Young Farmers UniteJanuary 21, 2009 at 2:11 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
By Tracy Strausberg (Fall ’08 )
After spending three blissed-out and blessed months in the food-loving arms of ADAMAH, I trekked out to Monterey, California to reunite with some of my fellow adamah-niks at Hazon’s Jewish Food Conference. The expectations were high. All told, I shelled out around five hundred dollars from my poor farmer pockets and increased my carbon footprint to make it to this great event. Upon arriving in Monterey, however, our happy car was struck by the beauty of our new ocean-side home. With crazy, beautiful trees, perfect blue skies, and a beach full of rocks to scramble upon, we were thankful to have arrived. And within hours, the reality of the reunion with our recently lost farming friends met with wide smiles and welcoming hugs.
The conference itself, with at least 5 classes in every time slot, offered something for everyone. If you weren’t making pickles, reworking the food system, and debating kosher meat practices simultaneously, you felt like you were missing out. The conference brought together people of all generations, from little rascals running underfoot to young wanderers like myself and even the financially stable long-time farmers and food justice activists. While I can’t say I realized my life calling with each step evenly laid out, the conference did reaffirm that there is hope out there in this food movement, that one person can make a difference, and perhaps, even balance a family and earn a living all at the same time. I am eager to get back to growing, on rooftops, in backyards (if only I had one), in the sadeh, wherever there is dirt to be found. Whenever the ground thaws, I will be right there waiting, ready to dig my hands back in the dirt and reclaim my young farmer status.