The Washington Tilth Association owes its existence to the resurgence, in the early '70s, of interest in ecology, the desire to ‘get back to basics,’ and the desire for the preservation of community. Concern built around the ways agriculture of the day was causing erosion, creating hardpans, dependent on high nitrogen fertilizers and toxic pesticides like DDT, wreaking havoc on wildlife-- recreating conditions which had led to the dustbowl of the 30s. Finally the USDA’s pronouncements that farmers must ‘get big or get out’ led the rebellious of the era to determine to right these wrongs. To do so a group of idealists in Washington State who were willing to put their ideals to the test in pursuit of ‘real,’ back to the earth farming, got together and began to attract others who had similar concerns and goals.
It began with small meetings, grew into a statewide conference, and burgeoned into the membership organization, the Washington Tilth Association.