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Agriculture and Food Systems


glyphWe all eat and use plants everyday, but seldom do we consider the many threats facing agricultural sustainability. Beyond the issue of hunger and food security, our agricultural systems contend with the challenges of drought, energy disruption, chemical and genetic pollution, pollinator crises, soil erosion, food safety, and climate change, just to name a few. While our understanding of the food system is evolving, so is our growing awareness of communities’ need to connect with local food and fiber sheds – and in some locales, a need to literally build food systems from the ground up. Earth Island supports efforts to create equitable food systems, promoting healthy plant cultivation, food production and food distribution. Our projects do this by leveraging indigenous knowledge, food access policy, legislation, storytelling, ending food waste, and protecting seeds, soils and producers.

photo of a group working with plants

Oakland residents earned a landmark win in 2014 when the City of Oakland adopted Oakland Food Policy Council's community-based land use policy recommendations. These guidelines uphold the premise that growing and selling food is a basic human right throughout all of Oakland. Past attempts to protect consumers proved misguided, in that local ordinances threatened urban agriculture zoning as well as food vending. Ultimately, these policies disproportionately impeded access to good, clean, local food for people of color and low-income residents. Wins like OFPC’s serve as a clear example of how an activated citizenry can create the policy solutions that meet their needs while fostering a continued conversation around how people can positively affect local food systems.

Cultivate Oregon
Cultivate Oregon is a group of leaders who were initially inspired and united through various statewide campaigns around food, agriculture, and environmental issues. We are an alliance of farmers, citizens, organizations, and businesses throughout the state working to expand socially and environmentally…
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Eco-Village Farm Learning Center
EcoVillage is an "Oasis of Connectivity," promoting sustainable urban agriculture, environmental education, economic and social justice, youth leadership and community building through its various programs and activities.
Ecovet Global
Ecovet Global partners with organizations and communities around the world to improve animal health (domestic and wildlife) as a sustainable path to resolving issues connecting poverty, threats to public health, food insecurity, and loss of biodiversity. Using an integrative approach that focuses…
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Food Shift
Food Shift is dedicated to building a more just and sustainable food system that curbs waste, empowers communities, respects the environment and nourishes all people. Food Shift educates and empowers consumers, businesses and communities by increasing awareness about food waste and inspiring…
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Friends of Muonde
Friends of Muonde supports locally driven efforts to foment creativity and development in the Mazvihwa and neighboring areas of south central Zimbabwe. Through educational, agricultural and community extension programs, and a healthy dose of action research, we back local development efforts that…
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Hempstead Project Heart
Hempstead Project Heart uses the power of music and art to raise awareness of the many benefits of hemp for the planet and people.
The Mississippi Farm to School Network
Mission: The Mississippi Farm to School Network works to connect farmers with schools in order to bring Mississippi products to school cafeterias.  We seek to strengthen the local agricultural economy and educate Mississippians on the importance of eating locally-grown, nutritionally-dense foods.  By…
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The Oakland Food Policy Council
The Oakland Food Policy Council is a 21-seat council that studies the Oakland food system and makes recommendations to the City of Oakland on ways to make the system more equitable and sustainable.
Real Food Real Stories
Founded in July 2014, Real Food Real Stories (RFRS) gives voice to the rising food movement and cultivates an empathetic culture based on listening and action. We design powerful experiences where local food heroes are facilitated to connect with their purpose and…
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Safe Food and Fertilizer
Safe Food and Fertilizer works to stop the use of hazardous and other industrial wastes in fertilizer, soil amendments and animal feeds because of their impact on human health and the environment.
Project Focus
glyphAgriculture & Food Systems glyphClean Energy & Climate Change glyphConservation, Preservation & Restoration glyphEnvironmental Education
glyphInternational & Indigenous Communities glyphLeadership Development glyphOcean & Water glyphPollution & Toxics
glyphSustainability & Community Resilience glyphWildlife Protection glyphWomen’s Environmental Leadership glyphYouth Empowerment