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Community launches campaign to help storm-destroyed organic farms

by Rowena Power


On March 26th two organic farms in southwestern Nova Scotia were hit so hard by the spring "weather bomb" that their newly built greenhouses were completely destroyed. Winds of over 140km per hour also ruined newly planted crops and seedlings inside the greenhouses of Whippletree Farm (near Annapolis Royal) and Wild Rose Farm (near Weymouth), causing a total damage of more than $35,000. (video clip of the storm battering the greenhouse to pieces). 'Acts of God' such as storms, are not covered by their farms' insurance policies but their communities have rallied to their assistance.

April 15, 2014

For immediate release

On March 26th two organic farms in southwestern Nova Scotia were hit so hard by the spring "weather bomb" that their newly built greenhouses were completely destroyed. Winds of over 140km per hour also ruined newly planted crops and seedlings inside the greenhouses of Whippletree Farm (near Annapolis Royal) and Wild Rose Farm (near Weymouth), causing a total damage of more than $35,000. (video clip of the storm battering the greenhouse to pieces). 'Acts of God' of this kind, are not covered by their farms' insurance policies.

A unique Fundrazr campaign (https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/9jfyf/ab/33BMf9) is now raising money to help replace the lost greenhouses and after only a few days is 1/4 of the way to its target. The campaign also aims to attract volunteers who wish to help the farmers rebuild after the devastating storm and there have been numerous offers of help through the Fundrazr site. The funds raised are managed pro-bono by ACORN (the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network).

These farms are well-respected members of Nova Scotia's organic farming community, and the storm's devastation inspired members of the local food movement to action. After hearing of the catastrophe, community member Rowena Power launched the campaign to help Wild Rose Farm's Gilberte Doelle and Whippletree Farm's Nicole Burkhard, Stewart Fotheringham and 6-month old Kieran.

The impact of the storm damage on the farmers is crippling for they not only lost their greenhouses and the crops within, but without insurance money they have no ability to rebuild. Plus without greenhouses to grow crops in, they can't generate money to finance the desperately needed rebuilding on their own.

"Insurance doesn't cover 'acts of God' so they only have their community to fall back on," said Power. "Anyone who enjoys delicious food grown by local Nova Scotian farmers is part of that community, and can lend a hand either through a donation or with their own elbow grease."

Just one week before the tragic storm Wild Rose's Gilberte Doelle brought freshly harvested organic spinach from her greenhouse to her local farmers market. A few days later the storm destroyed her greenhouse along with her hopes of recovering enough to grow a successful summer's crop. That same storm left Nicole and Stew's greenhouse at Whippletree Farm looking like this.
 

 

 

 

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Topics: Food
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