July 11, 2011

Dr. Jeffrey Ritterman also spoke at the West County Urban Agriculture Summit on June 3rd in Richmond, attended by more than 100 people. LaDonna Redmond, Senior Program Associate at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, delivered the keynote address, as she did at the Physical Activity and Nutrition Forum the day before. The goal of the event was for people to learn about the role of urban agriculture in environmental sustainability, community health, and economic development. Presenters shared innovative practices and urban agriculture models. Participants had the opportunity to network with other urban agriculture supporters, access helpful resources, and help grow urban agriculture in Richmond and in West County.

Reflecting on the event a few weeks later, Dr. Ritterman noted the large urban agriculture movement in the East Bay and in Richmond in particular. He talked about the real challenge involved for a city like Richmond, which has so much economic difficulty, to help green Richmond, including finding a way to capture the food dollar locally, turning empty lots into urban farms, providing green produce to eat, and building the local economy with green dollars. Dr. Ritterman said the Forum was the first time those involved in Urban Agriculture in Richmond had had the opportunity to all meet together, and with local officials as well.