USA Program Unites Farmers, Union Members

When local farmers answered a union request for assistance providing Thanksgiving dinners to laid off workers, a new alliance was born. Understanding that both farmers and workers face challenges posed by corporate global trading injustice, the farmers stepped up to the plate and made wonderful dinners possible for the laid off workers through the Food AND Medicine program and the Greater Bangor Central Labor Council.

Wanting to continue the mutually beneficial relationship, Food AND Medicine later worked with the farmers to design a program on the model of other Community Supported Agriculture programs where union members could buy in for a season's worth of locally-grown vegetables. The farmers get a guaranteed income, local farms in the community can remain viable, and the union members get a good price on organically-grown, healthful, tasty vegetables.

Last year was the premier season for the "Union Supported Agriculture (USA)" program. The program hopes to expand this year to include more farms and farmers, and provide vegetables for more workers in more unions. Deadlines for union members to sign up for this season are May 1. You can download both a brochure about the program and a signup sheet. You will need the free Adobe Acrobat reader for both of them.