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A Modern Barn Raising

Submitted by Food Democracy Now on August 4, 2012 - 5:27am

Yesterday Food Democracy Now! participated in a "modern barn raising" for organic farmer and seed grower, Jim Gerritsen and his family of northern Maine. 

We want to thank all of you for standing with us as we support farmers across America in their fight for justice against Monsanto. Few people have championed the effort to maintain farmers' rights or are more deserving of our support than Jim. 

Through Indiegogo, an online site for project fundraising, Food Democracy Now! members helped the Gerritsen's come closer to their goal of raising $32,000 for a much needed Repair Shop on their family farm. The Repair Shop will be used by their two oldest sons, Caleb and Peter, who plan to help their parents out on their farm and continue the Wood Prairie Farm family business.

The fundraiser ended at midnight Pacific time last night ending with $30,405, which will help them complete the first phase of building. If you wish to contribute to Jim and family, you may send a check to:

Wood Prairie Farm 

49 Kinney Road 

Bridgewater, Maine 04735

This amazing effort demonstrated that working together we can accomplish great things and that the organic community is strong! Thank you to those of you who stepped up to help Jim and his family. They are deeply grateful for everyone's support.

Jim and his family have been farming organic seed, grain and vegetables on Wood Prairie Farm in northern Maine for 35 years. He also serves as President of Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association, the lead plaintiff - and Food Democracy Now!'s co-plaintiff- in the lawsuit challenging Monsanto’s GMO seed patents, OSGATA et al vs. Monsanto. 

Below is a video of Jim and other courageous farmers in NYC last January for our first court hearing against biotech giant Monsanto.

Video from J31: A Citizens' Assembly of Support for Family Farmers vs Monsanto


Also watch the video from the Occupy Wall Street Farmers March, where Jim made his first trip to New York city to tell the story of our lawsuit (OSGATA vs Monsanto) to protect family farmers from Monsanto's abusive lawsuits.

Video from Occupy Wall Street Farmers March

Photo credit: Close to mother earth. Baby Caleb rides with mom, Megan Gerritsen, digging Rose Gold potatoes on Wood Prairie Farm near Bridgewater, Maine. Leland Daugherty, an intern sponsored by an organic growers association, helps out. Megan and husband Jim sell 17 potato varieties, harvesting by hand to avoid bruising. Certified organic by two trade groups, the farm grows potatoes, grains, and clover in rotation. Soil fertility is sustained with barnyard manure, fish scales, sawdust, and plant residue, known as green manure. - Caption and photo from National Geographic, December 1995.

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