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  FARM AID 2006: Notes and Quotes  

Farm Aid Board of Directors, (lft to rt)Neil Young, Willie Nelson, John Mellankamp & Dave Matthews.

Notes & quotes from our day -

Camden, New Jersey, near Philadelphia, holds the dubious honor of being the poorest and most violent city in the United States. It is in the region known as the Delware Valley an area with a long and rich tradition of family farming, but although the city is surrounded by family farms rich in soils and abundant with crops, it has only one grocery store. Willie Nelson brought the 21st Annual Farm Aid concert to Camden to shine a light on the family far.

"We started out trying to save the family farmer and now it looks like the family farmer is going to save us. It's important that we let our family farmers and local economies start everything and let it build up from there. By helping our farmer they will help us out of the economic hole that we find ourselves in today."
- Willie Nelson

Food For Thought

"We started a program called Food For Thought at my daughter’s college in Ohio. Farmers in the area started selling their food to the school cafeteria. The cafeteria started showing that they had organic or at least home-grown food. They started cooking it a little differently, not over cooking it and turning it into boiled ‘stuff’. We have a little foothold there – I’d like to see it go into every college. Here we have the answers to our problem: We need new blood. We need smart people to start using their education, their understanding of our capitalistic system, and to start using their knowledge to restore the good food system that we originally had." Neil Young

link » Rural Life Center

David Amram performing at Farm Aid. 2004

The Boston Globe has described David Amram as "the Renaissance man of American music." He has composed over 100 orchestral and chamber works, written two operas, many scores for theater and films, including Splendor in the Grass and The Manchurian Candidate.
He plays French horn, piano, guitar, numerous flutes and whistles, percussion, and a variety
of folkloric instruments from 25 countries. He travels the globe with his music and returns home to tend his farm in upstate New York.
Every year he joins up with Willie Nelson to support Farm Aid.

"Whether you meet an environmentalist or someone who’s an agronomist or someone who’s a fan of country music or jazz or rock. Everyone understands that the reason we are here at Farm Aid is not only to have a good time but also to help out the family farmers."

David on his farm
David at his roadside stand where he sells his organic produce from his farm in upstate New York. Photo/David Amram

"I feel as strongly about farming and the people who are farmers as I do about people who I work with in music. I was brought up on a farm, it’s just something like music that gets in your blood. Seeing a farm, a family farm, not a factory farm, but something that’s run with love and care, is as beautiful a work of art as any painting or any symphony. It’s real, it’s universal, and it’s something that we all came from." — David Amram


  Young Farmers
"It’s inspiring to see young people going into farming with a vision for possibility. There’s not
a broken heart – which I think has happened to a lot of farming families… Our young people farmers are saving our food and helping our communities and also saving the planet, all the things that we should be most concerned about."
Dave Matthews
Camden Farmers Mkt vendor  
Camden holds the dubious honor of being the poorest and most violent city in the US. More than 600,000 Delaware Valley residents live below the federal povery line and are at risk for hunger or malnutrition.
It's amazing to realize that despite bounty in the Delaware Valley countryside, Camden has only one grocery store and becuase of that many of the urban residents have a difficult time finding fresh food.

The Lunch Lady
" Research says that one out of every three Caucasians and one of every two Hispanics and African Americans six year olds that started school across American in the last two weeks, will have diabetes in their lifetime. Most before they are eighteen. And why is it ? – because they are not eating fruits and vegetables – all the great farmed food. What I want to do is teach kids across America what good food choices are, how important family farms are, and how they can live a long healthy life."
— Ann Cooper "The Lunch Lady"

Vendors at the Camden Farmers Market /2006. photo KS

is a great organization working to end hunger and malnutrition in the Delaware Valley by rescuing surplus food and distributing it to local organizations serving people in need. Approximately 27% of the food produced in the U.S. goes to waste each year while millions of people go hungry. Philabundance works to change this contradiction.

photo: Davia interviews Bill Clark from Philabundance
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