Local fishing, farming groups to bring Greenhorns director to Alaska
Young Farmers Advocate, Severine von Tscharner Fleming, Embarks on Alaska Speaking Tour
Severine von Tscharner Fleming, director of the young farmers organization, The Greenhorns, is coming to Alaska this September for a 9-day speaking tour and to meet with young farmers and fishermen in Kenai, Homer, Palmer and Anchorage. Fishing and farming groups worked together to bring the farmer, activist and organizer from New York’s Champlain Valley to engage with young Alaskan farmers and fishermen in conversations about their livelihoods and local food.
Fleming’s work and lectures celebrate the entrance of a new generation of farmers into American agriculture, and the rebuilding of regional food sovereignty. Now in its 6th year, Greenhorns focuses on convening in-person networking mixers, conferences and workshops, as well as producing new media and publications for their national network.
In addition to directing the Greenhorns, Fleming also runs the Agrarian Trust, working to build a national network, tools, templates and pilot projects to support new farmers with land access, and opportunity, and address the ownership transition of 400 million acres of US farmland.
“After seeing Severine speak at conferences in the Lower 48 last year, our staff wanted to bring her up to speak with young fishermen in Alaska because of the similarities between challenges faced by young fishermen and young farmers,” said Kelly Harrell, Executive Director of the Alaska Marine Conservation Council (AMCC) and board member of the Alaska Food Policy Council. AMCC is currently working on a multi-year research project with University of Alaska Fairbanks and Alaska Sea Grant called ‘The Graying of the Fleet,’ exploring barriers young fishermen face when entering the industry.
“What we are learning about young fishermen in Alaska seemed to parallel what Severine talks about with young farmers: they face high costs of entering this career path tempered by a love for the lifestyle those jobs create and a real care and stewardship for the sustainable resources these young people are using,” said Harrell.
Fleming’s speaking tour will consist of the following presentations:
● Friday, September 18th at 7pm: "Growing Local Food Systems: Tales from the Frontlines" presented at the Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association in Kenai, AK.
● Sunday, September 20th at 12pm: "Greenhorns - Lessons of Young Farmers for Young Fishermen" presented at the Homer Council on the Arts in Homer, followed by a conversation and lunch for young fishermen. This event is part of AMCC’s Homer Halibut Festival (September 19-20th).
● Tuesday, September 22nd at 7pm: "Growing Local Food Systems" presented at the University of Alaska Fairbanks' Matanuska Experiment Farm in Palmer.
● Wednesday, September 23rd at 7pm: Following Alaska Pacific University’s Farmers Market, Fleming will present at the Carr-Gottstein Lecture Hall at APU in Anchorage.
● Thursday, September 24th at 3pm: A screening of the Greenhorns documentary film followed by a discussion with Fleming at the Bear Tooth Theatrepub in Anchorage.
All events are free and open to the public. Severine’s Alaska speaking tour is sponsored by the Alaska Food Policy Council and the Alaska Marine Conservation Council.