Northern Virginia Groups Host October Urban Agriculture Month Events

For immediate release

October 1, 2020

Media contact:
Aisha Salazer, asalazar@vt.edu
Robin Broder, 703-786-8172, robin.broder@arlingtonurbanag.org

Northern Virginia Groups Host October Urban Agriculture Month Events

Urban agriculture groups responded to COVID-19 crisis to provide food to families in need

This year’s October Urban Agriculture Month will shine a spotlight on the significant role urban agriculture plays in our regional and local food system. Several urban agriculture, food security and garden groups in northern Virginia have come together to offer a series of virtual events that highlights the local urban agriculture response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The theme of the month is Urban Agriculture: Resiliency Rooted in Innovation.

The virtual event this year includes panel discussions on how local businesses and urban gardens adapted to the pandemic, a town hall with local elected officials, and cooking and gardening workshops. In addition, there are in-person garden tours and recorded classes by Master Gardeners and Master Naturalists. The month-long event showcases urban agriculture in Arlington, Alexandria, Fairfax, and Falls Church.

“In response to the COVID-19 health crisis, our groups have been working to support and expand efforts to grow fresh produce for our neighbors in need,” said Robin Broder, President, Arlington Friends of Urban Agriculture. “This global crisis will have long lasting health and economic impacts for our local community, and has shown that we need a resilient local and regional food system that is not fragile in the face of crises.”

“Individuals, churches, schools, and other groups have stepped up to grow fresh, nutritious produce for our community, but they can’t go it alone to meet the need,” said Stacey Evers, co-chair of the Fairfax Food Council’s Urban Agriculture Working Group. “We need policies and incentives that will support the many exciting local urban ag initiatives that can boost everyone’s access to healthy local food.”

“Our communities experienced a dramatic and rapid increase in demand for supplemental food programs and our local governments, nonprofit organizations, schools, PTAs, and businesses came together to find ways to meet that demand,” said Aisha Salazar, Family & Consumer Sciences Agent, VCE Arlington & Alexandria. “Now the question is how do we meet the ongoing food needs of our communities who will continue to suffer from food and economic insecurity.”

Event details and registration can be found HERE.

Garden tour registration is HERE. Tours begin the weekend of October 3-4.

Sponsoring organizations: Virginia Cooperative Extension, Arlington Friends of Urban Agriculture, Fairfax Food Council, Fairfax Master Gardeners, Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia, Falls Church Garden Club, and Master Food Volunteers of Northern Virginia. October Urban Agriculture month website: https://arlington.ext.vt.edu/programs/urbanag.html.