Practical Farmers of Iowa sees itself as an education and outreach organization. Its primary role is to educate the public about the value of locally grown food and to help farmers practice methods that will make their products more locally attractive and available. To fill this role the PFI supports farm-to-market initiatives, on-farm research, and special programs aimed at bringing youth to a better understanding of what goes on at a farm. PFI also sponsors a number of events that help farmers network with one another and share insights and resources: field days, conferences, a newsletter, and web resources.
The organization as a whole values many of the aspects of "sustainability" that are often addressed in our class, especially healthy food, biodiversity, local food connections, healthy soils, and vibrant communities. Its vision is especially focused around the characteristics of good farming: hard work, good stewardship, a connection to the past, sustainable incomes, and creative thinking. The vision for Iowa includes "places where the working landscape, the fresh air and the clean water remind us of all that is good about Iowa."Posted by at November 9, 2005 10:19 AM