Rutgers Law Student Grows Crops in Camden

gardenRutgers Law–Camden has a long tradition of harvesting some hearty attorneys. A newer tradition, cultivated most recently by 3L Angela Juneau, is growing crops of fresh produce for and within its host city. Established two years ago by 2012 Rutgers Law–Camden alumnus Stefan Erwin from two vacant lots on Danehower Street, the community garden co-op is now managed by Juneau with Mary Ellen Moore, a junior math major at Rutgers–Camden. The 12 eight-by-eight-foot plots utilize seedlings from the Camden Children’s Garden to harvest a range of crops, from pumpkins and corn in the fall to snap peas and strawberries in the summer, all with Camden residents in mind.

“We want it to truly be a community garden,” says Juneau of the site, named the Camden Agricultural Coalition. “We’re trying to reach out to residents so they feel a sense of ownership, even leaving tomatoes on doorsteps at times.”

Progress on the co-op has been made possible through the group’s relationships with the Camden Children’s Garden and Rutgers–New Brunswick Engineers Without Borders, which has assembled rain barrels.

But tending crops isn’t the only way Juneau is working to provide sustainable food options in the Garden State. An article she drafted recently on how the federal farm bill affects New Jersey has been accepted for publication in The Rutgers Law Journal.

“I’m interested in how the government affects what we eat,” she says. “The farm bill subsidizes corn and soy, which are largely turned into cheap fatteners and sweeteners for junk food, but what about bell peppers, blueberries, and spinach?”

After graduation, Juneau will hike through Yosemite, take the bar, and then clerk for the Honorable Kevin T. Smith, of the State of New Jersey Superior Court in Woodbury. Originally from New Orleans, Juneau earned her undergraduate degree from Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina.

“The cool thing about having a community garden in Camden is that the city is often labeled a food desert and we have been giving residents another option.”

More information about the Camden Agricultural Coalition is available at facebook.com/camdenagriculturalcoalition.

Posted in: Community Outreach

Comments are closed.