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News & Events November 2011
Berkshire Grown online

Michael Pollan, Walmart, & the food movement   Wednesday November 2nd - 7 PM

Berkshire Grown presents the fifth in a nine-week series on the rise and future of the food movement -- see schedule of speakers below and description of the full series here.   

Corporations & the Food Movement: a conversation with author Michael Pollan, and Exec. VP for Walmart, Jack Sinclair, and Jib Ellison who consults to Walmart. 

Edible Ed ad


Walmart Exec. VP says, "everyone deserves to eat healthy food...."  Come hear more.


A taped lecture at the Lecture Center at Simon's Rock College.    More information here.

Map of Bard College at Simon's Rock here.


Jack Sinclair is the Executive Vice President of the food division for Walmart U.S., responsible for the company's overall strategy for food and grocery.


Jib Ellison is the founder and CEO of Blu Skye Strategy Consulting where he leads a small team of strategy experts who work with Fortune 50 companies to transform markets - and to create new ones. 


Thanks to our generous sponsor:  Iredale Mineral Cosmetics! 


   Iredale logo as jpeg











More information here
Edible Education



Holiday Farmers Markets 2011


Lunch Lessons"School Lunch and Edible Schoolyards"


Wednesday Nov 9th 7pm   

The Lecture Center at Bard College at Simon's Rock


videotape of author, chef, educator  

Ann Cooper, the "Renegade Lunch Lady" more here  


What are the challenges and opportunities around transforming school lunch? How is school lunch integral to an edible education curriculum?


A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Cooper has been featured inAnn Cooper Chef renegade lunch lady The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Chicago Tribune, Newsweek, and Time Magazine and has appeared on NPR's 'Living on Earth,' ABC's Nightline, CNN, PBS' To The Contrary and the CBS Morning Show and many other media outlets. She is the author of four books, including Lunch Lessons: Changing the Way We Feed Our Children (2006).




"Feeding the World"

Nov 16th 7 pm

The Lecture Center, Bard College of Simon's Rock 

Stuffed and StarvedVideotape of Raj Patel, a writer, activist and academic.  


He has worked for the World Bank and WTO, and protested against them around the world. He's currently a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley's Center for African Studies, an Honorary Research Fellow at the School of Development Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and a fellow at The Institute for Food and Development Policy, also known as Food First.  


His first book was Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System and his latest, The Value of Nothing, is a New York Times best-seller.

  More info here


Meet Berkshire Grown's Farmers   



by Nichole Calero 


Oct Mtn Farm yellow squash blosson"'This has been an unbelievably fulfilling experience,' says young farmer Rafi Bildner. Located in Becket, MA, October Mountain farm is notable for both its size, and its farmer; Rafi Bildner is fresh out of high school and is farming on just a quarter acre."

Read more here 

October Mountain Farm here 


Photo from summer 2011 by Nichole Calero 

What We're Reading


By Annie Cheatham, President, New England Farmers Union


Who gets the biggest portion of Farm Bill dollars?

1) Organic dairy farmers?
2) Large industrial farmers?
3) Nutrition programs?
4) Soil management programs?


When asked this question by Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture Kathleen Merrigan on her recent trip to western New England, 70% of the audience said that the answer was #2. Take a look at the pie chart below and you will see that the largest portion of farm bill funding goes to nutrition programs. And this pie chart is based on 2009 figures. Today, nutrition programs constitute over 75% of the farm bill's budget.  Read more below, and here 


 US Fed spending Farm Bill



Of the overall farm bill budget, 14% goes to the farm safety net. Providing a safety net for farmers is an old tradition in our country. For generations our government has agreed that farmers should be provided with some sort of assurance that if disaster strikes, if weather conditions reduce or eliminate their yields, if market prices fall far below the cost of growing crops, we will, as a society, provide some insurance for them so that they can recover and plant again. Farmers produce food for us to eat, and for people of the world to eat. Theirs is the riskiest business there is, without any protection from weather and weather related disasters. Already in 2011, over 40 states in the U.S. have experienced weather related agricultural disasters. A safety net is part of our contract. Farmers grow food for our society; we take care of farmers in emergencies.

  US Net spending Farm Safety Net

Crop insurance and direct payments have been the predominant mechanisms for this protection. Today, the U.S. Congress and the White House are giving intense scrutiny to these and other agriculture programs with the aim of reducing funding to unprecedented levels. In budget and appropriations passed by the U.S. Congress in the last 2 years, agriculture spending has suffered cuts 2 or 3 times deeper than other federal programs. During the next 10 years, the current farm safety net is projected to make up less than 0.28% of federal spending. Programs that have a large impact on New England farmers, the conservation and energy programs, are expected to account for only 0.12% of federal spending. Still reductions continue to be made in programs that help farmers.





Bartlett's Orchard (weekends)
575 Swamp Road
Pittsfield, MA 01201

Hilltop Orchards and Furnace Brook Winery
508 Canaan Rd.
Richmond, MA
413-698-3301 or 800-833-6274

Jaeschke's Orchard
West Rd.
Adams, MA

94 Old Cheshire Road
Lanesboro, MA
Riiska Brook Orchard (Fri - Sun)
101 New Hartford Rd.
Sandisfield, MA
686 Stockbridge Road
Great Barrington, MA


Howden Farm
(weekends only)
303 Rannapo Rd.
Sheffield, MA
3475 Route 43
Hancock, MA


Farm Pick-Up Winter CSA

cheesesCricket Creek Farm in Williamstown is excited to announce a 2011-2012 Farm Pick-Up Winter CSA. Building on their first cheese CSA this summer, they are offering the full range of  products- cheese, raw milk, meat, eggs, and bread.


Each share starts with a base of cheese. From there you can mix and match any of the additional products. So you could create a share that consists of cheese, bread, and raw milk, or cheese, eggs, and meat cuts.


They offer two share sizes. The Regular and Family.

Details on the what is included can be found here.


Additionally, for the first time, they will have glass milk bottles, available only to CSA members. Please note that their milk is raw (unpasteurized).

Click here for more information and to sign up.

 Cricket Creek Farm, 1255 Oblong Rd.
Williamstown, MA 01267  413-458-5888


Berkshire Botanical Garden 

The Organic Home Orchard 

Michael Phillips, Lost Nation Orchards  

Saturday, November 19  1 - 4 pm  Lecture/field study/booksigning


Berkshire Botanical Garden header

For information on specifics, contact the garden 413-298-3926


Holistic Orchard BookJoin holistic orchardist Michael Phillips for an intensive programming on growing all kinds of fruit in the back yard.Confidence to integrate tree fruits into your landscape begins with embracing biodiversity and knowing how to steward system health.   


This program will be useful for both backyard growers as well as small-market fruit growers with a focus on growing healthy organic fruit. Michaels 


Michael Phillips is known across the country for helping people grow healthy apples and understand the healing virtues of plant medicines. His new book The Holistic Orchard published by Chelsea Green Publishing will be hot off the press and available for sale at the lecture. See the "community orchard movement" he helped found.     


For more information contact: Elisabeth Cary
Director of Education
Berkshire Botanical Garden
[email protected]  


Quick Bites



Berkshire Grown Online Farmers' Market

a 24 hour Farmers' Market! 



Squash HVFarm by NicholeBerkshire Grown has created a Facebook page 

called Berkshire Grown Online Farmers' Marketplace

- a central place for Berkshire Grown members to congregate and talk supply and demand. 


Self-propelled by Berkshire Grown members, the page will benefit those of you who choose to participate in it. Farmers and food producers can post what they have available, and chefs and community members can comment or contact suppliers directly with requests for product or more information.   

Thanks for the photo to Nicole Calero, taken at Hawthorne Valley Farm   

Berkshire Grown offers this as a networking service and bears no responsibility for transactions.






 If you are traveling through Massachusetts check out this map, support our local farmers throughout the state!




BG logoStay In touch!

Berkshire Grown's e-newsletter comes out monthly.  Please send information to [email protected], thanks!  Join Berkshire Grown here.

Barbara Zheutlin, Director
Sheryl Lechner, Outreach Coordinator