The California Roundtable on Agriculture and the Environment (CRAE) released A Call to Action to Preserve California Agricultural Land in 2014. This policy brief calls upon the Governor and the legislature to create a California Agricultural Land Preservation Policy and Strategy that encourages local and state governments to prioritize agricultural land protection, as well as providing resources and creating incentives for voluntary protection of agricultural land in collaboration with willing landowners.
“In the world of food and farming systems, the problems are always complex and the players and interests are diverse. Making change in such an environment requires patience and skilled facilitation to bring groups together for collaborative action. Ag Innovations has been doing just that for many years and they do it very effectively.”
California has the most productive farmland in the world. Unfortunately, it is being converted to nonagricultural uses at a rate of 30,000 acres per year, threatening our food production capacity, environmental health, and economy. However, the members of CRAE believe that opportunities exist to slow this trend. A Call to Action to Preserve California Agricultural Land describes a suite of policy recommendations, including:
- Fully fund efforts to understand the scope of the challenge.
- Strengthen state and local land use policies that prioritize the conservation of California’s agricultural lands.
- Finance long-term and permanent conservation of agricultural land.
- Keep farmers farming by ensuring strong markets for agricultural products, appropriate regulations, adequate labor force and infrastructure, and community support.