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Sustainable Agriculture

Sustainable Agriculture
To learn more about Forrest Pritchard:
January 26, 2020
Season 9

Sustainable Agriculture

Gaining Ground & Growing Tomorrow

Featuring

Forrest Pritchard,

Details

MODERATOR: Lori Vail (Assistant Professor of Humanities, Finger Lakes Community College )
  • DESCRIPTION:

In a spirited discussion, family farmer and author Forrest Pritchard shared his observations of the state of agriculture today and the its possible future.....

While many know him as an advocate for small, self-sustaining family farms, Forrest is also a poet. During his visit to Canandaigua, he wrote these verses:

Aesthetically Invasive (#50)

I see you, western New York,
Finger lakes wolf-clawed
Across the map, sleeting sheets
Of snow peppering the salted

Highway. Two hundred and fifty six
Miles of abandoned tractors,
Silos filled with hollow sky,
Green verge of fence row

And shaggy headed reeds,
Aesthetically invasive, nodding
“Yes, yes” where Wegman’s
Parking lot meets the marsh.

This is precisely the same
Everywhere, what we all know
Without seeing, a single emerald
Cover crop at the clover leaf

Just outside Rochester. We rise,
Merging, above the stone-
Picked fields, where black-hatted
Mennonites have returned, swept

Here on the same wind that
Stirred the lake schooners,
The bankers and businessmen,
The moldering barons of Buffalo.

(http://forrestpritchard.com/aesthetically-invasive-50/)

 

If you want to hear Forrest discuss the nature and art of farming, take a listen to this podcast with Heather Mizeur of Soul Force Politics.

Forrest Pritchard's BIO:

Forrest Pritchard is a seventh generation farmer and New York Times bestselling author, holding a B.A. in English and a B.S. in Geology from the College of William & Mary. He grew up in the Shenandoah Valley on his grandparent’s diversified farm, and spent summers with his non-farming grandparents in the Appalachian highlands and the Ohio River Valley. Upon returning from college in the mid 90s, he took over the family farm ⎯primarily growing GMO corn and soybeans⎯ hoping to make the land profitable for the first time in decades. On harvest day, when five tractor-trailer loads of grain reaped a meager paycheck of $18.16, he realized he must radically change course. The following season, he devoted himself to organic and sustainable production, raising free-range cattle, pigs, sheep, goats and chickens on pasture.

Decades later, his farm Smith Meadows is one of the oldest “grass finished” operations in the country, and sells at leading farmers’ markets in the Washington DC area.

Chronicling his agricultural adventures, Forrest’s 2013 book Gaining Ground, A Story of Farmers’ Markets, Local Food and Saving the Family Farm was named a top read by Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post and NPR’s The Splendid Table, and made the New York Times Bestseller list. He followed this in 2015 with Growing Tomorrow, a behind-the-scenes visit with 18 sustainable farmers from across the country. The book was a finalist for independent cookbook of the year.

Forrest’s latest book is Start Your Farm, co-written with Ellen Polishuk, a comprehensive handbook for beginning⎯ or transitioning to⎯ economically viable sustainable agriculture.

January 26, 2020
Season 9
Sustainable Agriculture

Sustainable Agriculture

Gaining Ground & Growing Tomorrow

Featuring

Forrest Pritchard,

Details

MODERATOR: Lori Vail (Assistant Professor of Humanities, Finger Lakes Community College )
  • DESCRIPTION:

In a spirited discussion, family farmer and author Forrest Pritchard shared his observations of the state of agriculture today and the its possible future.....

While many know him as an advocate for small, self-sustaining family farms, Forrest is also a poet. During his visit to Canandaigua, he wrote these verses:

Aesthetically Invasive (#50)

I see you, western New York,
Finger lakes wolf-clawed
Across the map, sleeting sheets
Of snow peppering the salted

Highway. Two hundred and fifty six
Miles of abandoned tractors,
Silos filled with hollow sky,
Green verge of fence row

And shaggy headed reeds,
Aesthetically invasive, nodding
“Yes, yes” where Wegman’s
Parking lot meets the marsh.

This is precisely the same
Everywhere, what we all know
Without seeing, a single emerald
Cover crop at the clover leaf

Just outside Rochester. We rise,
Merging, above the stone-
Picked fields, where black-hatted
Mennonites have returned, swept

Here on the same wind that
Stirred the lake schooners,
The bankers and businessmen,
The moldering barons of Buffalo.

(http://forrestpritchard.com/aesthetically-invasive-50/)

 

If you want to hear Forrest discuss the nature and art of farming, take a listen to this podcast with Heather Mizeur of Soul Force Politics.

Forrest Pritchard's BIO:

Forrest Pritchard is a seventh generation farmer and New York Times bestselling author, holding a B.A. in English and a B.S. in Geology from the College of William & Mary. He grew up in the Shenandoah Valley on his grandparent’s diversified farm, and spent summers with his non-farming grandparents in the Appalachian highlands and the Ohio River Valley. Upon returning from college in the mid 90s, he took over the family farm ⎯primarily growing GMO corn and soybeans⎯ hoping to make the land profitable for the first time in decades. On harvest day, when five tractor-trailer loads of grain reaped a meager paycheck of $18.16, he realized he must radically change course. The following season, he devoted himself to organic and sustainable production, raising free-range cattle, pigs, sheep, goats and chickens on pasture.

Decades later, his farm Smith Meadows is one of the oldest “grass finished” operations in the country, and sells at leading farmers’ markets in the Washington DC area.

Chronicling his agricultural adventures, Forrest’s 2013 book Gaining Ground, A Story of Farmers’ Markets, Local Food and Saving the Family Farm was named a top read by Publishers Weekly, The Washington Post and NPR’s The Splendid Table, and made the New York Times Bestseller list. He followed this in 2015 with Growing Tomorrow, a behind-the-scenes visit with 18 sustainable farmers from across the country. The book was a finalist for independent cookbook of the year.

Forrest’s latest book is Start Your Farm, co-written with Ellen Polishuk, a comprehensive handbook for beginning⎯ or transitioning to⎯ economically viable sustainable agriculture.

To learn more about Forrest Pritchard:

2020-2021 Season Postponed

Regretfully, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020-21 Canandaigua Forum has been postponed. Happily, all four great programs have been rescheduled for 2021-22.