Friday, August 30, 2013

New Farmers in North Carolina: Karen Refugees

[Note: This post, prepared originally for the NC Folklife Institute's NCFood blog, is hosted on the institute’s website, with excerpts and a link to the website posted here.] 

More than 14,000 refugees have been resettled in North Carolina in the past decade, according to the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement. As these refugee communities grow, they are beginning to transform food traditions of our state and expand the agricultural offerings at farmers’ markets and farm-to-home deliveries provided through community-supported agriculture.

Open house at community farm of
Karen refugees provides opportunity
to observe agricultural achievements.
Just last year more than 2,000 refugees fleeing persecution in their homelands were resettled in North Carolina by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. More than 20 counties now serve as their homes, although the majority have been resettled in the Triad (Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point region), the Triangle (Wake, Durham, and Orange Counties), and the Charlotte metropolitan area.

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