The Farm Coast of Southern New England is where Massachusetts and Rhode Island meet the saltwater of Buzzards Bay and Rhode Island Sound. It is a rural place of unspoiled natural beauty, of old stone walls edging farm fields and pastures that roll down to the sea.
If this region’s farms were to disappear (the way Walker’s Farm and Roadside Stand shut down suddenly in Little Compton, R.I., last year), would it still be the Farm Coast? Or would its rural towns become just like every other coastal town in Southern New England, summer destinations with no defining character other than the ocean?
To “Keep the Farm in Farm Coast,” a group of next generation farmers from Dartmouth, Westport, Tiverton and Little Compton want to raise appreciation of how farms preserve the working rural landscape that makes the region a special place. Anyone who cherishes the Farm Coast’s unique rural character can help Keep the Farm in Farm Coast in the following ways:
Double the percentage of your food budget that you spend with local farmers. Buying fresh, locally grown food strengthens our local economy and supports the farms that maintain our Farm Coast landscape. The more produce, eggs, honey, jam, cheese, meat, flowers, plants and nursery grown trees that you buy from local farms helps to Keep the Farm in Farm Coast. For more, see the New England Feeding New England Report.
Promote the slogan “Keep the Farm in Farm Coast” with a bumper sticker or a sign in your business or on the menu of your restaurant that features locally grown food. Request a bumper sticker by email.
Appeal to land trusts and town officials in Farm Coast towns to make more farmland accessible to next generation farmers — through farm ownership opportunities or long-term leases, with housing for farmers that ensures a place for tomorrow’s farmers to raise families. The focus of their efforts needs to shift from farmland protection to farmland access.
Carter Wilkie is a resident of Little Compton
Thank you to our sponsors
Founding benefactors: Joan and Irwin Jacobs fund of the Jewish Community Foundation, Mary and Jim Ottaway
For questions about donations, contact Chrystal Walsh, director of advancement, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For questions about sponsoring The Light, contact Peter Andrews, director of business development and community engagement, at email@example.com.