Agriculture, Aquaculture, Forestry and Food
Agriculture is a strategic domestic resource vital to American independence. Agriculture is the number one industry in Washington and requires active consideration in all decision making at every level of government.
We value the diverse stakeholders involved and impacted by our food system including: farmers, foresters, farmworkers, fishers, tribal communities, processors, intermediary traders, retailers, NGO’s, researchers, truck drivers, seafarers, teachers, eaters, etc.
Food and agriculture impact all of our lives and we are committed to supporting an equitable, sustainable, healthy, and viable food system that is accessible to all.
Owner/operator farmers, foresters, and fishers are primary stewards of the land and sea and we encourage related agricultural skills, careers, businesses, infrastructure, and lifestyles that are essential to our country’s survival.
Land use management and zoning are effective tools to reduce carbon emissions and energy use and to protect the quality of resources held in common for the benefit of the greater community, region, sensitive environments, and agricultural viability indefinitely into the future.
Crop diversity, conservation, and environmental efforts that preserve agricultural land and natural resources are critical to the viability of food, fuel, and forest production, both now and in the future.
We recognize the connection between health and access to healthy food and clean water for all in our community.
We support local sustainable agriculture, aquaculture, and forestry that provide jobs that cannot be outsourced.
We support the humane treatment of animals in food and agricultural production
We believe trade agreements should be based on transparent processes and a global-local connection that demonstrates both the positive and negative impacts of trade on our local and regional food system, family farmers and fishers, food system workers, the environment, and these same impacts on our trading partners.
2012 Policy Priorities
Seek resolution of competing water rights claims in Whatcom County, for the mutual benefit of fish, farms, people, tribes and the environment.
Expanding the Purchase and Transfer of Development Rights programs and other conservation initiatives in Whatcom County as a means to protect farm and forest lands.
Work to develop affordable housing for Whatcom County farmworkers.
All genetically modified foods should be clearly labeled as such so that consumers are able to make informed choices.
Reduction of the use of herbicides, pesticides, and other hazardous materials.
Support rules to strengthen child labor protections.
Protect all old growth forest that remains in the County and State because it has the highest ecological value and cannot be replaced in our lifetime.
Support community food and school lunch programs using healthy local foods.
Phase out farm subsidies that disproportionately favor large corporate farmers and farmers not producing food.
Expand land grant college funding of research for sustainable farming and fisheries.
Demand an end to the global land grab by governments and corporations buying up farmland around the globe to produce their own food, or simply to make a profit - this is causing devastating human rights violations, increased food insecurity, forced migration of millions of villagers and pastoralists, and a threat to completely lose many ancient cultures.