High October temperatures in Southern California can mask the pivot to Fall, but an early morning chill and telltale trace of high desert in the air signal a transition. Many of us sense that we, our country, our culture and our habits are also in transition, that we are gradually awakening to the costs of current agricultural and economic practices that threaten our near-term stability and the quality of our children’s and grandchildren’s lives.
Feed and Be Fed, now in its fifth year, is dedicated to facilitating and accelerating this transition to a more sustainable, less wasteful, holistic culture and economy. Our many projects here in the port town of San Pedro are unified by some basic mission principles:
1) to model organic, sustainable food growing practices locally/in our neighborhoods,
2) reduce food waste by composting and redirecting and
3) by social gardening to draw our community into a more intimate and informed relationship with their food sources and nature.
In spite of the pandemic and a tribute to our many dedicated volunteers, 2020 has been a very busy and productive year for Feed and Be Fed. Our most ambitious effort has been to establish a partnership with the LA Unified School District at their Science Center in Northwest San Pedro. On this 3.5 acre plot we affectionately refer to as “The Farm”, we have set up raised planting beds, a water conserving drip irrigation system, an experimental field of pumpkins and sunflowers designed to remediate trace toxins in the native soil and started our community compost program. We are part the revitalization of this amazing but under-utilized resource.
At our 6th Street downtown open space we are building out our “Little Sprouts” infrastructure with a new shed, educational tools, new planting beds and a gathering deck. All this will be waiting when children and their parents return to the garden.
New projects include participation in the reimagined San Pedro farmers market, a food distribution program to get healthy produce to pandemic sheltering seniors, and work with several local breweries to using their spent grains to make rich compost.
As always, we continue to be humbled and grateful to all those who have contributed to our financial support and helped our vision to grow.