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Children and food

  • Subject: [cg] Children and food
  • From: "John Verin" jverin@pennhort.org
  • Date: Mon, 21 Oct 2002 09:46:38 -0400
  • Content-class: urn:content-classes:message
  • Thread-index: AcJ5COoda3sGw+TVEdaKlQDgKSctRw==
  • Thread-topic: Children and food

Hi folks!
While flipping through Michael Ableman's wonderful book, "On Good Land; The Autobiography of and Urban Farm," I found this page written by his son, Aaron. Aaron grew up on the farm, 12 acres wholly surrounded by housing and shopping development. It is the last natural land in an area that used to be all farms. This book is delightful reading, and provides essential perspectives on food, land and our culture. It can be bought at your locally-owned bookstore (yes, I discourage the patronizing of corporate, warehouse bookstores).

So here is Aaron's food for thought. Share it with young people you know, perhaps in garden or over a delicious, home-cooked meal. Please do your share to reconnect the young of our society to Earth and the food it provides us. Support a farmer, stop farmland development, and grow some of your own. Bon appetit!

From The Farmer's Son, by Aaron Ableman

"At this time in America, there are few kids growing up on farms, especially urban farms. Or at least I don't know of too many. I am one of those 'few' and I felt it might be a good idea  to write about my childhood growing up at Fairview Gardens.
	I think the best thing to talk about is food. While peaches were my very first food, and probably my favorite, there have also been cherimoyas, avocados, cucumbers, guavas, tomatoes, melons, mandarin oranges, and on and on. Each one of these foods didn't just have an effect on my body, but on my mind and on my soul as well. Most of my friends probably can't relate to the last part; they haven't had the experience of growing food, living with it, and tending it.
	Most kids my age only know food from the shelf of a store; they don't understand the difficulties and joys of relying on your hands and the earth for a good meal each day. Although it may seem odd, I feel very close to the fresh food from the farm. I guess like anything else, when you are a part of the process it grows on you. I think that kids who have a close connection to their food, who understand where it came from or took part in the process of growing or preparing it, have an easier time understanding other things as well."

Paco John Verin
City Wide Coordinator - Philadelphia Green
The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society
100 North 20th Street, 5th floor
Philadelphia, PA  19103-1495
Phone: 215-988-8885; Fax 215-988-8810

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