Letters to a Young Farmer

On Food, Farming, and Our Future

Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture , Martha Hodgkins


     6 × 8.5 in (15.2 × 21.6 cm)
176 pages
13 b/w illustrations
Publication date: 3/7/2017
Rights: World
ISBN: 9781616895303

Letters to a Young Farmer is for everyone who appreciates good food grown with respect for the earth, people, animals, and community. Three dozen esteemed writers, farmers, chefs, activists, and visionaries address the highs and lows of farming life as well as larger questions of how our food is produced and consumed in vivid and personal detail. Barbara Kingsolver speaks to the tribe of farmers'some born to it, many self-selected with love, admiration, and regret. Dan Barber traces the rediscovery of lost grains and foodways. Michael Pollan bridges the chasm between agriculture and nature. Bill McKibben connects the early human quest for beer to the very modern challenge of farming in a rapidly changing climate. US representative Chellie Pingree probes the politics of being a young farmer today. Farmer Mas Masumoto passes on family secrets to his daughter and not-soon-forgotten stories to us all. Letters to a Young Farmer is both a compelling history and a vital road map a reckoning of how we eat and farm; how the two can come together to build a more sustainable future; and why now, more than ever before, we need farmers.

Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture is on a mission to create a healthy and sustainable food system that benefits us all. A nonprofit organization, Stone Barns Center works to develop a culture of eating based on what farms need to grow to build healthy soil and a resilient ecosystem. In its quest to transform the way America eats and farms, the organization trains farmers, educates food citizens, develops agroecological farming practices, and convenes change makers. Stone Barns Center, 25 miles north of New York City, is home to the celebrated Blue Hill at Stone Barns, under the direction of chef and co-owner Dan Barber, a multiple James Beard award winner.

Martha Hodgkins is communications director at Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture. A former editor of Nature Conservancy magazine, she is the editor of In Response to Place: Photographs from The Nature Conservancy's Last Great Places and The Field Guide to The Nature Conservancy.

Editorial Reviews

Neil Young, Farm Aid:

"The chance to make a difference in quality of life for all depends on the soil and those who care for and nurture the earth. New young farmers are on the front lines in the struggle for survival, the future of our children and theirs."

Tom Philpott, food and agriculture correspondent, Mother Jones:

"An extraordinary harvest of wisdom from a ragtag crew of farmers, cooks, and agitators--and a must read, not just for young farmers, but for anyone with an interest in a robust food supply in our era of climate chaos."

Mark Bittman, author of How to Cook Everything:

"This will make you want to become a farmer."

Lindsey Lusher Shute, executive director and cofounder, National Young Farmers Coalition:

"Young people face a steep and uncertain climb on their journey to farm. Letters to a Young Farmer is fuel for the moments when they might turn back. With love, respect, and a hearty embrace, the book's authors show a new generation of farmers that their work is at the very foundation of life on Earth."

Naomi Starkman, founder and editor-in-chief, Civil Eats:

"What a wonderful gift this book is to all aspiring farmers--full of sage wisdom, passionate encouragement, and practical advice from some of the greatest food and farming heroes of our time. Their words will inspire and remind you why farming is indeed the most important work to be done."

Reader Comments


Related Titles