Anthony Flaccavento, organic farmer, consultant and author, was the featured speaker for Grayson LandCare on Monday, September 19th.
He talked about his recently published book, Building a Healthy Economy From the Bottom Up to a standing-room only audience, followed by Q & A and book-signing. His book begins with six myths about the economy that hold us back, then gives examples of many current successful projects that illustrate how economic activity can boost community resilience and personal incomes when people work together and try innovative approaches. He ends with the caveat that personal responsibility and small local projects won’t be enough to change the world-wide economic model advanced by large corporations; we will need to network and use political power to change policies that hamper small businesses and small-scale agriculture.
Anthony & his wife were hosted by Summerfield Farm, where the current and upcoming Board members met with them for a potluck breakfast of local foods and toured conservation practices on the farm.
A pioneer in the local foods and sustainable development movements, Anthony has worked for over 30 years to strengthen the economy and food system throughout Appalachia and beyond. In 1995, he founded Appalachian Sustainable Development, which in turn launched social enterprises including farmers markets, a regional food hub, and sustainable forestry and wood products businesses. Anthony left ASD in 2009 when he started his consulting firm, SCALE, Inc, to help catalyze and strengthen healthier, more sustainable economies and food systems in both rural and urban settings. SCALE works with communities around the US, as well as in Canada and, most recently, Australia.