Tag Archives: VICFA

A ‘Real Food Campaign’ for Virginia


Important Press Release! Release date: 1/6/19

From: Virginia Independent Consumers and Farmers Association

Contact: Anne Buteau 434 260 4701

Go here for a better description of the bill and our press release with comments from Joel Salatin! http://vicfa.org/legislative/current-issues/

Richmond—A bill to extend additional entrepreneurial food craft opportunities to both consumers and farmers has been introduced in the
General Assembly by Delegate Matt Fariss. HB 1785 is dubbed “Campaign for Real Food” and would allow more foods generated in home kitchens
to be legally sold to neighbors.

Many local food artisans run amok of government food regulations, denying innovation in the marketplace and choice to consumers. Fariss
believes local food opportunities and economies should increase rather than being held back by regulations designed for opaque, large-scale
industrial food producers and processors.

Following cottage food laws and food sovereignty laws proliferating around the U.S., this bill extends liberties secured in 2008 and 2013 by
the Virginia Independent Consumers and Farmers Association (VICFA) and other freedom-oriented interests, to push back against unnecessary and inappropriate regulatory licenses that restrict local food options.

“Refusing to appreciate the difference between a 500-employees 24/7/365 export-oriented processing facility and a neighbor’s homemade
food craft is unnecessarily prohibitive to choice, innovation, and opportunity. Farmers and food shoppers need relief from these onerous and limiting
regulations,” said Joel Salatin, Virginia farmer and long-time member of VICFA.

HB 1785 specifically addresses relief for Virginians wishing to make and sell homemade yogurt, plus family favorites such as macaroni cheese pie, chicken pot pie, meatloaf, quiches and other baked goods containing cheese or meat, as well as pumpkin pies, baked cheesecakes, and other baked desserts. These nutrient dense types of foods are currently not allowed under current regulations, but are regularly shared at community pot luck suppers, yet you cannot give them to your neighbor and accept money in exchange.

For more information, contact VICFA at 434 260 4701

Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm. Co founder of VICFA


Gluten, or Glyphosate? Which is the Real Culprit in the Current Health Pandemic?



What’s the Darn Deal with Modern Wheat?

Suddenly in the last 25 years or so,  many people in the USA have been diagnosed as gluten intolerant or with Celiac Disease.  This fairly modern problem has arisen through the eating of grains such as wheat, oats, rye and barley. Various symptoms occur in those affected. Problems such as intestinal pain and bloating, headaches, rashes, poor digestion issues, brain fog, body aches, autoimmune responses, and more. Those who are prone to the debilitating  properties of gluten can develop disease due to the damaged intestinal villi ( the finger-like projections that line the small intestines). Those who suffer from gluten intolerance and Celiac disease know this all too well.

BUT..is it actually the gluten, (a grain protein), that is the cause of this? Grains that have been eaten all through human history that are full of beneficial nutrients and complex carbohydrates when prepared properly? The growing, soaking, drying, grinding, fermenting and subsequent baking of breads of all types has been traditionally utilized and consumed throughout all of societal time. What is happening now that so many can not eat bread? Why is wheat so different now?

Whole Grain Bread

Whole Grain, Baked Bread

A “Glutton for Gluten”

I, as well as so many others, am a “Glutton for Gluten”.  Most everyone loves bread and wheat products (pizza and pasta!) Those satisfying carbohydrates that are full of iron, B vitamins, and minerals, as long as they are whole grain and not refined and processed. Why suddenly are we having problems with bread? What is happening to our modern wheat and grains that so many are unable to eat them anymore?

Toxic Chemicals

Toxic Chemicals in our Food System

The Evil Empire of ” M’Santo and his spawn Roun Dupe”

Could it be the wide spread prevalence of herbicides and pesticides? GMO’s ( Genetically Modified Organisms) or a certain product with the initials “R.U”? I believe so! What else could be the reason why folks can’t eat they way we used to eat? While these herbicide chemicals are not yet genetically introduced to the seeds of wheat (yet!), they are sprayed liberally all over the almost finished fields so that the grains die back, fall down, and then are easily harvested up my machinery. Industrial farming efficiency, at the cost of our health! It’s the large laboratory made chemical glyphosate that is the culprit. “Glyphosate is a broad-spectrum systemic herbicide and crop desiccant. It is an organophosphorus compound, specifically a phosphonate. It is used to kill weeds, especially annual broad leaf weeds and grasses that compete with crop.” (from Wiki). Glyphosphates, the dangerous chemical that most all of us are now exposed to and inadvertently consuming here in the USA, and elsewhere where countries apply it. And the GMO seeds and the resulting food plants are truly not designed for the human body. Yet most of the unsuspecting public masses are eating it up in droves.  It can’t be good for our health. It’s just not natural.


“Back in the Old Country”

Northern Israel

Fertile Hills Looking out to the Sea of Galilee, Israel

For many Americans who have their heritage not too far back from overseas, they may recall hearing stories from the Grandparents or Great Grandparents who talk of the food from their country of origin. How they were able to eat each day. Fresh, local, straight off the farm, and from the village or city butchers, bakers, and healthy food makers. The indigenous diets from “back in the day” were full of life giving nutrients. Heritage recipes and food preparations that were all natural and fit into a balanced lifestyle. They did not have any of these new chemicals sprayed all over and into their foods and the lab manipulated seeds that change the genetics the way we do now. Longevity with barely a disease were some of their lifestyle attributes. In our USA history, the Colonists came with their food and farming methods and learned so much from the Native Americans. For much of early American history, there was good health and balanced eating (proteins, fats and carbohydrates).  Small scale farming and raising of livestock that was prepared and consumed fresh (and mostly indigenous). Fish caught off shore or in lakes and rivers, not from ‘force fed fish farms’, pond farms that go against the nature of the fishes normal habitat and selected diet. How can we now get “back to the Old Country”?


“Bread, the Staff of Life” and “Wine, the Fruit of the Vine”

Grapevines of Israel

Grapevines of Israel

Last year we had the amazing privilege of traveling to Israel for 2 weeks. Besides all we saw and did in the Holy Land, on our amazing self designed tour, we ate the most incredible and delicious fresh food. Israeli and Middle Eastern cuisine. The wheat products tasted phenomenal. In most instances the wheat was fresh ground and baked into breads and pastries. I have many friends who are gluten sensitive in the USA, but were able to eat all grain foods in Israel with no ill effects. What does that tell you? As far as I am aware, they do not use glyphosates on their farms or gmo plants! First hand we were able to visit the farms and food fields of much of Israel. It was an encouraging experience.


“What Can We Do?”

Fresh Garlic from Grow in Grace Farm

Fresh and Organic Garlic!

In my personal experience, I have found that I can make a difference for myself and in my own circle of family and friends. For right now in my life, it’s what I can manage. I can immerse myself getting educated, ( by researching and through first hand experience, learning from others around me), and by spreading this knowledge in my community (and in the occasional blog post!) Living in the countryside of Virginia has enabled us to have an organic farm in which we can grow food for our family. Also the ability to take part in, and help out with, a State wide food and farmer advocacy group called VICFA ( Virginia Independent Consumers and Farmers Association), that was co-founded by the “now famous farmer” Joel Salatin of Polyface Farm. Getting involved by joining this group, and by my being on the board of directors for a few years now, has helped me to learn and get active on the food and farming freedom movement in so many ways. Supporting VICFA can make a noble impact and important difference for the lives of so many, and especially for the next generations. This farm and food freedom advocacy group’s main mission and story is: “Our purpose is to promote and preserve unregulated direct farmer-to-consumer trade that fosters availability of locally grown or home produced food products. Working to bring Farm and Food Freedom to the Virginia people. VICFA was started by a handful of individuals in central Virginia who are deeply concerned about the over-regulation of small farm sales direct to consumers. Consumers were, in fact, being denied their right to have fresh, wholesome foods from farmers whom they knew and trusted. Incorporated in April of 2001 as a non-profit corporation, VICFA’s mission statement was and remains: “To promote and preserve unregulated direct farmer-to-consumer trade that fosters availability of locally-grown or home-produced food products.”

Local farmers growing and raising natural and organic foods without the use of toxic chemicals, and implementing the wisdom from the past, ( farming before chemical fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides), can be supported by us all buying from them at the farmers market. Or if you can, grow and raise the foods yourself!

Polyface Farm

Susan V., Joel Salatin, and Dr. Sina McCullough


Please consider joining VICFA today. We are hosting an event in Richmond, Virginia, “A Night of Solutions”, on June 22, 2018 featuring Joel Salatin and Dr. Sina McCullough (author of the highly informative book ” Hands Off My Food”) http://www.handsoffmyfood.com . It will be an educational and fun evening to learn and fellowship with others who care about health, food, and farming freedoms. Please visit the vicfa website to learn more and get tickets to our event. http://www.vicfa.org


Virginia Raw Milk and Farming Freedoms Prevail! Virginia is for Food Freedom Lovers.




kids and cows 045
Connecting with Cows

Persistence Pays Plenty! Virginia is for ‘Food Freedom Lovers’.

Through grass roots efforts, the voices of the multitudes of farm and food freedom lovers has been heard. On Thursday, February 1, 2018, at least 100 Virginians showed up in force at the Richmond, Virginia General Assembly hearing to oppose SB962 Bill. A Bill sponsored by Senator Mark Obenshain (R-26). Many that were not able to attend the hearing spoke up through phone, calls, emails, social media, and by word of mouth to spread through communities. The Farm and Food freedom advocacy group in Virginia VICFA ( Virginia Independent Consumers and Farmers Association), has been working feverishly and diligently since 2001.

VICFA was started by a handful of individuals in central Virginia who were concerned about the over-regulation of small family farm sales direct to consumers. Consumers, (potential customers), were being denied their right to have fresh and wholesome foods from the farmers with whom they knew and had trusted. So VICFA was formed as a non profit corporation with the mission statement “To promote and preserve unregulated direct farmer to consumer trade that fosters availability of locally grown or home produced food products”. 


The bill, SB962 and what would have been on the docket for next week HB825, is an invasion of private property rights. The herd share agreement is a private contract between the farmer and the consumer giving the consumer an ownership interest in a dairy animal. Distribution of milk through a herd share contract is a private transaction which should not be subject to government regulation.


Virginia Independent Consumers and Farmers Association

Here is the update from VICFA


SB 962- killed by 8/7 vote

HB 825 will be struck

Delegate Barry Knight will be striking HB 825 in the upcoming House Agricultural Subcommitte meeting scheduled for this coming Monday February 5, 2018.

This is posted on the agenda-
“PLEASE NOTE-At the request of the patron (Knight) HB 825 will be struck at this meeting. Any citizens interested in HB 825 (Herd Shares) need not attend the meeting.”
Yesterday Senate Bill 962, was heard by a packed house of 100+ citizens who filled the room beyond standing, spilling into the adjacent hall and beyond. In a joint effort, VICFA members, Weston A. Price members, FTCLDF members, herd share farmers, herd share holders, their families, and many others were there to speak against the bill.

Many had visited the General Assembly throughout the week talking with Senators and Delegates on SB 962 and HB 825. The phone lines were flooded and email inboxes were filled Virginians opposing the bill.
Because of the massive public outcry, SB 962 failed to pass and was killed by a narrow 8 to 7 vote..

NAYS–Ruff, Petersen, Stanley, Black, Chafin, Dance, Suetterlein, McClellan–8.

Voted to kill the bill
YEAS–Stuart, Hanger, Obenshain, Marsden, Ebbin, Lewis, Mason–7.
Voted to pass the bill

To see the recorded session, here is the link http://virginia-senate.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php…
(Start at the 45 min mark to go straight to SB 962)
Thank you!!
We would like to thank all who called, emailed, shared, and came to the General Assembly to speak about these bills.
Please contact the Senators that voted to kill SB 962 to thank them for their support and please thank Delegate Barry D. Knight for striking HB 825,
for striking the bill…

Senator Phon Email
Richard H. Stuart (804) 698-7528

Emmett W. Hanger, Jr.
(804) 698-7524

Mark D. Obenshain
804) 698-7526

Frank M. Ruff, Jr.
804) 698-7515

J. Chapman Petersen
(804) 698-7534

David W. Marsden
(804) 698-7537

William M. Stanley, Jr.
(804) 698-7520

Richard H. Black
(804) 698-7513

Adam P. Ebbin
804) 698-7530

Lynwood W. Lewis, Jr.
(804) 698-7506

A. Benton “Ben” Chafin
(804) 698-7538

Rosalyn R. Dance
804) 698-7516

David R. Suetterlein
(804) 698-7519

T. Montgomery “Monty” Mason
(804) 698-7501

Jennifer L. McClellan
(804) 698-7509

Senate Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources