By Jenna Wayne Mauder
We’re fortunate here in the Northern Poconos and Delaware River Valley region to boast some of the most pristine waterways in the country. Waterways that quench our thirst for adventure and hydration. For anyone over the age of 25, you may remember a time or have heard stories about there never being any bald eagles. A symbol of national pride that was nearly wiped off this earth by the misuse of chemicals on the environment. The return of the bald eagle that hunts from our rivers, proving the quality of the water is sustaining life, is one of our greatest accomplishments. One that we should be grateful for every time we dip our toes in a stream or take a sip of water.
When the bald eagle returned, it was in part thanks to the work done on the land that surrounds the waterways. Watersheds draw rain and melting snow to the lowest point and filter out pollutants before the water makes it to the river or lake. Responsible forestry and farming practices ensure that eagles, and us, will have all its necessities for many years to come.
Every year, local farmers adapt their operations to their communities and the effects of climate change. We must adapt to survive. We are incredibly grateful for farmers’ and value-added producers’ commitment to their work in producing food and being good stewards of the land.
At the heart of it all, great meals start with great products and our region’s farmers do a tremendous job at providing us with delicious food! There are many benefits to supporting a local food system. Here are a few:
- Local farms preserve green space and the beauty of our region.
- We develop a deeper sense of community.
- You can easily follow the farm-to-table journey.
- You support the local economy.
- Produce is picked and delivered at the peak of ripeness, so it’s more nutrient-dense.
During the holidays, Americans will consume their body weight in holiday savory snacks, sweet treats, and delicious goodies. We mustn’t forget the farmer. On snow days when the kids are home from school and bored eating, we mustn’t forget the farmer. As we indulge in vegetable soup, chicken pot pie, and Swedish meatballs, we mustn’t forget the farmer that provided the ingredients that will warm your heart and soul during the coming winter months.
Find your local food year-round at bit.ly/PikeWayneFarmFoodGuide.
Jenna Wayne Mauder is the agriculture and food program manager at The Cooperage Project. The Cooperage Project is a nonprofit community hub that aims to meet the needs of the community in a warm, inclusive setting. Check out all of their good times, learning, performance and market happenings at www.thecooperageproject.org. Follow on Facebook and Instagram or sign up for our newsletter at www.thecooperageproject.org. We look forward to meeting you at the Cooperage or around town.