Join High Priest of the Pasture Joel Salatin at Petaluma’s Tara Firma Farms on Saturday

photo courtesy Tara Firma Farms
photo courtesy Tara Firma Farms

Fellow Petaluma Community Guildres Tara & Craig Smith, founders of Tara Firma Farms, will be hosting the hilarious and inspiring Joel Salatin this Saturday at their farm on the I Street Extension in Petaluma. The event is a fundraiser for the Tara Firma Farms Institute.

Salatin, of Polyface Farms in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, has in recent years become something of a sustainable ag phenomenon – inspiring countless others around the world to take the plunge and create their own farming ventures, including Tara & Craig.

In addition to writing a plethora of successful, self-published “How To” guides on various aspects of running a farming business, such as You Can Farm and Pastured Poultry Profits, the native Virginian wrote the 2012 best-seller Folks This Ain’t Normal. He’s also become a virtual prerequisite for documentary filmmakers in the food and agriculture genre, from Food Inc. to Fresh and beyond.

Dubbed the High Priest of the Pasture by the New York Times in 2005, Salatin’s remarkable success with holistic, organic, and environmentally sustainable methods at Polyface and generous, quirky teaching methods have led to his being in nearly continuous demand as a lecturer. Dog-eared and mangled copies of his books are to be found laying around farms and ag schools everywhere you care to look.

According to Tara Smith & the Tara Firma Farms folks:

This year’s fundraiser will be featuring the internationally renowned speaker Joel Salatin. The hysterically funny and yet sobering speaker will knock your socks off, educate you as to the State of the Union of food and keep you laughing all the while you’re learning the critical nature in which our food system finds itself  (and why you should care).

This event is a fundraising event to raise money for the Tara Firma Farms Institute, this year we have a $100,000 goal. The funds raised will be used towards our annual use permitting costs to allow us to continue hosting events such as this one, and the upgrades that we are required to make in order to obtain this permit. We are also raising money to complete the build out of one of our three barns and turn it into student housing. Our goal is to provide housing and offer a accredited program that will allow us to educate and share our vision of sustainable farming. This program will lead the way to a better food system.

Click here to purchase tickets and help this remarkable local farm build an important addition to the local ag & foodshed.

Stopping by Tara Firma this week, I was reminded by the perpetually helpful and kind Tina Medeiros Farias that Tara Firma now has fresh, unfrozen meats available Friday through Sunday at the farm store. Stop by for a wide selection of pastured, grass-fed meats, veggies, eggs and perhaps some good reading material by Salatin or Michael Pollan.  The farm’s located at 3796 I Street Extension, Petaluma. Call the farmhouse at 707-765-1202 for more information, or email

Here’s a link to a New York Times piece about Tara Firma Farms from July of 2013.

Here’s another link to a great Lexicon of Sustainability video featuring Joel Salatin, as seen on PBS. The Lexicon is an enthralling multimedia project created by Douglas Gayeton and Laura Howard-Gayeton (more talented & creative Petaluma folks) that explores the terms and principles of sustainability. See the Lexicon website for a host of their imagery and videos featuring some of the most innovative and important food and agriculture pioneers in the world.

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