Agriculture is a vital component of our rural islands’ extraordinary beauty and abundance. Through a supportive community and regulatory environment in the County, more farmers, ranchers, food processors and food vendors prosper, and all islanders benefit from the subsequent local bounty. We envision a strong agricultural sector with many successful farmers producing an ever increasing percentage of the food consumed by islanders, thereby encouraging self-sufficiency and food security. San Juan County is a model in creative solutions for farmland preservation, in its support of farmers and in its celebration of our agricultural heritage and future.
In 2007, the Agricultural Resources Committee (ARC) of San Juan County identified a project to help local farmers establish permanent facilities for farmers markets to promote successful marketing of local agricultural goods in the islands.
In early December 2007, a group of people representing a broad range of county agencies, farmers and local food advocates met to determine and plan how best to proceed. The result was the formation of the San Juan Islands Agricultural Guild as a 501(c)(3) non-profit entity to foster sustainable agriculture in San Juan County. The Guild committed to coordinating its education and economic development programs with those of other county and regional entities having similar and complementary goals.
The new entity was ratified at a public meeting on February 4, 2008 held in the Community Room at Skagit Valley College in Friday Harbor. It has since raised considerable funding to support the execution of its goals — see HOME page