April 24, 2014

thinkfood conference Saturday April 19

ThinkFood April 19, 2014 

Interested in the local food movement?

Join us for a conference co-hosted by the
newly established Center for Food Studies at
Bard College at Simon’s Rock and The Nutrition Center

Learn more…

Kellogg Music Center
Bard College at Simon’s Rock

9:30a.m. – 3:00p.m.

Limited seating, advance registration required: www.simons-rock.edu
Conference only: $15     Conference and lunch: $25

Perceptions and Perspectives: Our Regional Food Culture

How does media coverage of Berkshire food culture impact the daily lives of people living and working here?

Time: 10:00 – 11:30
Dan Shaw, Founder, Rural Intelligence

Matthew Rubiner, Rubiner’s Cheesemongers & Grocers
Serge Madikians, Chef-Owner, Serevan Restaurant
Angela Cardinali, Founder, Berkshire Farm & Table

Fuel the Body, Fuel the Mind:

Current Research and Teaching by Food Studies Faculty at Simon’s Rock and Connections to the Community

Time: 11:30 – 12:30
Maryann Tebben, Faculty in French Literature

Chris Coggins, Faculty in Geography & Asian Studies
Erin McMullin, Faculty in Biology

Dominic Palumbo, Farmer, Moon In The Pond Farm
Peter Stanton, Director, The Nutrition Center 


Time: 12:30 – 1:45 

Practical Matters: The Challenges of Feeding Our Students

The highs and lows of sourcing and serving local food at schools and colleges in the region.

Time: 1:45 – 3:00
Marianne Young, Principal, Monument Mountain Regional High School 

Lisa Damon, Farm to Cafeteria Coordinator, Massachusetts Farm to School
Meriweather Clark-Connors, Director of Dining Services, Bard College at Simon’s Rock
Chas Cerulli, Senior Director of Dining Services, Bard College
Andy Cox, General Manager of Dining Services, The Hotchkiss School
John-Paul Sliva, Bard Farm Coordinator, Bard College 


© Bard College at Simon’s Rock / All Rights Reserved

Celebrate Spring April 27, 2014

Berkshire Grown Brunch at Prairie Whale April 27, 2014


Meet Berkshire Grown Board and staff and farmers.

Learn more about Berkshire Grown.



$10 for 12 year old and under.

Saturday April 12 – how to keep farmers on the land and increase the land in farming?

Seedlings Woven RootsRead About it Here

Saturday April 12, 10 am to 2 pm

Berkshire Athenaeum (Pittsfield’s Public Library)

One Wendell Avenue, Downtown Pittsfield

Lunch, RSVP Required


Berkshire Grown and Community Land Trust in the Southern Berkshires are convening a conversation among people and organizations working in the Berkshires to put more farmers on the land and more land into farming. We believe access to affordable farmland is critical to our food security and the sustainability of our economy. We would like to discuss with you ways we can build a more secure land base for farms, farmer housing and related businesses. Our intention is to foster dialogue among -


  • Established, new and retiring farmers seeking opportunities
  • Land owners considering options for farming on their land
  • The land conservation community connecting land owners and farmers
  • Agriculture commissions developing their local agriculture economy
  • Community food security planners seeking locally produced food
  • Sustainable community organizers attracting youth to the Berkshires
  • Financial advisors, assessors and attorneys managing transactions


A farmer writes in Huffington Post:

Rafi at BG table












Berkshire Grown: A Case Study of an Organization Vital in Creating a Local Food System
(Huffington Post) by Rafi Bildner – With a staff of just one full and two part-time employees (along with a dedicated volunteer board), Berkshire Grown has established itself as a true umbrella organization for local food in Western Massachusetts. They provide essential resources for small farmers, and have created a true brand for local food in the region. While they do an incredible job, they’re not unique: Organizations like Berkshire Grown operate all over the country, filling a key role in our national small-scale food system, making them bedrocks of the “local food” movement. Yet while the latest Farm Bill continues to provide substantial resources for large, commodity-producing farms, it does not do enough for small (and sustainable) operations, that could most use the support.

The Sugar Season: Sunday March 9th

Writer Douglas Whynott, author of the new book The Sugar Season: A Year in the Life of Maple Syrup, and One Family’s Quest for the Sweetest Harvest, will be giving a reading and a talk at The Bookloft in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, Sunday, March 9th at 4pm.

The Sugar Season follows one New England family as they work to preserve an ancient, lucrative, and threatened agricultural art—the harvesting of maple syrup—and explore how one of America’s oldest agricultural crafts evolved from a quaint enterprise with “sugar parties” to a modern industry. At a sugarhouse owned by maple syrup entrepreneur Bruce Bascom, 80,000 gallons of sap are processed daily at winter’s end. In The Sugar Season, Douglas Whynott follows Bascom through one tumultuous season, taking us deep into the sugarbush. Along the way, he reveals the inner workings of the multimillion-dollar maple sugar industry.

Whynott brings us to sugarhouses, were we learn the myriad subtle flavors of syrup and how it’s assigned a grade. He examines the unusual biology of the maple tree that makes syrup possible and explores the maples’—and the industry’s—chances for survival.

Douglas Whynott is also the author of Giant Bluefin, Following the Bloom—Across America with the Migratory Beekeepers, and A Unit of Water, A Unit of Time: Joel White’s Last Boat, and is an assistant professor at Emerson College in Boston.  In 2013 via a fellowship from the Fulbright Foundation he taught literary journalism and nonfiction writing in the U.S. Studies Center at Universidad Nacional in Bogota, Colombia. He also has taught writing and literature at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Mount Holyoke College, and Columbia University.

For more information about Douglas Whynott,

 Douglas Whynott on Sunday, March 9, 2014, at 4pm. The Bookloft is located at the Barrington Plaza (332 Stockbridge Rd/Route 7) in Great Barrington. Call (413) 528-1521(413) 528-1521 for more information.


Taste Berkshires dark gray








Click for TasteBERKSHIRES

The Berkshire Visitors Bureau new focus for 2014 is Taste Berkshires, and we’re happy to see Berkshire Grown members featured! Their first spotlight article takes a look at Cricket Creek Farm, Chocolate Springs and Table Six restaurant at the Kemble Inn. Looking forward to more local food heroes in future Taste Berkshires posts!

MORE INFO at the Berkshire Visitors Bureau

Cultivating a Sustainable Food System

GreenLivingSeminar2014Thursdays at 5:30  at Murdock Hall, Room 218 MCLA in North Adams, free and open to the public
Creating Sustainable Food Systems

For more information 413-662-5303413-662-5303 Elena Traister

If you miss this first of a series, watch online.

Thursday March 6 at 5:30Susatainble Business as a Vehicle for Social Change

Thursday March 20th at 5:30

Current Status of Farming in Berkshire County

Melissa Adams, Keep Berkshires Farming Program Coordinator and Sarah Gardner, Williams College Center for Environmental Studies Associate Director.

Click on the poster for details.

Courses Thursdays at 5:30 through April: 4/24/14.

2014 Maple Recipe Contest

maple syrup buckets severalThink beyond the pancake: Submit your favorite maple recipe!

For hundreds of years Massachusetts sugarmakers have been making pure, sweet, all-natural maple syrup, and cooks have been using it for baking and cooking in endless ways. Maple syrup isn’t just for pancakes! This delicious, all-natural sweetener can be used in marinades, in baking, and for many other cooking purposes. Now you could win a prize if your recipe featuring 100% pure Massachusetts Maple Syrup is the best!

To coincide with our annual March is Maple Month celebration, Massachusetts Maple Producers Association is holding a contest and inviting anyone in Massachusetts to let us taste your most creative and delicious creations. The contest will be held at Williams’ Sugarhouse in Deerfield, MA, beginning at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 18. Contestants will bring their dishes to the event and our panel of judges will taste and choose the winners.

Contest Rules

  • Entries may be submitted in three categories: Main dish, Side dish, Dessert
  • Entries will be judged based upon taste, originality, and visual appeal.
  • Each entry must include pure Massachusetts Maple Syrup as an ingredient.
  • The recipe must not have knowingly been previously published and the right to submit the recipe to the contest must not be restricted in any way.
  • Recipe submissions may be published by the Massachusetts Maple Producers Association in electronic or paper form, with credit given to the contestant.
  • Each entry must be brought to the contest, to be held at Williams’ Sugarhouse at 491 Greenfield Road (Routes 5/10) in Deerfield, MA, by 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 18.
  • Entries must be presented as a completed dish, with enough quantity for four judges to taste. Facilities to warm entries will be available at the contest site.
  • Submissions must include the name of the recipe, a list of ingredients with standard U.S. measurements for each, and complete, step-by-step cooking instructions.
  • Contestants must submit entries to info@massmaple.org or Mass Maple, PO Box 6, Plainfield, MA 01070 before Friday, March 14 at midnight. Entries must include contestant’s name, address, phone number, and email address, as well as the recipe(s) being submitted. Submissions can be emailed to info@massmaple.org or mailed to Mass Maple, PO Box 6, Plainfield, MA 01070.
  • Contestants must live in the state of Massachusetts.
  • Prizes will be awarded in each category, and an overall winner will be chosen as well. Prizes include: gift certificates for meals at Ioka Valley Farm, South Face Farm, and Gould’s Sugarhouse; pure Massachusetts maple syrup; and a grand prize of a night at Parker’s Bed & Breakfast and Sugarhouse.

Please contact MMPA coordinator Winton Pitcoff at winton@massmaple.org or 413-628-3912 with questions.

Buy Locally Grown

old chatham cheeseEven in winter you can support local farmers by purchasing cheese, meat, root vegetables and more.

Last Holiday Farmers Markets Dec. 14 -15, Join us!

HFM 2013 header

Saturday December 14  in Great Barrington from 10 – 2 pm at Monument Valley Middle School

Sunday December 15 in Williamstown from 10 – 2 pm at the Williams College Towne Field House

Many many thanks to our sponsors!

HFM 2013 Sponsors