Help Save a Michigan Family Farm


| 11/19/2012 5:46:29 AM


Tags: michigan, right to farm laws, small farms, shady grove farm, Colleen Vanderlinden,

MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers understand the importance of locally-grown food, of sustainable, small-scale farming, and the need to support those small-scale food producers. I hope you'll help me try to save this small family farm in Michigan's upper peninsula.

The Farm  

Shady Grove Farm is a 6.5-acre homestead in the small town of Forsyth Township, Michigan. The family purchased the land, started growing food, started keeping chickens and goats, and is doing their best to not only live a more sustainable lifestyle, but to share that lifestyle with their community as well. The farm uses natural growing methods, and they sell their eggs and produce to their neighbors and at local farmer's markets.

The Problem 

Unfortunately, the township has cited the Buchler family (the farm's owners) saying that they cannot keep livestock on their farm, that they have to get rid of the animals to comply with township ordinances. The family (rightly!) disagrees, arguing that Michigan's Right to Farm law supersedes the township's zoning ordinances. Their case is going to court, and is being heard on November 20th and 21st. The video below explains the situation, and it is definitely worth a watch: 

 




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