July 2011 Agriculture Collaborative Meeting

On the Road with UNM’s Summer Foodshed Field School

UNM Foodshed Field School students were given the opportunity to showcase their media projects at this month’s Mid Region Council of Governments (MRCOG) Agriculture Collaborative Meeting. Dr. Bruce Milne, Director of the UNM Sustainability Studies Program, provided a brief overview of the field school to the audience of about 40 community members, and then played the student media pieces.

Six of the fourteen field school students were able to present at today’s meeting. First was Kimberly Barnett’s piece, which featured student voices describing their favorite parts of the field school, and provided a great synopsis of the course. Next, Valerie Gurule presented a short piece on acequias. Amy Jones’ piece followed, with an original take on the concept of ayuda mutua, or mutual aid, as seen in various agricultural communities across the state. Brittany Herrera presented a short piece on Curandera Laura Alonso, which provided a great segue into Layla Wall’s piece about optimizing health and nutrition by eating traditional foods within our foodshed. Tiana Baca-Bosiljevac wrapped up the media presentations with a “green hero” piece on Joe Garcia, Outreach Director of La Plazita Gardens in the South Valley. Strong work, ladies!

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The student media pieces were well received by audience. During the panel discussion that followed, students received questions about:

  1. The opportunities and barriers apparent in our state’s current food system
  2. If the students’ personal eating habits changed during the course of the field school
  3. How students will continue their work on campus over the upcoming semesters
  4. How we can work to reach the goal of 10% local food consumption in the state
  5. How to deal with the issue of the high cost of local food in a global marketplace where food prices are artificially low due to subsidies and unfair labor practices
  6. Potential career paths students have identified in the local foodshed
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