J500 Media and the Environment

K.C.’s the Place to be for Urban Agriculture by lindsaycr

Visiting local farmer’s markets in Kansas City is a pastime that many people enjoy. What’s not to like? Buying fresh food from local farmers is cheap and it’s fun to see all of the various goods for sale.

This picture was taken at the City Market in downtown Kansas City. Picture courtesy of Google.

However, have you ever wondered what kinds of farms the food comes from? Well, there’s a good chance you could be eating produce that was grown at the Kansas City Center for Urban Agriculture or KCCUA.

This program was founded by Daniel Dermitzel, a German who came to Kansas City after working as a television news producer in Los Angeles. After working the O.J. Simpson trial in L.A., Daniel realized he needed a career change and that is when he first became interested in farming. According to the KCCUA Web site, Daniel is interested in increasing the productivity of his farm with advanced technology.

After speaking with Daniel, I learned about community supported agriculture, which is when a group of people invests in a farm, and then shares the produce in the end. By doing this, everyone shares in both the benefits and risks associated with farming. If instead you choose to buy food at the grocery store, the farmer carries the risk alone. And when the farmer has a bad season, prices skyrocket and everyone has to pay.

Source: Notes from field trip on 3.7.08

In conclusion, buying food from local farmers in Kansas City is a great idea. Not only are you helping out your neighbor, you can also feel good about eating fresh, locally grown products. If you are more interested in learning about the KCCUA, they have paid and unpaid apprenticeships, as well as volunteer programs. Just visit their Web site to get more information.

Lindsay Crupper

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