Farm Aid 2006 Presented by Silk Soymilk Promotes Family Farm Food For All

Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp and Dave Matthews Headline Sold Out Sept. 30 Concert Event

Brandi Dobbins
(202) 331-4322

CAMDEN, N.J.-Artists performing at Farm Aid 2006 Presented by Silk Soymilk urged the sold-out crowd to buy family farm foods and to support Farm Aid. Farm Aid leads a growing movement that is helping more people gain access to good food.

"The Farm Aid concert brings us all together to support family farmers, one of our most valuable resources," said Farm Aid president and founder Willie Nelson. "Everyone deserves access to good, family farm food all of the time. I'm proud to be on stage with my friends sharing that message with Camden, Philadelphia and the nation."

The day-long show grossed $1.1 million in ticket sales alone and played to a crowd of 25,000. The Farm Aid concert was broadcast live as a streaming webcast on The day of the show press event with artists was also webcast. XM Radio also aired a live broadcast of the show on X Radio (XM Ch. 12).

At the 2006 show, Farm Aid urged Americans to choose food from family farms, creating growing opportunities for more family farmers. Artists showed support for activities that keep family farmers on the land, promote food from family farms and raise funds to support Farm Aid's work.

"Farm Aid works to build connections between the people who eat and the people who grow that food," said Farm Aid Executive Director Carolyn Mugar. "The good food movement that Farm Aid has promoted since 1985 is about strengthening that connection and making sure that more people have access to fresh, local, family farm foods in stores, schools, restaurants and at home."

Today, Nelson joined board members Neil Young, John Mellencamp and Dave Matthews on the Farm Aid stage, calling on concertgoers and viewers from home to choose food from family farms. Other performers included Jerry Lee Lewis with Roy Head, Los Lonely Boys, Gov't Mule, Steve Earle, Allison Moorer, Steel Pulse, Shelby Lynne, Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Jimmy Sturr & his Orchestra, Pauline Reese and Danielle Evin.

Farm Aid kicked off its annual benefit concert with a press event that featured pioneers in the good food movement. Young farmers and food activists, and a school lunch lady taking on public school food policy, shared a new agriculture vision focused on family farms and sustainable practices being led by today's young people.

Farm Aid launched its 2006 concert celebration with events across greater Philadelphia and Camden, NJ that focused on family farm foods. Activities introduced area residents to their local farmers; taught students about the importance of fresh, family farm foods; and gleaned farm vegetables for those in need locally.

Farm Aid 2006 Presented by Silk Soymilk is sponsored by Chevrolet, Wild Oats Markets, Horizon Organic, Whole Foods Markets, American Apparel, Chouinard, Toy Farmer, and Annie's Homegrown Naturals.

Over the past two decades, Farm Aid has built a nationwide legacy promoting food from family farms, growing the good food movement, helping farmers thrive, and taking action to change the food system. Farm Aid's vision is for family farmers to provide us all with good products-food, fiber and alternative fuels that protect our land, our health and our environment.

Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert in 1985 to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001. Farm Aid raises awareness about the critical role of family farms and has raised more than $29 million to build and strengthen family farm food production. Between 1985 and 2005, 80 percent of Farm Aid's total expenditures was spent on programs to benefit family farmers, exceeding charity watchdog standards. Through public education, program activities and grants, Farm Aid promotes food from family farms and sustainable agriculture, fights factory farms, advocates for fair farm prices and provides disaster assistance and credit counseling to farm families.