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Chet Kendell

Farming from the Heart Livelihoods that Hinge on the Land

Farming from the Heart: Livelihoods that Hinge on the Land

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There may be some who might suggest that this is a result of large farm size and economies of scale. While the big farms are huge farms, the data shows that fully half (54%) of all United States farmers who depend on their practice of agriculture for the livelihood do so on 179 acres or less and even half of those (27%) are farming 49 acres or less. Contrary to much of the popular sentiment, it’s the farmers who are proving that small farms can be just as viable in sustaining agrarian livelihoods as large farms and perhaps more so.

Searching for Civility

Searching for Civility

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The historic problem has been the short window of time in which fields must be worked and planted and then later harvested. A large labor force was needed, but only seasonally. The persistent problem was then and still is that there is really no livelihood for the farm laborer, without migrating. An agriculture which allowed the general society to settle and build urban centers still required a farm labor force to migrate to sustain a livelihood.