This is no April Fool's joke. Our 2 week quarantine has been stretched by another month and we really need to be ready for an even longer period to be mandated. According to the US Department of Agriculture, there are no food shortages in the supply chain. However, we're seeing empty shelves at all public food supply sources. Why is this a reality? Of course, the most obvious answer is hoarding, but another reason is that we're eating at home more. Before Covid-19, Americans were eating out at a rate of 4 to 5 times a week, now the number is zero for most of us. Empty shelves at the grocery store or food pantry are a reality that will last through the summer at least.
The world hasn't seen food insecurity issues this severe since the 1940's when Victory Gardens or War Gardens were planted to supplement the interrupted food supply chain. Feeding troops fighting outside American borders took priority over the public, so many families experienced extreme hunger and depression. Growing their own food gave people hope for the future that carried them through the tough times.
Today we're experiencing many of the same challenges as our parents and grandparents: tight food supply, finances are inadequate or non-existent, families are separated, numbers of deaths are rising, our future is uncertain, and manufacturing of PPE and ventilators has become more important than other goods like cars. The "Greatest Generation" was the result of our country pulling together for the common good, standing up to bullies, and never giving up. It's our turn, we need to step up now! We're already physically distancing to "flatten the curve" to prevent more American deaths, let's take it a step further; do your part to supplement the food supply, plant a Food Justice Garden.
You can grow your own food even if you live in an area with limited space. Vertical gardens are the easy to set up and will produce enough food to make a difference.
Planting a Food Justice garden not only helps alleviate a food shortage, it's also a positive activity the whole household can participate in. Learning how foods grow is great for the little ones too. Eating a diet that consists of fresh vegetables and fruits is an excellent way to boost your immune system, which keeps you healthier and happier. So get busy and make things grow.
We want to hear from you, so send pictures and comments of your Food Justice Garden!