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Archive for the 'Farming' Category

FSCPodcast Epi 11 Final

FSC Contributor Amy Halloran takes on an a podcast journey to explore the Northeast grain system. Amy’s series on scaling up the northeast grain system provides a wealth of information and serves as an incredible introduction to the world of local grains, and in this episode we continue that conversation. Grains are often left out of the locavore puzzle, aren’t they? We all try to seek out locally-grown vegetables and fruits, perhaps dairy and meat as well, but grains and their by-products sometimes slip off the radar. In fact, it wasn’t until I read the book ”The 100 Mile Diet: A Year of Local Eating” by Vancouver couple Alisa Smith and JB Mackinnon a few years back that it even occurred to me to think about where grains come from.

Not anymore! Take a listen and learn more about the resurgence of grain growing here in the Northeast.

The Wheat is Ready

The Wheat is Ready

Thanks to our special guests:

  • Glenda Neff, who consults on a variety of food and farming projects, and worked on NY Farm to Bakery, a project that paired upstate millers with NYC bakers.
  • Elizabeth Dyck is an agronomist and founder of OGRIN, the Organic Growers Research and Information Sharing Network.
  • Thor Oechsner is an organic grain farmer and runs Oechsner Farms in Newfield, New York. He is part owner of Farmer Ground Flour, and Wide Awake Bakery.
  • June Russell is farm inspector for Greenmarket, which runs farmers markets in NYC. She’s also behind the Greenmarket Regional Grain Project.
  • A special thank to NOFA-NY and continued her exploration of the grain system by talking to the people who are actively involved in it. Oh, and those cookies that Amy mentions as her gateway introduction to whole grains? Above is a picture of Don Lewis of Wild Hive Farmduring a NOFA-NY Field Trip Day.  Amy wrote about those gateway cookies, and the Wild Hive Field Day in her Scaling Up Series here.
book club whole grains

If you’d like to start cooking more with whole grains, join the FSC Book Club as we cook and chat our way through the book Whole Grains for a New Generation by Liana Krisoff.

Sheaves of wheat on the front porch

It sounds like the Northeast grain system has a bright future ahead. The growing consciousness of consumers and their demand for local grains will continue to help drive innovation in grain agriculture and prove that there is indeed a market for small-scale, local grains and value-added products such as flour and baked goods.

The podcast receives sponsorship support from the Agricultural Stewardship Association,Schenectady GreenmarketHonest Weight Food Coop, West Wind AcresKilpatrick Family Farm.

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Raising animals for food. It’s a tricky subject, but we are tackling it with gusto in this month’s podcast. We’ve talked about growing vegetables, joining CSAs to pay someone else to grow vegetables and we’ve even talked a little bit about backyard chickens. Now we are bringing you an extended interview with a local meat farmer who knows exactly what it takes to raise farm animals sustainably, humanely and compassionately.

Here at From Scratch Club, we represent nearly the entire range of diets including vegetarianism, dairy-free and responsible carnivore households. What we all have in common though, is the commitment that if and when we choose to eat meat, we choose to buy the most sustainable, humanely-raised, healthy meat we can find. Because factory-farmed, commodity animal products are just gross.

FSC Editor & Reporter in the Field Christina Davis brings you this month’s interview with Joshua Rockwood of West Wind Acres Farm. You can learn more about West Wind Acres, including information about their CSA program and buying club, at their website. Josh tells us which animals and which breeds he raises and why. He also talks about why pasture-raised meat is not only tastier, but actually healthier for you than conventionally-farmed meat and he even talks about how to incorporate rabbit meat into your favorite recipes. His particular emphasis on quality of life and humane practices should inspire you all, if you are meat-eaters, to carefully choose your farmer and to learn more about their practices and process of nurturing animal life from birth until the end. (Read more about West Wind Acres in this post about their farm tour.)


FSC Contributor Liz Russell brings us an interview with Tatiana Stanton from this winter’s NOFA-NY conference. Tatiana is the goat extensionist for the State of New York working out of Cornell University and also raises her own goats. She talks about what you call goat meat, what it tastes like and what her favorite recipes are for a product that has fallen from popularity recently in our country.

Thanks to Keith Drinkwine, Produce Manager at Kilpatrick Family Farm for the June/July Crop Report.

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If you like what you hear, please tell a friend & consider submitting a review on iTunes

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This episode of the FSC Podcast, we are diving into the world of urban farming. That’s right, farming in cities. Not the typical, sprawling pastures in the country or the iconic red barn, but we’re talking to people and organizations who are farming in the city. They are increasing access to fresh food, forging a stronger connection with the land and using urban farming as an educational and job training tool for youth. We’ve chatted with a lot of people who are growing local, even on small city plots, and proving that you don’t need a homestead in the country to take control of your food.

City farming is not only great for the local food system and for the people who directly benefit from increased food access, but it’s really great for the cities themselves. Vacant lots can be turned into thriving community gardens and urban schools can introduce students to agriculture and a whole new world of healthy eating. Urban farming is a creative way to promote reinvestment in our cities and FSC is thrilled to bring you this episode.

At the NOFA-NY Winter Conference a few months ago, Liz caught up with Erica Brenner of Dekalb Farm and Molly Culver of the High School for Public Service Youth Farm, both located in Brooklyn, to chat more about farming in the Big Apple.

Christina met with Matthew Schuler and Brian Bender of the Capital District Community Gardens’ The Produce Project, who shared with us more information about the exciting urban agricultural youth program operating in Troy, NY. The Produce Project is an organic, year-round urban farm business. Youth earn a small stipend along with a vegetable share for tending crops from seed to harvest. They sell their crops to local restaurants and at farmers markets while learning lifelong lessons in business and entrepreneurship. The Produce Project students also learn about healthy eating by participating in workshops with local food experts and network with potential future employers in our community. Christina also caught up with two Produce Project students, Devin Chandler and Stephen Cochran.

Our last interview explores the link between urban farming issues and advocacy. Jen Pursley Guidice and her husband Michael, owners of Hounds on the Hudson, encountered first-hand the controversy that can sometimes form around urban farming. Their small flock of backyard chickens stirred up emotions on both sides of the issue and launched a citywide campaign of concerned citizens that is now tackling larger issues of voter registration and government accountability through Albany Votes. Thanks to the inspiring urban farming mecca, The Radix Ecological Sustainability Center, for hosting this podcast interview!

So, city dwellers, are you inspired to get farming yet? Stay tuned for a follow-up episode later this year with even more stories and resources on urban farming.

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Thanks for listening!

If you like what you hear, please tell a friend & consider submitting a review on iTunes :)

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{Christine's 2o11 22-week CSA Share from Kilpatrick Family Farm}

This month’s episode is all about CSAs-- community supported agriculture! We tell you what CSA is and why it’s awesome for both farmers and consumers. If you’re interested in supporting local farmers and the local food system, this show is for you.

Are you still on the fence about joining a CSA? Then go read our {KNOW YOUR FARMER} Why Are You a CSA Member? post from earlier this month. All of the FSC contributors that have belonged to a CSA at one point or another chimed in about their experiences and why being part of a community-supported agriculture program is important to them. There's also an excellent round-up of additional CSA advice and local foods resources.

Joining a CSA means that you’ll be eating a lot of vegetables. Not sure what to do with them all? Not even sure what they are? Never fear! FSC is here to ease you into your new life as a CSA member. Chances are, we’ll have a post or recipe about it! Hakurei turnips? Jillian has you covered here. Jerusalem artichokes? Why not make Erika’s Jerusalem Artichoke & Beef Enchilads? Try Christina’s Pickled Fiddleheads or Christine’s Rainbow Chard Quiche. FSC even ran an entire Garlic Scape Week. We’ve got you covered.

{DENISON FARM: On-Farm Pick-Up Site}

For this month's podcast, we interviewed several rad farms at NOFA-NY’s 2nd Annual CSA Fair in Albany. We spoke with farmers who run vegetable CSAs, farms who collaborate with other local producers, farms with a CSA for meat & poultry, year-round vegetable CSAs and even a farm that will do the cooking for you. You can learn more about the farms and their CSA programs at the following links:

Quincy Farm, Easton, NY (Read about FSC’s tour of Quincy Farm back in October 2011 here) Denison Farm, Schaghticoke, NY (Read about the fundraiser FSC ogranized for Denison Farm & Kilpatrick Family Farm in the wake of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee here) Full Field Farm, North Chatham, NY Kilpatrick Family Farm, Middle Granville, NY 9 Miles East Farm, Northumberland, NY

Thanks to Luke Deikis, Justine Denison, Mike Kowalski, Philip Kilpatrick and Gordon Sachs for taking the time to talk to us about their 2012 CSA programs.

{Walking Quincy Farm}

For more information about CSAs or to find a farm near you, visit www.localharvest.org. Local listeners can learn about upcoming CSA fairs in New York by visiting www.nofany.org.

Thanks for listening!

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