Urban Agriculture and Backyard Hens in Arlington?
“Local food” could soon take on a new meaning.
The Arlington County Board has tasked a group of residents to make recommendations to expand urban agriculture and increase access to local, healthful food. The group will report back to the Board in 2013.
Among other ideas, the Arlington Urban Agriculture Task Force will consider modifications to county ordinances so that Arlington neighborhood residents can keep small numbers of backyard hens.
Proponents point out that backyard hens can provide nutritious food, reduce dependence of environmentally harmful industrial farming, and help kids learn where food comes from.
Hundreds of urban communities including Charlottesville, Baltimore, Seattle, Madison, Minneapolis, New York, and Portland have embraced backyard hens. The Arlington Egg Project, a local advocacy group, says it’s time for Arlington to join their ranks and promote urban agriculture.
More than 1,000 Arlington residents have signed a petition to the County Board calling for the legalization of small-scale, sustainable backyard hen-keeping while prohibiting roosters and ensuring secure, humane, and proper housing for hens.
Arlington Egg Project