “Phat Beets Produce is a food justice collective. The collective was started in North Oakland in 2007 as a guerrilla produce stand in a North Oakland park. We now support two certified, clinic based farmers’ markets, one youth led school farm stand and community nutrition hub, and a youth market garden in partnership with a local hospital obesity prevention program. As a collective, we strive to support social businesses and small farmers and farmers of color.”
Pie Ranch (Pescadero, CA): Food education, farmer training, and regional partnerships between consumer and farmer.
Planting Justice (Oakland, CA): “We bring community members together to create replicable, energy- and water-efficient gardens that demonstrate how it is possible to grow a complete nutritional diet – including the production of fruit, vegetables, fish, eggs, nuts, edible mushrooms, goat milk, herbs, jam, honey, and meat – right where 80% of U.S. residents live: in the city. Whereas edible landscaping and Permaculture have thus far been available only to those who can pay a premium for it, our organizational model enables us to empower economically disadvantaged communities to transform empty lots, paved backyards, and grass lawns into productive organic gardens that serve as living classrooms for community members to practice Urban Permaculture and bio-intensive gardening techniques.”
Rudolf Steiner College (Fair Oaks, CA): An educational facility focusing on the trainings of Steiner including anthroposophy and biodynamics. Also has a beautiful biodynamic farm and vegetable CSA on the premises.
Wishbone Cafe (Petaluma, CA): Cafe that is owned by a farmer! These guys get all of their beef from their own farm, and focus on deliciously regional cuisine. Annnnnd they let us hang out for a super long time and use their WiFi! Woohoo!