The next time a consumer opens the lid on a Stonyfield Farms yogurt container they're going to see an interesting solicitation: sign a petition to preserve farmland. The aim is to urge Congress to expand farmland stewardship and protection programs in the 2007 Farm Bill.
The message, printed on more than 8 million yogurt lids, will tell consumers the following: "In the time it takes you to eat this yogurt, ten acres of farmland will be lost to development." The lids will urge consumers to take action including signing a petition to Congress seeking more funds for USDA programs that reward farmers when they help preserve open spaces and provide a healthier environment, the company reports.
Stonyfield Farm claims a leadership position in public outreach on health and the environment using its yogurt lids, Web site and consumer events to reach millions of consumers to build awareness and action on healthy food choices, climate change, and organic and family farming.
The company notes that more than 200 members of Congress have already cosponsored legislation to boost USDA programs to reward farmland stewardship and protection. Stonyfield says two out of three farmers and ranchers offering to share the cost of clean water and wildlife habitat are turned away due to funding shortfalls.
Environmental Defense has set up a Web site - www.environmentaldefense.org/go/farms/ - for more information.