Other Vegan Views articles
Appeal for Jamaica by Fabrice Menoyot, Vegan Views 94 (Autumn 2002)

Isolated in the Cockpit Country of Jamaica and surrounded by green valleys and mountains, lies the small town of Accompong, home of the Maroons of Jamaica. This small community consists of about 500 residents, the direct descendants of the first runaway slaves, who received their independence in 1739. Today, the historic treaty is still honored and the Maroons own 1500 acres of land and a degree of autonomy from the Jamaica government. The community is pacifist, has no police and has had only one capital crime in 264 years requiring the intervention of the Jamaica judicial system.

The Maroon community is a very low-income community with very few jobs available locally. Many depend on their farms to make a living. In their intent to raise their incomes, Accompong farmers have been for the last 10 years using monoculture and chemical fertilizers. However, the increase of production hardly paid off their investment in chemical fertilizers and some members of the community are concerned about the degradation of the land and water contamination.

Starting August 2002, with the help of Will Bonsall, as our technical advisor, we want to show Accompong farmers how to use Veganic Farming and help them implement these techniques to improve their product, protect their land, and increase the value of their product on the International Market, without any loss in incomes for chemical or animal-based fertilizers. Will Bonsall has been successfully cultivating his farm veganically in Maine, USA, for over 25 years, and is today one of the top experts in Veganic Farming in the USA. This project is about helping the Jamaican Maroons and also showing the world that Veganic farming is not only an option for Vegetarians and Vegans, but also the only reliable answer for all communities, especially those who cannot afford fertilizer (chemical or animal based).

You can help. Information is without any doubt your best gift to us at this time. If you are a member of a Veganic Farming community, an expert in Veganic Farming and Veganic Composting, please share your knowledge with us. Tell us as much as possible. Give us tips. Donate a few books on Veganic Farming and Veganic Composting. Help us produce the best compost and green manure with no tools or very affordable tools. Maroons are very creative people and can often build their own tools if necessary. However, we would gladly accept any other type of help. We don't need much at this point, mainly a few tools to collect hay and leaves and prepare veganic composts. We invite anyone interested in this project to visit our web site at www.timeismine.com/vegan or write to us at veganstep@yahoo.com.

Fabrice Menoyot, on behalf of the Accompong Community of Jamaica. Email: fm@petrene.com or veganstep@yahoo.com.

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