Food Security Initiative

Updated: Jun 13


Bermuda has long needed increased efforts toward food security, the unique opportunity that the pandemic has provided us to act with support from every sector is what I believe will allow it to emerge successfully.


Bermuda spends millions on the importation of food, contributing to economies and companies off island when we could be contributing to our own success and sustainability.


This is an ongoing project meant to evolve as we learn more and gather specialists in each field. The most important aspect of this will be community involvement, shared knowledge and resources. Please join our team in whatever capacity you're able by emailing nidusa.co@gmail.com.

Or contribute directly to our working document by following this link.

What this Initiative Aims to Achieve

  1. Empower individuals to cultivate food.

  2. Consolidate and develop educational and informative resources.

  3. Create a cyclic, closed loop local economy of food production and consumption.

  4. Co-ordinate and intertwine subsections of the existing community.

  5. Research and support the development of new methods, crops, and industries.

  6. Design systems which minimize food waste from farmers, grocery stores, and restaurants.

  7. Reduce environmental impact and degradation surrounding food industries.

  8. Design and support the development of co-operative structured food industries.

  9. Work with Governmental agencies and key stakeholders in the community to provide resources and secure funding.

Key Elements to Food Security

  1. Extensive Viability Assessments & Strategy

  2. Education & Informative Resources

  3. Minimize Negative Environmental Impacts

  4. Expanding Production & Industry

  5. Product Development & Packaging

  6. Mitigating Food Waste

  7. Co-operative Structures & Shared Resources

  8. Government Support, Funding, Waivers & Legislation

  9. Identifying Key Influencers


1. Extensive Viability Assessments & Strategy

Target the aspects of the industry that are likely to

  • Create the most jobs.

  • Contribute most to developing our local and cyclic economy.

  • Require minimal input with maximum output.

  • Will become most self sustainable.

2. Education & Informative Resources
  • Developing easily accessible Bermuda specific educational resources.

  • Consolidate and report existing information and aspects of industry.

  • Encourage recipe research, development and acceptance to minimize food waste, utilize foraged goods, or establish cultural acceptance.

3. Minimize Negative Environmental Impacts
  • Design cyclic system alternatives to address gaps in waste management

  • Develop best practices guides specific to various industries

  • Reduce imports

  • Ban chemicals that sacrifice the quality of our soils and groundwater

  • Limit the use of synthetic fertilizers

  • Introduce viable sustainable alternatives

  • Minimize use of antibiotics in the meat industry

  • Remove endocrine disrupting chemicals from the local food chain

  • Favor enterprises who include sustainable practices as core objectives

4. Expanding Production & Industry

The next phase of this process is identifying specific species and factors to expand upon all these aspects of development.

  1. Utilize all existing zoned agricultural reserve (50%+)

  2. Utilize GROW BIOINTESIVE farming methods as outlined by Agra Living Institute

  3. Target existing successful crops / high yield crops for expansion

  4. Target high caloric crops

  5. Target crops with extended lifespan in storage or canning

  6. Cultivate local and endemic species to support longterm foraging

  7. Research potential species for importation

  8. Nurture or import miniaturized fruit tree varieties

  9. Support large scale air-layering cultivation for quicker fruiting

  10. Fungiculture

  11. Supporting the needs of individual/ family home farmers

  12. Assess and assist in the redesign of commercial farming practices

  13. Heliciculture (snail farming)

  14. Develop aquaculture industries

  15. Expand meat production

  16. Expansion of egg farming in size and species

  17. Develop industry around foraging

  18. Establish cyclic processes where possible

5. Product Development & Packaging

Creating a cyclic system will require the development of new products from our local resources.

  • Preservation - drying, canning, fermenting and freezing

  • Packaged meals - cooked, meal plans, delivery, cook at home baskets

  • Expand jam and cheese production

  • Develop products from what is typically waste material

6. Mitigating Food Waste
  • Assess and report specifics on local food waste

  • Establish relationships with grocery and restaurant partners

  • Research and develop products and recipes that utilize produce late in life cycle

  • Encourage the use of products with long natural shelf lives

  • Utilize ethylene management practices to prolong life cycles of produce

  • Co-ordination with the 3rd sector to deliver more effectively to families in need

  • Create best practices manual for storage of goods

  • Develop composting systems

7. Co-operative Structures & Shared Resources

Sharing resources will be our quickest root to success. There's a range of co-operative structures and resource requirements that will benefit both companies and the individual hoping to invest in Bermuda's food economy, including but not limited to:

  • Research & development - sharing science, knowledge, successes and failures specific to Bermuda.

  • Administrative needs like business planning, accounting, marketing, etc.

  • Developing economies centered around waste and industry byproducts.

  • Creating co-operative structures for services essential to the life of every Bermudian.

8. Government Support, Funding, Waivers & Legislation

These elements are paramount to the development, safety, and continued success of any island wide food security initiative.

  • Support that allows us direct relationships with Government entities, services and access to equipment or land.

  • Resources and initiatives that provide education and aim to garner wider support and cultural acceptance of best management practices.

  • Funding agricultural entities will eventually pay off in reduction of funds spent on food for individuals receiving financial assistance.

  • Waiving aspects of the protected species act in order to develop industries that commit to repopulation efforts.

  • Review and reconsider (on an individual basis) legislation that prevents the import of fungi species that could be cultivated locally without threat.

  • Develop best management practice guidance for all food related industries and reward the adoption of them.

  • Tax and social insurance relief for new enterprises or enterprises committed to establishing food security, environmental protection, repopulation or product export.

  • Ban the importation of all chemical pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides.

  • Limit and establish strict controls for the use of synthetic fertilizers.

9. Identifying Key Influencers

Identifying key influencers, commercial and community partners will play the most important role in the development and perpetuation in any aspect of food security. These are not necessarily individuals or organizations working on this project (yet!) unless otherwise noted. But they are what I consider to be important cogs in the grand scheme of success and I admire what they're doing.

If you know of individuals or companies who should be included as potential key influencers, please submit their information to nidusa.co@gmail.com



The Bermuda Government

The Government has sprung into action in order to design a post-covid relief structure. It only makes sense that an intense food security initiative needs to be part of that. Bermuda has adopted strict environmental practices to reduce invasive species and protect our natural resources. Now is the time to push that envelope further. We have requested the development of sub-committees related to food security and co-operative structured entities.


BEDC

The Bermuda Economic Development Corporation provides integral resources and support for developing companies.


Agra Living Institute

Utilizing GROW BIOINTENSIVE farming methods, Chris Faria and his team (of which we are a part of now) are intent on empowering the home farmer, increasing use of zoned agricultural reserve, producing higher yields per acre and maximizing profit margins. Their website (designed by us) is launching soon and they will be offering consultations. This company will play an integral role in the enactment of specific aspects of this initiative.

Stratton Hatfield A local personality and sustainability design professional that recently completed his Master's degree thesis focusing on a citizen's assembly that promotes and facilitates sustainable development in Bermuda. He is also a core team member of BE Solar and the developer behind WE Count. He has agreed to act as a consultant on this initiative.


Bermuda Environmental Consulting

An environmental and land use planning consultancy firm in Bermuda, working with clients to manage their environmental concerns, meet regulatory requirements and attain sustainability goals. Their team boasts environmental scientists, engineers, planners and policy advisors whose advice we hope to gain moving forward.


Bermuda Farmers & Gardeners A facebook group that is incredibly supportive and helpful with questions, knowledge and first hand experiences.


BEST

Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Taskforce core mission is to preserve and enhance the quality of life in Bermuda for present and future generations by engaging with the community to advocate for sustainable management and development of the physical, social and economic environments. Their approval is essential to the development and long term sustainability of any initiative we put forward.


Greenrock

A local charity that has established connections within the community and operates an eco educational model that promotes environmental understanding and cultivation of food. They are committed environmental partners, working to establish projects that address environmental needs and social concerns. Utilizing frameworks that they have already established will benefit any initiative we put forward.

Yard Farm Bermuda

A newly formed company that specializes in microbial soil development as well as providing Bermudians with high quality natural and organic growing products and materials.

Wild Herbs & Plants

A local company famous for its foraging workshops and recipe development. Doreen is an energetic influencer that helps us to see the world of potential already growing in our environment.


Kristin White

A local entrepreneur and influencer that has been documenting her journey through the pandemic in fun and fantastic form.


Animal & Garden House

Providing the island with to the door delivery of heirloom and organic seeds via their website.


Rosalind Wingate

A local environmentalist that has headed up workshops focused around sustainability and has recently started a composting initiative.


Thad Murdoch

Specializing in marine environmental impact assessments, marine habitat restoration, water quality monitoring, fisheries surveys, logistical support and more, though Thad has shut down his marine consulting agency (Murdoch Marine Ltd.) and his marine research program (BREAM) to be a stay at home parent, his previous research and future consultation will likely play a pivotal role in the development of Aquaculture initiatives. He has been kind enough to answer our initial questions surrounding Aquaculture potentiality.


Nidusa

A social and eco-design company set to be the parent company of La Garza and will promote social initiatives, design and co-ordinate co-operative design structures forming around food security and entrepreneurial initiatives.


Tara Sapien

Creator and lead designer for Nidusa, La Garza, Circus Circus Arts Collective and established team member of Carnicycle and Agra Living Institute. Heading the administrative co-ordination of this project, with a background in Environmental Design (specializing in sustainable residential development and biomimetic systems), eco and social entrepreneurism, I am a polymath autodidactic with considerable experience in a range of fields that associate with the design of a food security initiative.

Previously invested in tourism, performance, art and fabrication, given the severity of this situation, the skills and networking I can contribute, I am pivoting toward developing these crucial components in securing our island's future stability.



Request to join the Economic Council:



26 May 2020

Addressed to Curtis Dickinson:


Good Day Sir,

I am writing on behalf of a number of invested community partners working toward developing local food security and co-operative structure essential industries.

I noticed that agricultural initiatives have not been mentioned in the economic recovery layout. It goes without saying that the industries encompassing food security are severely lacking but hold exponential potential for developing a cyclic local economy.

Equally as important will be supporting the development of local co-operative structures for essential services as we aim to reduce costs and minimize capitalistic gains on essential services. 

I ask that you please consider including food security and co-operative structure essential service sub-committee as elements in the economic recovery plan. I would be thrilled to contribute in any way possible, having an extensive background in environmental and social design, cyclic system design, ideation and functionality. 

I will soon be releasing our food security initiative assessment and continue to gather the best minds to achieve this monumental task. In addition, I am working toward co-operative structure pitches and will be seeking financial support and partners over the summer / fall. 


Looking forward to building a better Bermuda, 

Tara Sapien CREATOR | FOUNDER | DESIGNER ________________________________ Nīdusa Co. SOCIAL & ECO ENTREPRENEURISM DESIGN, ARTISTRY & FABRICATION





4 June 2020

Addressed to Curtis Dickinson:


Good Day Sir,  I am following up on my previous email (9 days ago) requesting agricultural and co-operative sub-committees on the economic recovery council. 

You can find my first draft of the food security initiative document here. 

I have also established further connections in the realm of co-operative structured companies that will aid the economic recovery and I will be announcing those more officially in the months to come. However, it would be beneficial to connect governmental resources prior to our official launch.  Looking forward to hearing from you soon,

Tara Sapien CREATOR | FOUNDER | DESIGNER ________________________________ Nīdusa Co. SOCIAL & ECO ENTREPRENEURISM DESIGN, ARTISTRY & FABRICATION

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