Utah Farm & Food Conference 2022
In the rear view mirror
January 13 - 15, the 6th annual Utah Farm and Food conference Gathered more than 150 farmers, gardeners, biodynamic practitioners, permaculturists, educators, students, activists, chefs, seed geeks, foodies, and homesteaders from Utah and neighboring states. The conference inspired: Learning, engaging, exploring, sharing, questioning, connecting, reflection, camaraderie, and reverence as a vibrant community gathered over three days. Our minds and hearts were opened, souls and spirits were nourished, and our wills were strengthened to continue the sacred work of stewarding land, growing food, building local food economies, and cultivating relationships.
On the Amigo Farm tour, we visited three farms and one homestead in Sevier and Sanpete Counties. We learned hands-on in two pre-conference workshops how to build hoop houses and the role and importance of biodynamics on farms and in gardens.
We celebrated, conversed, and connected through the miracle of seed at the Seed Exchange and opening dinner by board member Chef Shon of Against the Grain Restaurant Group. Beef from board member Stan Jensen of Sunnyside Up Pastures with produce and ingredients from local, organic, and biodynamic producers.
We introduced the Clinton Ray Miller Legacy Food and Agriculture Award this year to recognize one person, business, community leader, chef, farmer, or producer who is an ardent supporter and believer in the mission of Red Acre Center. The award is named after the late Clinton Ray Miller, who dedicated decades of his life as a lobbyist and activist for food and nutrition. For the 2022 award, Lieutenant Governor Deidre M. Henderson attended the evening to make the presentation. The award will be presented annually at the Utah Farm and Food Conference.
Gentle Yoga started off each morning. There were inspiring keynotes: " 'Organic or Local' by Bob Quinn, "Rooted in Resilience" by Sara Patterson, and "Seeds" by Bill Mc Dorman. Recognized for making it Happen in Utah: Heritage Family Farms and Abigails Oven. Over 20 diverse workshops to gain knowledge from and 30 presenters to learn, discuss, and share. Red Acre Center provided a wide variety of books in the book store while exhibitors and vendors offered products, information, and inspiration. Additional farmers and bakers joined the vendors for the statewide Saturday Farmer's Market. This year, we were also pleased to have our statewide Market Managers with us for the Farmers Market Forum.
We are thankful to all who helped to make this conference happen: The Board of Trustees, Business and Community Partners, farmers and producers, presenters, performers, exhibitors, vendors, volunteers, and most importantly, those who attended you are the heart and soul of this event.