Everyone is hopping on the green, and sustainable farming trend, even food giant Kraft. And while my feelings about Kraft are just slightly better than my feelings about Monsanto, I have to say good for them. What Kraft is doing reminds me of the Pepsi Refresh project in the sense that they are actually trying to provide some good on the neighborhood level, and if it means people actually eat better in this country I’m all for it.
Kraft and Triscuit in collaboration with non-profit organization Urban Farming have launched a new campaign to encourage the growth of the home farming movement. To kick-start the efforts of urbanite farmers looking to plant their own gardens, 4 million boxes of Triscuits will include seed packets and instructions on getting started with planting and nurturing your future crops. The campaign is not revolutionary but, the sponsored “Home Farming” website does contain some fun social components that allow urban farmers to share photos, stories and tips and the partnership is working to build 50 community-based home farms across the country. The link between the physical product and the social space of the website is handled fairly well, although I’d be interested to see what kind of results they get. (how many people register from information on the box, how many people actually plant a garden, how many people actively participate with the website, etc.) Overall Kraft has done a solid job with site production, integrating rich media content alongside the social components. In addition, Kraft has been very smart about allowing the user to share with every other social network powerhouses like Facebook, Twitter, Stumbleupon, Google, etc.
When you look at the concerns over the economic, environmental and health impacts of how are food is grown, and made available, to the public, it’s nice to see a brand like Kraft (no matter how you feel about giant food processing conglomerates) push to make the conversation about food production more public. It’s hard to tell if these small scale models of urban farming will really change the current state of food production in North America. The real importance might simply be in experimenting with what works and raising social awareness about the food we all eat.
You have to admit that at the end of the day, it’s certainly more satisfying to be eating something grown in your backyard, on your porch, or down the block in the community urban garden.