Another option is to start growing your own food locally. There are many avenues available to people even in the big cities. There are many ways and levels of involvement possible. Ziggy one of the organisers of the Seed Swap advises:
"Get an allotment. If you can't do that (waiting lists etc) chat to the site reps and ask if they need volunteers about the site. Often there are plot holders who feel they are struggling - you may inherit' a plot that way. Same goes for gardens - there are lots of people who haven't got the time to garden - you can come to an arrangement to do the gardening for them and take a share of the produce. At the moment, I am looking after a friend's permaculture back garden in Eastleigh and this set up works quite well."
Other groups that may be of interest to those looking to start growing their own include: Garden Organic (who used to be HDRA - Henry Doubleday Research Association www.gardenorganic.org.uk/) are running a programme - organic food for all (www.gardenorganic.org.uk/foodforall/index.php) Its aimed at people who might otherwise be excluded from growing their own..
WWOOF: www.wwoof.org/ "The aims of WWOOF are to enable people to learn first-hand about organic growing techniques:
# to enable town-dwellers to experience living and helping on a farm
# to help farmers make organic production a viable alternative
# to improve communications within the organic movement.
Permaculture UK: "Permaculture in Practice Permaculture is about creating sustainable human habitats by following nature's patterns." It uses the diversity, stability and resilience of natural ecosystems to provide a framework and guidance for people to develop their own sustainable solutions to the problems facing their world, on a local, national or global scale. It is based on the philosophy of co-operation with nature and caring for the earth and its people. There is a new wiki being developed to help explain the aims of permaculture and should provide a good introduction for those looking to learn:
Come along and find out more. Many local green and environmental groups will also have stalls at the event. Other events in the near future include South East Essex Permaculture one day gathering on April 1st:
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