Friday, October 10, 2008

Polyface Farm

I'll have the opportunity to visit Joel Salatin's Polyface Farm,, next week, October 16. It's the Healthy Food Shed Tour at the Society of Environmental Journalists' Annual Conference,

Daniel Sullivan, senior editor at Rodale Institute, Joe Davis, SEJ WatchDog and I organized the tour.

In the wake of global warming concerns and food-borne illness outbreaks that could be partly the result of growing and processing methods used in industrialized agriculture, consumers are starting to pay attention to how their food is raised and how far it travels. Farmer, writer, and speaker Joel Salatin is the poster child of the local food and farming movement. We'll visit Salatin's 550-acre diversified Polyface Farm in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley and find out why his spread is, in the words of Michael Pollan, "one of the most productive and sustainable farms in America." And we'll hear from other industrious farmers, policymakers and folks serving up everything from food to fiber to fuel in their communities. Finally, we'll take a trip back in time as we visit the Frontier Culture Museum of Virginia (where we'll enjoy lunch on Chipotle, a chain restaurant committed to sourcing food locally) and have the opportunity to explore the diverse food ways and farming techniques of the first European settlers to the region as well as the slaves brought over from Africa by force.

I'll also host a lunch discussion on the National Animal Identification System during the conference. Other journalists will have this opportunity to learn more about it and to meet with reporters and editors who are covering this issue.

SEJ conferences are always terrific and I look forward to having a great time.

1 comment:

tanyaa said...

It seems not all farms are treated fairly, and our local sweetheart, Polyface Farm, seems be getting the cold shoulder from the USDA. Joel Salatin mentions he would like to sell custom slaughtered meat, but can’t. The irony here is that the government is OK with us eating his meat in any way shape or form, as long as we don’t give him money for it. It must be processed at a USDA approved facility bla bla bla. Have any of you seen Fast Food Nation? Would you prefer one of our local boys cutting the meat or the heathens in the meat factories? I know regulations are there for a reason, but they don’t always bring out the best.
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