No single policy is designed to address all aspects of sustainable agriculture, and many serve farmers who would not characterize themselves as sustainable agriculture adherents as well as those who would. But taken as a whole, policies help move the nation’s agriculture toward a more environmentally, economically and socially sustainable future.
Our policy program empowers citizens to use democratic processes to direct government resources to support sustainable agriculture’s many objectives. For example, Michael Fields coordinates the national sustainable agriculture movement’s annual grassroots campaign to obtain funding for sustainable agriculture programs. We meet with agency staff to encourage proper administration of programs we have helped create and improve.
They might be federal marketing programs like the Farmers Market Promotion Program or Conservation Stewardship Program. Or possibly policies such as measures to reform the direct farm payments in the federal commodity programs.
In Wisconsin, we advance programs such as the new Buy Local Buy Wisconsin program and Farm to School program, whose legislative passage Michael Fields coordinated and led. We also promote managed grazing, bioenergy, new markets and opportunities, local food, agricultural innovation, and the next generation of farmers.
Michael Fields also works to build the capacity of the sustainable movement. For example, we cultivate new leadership through our policy internships, build the grassroots power base that helps our movement achieve its many victories, and offer grantwriting workshops to help farmers and ranchers nationwide access federal programs’ resources.
Latest Public Policy Posts
MFAI Collaborates on National Survey of Attitudes About Crop Insurance
September 12, 2017
The 2014 Farm Bill greatly increased access to crop insurance for diversified, organic, and specialty crop growers, but so far only a small percentage of those who are eligible have taken advantage of these new opportunities. Please give your input and share the link with all who may be interested.
Farm Law Tip Sheets
September 7, 2017
In mid-June, MFAI’s Policy Program Director, Margaret Krome, participated in one of Farm Commons’ excellent Farm Law 101 for Ag Professionals workshops. With funding support from the federal Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program, Farm Commons, has written and posted a series of excellent tip sheets about a wide variety of topics […]
Food Systems Course
September 1, 2017
On Monday evening, August 21, MFAI’s Policy Director, Margaret Krome, gave the second talk of the Food Systems series sponsored by Groundwork Milwaukee and Milwaukee’s Urban Ecology Center (UEC) at 1500 E Park Pl, Milwaukee, WI 53211. Entitled Knee Bone Connected to the Thigh Bone – Food Systems Policy, Krome engaged the audience in describing parts of a food […]
Knee Bone Connected to the Thigh Bone – Food Systems Series
August 11, 2017
On Monday, August 21, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., MFAI’s Policy Director, Margaret Krome, will be a guest speaker at Milwaukee’s Urban Ecology Center (UEC) at 1500 E Park Pl, Milwaukee, WI 53211. Entitled, “Knee bone connected to the thigh bone – Food systems policy,” Margaret’s talk is part of a Food Systems series sponsored […]
Upcoming Grant-writing Workshops
We are pleased to again collaborate with our partners* to present four all-day grant-writing workshops around the state – all in October this year. We will post the flyer with more details about times and specific locations in next month’s Fields Report, but you can save the date for the following general locations: Ashland/Bayfield – […]