INTERVIEW AND PHOTOS BY ZACH KAISER
The act of sustainable agriculture and organic farming is still considered by many as practice on the fringes. When Norman Borlaug presented the ideas of the “Green Revolution,” “traditional farming techniques” or those focused on sustainable agriculture have been considered more of an obstacle than a resource. It was a revolution focused on the goal of industrialization with the sacrifice of biodiversity, Wes Jackson explained, in his segment from Letters to a Young Farmer.
Farming is hitting a critical pressure point. The average age of a farmer as reported by the AGCensus is 58 years old, and only 6% of these farmers are under the age of 35 years old. There is an incredible need for young farmers to take to the fields and farm the land left behind by this older generation of farmers.
Jack Algiere is working hard at the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture to help build resourceful, passionate, and thoughtful farmers. The center located in Pocantico Hills, New York, sits right at the lower tip of the Hudson Valley only 30 miles from Manhattan. His team works with children, high school students, and using their world-renowned Apprentice Program to build farmers for the future. He oversees a diverse farm operation that includes pastured livestock, grains, field crops, fruits, wild landscape, flowers, and compost. He uses all of these areas of the farm to create a dynamic farm system. Jack fell in love with farming in the early 90s and never looked back. This is Jack Algiere, Farm Director of the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture. Join us at the table...
Jack taught me so much in my short time with him. Stone Barns is looking for new apprentices every year to take part in their program. As Jack explained, all you need is the engine to make change and understand the dynamics of farming. If you haven’t already, pick up a copy of Letters to a Young Farmer. It is a wonderful book pulling together excerpts from farmers all over the country organized by the team at the Stone Barns Center. For any farmer starting out, it is a great place to gain confidence and insight.
Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture
Letters to a Young Farmer
The Third Plate
Thoughts from the Grange - Brody Mcallister of Darlin' Corey Farm
Artisan Feature - Fields to Plate Produce
Artisan Feature - Agrarian Ales
Episode 2 - Ben Wenk of Three Springs Fruit Farm and Ploughman Cider
THE ARTISAN SITUATION PODCAST
We believe that every person has a connection to food. Each podcast will feature a deep dive interview with food producers, as we try to learn what inspires and influences them on a personal level. For many, producing flavorful, wholesome, and sustainable food is a vocation. Food has a voice. Listen in