Action Alert

Fair trade or free trade? Let your voice be heard on Minnesota’s future!

The Obama Administration is negotiating two new mega trade deals (one with Pacific Rim countries, another with Europe) entirely in secret, with the goal of further expanding the NAFTA-model of free trade. These trade agreements could have major impacts on Minnesota's farmers, workers, small business owners and rural communities. They could limit Minnesota’s ability to support local food and energy systems and grow local businesses. In order to stay up to speed, Minnesota has set up a new Trade Policy Advisory Council (TPAC) to advise the state legislature and Governor.

TPAC wants to hear from Minnesotans: What concerns do you have about free trade? What role could TPAC play in the future? Now is your opportunity to have a say in our future trade policy. Complete the survey and let them know future trade negotiations should be public, not secret. Help ensure the voices of all Minnesotans are heard in the development of trade agreements and that they protect local control and our quality of life. The free trade model has failed for Minnesota and we need a new approach to trade. Help ensure the voices of all Minnesotans are heard before trade agreements are completed, and that they protect local control, our natural resources and our quality of life.

Please take five minutes and complete the survey. To find out more about these trade agreements, go to

Document Library

Format: 2014

February 2013

Networking Small Urban Farmers Markets

Posted February 4, 2013

Local Food, Mini Markets, Food

Overview While some Minneapolis neighborhoods enjoy a bountiful supply of healthy foods, others do not. Mini farmers markets help address this challenge by bringing fresh, locally grown foods into Minneapolis neighborhoods. This manual shares IATP’s experience building and managing a network of these small...

January 2013

A year of squandered opportunities to resolve the food crisis

Posted January 31, 2013

Markets, Food, Food Reserves, Food security

January 31, 2013 – A drought in the United States last year sparked the third price spike in international food commodity markets in the last five years, again pushing maize, wheat, and soybean prices to record highs. Why are we still seeing such volatility six years after prices shot up in 2007? Have global...

Minnesota set to lead on green chemistry through innovative partnerships

Posted January 22, 2013

Green Jobs, Business and industry, Environment, Green chemistry

Business leaders will gather in Minnesota on Friday, January 25, to discuss how green chemistry—an approach to the design, manufacture and use of chemical products to intentionally reduce or eliminate chemical hazards—is becoming central to their success. Cohosted by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade...

Beyond the Farm Bill

Posted January 9, 2013

Agriculture, Farm Bill

The failure of Congress to pass a Farm Bill in 2012, and the ensuing disastrous nine-month extension that eviscerated a score of programs, illustrates how impotent this policy tool has become. Instead of addressing the urgent challenges our food system faces, the Farm Bill is a patchwork of programs that not only fail...

December 2012

Frozen Local: Strategies for Freezing Locally Grown Produce for the K-12 Marketplace

Posted December 11, 2012

Local Food, Food

Executive summary Farm to School programs, linking children in K-12 schools with locally grown foods and the farmers who produce them are growing by leaps and bounds across the United States. In 2012, more than 12,400 schools were engaged in Farm to School activities.1 In Minnesota, where the Institute for Agriculture...

Autism, Environment and Diet: Questions and Answers

Posted December 10, 2012

Food and Health, Autism, Food, Health

Q: What causes autism? A: There is no one cause of autism. Multiple factors in our food and broader environment combine with inherited factors to contribute to autism. All of these factors can play different roles, and can take on various levels of significance in different individuals—all of us are unique in...

Food + Justice = Democracy conference steering committee

Posted December 7, 2012

Food Justice, Food, Justice

Steering committee for the Food + Justice = Democracy conference that took place in Minneapolis September 24–26.

Food + Justice = Democracy conference speaker bios

Posted December 7, 2012

Food Justice, Food, Justice

Bios for the speakers at the Food + Justice = Democracy conference in Minneapolis September 24–26.

Food + Justice = Democracy Peoples Movement Assembly

Posted December 7, 2012

Food Justice, Food, Justice

Information on the Peoples Movement Assembly at the Food + Justice = Democracy conference in Minneapolis September 24–26.

Food + Justice = Democracy conference agenda

Posted December 7, 2012

Food Justice, Food, Justice

The full agenda for the Food + Justice = Democracy conference that took place September 24–26 in Minneapolis.

November 2012

Grow Ahead connects coffee drinkers and growers in alternative finance model

Posted November 27, 2012

Agriculture, Fair Trade

MINNEAPOLIS – A new approach to social trade finance and crowd funding is offering coffee lovers the chance to support the small-scale farmers that produce their favorite brew. Grow Ahead, led in part by the Minneapolis roaster Peace Coffee, connects coffee growers with critically needed capital, bringing small...

October 2012

No Time to Lose: 147 Studies Supporting Public Health Action to Reduce Antibiotic Overuse in Food Animals

Posted October 30, 2012

 147 Studies Supporting Public Health Action to Reduce Antibiotic Overuse in Food Animals  

No Time to Lose

Posted October 26, 2012

Food and Health, Healthy Food Action, Antibiotics, Health

For all 147 studies, download the expanded version of the bibliography. 1. Antibiotic resistance and why it occurs Health professionals in training learn the basics of antibiotic resistance summarized, for example, in Levy (1999, 2002),1,2 Tenover (2006)3 and Courvalin (2006).4 As science evolves, it has become clear...

Draft Principles of Food Justice

Posted October 18, 2012

Local Food, Food Justice, Food, Food security, Justice, Labor

On September 24–26, 2012, hundreds of food justice advocates gathered in Minneapolis for the Food + Justice = Democracy conference. One of the primary features of the conference was the use of a People’s Movement Assembly process to craft principles around food justice. These principles were drafted in six...

Press release: Business, consumer groups voice support for position limits

Posted October 18, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Coalition Contacts: Jim Collura (703) 945-1067 Sherri Stone (703) 351-8000 WASHINGTON, DC (October 18, 2012) – A non-partisan alliance of trade associations and consumer advocacy groups announced their continued support for new limits on speculative...

October 18 letter from CMOC to CFTC concerning speculative position limits

Posted October 18, 2012

Finance, Markets, Commodities, Market speculation

The undersigned organizations write to voice our support for the efforts of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to implement Speculative Position Limits in accordance with the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2012 (Pub.L.111-203).  We remain committed to the rule’s...

Crisis or opportunity in the multilateral trade system?

Posted October 15, 2012

Agriculture, Trade, Climate Change, World Trade Organization (WTO)

October 10, 2012 – It was fascinating to attend the WTO public symposium at the end of September, an event framed around the question: “Is Multilateralism in Crisis?” The question invited far more yesses than noes, although there was a healthy sprinkling of determined optimists in the crowd as well....

An Update on the World Bank’s Experimentation with Soil Carbon

Posted October 4, 2012

Agriculture, Carbon Markets, Climate Change, World Bank

At the first Hague Conference on Food Security, Agriculture and Climate Change in November 2010, the World Bank launched its first agricultural soil carbon project in Africa. The Kenya Agricultural Carbon Project (KACP) has been promoted as a “triple win” for mitigation, adaptation and increased crop...

Letter from FDA in response to Reps. Slaughter and Markey regarding antibiotic use in ethanol production

Posted October 4, 2012

Antibiotics, Energy, Health

 A response to Reps. Markey and Slaughter's May 2012 letter regarding FDA mandate to regulate antibiotics used in ethanol production. Download the document above or learn more from IATP's report, Bugs in the System.