Are You a Member of Dakota Rural Action?


One of the organizations that can most positively influence the preservation of our quality of life here in South Dakota is Dakota Rural Action.

They are a grassroots, family agriculture, and conservation group wherein the members are able to identify energy, natural resource, and farmland issues in their area and get back-up help and support from the organization.

In this area, the Hyperion oil refinery/Gorilla Project has been worrying a lot of residents.  I would like to see a larger DRA membership base here so that we can engage their resources and support to help us with the land, water, and clean air issues we’ve been talking about lately.

We need all the help we can get, and the more members we can gather from this area, the more we can count on their support.  You don’t need to be a farmer or producer to join–you just need to be concerned about the quality of life and the preservation of natural resources here in South Dakota.

The link to Dakota Rural Action’s website is both above and to your right, and the link to their membership form is here.

You can join at one of their standard membership rates (which are very reasonable), or use the “limited income” option. Please consider joining DRA today.

There is strength in numbers!

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4 responses to this post.

  1. hey flying tomato – something i have been wondering for a long time might be a perfect thing for dra to undertake. thousands of dollars of food is being thrown away in vermillion every day by wally world, hy-vee and jones market. surely there must be a way to legislate this to direct those foods that are perfectly good except their use date has expired to senior citizens, the jails, the poor and needy. these big supermarkets would love to give this food away but cannot because of fear of lawsuits. DUMB!

  2. Posted by flyingtomato on November 7, 2008 at 10:11 am

    Doug–Did you mention this idea to Frank? I met with him last night, and he said he’d also met with you while he was in the area.

    I think DRA is focused more on family farms and environment. I would guess the food issue might be a good one for the Welcome Table folks to consider, as they are more of a food distribution entity. They might be able to use some of those foods that are close to or at their expiration date for their weekly free community meal.

    I agree that the waste of food is dumb, but I wonder about the nutritional quality of the foods being wasted. I know that many of the grocery stores have less overstock now that they use bar code scanners that indicate what needs ordering through a computer system. So, I’m guessing much of what is being tossed is pre-prepared, heavily processed, and full of fat and preservatives.

    Now, I’m not going to tell someone who is hungry they can’t have some ham salad because it’s not good for them, but a steady stream of these kinds of foods may solve a hunger crisis now, but sets up a health care crisis down the line–much like the one we see with diabetes and so-called “commod bod” on the reservations.

    –Rebecca

  3. Posted by Jacob Limmer on November 13, 2008 at 9:35 am

    I heard that you met with Frank from DRA. That is great. I am the current chair of the Board of Directors. One of the beauties of a grassroots group like DRA is that we organize from the ground up. If your chapter or area wants to organize around an issue like grocery store waste, then you get some consensus and a game plan and go for it. About the only limitations are making sure that the issue falls within the mission of DRA (which the case above certainly would) and making sure there is a solid plan and resources to get the job done. And that is where the organizers come in. They can help with planning sessions and other logistics.

    Another strategy to consider would be whether or not a DRA group could help another group accomplish the goal. We’ve often played a supportive role along side other groups or organizations.

    Thanks for taking the time to post about DRA. It is a great group of people with a lot of potential for change in our region.

  4. Posted by flyingtomato on November 13, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    Thanks, Jake. Good to hear from you, and I hope business is good at the cafe.

    I am very interested in organizing around local food in this area, as it’s my major focus with the community gardens, Farmers Market, and other involvements. I think a local chapter could be really helpful in boosting awareness and expanding the local markets to allow local farmers to boost production.

    I’ve distributed most of the food books Frank left for me–managed to get them in the local farm supply store as well, so hopefully that will result in some more listings for the next edition.

    Best,

    –Rebecca

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