31 Year-Old Organic Farm To Be Replaced With Private Soccer Field

Farmer Nick Maravell has been growing food and raising cattle in a sustainable fashion for over 30 years. His efforts to grow food for his local community have been so successful, they earned him recognition from†USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack who appointed Maravell to serve on the National Organic Standards Board, a panel of unpaid experts established by Congress to set organic industry policy.

But despite the fact that Nick’s 165-acre farm is†one of the few certified organic heritage farms left in the United States and a place for the community to see and†participate†in the growing of its food, the local government wants to tear it up and plant turf grass in its place.

Earlier this year, the Montgomery County School Board, which owns the public land that Nick has been farming, gave three weeks notice that they intended to cancel his lease, and give the lease to the county government in order to build… private soccer fields. The deal was made with no public or community input.

Ekos Squared reports that the community is in an uproaróNick’s Organic Farm is Montgomery County’s only organic seed farm (one of a few in the entire Chesapeake region). Itís also strategically isolated and protected from cross-pollination by GMO crops grown on nearby conventional farms.

But farmers are resilient people, so of course, Nick’s Farm has no intention of surrendering to the County’s boring and quite frankly, wasteful use of the land.

“We do not intend to let this happen,” says the Nick’s Farm team on the official campaign website. “Our vision for the farm is a down-County educational anchor to provide opportunities for school children and adults to learn about local food and agriculture, and their relationship to the soil and water that sustains us. But we need your help to make this vision happen.”

How You Can Help:

1) If you live in Maryland, write a letter to†Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett, telling him that you oppose the destruction of Nick’s Organic Farm.

2) Send a copy of that letter to†your county council member, and also CC it to Nick’s Farm.

3)†Volunteer to help with the growing campaign


Related Reading:

Mother Facing Jail Time For Growing Veggies

From Organic Farm To Food Truck

So All May Eat – Organic Pay-As-You-Go Dining

Image Credit: Flickr – suzettesuzette

Video from†Mark Leisher Productions on†Vimeo

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Abbe A.
Azaima A.4 years ago

what misplaced priorities

Joy Jin
Joy Jin4 years ago

I really hope that the land doesn't turn into a soccer field. Sent letter. :)

Laure H.
Laure H.4 years ago

This community is so ignorant of the treasure of this organic farm.

Tony James
Tony James4 years ago

im from the united kingdom i hope he manages to keep on farming. This is an outrage .We cant have enough organic farms to many chemicals destroying our planet ..

Pradip Chavda
Pradip Chavda4 years ago

I can only say IT IS VERY VERY SAD DEVELOPEMENT. Is football more importent than food in USA??? We encounter stupid people in various forms in our lives - one of them is POLITICIANS.

Sorry, I could not sign the petition there seems to be a problem.

Steven Newman
Steven Newman4 years ago

Sorry- I restarted my system and was able to finally sign your petition! We need more organic farms! You can't eat soccer balls! Grow cabbage instead!
“When all the trees have been cut down, when all the animals have been hunted, when all the waters are polluted, when all the air is unsafe to breathe, only then will you discover you cannot eat money.”
— Cree Prophecy

Steven Newman
Steven Newman4 years ago

Hi! Just sending a reminder to check the petition link!! Aloha!

Steven Newman
Steven Newman4 years ago

I have been trying to sign this petition, but it does not load properly- I think causing a large loss of people that would if they could respond to this dire need! Please check the web page and restore the proper loading of the petition link!!! Much Love & Peace from CA!!

colleen p.
colleen p.4 years ago

why is this not on every news channel? because he did not own the land?
If he were a 14 year old who got called "slutcake" over AIM, it would be all over the place.

Sagar M.
Sagar Matha4 years ago

I hope this farmer gets lots of support to fight this. What is going on around food in the US is shocking and scary. We need to vote with our forks, our voices, our votes.