388: Jess Mazour on Building a Resilient Food System.
Reinforcing local food and ag in the heartland of America.
Jess is a Farm & Environment Organizer for Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement (CCI), a 5,000-member non-profit. She organizes with local communities to develops statewide strategies to stop corporate factory farms from building. In 2013-2015 Jess worked with a 10-state coalition of farm and ranch groups to develop a new narrative around Food and Ag Justice. Jess also built a citizen lobby team at the Iowa Statehouse to lobby for policies that build a food and ag system that works for farmers, eaters, workers, and the environment.
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At home Jess is a beginning urban farmer in Des Moines selling heirloom plants, local produce, and other homemade/homegrown goods at a local farmers market.
In This Podcast:
There can be no doubt that Jess Mazour is dedicated to building a better food system – and she is doing it for those that grow food, those that eat it, and to protect the communities and environment that surround farms. Her passion is strong and is a resource for families and farmers in Iowa as she helps educate and empower the “little guys” to work together to benefit the whole community.
Listen in and learn about:
- Why she is so focused on making a change in the food system
- Growing up in rural Iowa and how this community is so connected to Farming
- Starting up with Citizens for Community Improvement
- What is wrong in the food system
- How hog farming is affecting the community
- How small town are being affected by the new model of farming
- Why Iowa is losing 5 tons of soil a year
- The problem with manure from the factory farms
- Looking for a just solution that connects to our values
- Food should nourish our bodies and souls
- 500 ranchers, farmers, workers and eaters submitted their most important values
- The compilation document that summarized their points
- Taking the power back to the community
- Three strategies on how people can make a difference
- What the word “narrative” means
As well as:
- Her failure – When she was ready to give up growing tomatoes
- Her success – Her career at Citizens for Community Improvement
- Her drive – Watching people recognize their power
- An Epic Moment – The time she helped fight off a huge pork slaughterhouse despite a City Council approval
- Her advice – Get Involved
Jess’s Podcast recommendations:
Democracy Now Podcast with Amy Goodwin and Juan Gonzales
How to reach Jess:
To learn more about more about Growing Your Own Food
And to see the I’m an Urban Farmer line
Note: You can also find these books mentioned above at one of our favorite local independent bookstores and know that you are supporting a small business.