Urban Farming – Rashid Nuri

Farming no longer just happens in the country.  It’s increasingly taking place in cities around the globe.  Whether it’s to feed a family or generate additional income, seeds in the ground, attentively cultivated to harvest is making a difference.  At home in Atlanta Rashid Nuri is continuing to promote urban agriculture as he has for over 40 years all over the world.  He has shared his perspective and experiences on Ted Talks and in books, most recently including “Growing Out Loud – Journey of a Food Revolutionary”. Rashid offers solutions for failures of the food system and how an urban inclusive food system will cultivate social and environmental sustainability. With a Masters Degree in Soil Science Rashid Nuri has managed farms, global agribusiness ventures, community development projects and a large department at the US Department of Agriculture. This journey and decades of urban farming have have instilled a passion that he shares in his conversation on Farm To Table Talk. www.nurigroup.com



Meat Lab to Table – Dr. Keri Szejda and Al Banisch

“Meat” doesn’t necessarily have to come from animals any more.  Protein alternatives from plants have been in the market for decades and have become popular of late as restaurants and their consumers are finding plant based meat products are appealing for a number of reasons. The next new thing in protein options will be meat produced in laboratories from animal cells.  Potentially there will be more meat derived from fewer animals with fewer issues. Since over a dozen companies are racing to produce and market these new meat  products, there is a basic need to agree on what to call them. Extensive consumer research has concluded that “Cultivated meat” is a better name than descriptions such as “lab grown” or “cell based”. To explain the journey to name this game changing food technology, Farm To Table Talk is joined by Dr. Keri Szejda, Senior Consumer Research Scientist at the Good Food Institute and Al Banisch, Executive Vice President, New Product Strategy and Insights with Mattson.  In the near future, meat eaters will enjoy their favorite meat, that will have started as animal cells grown in a nutrient rich environment- farm to table by way of a scientific laboratory.



Organic/Conventional Global/Local – Tom Knowles, Chico Rice


Can a farmer be both a producer of a global commodity and organic wiwth local branded product available at the Farmers Market and on-line?  The answer is Yes when the question is put to Tom Knowles whose family has grown rice in Northern California for over 100 years. Too often in Agriculture organic and conventional systems are viewed as the enemy of each other.  It doesn’t have to be that way since, done right, there is a place for both systems. Tom Knowles family has been raising rice in northern California that often makes its way from their fields to a tables in Japan. Then they decided to also grow organic rice and open a whole new venture, Chico Rice, with their own milling of blonde rice (between brown and white) and marketing at farmer’s markets and on line.  The combination of traditional conventional and niche organic is working and gives this farming family a base they hope works for another 100 years. www.chicorice.com

Farm Workers Are Farmers – Gail Wadsworth

In the modern lexicon of food and farming, Social Justice is a term that is often heard but not often understood, let alone practiced. The California Institute of Rural Studies wants to increase social justice in rural California for all residents, building sustainable communities based on a healthy agriculture.  Foremost in their work are marginalized populations, strengthened social justice and increased sustainability of rural communities.  Farm workers are farmers and are a central concern to much of this work.  Gail Wadsworth has led the Institute for the past 10 years and joins us at the table on her last day as Executive Director to explain how collaboration for the common good is essential for rural communities and our food system. www.cirsinc.org




Provenance Matters – Kristin Kiesel, UC Davis

The growing local food movement is connecting consumers with how, where, and by whom their food is produced. “Yet small farmers and food businesses struggle to sell their goods to local buyers at profit-generating prices.”  A study from UC Davis argues that authentic regional brands rather than labels defined by the proximity of production can capture complex consumer values, support farming communities, and attract new food entrepreneurs. Dr. Kristin Kiesel is a UC Davis Professor who co-authored “New Marketing Opprtunities for Local Food Producers” and joins our podcast for table talk about what marketing ‘Provenance’ means to consumers, retailers, restaurants and farmers. https://kiesel.ucdavis.edu/

Appreciating Joel Salatin – Ben Glassen

On Vancouver Island in British Columbia Ben Glassen is following the advice that Joel Salatin has shared in books, speaking engagements and on the Farm To Table Talk Podcast. Using Joel’s model, Ben is providing Pastured Poultry  for Vancouver Island families by moving chickens across the field daily to evenly spread the wear, fertilization and ensuring the birds are always happily on fresh grass. He followed Joel Salatin’s four principals for a young farmer: 1) Borrow land 2) Mobile infrastructure 3) Modular units to scale 4) Direct market to the end user.  It’s a solution to the problem faced by many: how to start farming when you are rich in enthusiasm but not in land or money. www.GlassenFarms.com  Instagram @GlassenFarms

Ben’s Favorite Podcasters: Rodger Wasson- Farm To Table Talk; Diego Footer – Permaculture Voices, Grass Fed Life, Farm Small Farm Smart; Darby Simpson- Grassfed Life; John Suscovich – Farm Marketing Solutions and Growing Farms Podcast; Tim Young – Small Farm Nation; Terrance Layhew – The Intellectual Agrarian; Mike Badger – The Fighting Farmer Podcast; Justin Rhodes – You Tube and Abundant Permaculture, leading to Joel Salatin, leading to Wendall Berry, leading to Sir Albert Howard leading to…..

Eat Right? Right! – Sharon Palmer, RD

Do we Eat Right? Yes, maybe. What should we eat? There are professionals to help us answer questions like this. They’re called Registered Dietitians and over 10,000 of them attended the Food Nutrition Conference and Expo #FNCE in Philadelphia,  sponsored by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. One of the highly respected Dietitians in Philadelphia for #FNCE, Sharon Palmer joins the table talk to explore what’s the buzzt and what’s to come as we strive to eat right. Sharon is an author, registered Dietitian, expert on the food system and a foremost proponent of plant based diets. Dietitians tell us what we should eat, so should they also be able to tell us how the food is grown and why certain farming systems or sources are better for us than others? #FNCE @sharonpalmer www.eatright.org


Farmers and Forkers – Toki Sawada, Don Watson, Camellia Enriquez Miller and Michael Passmore

Celebrating agricultural bounty in the midst of a record-setting 150,00 festival goers, great conversations take place about food and farming. What does Farm to Fork mean for farmers, restaurant chefs and consumers? To answer that and related questions 4 special guests sat down at a table, on a stage in a tent at the world famous, Sacramento Farm to Fork Festival. Our guests are Chef Toki Sawada of Binchoyaki; Don Watson of Napa Valley Lamb and Wooly Weeders; Camellia Enriquez Miller of Produce Express and Twin Peaks Orchards and Michael Passmore, owner of Passmore Fish Ranch. Surrounded with the fun sounds of the Festival, we jump in for a brisk conversation of what brings us all to the table.

Cultivating Ground Water – Marian Singer

Groundwater is a critical under-measured resource that is in a precarious state. In the U.S. ground water provides 44% of drinking water and 42% of the irrigation supply; globally it’s closer to 70% of irrigation supply. It provides the base flow for our streams, rivers and lakes. Our virtual savings account for food production, property value and strong local communities. that we take for granted at our future peril.  New technologies can assist food producers of all shapes and sizes to manage this most important ingredient of everything we eat. Marian Singer is the CEO of Wellntel, an ag-tech start-up that is providing solutions for monitoring the state of our wells. She joins our table to explore the makings of a groundwater revolution. www.wellntel.com



Breakfast Is Happy – Dan Ansperger, Happy Egg

Good food, well grown, makes us happy, but can the food be happy too? At least one company suggests that is the case: the aptly named “Happy Egg”. Originating in England, before sustainable food became popular, the Happy Egg is a pioneer of free range farming. The CEO of Happy Egg, Dan Ansperger, is a Missouri farm boy who finds a brand new way to deliver “happy”. This episode of Farm To Table Talk explores the consumer demand for food with a good story and how egg farmers are adjusting to meet that demand. Happy Egg is a pioneer of free range egg farming with hens roaming free on over eight acres of pasture. It was the first free range egg producer to receive the American Humane® Association certification. Flock sizes are regulated, giving year-round outdoor access, providing play kits and tree coverage, outdoor watering systems, and ample room for the hens to dust-bathe, forage, exercise, and roam. Here’s to an egg finding a happy place on your plate. www.happyegg.co