Agricultural Heritage Areas
Duncan Hilchey is on a mission to save some of the most iconic agricultural landscapes in the United States. He argues that places like the Cranberry Bogs of Cape Cod, the Wild Rice Region of Northern Minnesota, and the Hatch and Chimayo Chili Regions, New Mexico are “America’s contribution to world cuisine just as Italy has contributed Parmesan cheese and France has contributed Champagne.” Duncan, who is with the Community and Rural Development Institute at Cornell University, has identified ten such places and he is seeking to make these regions more sustainable through tourism and product marketing. Recently, the ten regions were featured in a double fold spread in the October 2011 issue of National Geographic Traveler.
Based in part on his efforts, one of these landscapes the Lake Erie Concord Grape Belt in New Yorkhas become a New York State Heritage Area and is actively marketing the region as an agri-tourism destination
For more information on Duncan Hilchey’s work see the following article.