California’s abundant natural resources and favorable climate have in the past enabled a flourishing agricultural economy.

Today more than ever before, however, food production in our state is endangered.  Chronic drought is of course one of the challenges we face; the state’s water sources must be managed and distributed thoughtfully and equitably.  At issue also are matters such as food safety, use of pesticides, tariffs, climate change, and conditions of agricultural labor.

Working together, we can solve these problems.  But it will take determination and collaboration on the part of all interested parties.  Since food and water are essential to everyone’s very survival, that includes all of us!

Animal Agriculture

Though we have many crises to address, one major elephant in the room is animal agriculture.   Dana Baker and Shawnee Badger are the co-chairs of a new Animal Agriculture Committee of the Environmental Caucus.

The first project of this committee will be an informational campaign about the history of animal agriculture and its current circumstances and dilemmas — not only here in California but elsewhere in the nation and worldwide as well.  We will advocate for alternative food production pathways that are environmentally sustainable and humane.

Our aim is to elevate the voices of those most often ignored on this subject, and to highlight the intersectionality (people’s diverse identities and overlapping experiences) of the agricultural system.

Any other caucus members who want to help us champion the gradual transition of our state away from this industry, while ensuring that the current interests and values of everyone who lives and works on the land are respected and taken into account, please reach out to Dana or Shawnee. You can reach us here.

Over a third of the nation’s vegetables and two-thirds of the country’s fruits and nuts are grown in California.

Although they are not as famous as the state’s grapes and almond crops, carrots are grown year-round in California.  Four production areas are: the southern San Joaquin Valley and the Cuyama Valley (Kern and Santa Barbara Counties), the southern desert (Imperial and Riverside Counties), the high desert (Los Angeles County); and the central coast (Monterey County).

In an era of rampant wildfires, more California farms are deemed too risky to insure.