Flood Farm Collective
(text provided by Flood Farm Collective members)
Executive Summary for FFC
Flood Farm Collective is a consortium of small vegetable and cannabis gardens that work in cooperation with each other for the purpose of healing the people and the soil we interact with, feeding the families and participants of the gardens, and educating those families and participants on social agriculture, and social sustainability. The concept of “The Flood” was started though the artistic outlet of music and poetry. A flood is an overflowing of large amount of water beyond its normal confines. The feeling of being confined as people, whether it is physically or emotionally, intrigued and resonated with us metaphorically. We became that water during a flood because we are the embodiment of breaking confines and moving freely.
These gardens were established in 2017; the concept of The Flood was created in 2016. In the spring and summer of 2017 there were five gardens total -- two cannabis, three vegetable. Each garden was no more than 50 feet by 50 feet maximum. Donovan Riley Robinson was the main garden manager during the 2017 season and created a garden agreement with each property owner in order to manage their space for that season. Each agreement was seasonal. We grew a variety of herbs and vegetables such as: collards, kale, cayenne peppers, habanero peppers, lettuce, tomatoes of many varieties, calalou, corn, sunflowers, spinach, and variety of other vegetables and herbs the property owners selected. We helped cultivate cannabis at specific properties in which case we had separate specific agreements.
The United States’ systems of agriculture have failed to provide for the people in which it is supposed to serve, and the land in which it takes from. It is based in capitalist ideologies that promoted and lead to, slavery, racism, cannabis prohibition, mass incarceration, and the current crisis of American food deserts and the environmental destruction throughout history. Now, humanity is at a point of still learning how to exist socially yet our environmental clock is running out. We see an opportunity to change the direction of the U.S. agricultural systems through a basic lense of cooperative organizations creating a common mission of justice. For example, through the cannabis industry we can able to be economically self-sufficient while creating creative solutions to healing the earth as well as provide space to heal racism, advance resources within communities, and support a social awakening through agricultural healing.
In the current food Apartheid that we see today, The Flood Farm Collective was created as a means of change within the food system. With a passion for food, music, and sustainability the founders have collaborated by sharing access to resources and skills toward a common mission. There are an overbearing number of people suffering through American Agriculture systems, whether it is because of food related illness, a lack of healthy food, suffering through agricultural labor initiatives, or being trapped in the prison system due to the possession of a crop. All of these aspects of agricultural oppression disproportionately affect people of color and have throughout history. As people of color with an interest in land and agriculture we feel a responsibility to protect the land and preserve its beauty by regenerating its resources rather then leaching them as imperialist white agriculture has done.
We are a garden and art collective on a mission to respond to the implicit forms of violence and racism that dictate the US farm and food systems, as well as our legal systems. We aim to continue to serve as a source of food, income, education, medicine, and healing for people of color in our direct community. Rooted in intention to expand our work, serve, and collaborate with victims of torn communities due to the War on Drugs and historical marginalization in the United States; we acknowledge the unjust laws surrounding cannabis prohibition, as well as the black, brown, and disenfranchised that suffer from the oppression of food apartheid, (e.g., food deserts) and respond accordingly.
We aim to spearhead a movement that positions farmers, vendors, artists, and communities of color as direct beneficiaries of the organic food movement and the lucrative cannabis industry. We believe that doing so will initiate a crucial step towards social and environmental justice.