Frequently Asked Questions – Protecting Farmland
Q: Why protect farmland? A: Answer
Q: What is the economic value of farmland in Ontario? A: Answer
Q: What is prime farmland?
A: In the 1960s, the Government of Canada realized the importance of mapping the country for resource management. The resulting Canada Land Inventory (CLI) is a multi-disciplinary land inventory of rural Canada. According to the CLI, there are seven classes of land denoting suitability for agriculture: Class 1 is the most suitable for agriculture; Class 7 is the least suitable for agriculture due to significant constraints such as poor soils, unsuitable climate, difficult topography, excessive stones, etc. In the context of Food and Water First, “prime” farmland is considered classes 1 through 3.
Only 5% of Canada’s land mass is made up of prime farmland; only 0.5% is class 1. Soil analysis done for southern Ontario confirms 50% is prime agricultural land, and roughly 20% of that is Class 1. (source) For more about the land inventory in Ontario see: Application of CLI in Ontario
Q: How many people in Ontario? Canada? The world? A: Answer
Q: Farms are the principal source of pesticide, herbicide and fertilizer run-off. Why do farmers use pesticides? A: Answer
Q: What are biosolids? A: Answer
Q: How about GMOs? A: Answer
Q: Farms are industrializing — aren’t they part of the problem? A: Answer
Q: We can always use greenhouses and hydroponics, so why do we need to preserve traditional farmland? A: Answer
Q: With global warming and climate change, won’t it be easier to grow food? A: Answer
Q: Can’t we always import our food from somewhere else? A: Answer
Q: What is farm fragmentation? A: Answer
Q: How is Food & Water First different from Farmers Feed Cities?
A: Food & Water First and Farmers Feed Cities are both public awareness campaigns initiated by the agricultural community. Farmers Feed Cities focuses on creating a connection between people, the food that we eat, how that food is produced and developing an appreciation for farmers who produce it. Food and Water First concentrates on educating people about the importance of farmland and water, and encourages us to request change at all three levels of government to protect these critical resources into the future.
Q: What about marijuana? A: Answer