Grown in Oregon.
It’s that bounty of vegetables and meat at the market, the timber for your table or even the seeds for that soft lawn under your toes. They’re grown in Oregon.
From community gardens to family ranches our state’s agricultural lands are the cornerstone of the Oregon’s rural communities and our food systems. These lands are also critical for fish and wildlife habitats and they sustain traditions, preserving a local way of life. There are 16.3 million acres of agricultural lands in Oregon. That’s a landmass larger than the state of West Virginia (and 8 other states, too).
These lands are also largely family-owned—almost 80 percent of Oregon’s principal farm operators own their land (compared to 61 percent nationally). We are at a turning point in Oregon, as two-thirds of our farm and ranch lands will change hands in the next twenty years. COLT member land trusts are hearing from interested farmers and ranchers who want to prevent future fragmentation of their land, keep local ways of life and safeguard the ecological values they steward. Land trusts can support private farm, ranch and forest owners by purchasing conservation easements to protect migratory corridors and habitat of native plants and animals. Easements can be drafted to still allow productive use on private land.
The new Oregon Agriculture Heritage Program is an emerging opportunity to build partnerships between Oregon’s agriculture and conservation communities and address the needs of rural landowners in protecting public values on private farms and ranches.
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We are at a turning point in Oregon, as two-thirds of our farm and ranch lands will change hands in the next twenty years.
Why conserve land? Because food.
Policy Advocacy at Work
Oregon Agricultural Heritage Program provides the structure and funding to keep working lands working, while preserving and enhancing fish and wildlife benefits on these lands.
C2 Ranch. Photo Credit: Thomas Kirchen
Members at Work
The Conservation Fund helped create Oregon’s newest state forest by partnering with the Oregon Department of Forestry to purchase Gilchrist Forest in Klamath County.
Gilchrist State Forest Aerial View
Photo by Justin Bailie
Lower Nehalem Community Trust. Alder Creek garden
On the North Coast, the Lower Nehalem Community Trust’s Alder Creek Farm, a local community farm, provides over a ton (literally) of produce each year to the local food bank.