The Detroit Free press, several years ago, had an interesting article by Samantha Gross titled “When the oil runs dry.” While the focus of the article was on the concern for oil prices and the world demand versus supply, it posed the question: What if the cost per gallon of gas went to the point that families had trouble being able to afford fuel for transportation and more importantly, afford the foods that may be affected by high transportation costs?
I have always been concerned regarding social specialization and the effect of a disruption in the many goods and services that so many of us depend upon on a day-to-day basis. When I visit the many large cities or drive around the suburbs of those cities, I cannot help but wonder about the “what ifs.” In these concentrated areas of humanity, should the food supply be disrupted even for a relatively short time or a regional emergency cut off communities from one or another, what infrastructure can they fall back to to supply its families who have been enjoying three meals a day?
Do I think we are a midst a potential disaster or crisis? No, I do not, but I do think it important that communities be concerned about where their food sources are located. Do I think every city block should devote several acres of land to local food production? Well, perhaps as a community garden, it would be a good thing. The scale I would like to see is, say within a township area, a number of small farms that supply seasonally fresh vegetables, meats and dairy to the local community. Such encouragement could even evolve into the production of local artisan products like cheeses, cured hams and honey, to name a few. Some of these successful farms may even reach the scale and reputation of products like Prosciutto de parma or Parmesan Reggiano.
Another important lesson to glean from the Detroit Free press article is that all of us should have some basic skills in growing our own food, whether it is a full garden or a small area dedicated to the herbs we use in our own kitchens. Ether way, it makes for a great education and, most importantly, good eats.
Is there a Prosciutto de Rose (Rose Township) in our future?
So what say you?