Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
Community

Community

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Horizontal photo illustrating the MOFGA community

MOFGA has been at the heart of changing Maine culture and dramatically increasing the popularity of organic local agriculture and healthy rural living. Once a “fringe organization” that championed an alternative lifestyle, mainstream culture has actually moved towards MOFGA; so MOFGA is not so alternative anymore. MOFGA has stayed true to its roots.

MOFGA is a community. That community is best symbolized by its signature community gathering: the Common Ground Country Fair. At the heart of every Fair are two farmers' markets, one at each entrance, showcasing Maine’s organic farmers of all ages and genders. Yet the fair also includes many who supply organic farmers and gardeners with raw inputs and equipment, and also includes many who process, add value to, and package organic products for consumers. And the Fair includes extensive information transfer from those who know to those who want to learn, from traditional to innovative, techniques for organic farming and gardening. Then there are the sellers, the buyers, the advocates, the musicians, and the tire-kickers; thousands and thousands of them. Though possibly outside the inner core of the MOFGA community, most of today’s MOFGA members are organic enthusiasts, Common Ground Country Fair lifestyle practitioners, and folks who are generally supportive of “the idea of MOFGA.” Many of them are not farmers or gardeners or even rural residents at all. It’s a huge community.

The idea of MOFGA is that physical and emotional health comes from good organic food. Growing food, preparing food, sharing food. The core work that MOFGA does is to educate people – from novices to masters – about how to grow, prepare, and share good organic food. In addition to educating producers, MOFGA educates the general public, consumers, and policy makers about the value of organic food and is a fierce opponent of harmful chemicals and uncaring corporations.

MOFGA has long understood the interdependence of a thriving, local, organic food system and a healthy, sustainable environment. MOFGA recognizes the essential interconnections among organic farming and gardening and the survival of socially and economically just rural communities.

MOFGA demonstrates what it teaches; practices what it preaches. MOFGA models organic farming and gardening at the year-round Common Ground Education Center in Unity, through our apprentice and journeyperson farmer training programs, and through all our other activities. MOFGA helps people get their hands dirty. And not only when it comes to growing food.

MOFGA is organic in how it runs itself: fully inclusive, supporting trial and error, not overly structured, a web of connections, and nurturing innovative ideas and initiatives that take hold. MOFGA learns as it goes, based on what it experiences, and teaches from peer-to-peer.

MOFGA is trusted. More than a group of back-to-landers with gumption and know-how, MOFGA teachings are science-based and field-tested. Practitioners and policy-makers alike know that they can rely on information from MOFGA. Not only does MOFGA hold and share reliable information, MOFGA holds a vision for a better future endorsed by many.

So powerful is the vision that MOFGA holds for a simpler and healthier way of life, that thousands of people give time and money. The MOFGA community is not held together by contracts or compensation, but by generosity and compassion. MOFGA is a community of volunteers and donors. People love to give to what MOFGA stands for.