What is An Agrihood? Learn About These New Farm-to-Table Communities – Guest post by Karlyn McKell

If you’ve been dreaming of ditching the city for a sprawling rural farm you’re not alone – but while the simple life sounds idyllic, many forget what hard work farming really is. 

Enter agrihoods, new farm-to-table developments that let you live in a farming community without having to cultivate the land. Here, you can have your crops and eat them too. 

As more and more people (millennials in particular) prioritize sustainability and healthy living, agrihoods are growing in popularity. Today, there are more than 200 of these unique neighborhoods in the U.S. alone and some developers think they could become the next golf course community. 

Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of living in an agrihood

  1. Support local farmers 

A recent survey revealed that 73% of people consider access to fresh, healthy foods a top priority when looking to buy a home. Since agrihood communities are centered around working farms, living in one means getting access to farm-fresh ingredients directly from the source. This is a great selling for residents who desire a healthy lifestyle. 

Purchasing local ingredients also helps revitalize local farms and put money in the pockets of farmers who tend to the land. In addition to food purchases, agrihoods allow working farms to take part in cooking workshops, demonstrations, events and more. 

2. Participate in communal experiences 

Agrihoods are outfitted with shared amenities so residents can enjoy the simple life together. Onsite kitchens, restaurants and shops are all popular features, as are pavilions, grill areas, community herb gardens and more. 

Workshops let residents learn how to cook using the crops grown on the land. It’s all about creating shared spaces where people want to spend time together. Some agrihoods are even taking it a step further by building schools and other resources onsite. 

  1. Live in eco-friendly housing 

Since agrihoods are a fairly new concept, most of these developments are new builds. This means the amenities and residential housing can be outfitted with the latest energy efficient housing solutions, such as LEED certifications and Energy Star ratings. All of these features help the environment and lower your utility costs. 

Another feature of some agrihoods is solar farms, which can power the community, farm and even surrounding town. 

  1. Enjoy public green spaces

Living the simple life means spending time outdoors and unplugging from technology. This time spent outside is proven to increase creativity and build confidence in kids and adults alike. Shared green spaces such as parks and trails let families get outside and stay active in their neighborhoods. 

Residents are also encouraged to participate in volunteer activities on the farm. Tending to the chicken coop, seeding the soil and aerating the compost piles are all examples of farm activities families can volunteer to help with. 

Does living in an agrihood sound like a dream come true? Check out this visual from The Zebra below to learn more about the features of these idyllic communities and the benefits they offer to residents. 

Book Review – ‘Connecting With Life’ by Martin Summer

Connecting with Life can be read either cover to cover, as it is eminently readable, or used as a handbook for rekindling one’s relationship with the natural world, to be kept on the shelf but dipped into now and then when you need a natural boost of encouragement to get outdoors. Summer’s debut book is all about giving urban readers encouragement to access nature in an urban world, but I found that even reading the book through rural eyes could have value. As I have become more ‘utilitarian’ in much of my reading this year (unsure why but this seems to be the case) I found his bullet points at the end each ‘solutions’ chapter helpful and positive, although it will not be to everybody’s structural taste, as some might believe it breaks the flow of prose. I disagree however, and found Summer’s approach positively refreshing.

This book tackles a lot of ground, from historical context, exploring the lifestyles of human ancestors in comparison with our modern lives today, to the sense, how we experience the natural world, the challenges of indoor living and the practicalities of designing a home, garden and lifestyle that can benefit both ourselves and the natural world. On a stylistic level, the hardback version of the book is also beautifully made, with its tactile, waxy cover.

Every so often we need a reminder to experience and embrace the gargantuan wonder of nature, and I believe that Summer is successful in encouraging readers down this line. A highly recommended book for your shelf this year. At a time when optimism is hard to come by, we can rest in the solace provided by nature and in works that celebrate its glory.

The book is available to buy here.


N.b Many thanks to Martin for providing me with a pre-publication copy of the book for review purposes. 

Meet the Farmers Podcast – episode 85 – The Future of Food, Farming and Our Countryside

Ben speaks to Monmouthshire farmer and the CEO of the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission, Sue Pritchard.

Meet the Farmers podcast – 84. Meet the Forester

In the latest podcast episode, alongside the week’s farming news, Ben speaks to forester, Luke Hemmings about why he thinks farmers should think more about trees.

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