Last weekend was the long-anticipated Farm to Table Conference in Pittsburgh. I had a great time presenting and meeting lots of great people interested in local foods last year, and I'd been looking forward to doing it again this year. Also exciting was that my mom was able to attend and see me speak, and my sister Laurel graciously covered the farm's table in the exhibit hall while my presentation, titled "Treasures from our Grandparents' Gardens: Heirloom Seeds" was going on. I was amazed that I had as many attendees at 11:30 on Friday morning for my speech as I did last year on a Saturday afternoon!
Speaking so early meant that lots of folks who saw me had a chance to stop by and say hello or ask follow up questions when they stopped by the farm's table in the exhibit hall. I was flattered by the number of them who said that they really enjoyed it, and glad that so many of them were able to take away something useful from what I had to say.
Pleasant Valley Farm's table at Farm to Table Pittsburgh, 2012
The conference was much busier this year than last in my opinion. It was great, I believe that I literally talked to hundreds, if not over a thousand different people, all interested in local foods. Many of them were even familiar with Tionesta, and I hope to see some of them this summer. We had lots of positive feedback about the different tastes of the farm we brought to sample- Carrot Cake Jam, Black Forest Preserves, Hot Peach BBQ Sauce, Fiesta Salsa, and Ginger-Garlic Mustard. We sold out of Ginger-Garlic Mustard, Peach BBQ, and our Blueberry-Basil vinegar, much to the disappointment of some who tried a sample and wanted to pick up a jar on the way out! All in all, we made some great contacts and hopefully reached a lot of people, and helped to get the word out that there is more to eating locally than just raw veggies!
We were also very flattered to be in the Farm to Table preview article in Pittsburgh's Tribune-Review! Emily was quoted extensively, and the print version featured photos from the farm, a shot of heirloom lettuce growing in last year's garden, and another of Emily working our team of horses (Dixie & Dolly even got their names in the caption!). To read the article for yourself, check out: http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/email/s_787449.html?_s_icmp=enews