Follow Keri and Janine
Keri Brandt Off and Janine Fitzgerald are both professors of sociology at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado, and they’re both ranchers. They’ve coined the term “zombie agriculture” to describe a food system that raises food from dead soil–it looks like it’s alive but doesn’t have the life or history or interactive communities on the level of either soil or interpersonal relatedness. Can we keep it from eating our brains?
0’41 what is Zombie agriculture
5’04 the idea of eternal hunger and greed
9’57 zombie chemicals spreading onto non-zombie land
11’36 letting go of good guys vs. bad guys thinking
14’01 Keri had to face her own right-wrong thinking when she, a vegetarian, fell in love with a rancher
17’32 radical center
18’27 the fallacy that we can find the perfect “fix”
23’54 history of a place gets erased when you remove life from the land
24’26 native belief that endangers plants “hide”
25’28 the need for restoration rather than moving on once you’ve damaged the land
26’37 the problem with the “feed the world” narrative
30’29 colonialist attitudes underlying industrial ag thinking
32’54 putting aside “good-bad” thinking doesn’t mean abandoning morality
33’25 finding “a” right road, not “the” right road
34’42 criticize the system, not the people caught up in it
37’13. bright spots of hope
40’00 how communities respond to disasters
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Brennan Washington is an agriculture Renaissance man. He farms, promotes farmers markets, provides resources to limited-resource producers, and produces the Sustainable Ag Rider podcast.
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Kate Zeigler is a geologist who works with farmers and ranchers in the arid Southwest to monitor their wells and the water table that keeps them flowing–and helps them to come up with water conservation strategies.
Jillian Hishaw works with farmers to protect themselves, their families, and their land–legally and financially. Attorney and food systems strategist, she provides free or low-cost services, particularly to African American farmers.
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Dr. Robert Fetsch has for decades been helping farmers and ranchers deal with disabilities — from injuries brought on by hard work, to mental health problems like anxiety, depression, and anger.
Nicole Masters is an agro-ecologist and educator in regenerative agriculture. She’s founder of Integrity Soils, and author of the new book, For the Love of Soil.
The food business is beginning to realize that they’re unsustainable — but don’t really know how to transition. Bio-Logical Capital provides demonstrations and research that point to possible paths forward.
Graeme Hand teaches Holistic Management, and how to restore grasslands with cattle–and his techniques might surprise you!
Joel Benson applied his training in holistic management to his business, and then to the government of his small town where he was mayor for eight years. The results are inspiring — and remind us of the power of systems thinking.
While cows can be destructive, they can also be effective management tools for improving land health. We talk to Rodrigo Sierra Corona about his work to improve grasslands and preserve species at the Santa Lucia Conservancy.