A Chronicle of Successful Organizing:

2013    Led efforts in Bowling Green, Floyd Co. and Berea for local food system development by facilitating Community Food System Assessments. CFA organizes key stakeholders to get local food into the State Capitol Annex Cafeteria. In Louisville CFA leaders organize grassroots leaders in the local food movement for a meeting with Mayor Greg Fischer of Louisville. CFA clarifiies the process for obtaining free EBT machines for farmers markets.

2012   CFA members meet 41 times with Kentucky Legislators and successfully lobby for HB 419 for a voluntary income tax check off to Kentucky food banks to use to purchase food directly from Kentucky farmers. CFA is named to the Farm to Food Banks Trust Fund Board and the Kentucky Hemp Commission.  CFA members testify about the needs of beginning farmers, EKY agriculture, the right for farmers and consumers to share livestock ownership, and urban agriculture. CFA successfully advocates to the Kentucky Agriculture Development Board for the expansion of the Farmers Market Infrastructure Grant program to include Marketing and Community Outreach.

2011   CFA members launch the Agriculture Legacy Initiative to support beginning farmers and the future of Kentucky family farming. CFA begins participating on the statewide Farm to School Task Force.

2010   CFA members celebrate 25 years of community organizing for change. CFA members successfully lobby legislators to amend the controversial SB 105 (now HB 398), the Livestock Care Standards Commission. Members get set to celebrate 25 years.

2009   First CFA Food Summit held in Louisville. CFA members rally in Louisville to protest USDA NAIS hearings, leading to a meeting between Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack and CFA leaders. CFA wins passage of SB 84 requiring state agencies to report local agricultural products buying.

2008   CFA members win passage of HB 495, ensuring that participation in the National Animal Identification System remains strictly voluntary and from coercing farmers into the program.

2007   CFA members win passage of HB120, allowing farmers to sell cooked food at farmers markets. A citizen led Community Food Assessment of West Louisville entitled Bridging the Divide: Growing Self Sufficiency in our Food Supply is completed with policy recommendations to improve access to fresh local foods in all communities. Grasshoppers LLC, the first farmer owned distribution business in the state opens.

2006   CFA members win passage of mandatory state parks buying bill HB 669.

2005   WIC demonstration project begins at Farmers’ Markets in Louisville, helping to grow the markets’ customer base. CFA members were successful in removing biotech money from the state budget.

2004   KY Agriculture Development Board adopts the CFA proposed regional markets plan. Smoketown-Shelby Park Farmers’ Market opens; the West Louisville Food Working Group is formed.

2003   CFA members win passage of House Bill 391, legislation that allows home-processing, micro-processing, and in-state certification. CFA develops a five-year plan for the creation of a locally innovative food economy (LIFE). Portland and Rowan Street Farmers’ Markets are established and CFA Louisville Office opens.

2002   County Councils, under CFA’s leadership, ensure that the first $184,000,000 in Tobacco Settlement Funds are used to help meet the needs of Kentucky farmers and support the development of a local food economy, rather than being used to fund biotechnology.

2001   CFA presents the Greenprint for Kentucky Agriculture to the governor, successfully influencing ‘Kentucky’s Long-Term Plan for the Development of Agriculture’, a policy document that allows the state to redefine the family farm and create a locally driven economy. The content and direction of the Long-Term plan clearly reflects the mission and principles of CFA’s Greenprint.

2000   CFA members organize to pass House Bill 611, legislation that gives Tobacco Settlement funds back to tobacco regions. CFA is instrumental in providing the structure for spending the funds, setting up local councils to make the process people-driven and farmer-inclusive.

1999   CFA submits a Vision for Revitalized Agriculture to the governor and kicks off a petition card drive to urge legislators to ensure Phase I tobacco monies are used for the benefit of tobacco regions. CFA members in Monroe, Cumberland & Allen Counties pass local poultry ordinances.

1998   CFA ensures that the Southern Dairy Compact Legislation is passed in Kentucky and corporate integrator responsibility is included into swine regulations.

1997   CFA members organize against 3 mega hog operations in Kentucky and hang on to health care reform in special session called to repeal the reforms.

1996   CFA members defeat attempts by insurance companies to repeal the 1994 healthcare reform and successfully increase the monies available for cost-share assistance. CFA members help establish the first Lexington Harvest Festival.

1995   CFA begins organizing youth, begins building our Fund For the Future, hosts one of the most successful Farm Aid concerts ever, coordinates several demonstration projects designed to identify supplemental sources of income to tobacco and publishes State of the South, charting university research and education priorities for development of a sustainable economy in the region.

1994   CFA begins the Kentucky Leadership for Agricultural and Environmental Sustainability (KLAES), promotes a tobacco reinvestment proposal in the halls of Congress, prevents rural schools from closing and successfully fights for new Water Quality Legislation, a cost-share bill that helps farmers install pollution abatement practices, the most far-reaching health care reform legislation in the nation and repeals of a special tax imposed on tobacco farmers.

1993   CFA members help form Kentucky Organic Growers vegetable co-op and develop the Family Farm Loan Fund, matching investors with farmers unable to obtain credit from traditional sources.

1992   CFA members are appointed to the Governors Health Care Task-force, win adoption of State organic certification standards and establish ten additional labor hotlines.

1991   CFA co-founds the Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (SSAWG), wins approval of solid waste legislation which gave communities local control over landfills, organizes the first labor hotline to connect farmers who need help with people who need jobs and fights for a new dairy policy to protect family farmers.

1990   CFA persuades the Kentucky General Assembly to adopt House Bill 557 to provide loans to farmers and used the Community Reinvestment Act to negotiate with Kentucky National Bank to increase capital for Kentucky farmers.

1989   CFA members spearhead a statewide campaign opposing the passage of GATT and stop construction of a landfill and medical waste incinerator for out-of-state waste.

1988   CFA distributes 5,400 bushels of free seed corn to needy Kentucky farm families.

1987   CFA, with the National Family Farm Coalition, wins passage of the Agricultural Credit Act and successfully organizes farmers in Central Kentucky to resist signing contracts with Seaboard Farms.

1986   CFA establishes a credit hotline helping thousands of Kentucky farmers stay on the land. CFA incorporates.

1985   Farmers from several different counties across the Bluegrass Region meet at the Holiday Inn at Bardstown on July 9th for CFA’s first meeting