Why Raincross Farms?
Raincross Farms’ Activities Help to:
- Increase economic development in our region’s farm and food sector
- Create jobs in the farm and food economy
- Improve access to healthy local food for all of our citizenry
How Do We Do This?
- By improving job skills and life skills in the context of farming
- By protecting and expanding the acreage of productive agricultural lands
- By training a new generation of farmers through our Growing Skills program
- By improving the viability of farm and food businesses
- By increasing local food availability and affordability through multiple channels
- By increasing consumer engagement and demand for local food
Some Foods Statistics You May Not Know
According to the Sierra Nevada Research Institute, UC Merced, “As much as 90 percent of Americans could eat food grown within 100 miles of their home… More than 80 percent of mouths could be fed with food grown within 50 miles.”
Unfortunately, in our region, only 2% of the food we eat is currently locally sourced. (Los Angeles Food Policy Council, Overview of Food System Issues)
According to the USDA;
- The number of American Farmers has declined from over 6 million in 1910 to 2 million today.
- For each new farmer under the age of 35, there are 6 over the age of 65.
- The average age of a farmer today is 57 years old.
- The USDA expects more than 500,000 farmers to retire in the next 20 years.
- Growers selling locally create 13 full time jobs per $1M sold compared to only 3 jobs created by farmers not selling locally
- Money spent at a local farm circulates within that community between six and fifteen times, supporting local agriculture, businesses, and people
- A Virginia Cooperative Extension report showed if households in Southern Virginia spent 15% of their weekly food budget on locally grown food products, $90 million in new farm income would be created for the region
- Shifting 25% of agriculture to local production could:
a. create 27,664 new jobs,
b. provide work for about one in eight unemployed residents,
c. generate $4.2 billion in economic activity and $126 million in state and local taxes,
d. while increasing food security, improving public health, and lowering the region’s carbon footprint.
Our food systems need to change in order to provide more locally grown healthy foods. We need more farms and more farmers. Raincross Farms is helping to achieve that.
We Feed People and Put People to Work
How Can You Help?