An Oregon farmer’s quest to create a sustainable farming community in a state where a growing population is expected to drive up the cost of food, water and electricity is being closely watched.
A local television station recently aired a segment on the farm where Blain’s Farm owner John Johnston has been raising chickens for a couple of years.
He’s an avid farmer and he believes a lot of the time people are in denial about climate change.
The farm is also home to a flock of llamas, goats, pigs and turkeys, and he’s seen some big changes on his land as people in the area move to warmer climates.
Johnston is an avid outdoorsman who once said he had a vision of the Oregon coast as a green space.
His farm is about 100 miles south of Bend, about 20 miles from the Columbia River.
Johnson said he started farming in 1984 as a hobby but decided to get into farming because he loved the idea of making a sustainable living.
He said he wants to create something similar to the way a small family farm can.
Johnsson said he grew up in a farming family, but he now sees the challenges in adapting to a changing climate.
He said it was tough growing up in the Northwest, where many families moved to Oregon from other states.
Johnsen said he believes that a majority of Oregonians don’t understand climate change, especially in a conservative state where people often don’t think about climate.
“People say it’s not that big a deal,” Johnston said.
Johnston said he sees people who don’t want to adapt, but they have the mindset that it is.
In addition to the chicken, goat and turkey operations, Johnston said his farm is a tourist attraction.
He sees a lot more tourists visiting the farm and it’s also the site of many weddings.
John Johnston’s farm in Oregon.
(Courtesy of Blain Farms)”People want to take the risk of trying something new,” Johnston added.
But there are some concerns.
Johnston said he was surprised by some of the backlash his farm received after he made his comments.
Some people even called him a racist.
Johnston has received hundreds of messages and emails since making the comments.
“I don’t like it.
I don’t know if it’s because I’m a black man or a white man, but it’s just that people are angry,” Johnston told KATU.
“People have been like ‘oh well, he’s not a racist.’
He’s a farmer.
People want to be a farmer and that’s what they want.”
The Oregon Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services sent a letter to Johnston in August about his comments and said that he could not have made his remarks without the help of the department.
Johnson said that was not the case.
“They had to be on the same page with me,” Johnston explained.
Johnnson said the department’s position was that he should have gone through the proper channels to get his comments out.
Johnston believes that is what happened.
“We were just like ‘let’s talk it out,'” Johnston said about the meeting with the department on Wednesday.
Johnston told KTVZ that he did not expect the department to make any changes in their stance, saying he had hoped for more cooperation.”
So they just didn’t give me an opportunity to make my point.”
Johnston told KTVZ that he did not expect the department to make any changes in their stance, saying he had hoped for more cooperation.