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"delicious food never comes from careless farmers"

Posted 3/31/2016 8:58am by Shiloh Avery.

This beautiful cover crop is part of tending to delicate ecological relationships


I listen to a lot of NPR podcasts. Yes, I am that person the pledge drives are targeting who begins many of their sentences with “I heard on NPR….”.  The fact that I know that I am the target for pledge drives is just one indication of my NPR habits (because clearly I have listened to the pledge drives!).  I once even made it in the annual report of WFDD-the Winston-Salem NPR station.   It’s an addiction, but I can think of worse things to be addicted to I suppose.  

Anyway, one of my favorites is the TED Radio Hour.  The other day, while seeding radishes, I listened to a TED Radio Hour interview with the chef at Blue Hill Restaurant at Stone Barn Dan Barber.  He was speaking from a chef’s point of view about the flavor of ingredients.  He said, “delicious food never comes from careless farmers….but farmers who care about delicate ecological relationships.”  

Now, the word “sustainable” gets thrown around a lot these days.  But it’s a concept that we have always strived for.  We always considered these “delicate ecological relationships” to part of the environmental responsibility aspect of sustainability.    But what I realized from listening to Dan Barber toot our horn, so to speak, is that tending to those relationships as environmental responsibility circles right around and benefits us back in terms of quality and flavor of the food we produce.  Cool!  

I mean, the management of an organic farm includes thinking of the farm as a whole ecological system so it’s always there in the back of our minds, but hearing a famous chef appreciate it created a whole new level of proud for me.  I have to say, though, that it did nothing to dissuade my addiction to NPR.    



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