In rural states, gardening and foraging helpe

Corn Seedlings

image: 

Person plants corn seedlings


view more 

Credit: Sally McCay

New research on rural New Englanders shows that gardening, hunting, fishing and other HWFP activities are important tools for maintaining food security through extreme events, such as pandemics or climate change events. 

University of Vermont and University of Maine researchers found that both food insecurity and home and wild food production (HWFP) – gardening, hunting, fishing, foraging, and having “backyard” poultry or livestock – increased significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic, and those who undertook HWFP activities exhibited improved food security 9-12 months later.  

The paper, published in Scientific Reports, surveyed over 1,000 individuals in rural Vermont and Maine (the two most rural states in the country) to identify their food security and food sources. 

Researchers hope that policymakers will consider how HWFP might lead to a more resilient food system. “Home and wild food production is not a silver

Read the rest