The midsummer challenge

by Alicia Lundquist Guy

This article was originally published in June 2007

The summer solstice is one of those common threads that bring humanity to the same point of reference — the same table. Every single one of us needs food and agricultural civilizations would not be possible without this blessed season of growing.

Marking the solstice began thousands of years ago as an agricultural celebration, the middle of the growing season — a tick of the long slow celestial clock that marked a year.

As you sit with friends enjoying an alfresco meal in the warm, light evening of midsummer, lift your glass for a toast to the wonderful food and drink that the sun has nurtured on nearby farms, vineyards and ranches. If the wine to fill that glass helps to save farmland, all the better. (Powers Winery has blended a lovely Cabernet for PCC and $2 per bottle is donated to the Trust.*).

After that first celebratory glass, make a commitment, on some level, to pay more attention to where your food is coming from. Has it been raised with organic and sustainable growing methods of benefit to the soil and wildlife around it? Is it part of a vital local farming community? Is the money you spend on it encouraging local farmers to farm and keeping fertile soil in active production?

As you raise your glass a second time, toast the part you can play in supporting local organic agriculture. Resolve to make at least one meal each week locally and organically grown.

Live in season! Eat strawberry shortcake!

And then after your wine is gone, consider making a donation to the PCC Farmland Trust to play an even bigger part in supporting your local food economy. Our goal is to preserve farmland so a truly local midsummer feast still can be brought to the table 50 years from now.

Find out more about what’s happening at the Trust on our Web site,

* Look for additional beverage vendors that generously support the Farmland Trust with signs next to product at PCC stores and on our in-store promotions Web page.

Also in this issue

News bites, June 2007

Legislation for a healthier Washington, Pharma safflower barred by Canada, Bellingham a “Green Power Community”, and more