Let’s Talk About Sustainability on Saturday

Today, I found a story that has big implications. I listen to CBC Radio 2 in my little car, and I had to go to the post office this morning. It turns out that Stuart McLean, of The Vinyl Café, was talking about the Arthur Awards as I backed out of the driveway. He was awarding all the Moms and Dads across Canada who took their kids on a road trip this Summer an Arthur Award. Because my daughter did just that to visit all her Family in the Pacific Northwest, I sent her an e-mail about it. And that led me to look for the Vinyl Café Web site, which led me to find this story that is posted there:

Tall Grass Prairie Bread Company

So they started their bread co-op, and they baked bread every Saturday night in a kitchen they rented at the St. Margaret’s Church, and it became a neighbourhood thing … not a church thing. Neighbourhood people joined the co-op … and you could work in the co-op and get work credits, and people who were well-off were invited to pay a little more for their bread to carry those who couldn’t, and neighbourhood kids delivered bread around the neighbourhood in little red wagons … and the co-op grew over two or three years. And they were actually supporting one family farm. And having fun. Just as they had hoped.

And this provoked more discussion. It began with the question: What is good stewardship of the land? And what did that mean to people who live in the city? If you believed, as Tabitha and her friends did, that herbicides and pesticides were not God’s best idea, how should you proceed if you are city folk? How much should those who live in the city be paying for grain, ethically? What would things look like if instead of having farmers begging city people for pennies, city people were begging farmers for grain.

Finally they asked … what could they do? Could they do anything to support farmers in some larger way?

To read the entire story, which is well worth the time, please click here.

My daughter Rachel happens to live in Winnipeg, so maybe she can go find the Tall Grass Prairie Bread Bakery. And maybe all of us can give some thought to sustainability and what we might like to do to promote it in and bring it to our communitities. Me, I believe this is just another example of a small synchronous event on a Saturday morning.

Richard Jehn

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