Mission: Balt permanently protects the fertile orchards and farms in the rapidly developing bretnwood region with an active farmland conservation program and works with farmers and the community so that future generations will have a local source of food.
Programs: The rich agricultural lands on the urban edge of contra costa county include more than 12,000 acres of irrigated farmland located just fifty miles from the bay area. With rich delta soils, ample water and a year-round growing season, brentwood farms have provided food for the bay area since the 1880s. Today brentwood farmers continue to grow a remarkable diversity of food, primarily fruits and vegetables. Balt permanently protects the fertile orchards and farms in this rapidly developing region with an active farmland conservation program. Balt promotes local farming and builds new markets for farmers through the buy fresh buy local marketing program. Working closely with local governments, balt develops programs and policies that support a vibrant agricultural economy for contra costa farmers. Together with community partners, balt is creating food connections between farmers and their
urban neighbors. The 12,000 acres of prime farmland in the brentwood region of east contra costa county is one of the largest, most productive farming regions remaining in the bay area. However, the region has experienced tremendous development pressure over the past twenty years as the city of brentwood grew from 7,500 people to 56,000 people. Balt protects farmland from development by acquiring agricultural conservation easements from farmers. While farmers continue to own and farm their land, the conservation easement prohibits future subdivision or development of the property. Balt holds conservation easements on eight brentwood farms, and is currently working on several additional easements.