If you want to see how the Great Recession has reshaped consumerism you can start with both the chicken and the egg.

If you want to see how the Great Recession has reshaped consumerism you can start with both the chicken and the egg. You find them in hundreds if not thousands of backyards, where do-it-yourselfers have built coops, installed hens, and begun harvesting their own eggs. At most of these homes you’ll also see the modern version of the old Victory Gardens: small plots that produce crops all year long. This shift from consumption to production in households across America is part of a more self-reliant lifestyle. Today it’s about make instead of take: Twenty-three million Americans grew their own food last year, while nearly two-thirds of American households in our surveying were learning new skills in order to be more resourceful.

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