The Austin Chronicle

Farm and Food Leadership Conference

By Anna Toon, September 17, 2013, 3:10pm, On the Range

Nonprofit leaders, farmers and ranchers, and local food activists will gather at the Bastrop Convention & Exhibit Center (1408 Chesnut in Bastrop) on Sept. 22-23 for the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance (FARFA) annual conference.

Designed for both experienced and beginner activists, the conference will be divided into two tracks: GMO Perspectives: From Farm to Store and Community Food Access. Panels and workshops will cover topics ranging from the farm bill and food safety to organics and urban farming. Other notable topics include raw milk, water policies, and a highly anticipated chefs’ panel featuring, among others, James Beard award nominee Jesse Griffiths of Dai Due and Sonya Cote of Hillside Farmacy and the Homegrown Revival. Bi-partisan co-founders of Texas' Farm-to-Table Caucus, Rep. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham), and Rep. Eddie Rodriguez (D-Austin), will be also take part in a legislators’ lunch and perspectives panel.

A banquet prepared by Jesse Griffiths will accompany the keynote address by Dr. Francis Thicke. An independent organic dairy farmer and former National Program Leader for Soil Science at the USDA, Thicke was named 2012 Farmer of the Year by the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service and is a current member of the Cornucopia Institute’s Policy Advisory Panel.

For a full agenda, registration, and additional information, visit

Copyright © 2022 Austin Chronicle Corporation. All rights reserved.