Sometimes political, often religious, and always collective, alternative communities formed in the 1960s and 1970s produced and shared food or shared the work and costs of new food-distribution systems. Members created food co-ops in university towns, rural communities, and cities, often trading labor for food. Many of the practices they started—buying and distributing bulk foods, introducing principles of recycle and reuse, supporting local farmers, and living the values of growing, raising, and making your own food—were embraced and extended by new generations.
Coming out of the 1960s, we were concerned about the war, where the country was going . . . [By] going to the farm, we would be accountable and have responsibility for our lives, for the way that we lived . . . My whole life revolved around food . . . We had a three-acre garden . . . canning and freezing . . . 600 quarts of tomatoes, three 20 ft. freezers full [of] corn, broccoli, beans, and peas . . . We had the Whole Earth Catalog, Mother Earth News. Reduce, reuse, recycle. We learned from the farm community . . . Be self-sufficient, live off the land.
—Ruth McCully (formerly Lantzy), 2011 interview