This article starts with attitude but then quickly turns to tell a story of a model that many more of us could adopt. Read on... Source: Wall Street Journal By Katy McLaughlin.

There could hardly be a loftier culinary class than that of the locavore, a movement whose members eschew food grown outside a 100-mile radius of their homes. With copious outputs of money and labor, locavores earn bragging rights (we put up 50 jars of beets!), complaining rights (we went without wheat all winter!) and the right to believe they are doing their part to save the planet (we support local farms by paying $10 a pound for cherries!).

But James Lucal in Seattle has them all beat. He not only brings home the local produce, he got a local to grow it for him directly outside his home. And yet he spent almost nothing for this luxury, and lifted not so much as a trowel to make it happen.
Welcome to "urban sharecropping," the hippest, most hardcore new way to eat local. In the latest twist in the farm-to-table movement, homeowners who lack free time or gardening skills are teaming up with would-be farmers who lack backyards. Around the country, a new crop of match-makers are helping the two groups find each other and make arrangements that enable both sides to share resources and grow their own food. More...

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Comment by Alan Wyle on November 23, 2010 at 8:38pm
Hello from Lewes in East Sussex,

Today a colleague and I are visiting the House of Commons to discuss "The Big Society" with an MP. This is the idea to give back more responsibility to the people for their own services.I have been working with villages who buy and run their own village shop since the early nineties and am convinced that creating Community Shops is laying down the foundation stone on which to build the Sustainable Community. It is a simple fact that if people can be persuaded to work together and buy a share in the shop, the shop flourishes. It is all about ownership. The shop in Kirdford, West Sussex was recently opened by Julie Walters and is doing well. I was there yesterday.
One of our ideas which fits in with your report is "Crop For The Shop" where the village grows local, seasonal produce as organic as possible and grown for taste not looks. The produce is then exchanged for vouchers which can be spent in the shop. Any surplus profit has to be reinvested in the village.
We are also looking at developing a European funded project working with South Holland, Flanders and Northern France.
We run a weekly local produce market in the Old Market Tower in Lewes (1793). It is going really well. If my wife spends money there it must be good. The web site (under development) is Your comments would be appreciated.
Next time you are in the UK give us a call. We operate every Friday morning.
If you want to keep in touch please contact me at
Comment by Carol Shantal on November 18, 2010 at 11:08am
Its a GREAT idea! Seems to be a bit of gap between those wanting to make land available to others and those with the skills, and TIME to do it. Times will change:)
Comment by Pete Russell on November 17, 2010 at 8:41pm
Keep the hope Steph. ;-)
Comment by Steph Hamilton on November 17, 2010 at 8:39pm
This is EXACTLY what I want to do. I have posted an ad on my profile page asking for someone to come and share my garden but sadly no one has answered it yet! There is still hope!!! It is such a good idea and really will be the way of the future....
Comment by Jo Drysdall on November 17, 2010 at 7:44pm
This is also being done in England, with the Landshare project started by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall of River Cottage fame. Bloody brilliant, I say.


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