Civic Agriculture is the trend towards locally based agriculture and food production that is tightly linked to a community's social and economic development.
Civic agriculture represents a sustainable alternative to the potentially destructive practices of conventional, large-scale agriculture. The term was coined by the late Liberty Hyde Bailey Professor Thomas A. Lyson, Department of Development Sociology, Cornell University, at the 1999 Rural Sociology Society Annual Meeting.
Professor Lyson wrote a follow-up book titled Civic Agriculture, in which he expounds on his ideas, arguing that because of the interlocked relationship between the food economy and consumers, people have a civic duty to support important agricultural engagements. In his book, Lyson claims that communities that show an active involvement in civic agriculture aid economic development by supporting their local food production. Thus, in committing to civic agriculture, local communities contribute to an economy growth in the agricultural sector.
Manifestations of movement towards Civic Agriculture:
- Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)
- Farmer's markets
- Specialized agricultural districts
- Alternative food stores
- Artisanal food
- Consumer cooperatives
- Lyson Thomas A. Civic Agriculture: Reconnecting Farm, Food, and Community (2004)
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