Archive for March, 2011


New Study to Assess Economic Prospects for Food Localization in Colorado

Saturday, March 12th, 2011

More great news on the local food front (see Tuesday’s featured post), this time from Transition Colorado. See the press release below to find out more.

February 2011, Boulder, CO: “As Colorado transitions towards a sustainable future, food will play an increasingly significant role in shaping the local economy,” says Michael Brownlee, co-founder of Transition Colorado. “But our best data indicates that of the more than $10 billion Colorado residents spend each year on food, at least 97 percent is imported from outside the state. Very little of what we eat is grown within the state, and just a tiny portion is organic.”

This realization has prompted Transition Colorado to commission acclaimed economist and author Michael Shuman to develop a comprehensive assessment of the economic prospects for localizing the local food system, focusing on Colorado’s Front Range, and to make specific recommendations for achieving 25 percent food localization in the coming years.

The major goal of the Local Food Assessment and Plan is to create a significant economic development strategy for the region based on the production, processing, and distribution of locally-grown food. The Assessment will outline the framework for developing a resilient and self-sustaining local food economy.

Shuman recently completed a similar study for the 16-county Northeast Ohio region (Greater Cleveland), which showed that, 25% food relocalization by 2020 in that region would create 27,000 new jobs and provide work for one out of eight jobless individuals. Annually, that shift could propel $4.2 billion in additional output, $868 million in additional wages, and $126 million in additional state and local tax revenues.

Michael Shuman is director of research and economic development for the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE), author of The Small-Mart Revolution, and lead author of Community Food Enterprise: Local Success in a Global Marketplace, published by the Wallace Center at Winrock International. Shuman will also be a keynote speaker at the “Our Local Economy in Transition” conference in Boulder, Feb. 26 (see www.TransitionColorado.org).

A key strategy in the Assessment will be organizing “affinity groups” around topics of common interest. These groups will contribute to understanding the multitude of viewpoints and ideas around how to advance local food efforts along the Front Range and beyond. Affinity group members will be asked to participate in surveys and discussion topics throughout the duration of the assessment.

Shuman and his on-the-ground team will consider the full-value cycle of a healthy regional food system, evaluating agricultural production, supply chain infrastructure, markets, capacity building, and secondary businesses. The quantitative analysis component of the Assessment will feature the use of the IMPLAN method for evaluating the impact of “import substitution” as a means for economic development through supporting locally-owned businesses. The Assessment will culminate in late 2011 with a final report and public forum on the findings.

The Assessment will complement the recently-completed Northern Colorado Food System Assessment conducted by Larimer, Boulder, and Weld Counties, the Fort Collins Downtown Development Authority and Colorado State University Extension.

Shuman says that the biggest downside on a non-localized food system is economic. “Every time you choose not to be self-reliant in a given good or service, you’re giving away business opportunities. So you not only lose the income, wealth and jobs associated with that business, but all of the jobs and income and wealth that would have come from linked businesses, with the so-called multiplier effect as a dollar works its way through the economy from one local business to another. Figuring out how to bring those businesses back into the community is a key strategy for economic development.”

Shuman also contends that the number one priority in food localization is local investment in food and farming enterprises. “We need to crack open funds that are being 100 percent invested in non-local business,” he says, “and move them into local reinvestment.”

Transition Colorado is a non-profit organization (501c3) dedicated to building the resilience and self reliance of Colorado communities through the process of relocalization. The organization is establishing an investment fund that will connect local investors with local food and farming enterprises, following the inspiration of Woody Tasch, author of Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing As If Food, Farming and Fertility Mattered, and founder of the Slow Money Alliance.

Visit TransitionColorado.org to learn more.

Learn more about Woody Tasch and Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money in our bookstore now.

Why the Government’s Unemployment Rate is Dangerously Deceptive – And the Dark Reality it Hides

Friday, March 11th, 2011

The following post comes to us from Les Leopold, author of The Looting of America: How Wall Street’s Game of Fantasy Finance Destroyed Our Jobs, Pensions, and Prosperity—and What We Can Do About It. It appeared originally on the web at Alternet.org.

I’m here to confirm everyone’s gut sense that the way the government measures unemployment is a lie, and it matters.

The latest statistics compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) indicate the unemployment rate is 8.9 percent and the economy added 192,000 jobs in February. Yes, that’s better than a year ago when the rate peaked at 10.4 percent and we lost 35,000 jobs.

But there are two big problems with those numbers:

First let’s look more closely at the 192,000 new jobs that were created last month. It’s seems like a good looking number – like filling up two big football stadiums with people and giving them all jobs. But not quite. We need about 100,000 new jobs a month just to keep up with population growth. That means we can only move toward full employment if the economy creates many more than 100,000 new jobs a month. So in effect, one of those football stadiums each month is mostly filled with young people just coming into the labor force. And the other football stadium in February seats the 92,000 unemployed folks who actually found new jobs.

The pathetic pace of job creation
Since November when jobs growth started again, the economy has added an average of 136,000 jobs a month. Take out the 100,000 for new workers and it means we’re gaining ground on full-employment at only 36,000 jobs a month.

How far do we have to go? Using the most conservative numbers, we’re still down 7.5 million jobs since December 2007, when the Wall Street crash really started wrecking the rest of the economy. Do the math. Divide 7.5 million jobs lost by 36,000 per month of net new job growth and you get a little over 208 months or 17.4 years until we get back to pre-crash levels. That’s an entire generation! And that assumes we won’t have another recession or Wall Street crash. Fat chance.

But the darkest data buried in the BLS statistics, and in numbers the media tends to ignore because they don’t understand them –and they are numbers that are truly frightening– have to do with the long-term unemployed and the people who have given up looking for work.

Continue reading this article at Alternet.

Les Leopold’s The Looting of America is available now.

Speculators & Oil Cost Are To Blame For Gas Prices, Not The Middle East

Thursday, March 10th, 2011

by Jamie Court, author of The Progressive’s Guide to Raising Hell.

While skirmishes in Libya and uncertainty in the Middle East are nice cover for outrageous gasoline prices, the fact is the same old suspects are making a killing from sky-high gas prices approaching $4 dollars per gallon in California: big oil companies and greedy speculators.

The speculative market may have driven crude oil prices up, but that’s not the price oil companies pay for the crude oil that goes into our gasoline. America’s big oil companies use crude oil that they have harvested from the ground or bought much cheaper on long term contracts to refine into gasoline. You’ll see the results in next quarter’s profit statements: big profits from both crude oil sales and refineries that make gasoline, what’s called “upstream’ and “downstream” operations in profit reports.

Consumer Watchdog has for years both tried to curb the opaqueness of the volatile speculative market for oil and to regulate supplies at gasoline refineries because oil companies game both systems, creating artificial shortages in the markets to jack up prices or exploiting historical events to justify obscene profits.  Today’s sky high gasoline prices are the result of oil companies shutting down refineries and playing the speculative markets for big gains.

The deafening silence from the White House and  groups in DC loyal to the President who know better is the most astonishing thing.

Obama campaigned against oil company greed on the campaign trail but now he seems to have lost his voice on the subject. Republicans are taking the offensive, but the oil industry that has nourished in their bosoms for decades is at the heart of the crisis. Oil companies have kept the nation running on such short supplies of gasoline that any jolt to the system sends gas prices through the roof and makes the economy pay.

What follows is the five facts of life I have learned from more than a decade fighting oil companies, battles I recount in my book The Progressive’s Guide To Raising Hell.  It’s about time the White House started educating Americans about these facts of life and fighting back against  the real perpetrators of the pain at the pump.

• Rather than compete with each other to provide more cheaper gasoline, oil companies cheat together to withhold needed gasoline supply from the market. Consistently, the companies artificially pull back refinery production of gasoline in order to reduce supply coming in during periods of peak demand so they can increase prices. It’s legal so long as there is no smoky back room where they talk about it, but they don’t need to since industry data about supply flows freely on corporate computer screens. This behavior has been documented by government agencies like the Federal Trade Commission, which found, for example, in an investigation of Midwest gasoline price spikes, that one refiner admitted keeping supply out of a region in need because it would boost prices.

• Oil companies failed to build ample refining capacity to meet demand. Over the last twenty years,America’s demand for gasoline increased 30 percent and refinery capacity at existing refineries increased only 10 percent. No new American refinery has come on line during the last thirty years. Internal memos and documents from the big oil companies show they deliberately shut down refining capacity in order to have a greater command over the market.

• The big oil companies have their own crude oil production operations and control substantial foreign production of crude oil. They profit wildly when the price of crude oil skyrockets, so they have an interest in driving up the price, despite the fact that they blame OPEC for those crude oil increases. The crude oil producers can even drive up the price of crude by restricting gasoline production and trading crude oil among their own subsidiaries to drive up the price paid for crude by others.Traders with connections to the oil companies can also make big bets on the opaque crude oil futures market to drive up the price and also drive up the value of their Exxon shares.

• The crude oil that big integrated oil companies use in their own refineries is mostly bought on long-term contracts or through their own production, so the oil companies don’t pay the world price for crude oil when it’s high. Their raw material costs are much lower than they would like us to believe. So when the companies raise the price of gasoline in tandem with the run-up in crude oil prices, they are making big profits because Exxon’s crude oil unit is charging its own refining unit a higher price for crude than is necessary. The accounting shenanigans result in an overall windfall profit but show the companies’ gasoline refineries making little profit, and “upstream” crude-oil production divisions making the lion’s share.

Read the original article on The Huffington Post.

The Progressive’s Guide to Raising Hell is available now.

Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares a finalist for 2011 IACP Cookbook Award!

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

We’re thrilled to announce that Greg Marley’s book, Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares: The Love, Lore, and Mystique of Mushrooms, is a finalist for a 2011 IACP Cookbook Award in the Culinary History category. Read the official press release here.

The awards, distributed by the International Association of Culinary Professionals, are a “prestigious honor considered the gold standard for culinary publishing,” and we think Greg’s book couldn’t be more deserving of this tremendous achievement.

About the Awards:

The IACP Cookbook Awards have become one of the industry’s most coveted acknowledgment of excellence in cookbook writing.  The awards promote quality and creativity in the cookbook publishing industry, and expand the public’s awareness of culinary literature with awards in 17 categories.

Over 500 entries were submitted for consideration, making this year one of the most competitive ever. Fifty-two books in 17 categories were selected as finalists via a rigorous two-tiered judging system by independent panels of food and beverage experts. The stringent procedure has made the IACP Cookbook Awards the industry’s most reputable acknowledgement of excellence in cookbook publishing.

“The caliber of books submitted was exceptional as always,” said Robin L. Kline, MS, RD, CCP, former chair of IACP Cookbook Awards committee. “It is always gratifying for our committee to have so many notable works to consider, especially this year when we celebrate 25 years of honoring outstanding culinary works.”

Over the past 25 years, more than 350 books written by more than 300 authors have won the coveted Cookbook Awards. The list of authors whose books received the award reads like a “Who’s Who” of the culinary world from Flo Braker, Dorie Greenspan, Rick Bayless and Jacques Pepin to Patricia Wells, Barbara Kafka, Thomas Keller, Deborah Madison and Julia Child.

“For someone looking to build a culinary library they could do no better than to consult our list of winners. No matter what the area – culinary classics, the best of the American table, kitchen science or baking – there are numerous IACP award-winning titles,” said Stella Fong, committee chair.

Continue reading at the IACP website.

Check out Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares in our bookstore now!

Maine Town Passes Landmark Local Food Ordinance

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

The following press release was provided by Food for Maine’s Future on March 7th.

SEDGWICK,  MAINE – On Saturday, March 5, residents of a small coastal town in  Maine voted unanimously to adopt the Local Food and Self-Governance  Ordinance, setting a precedent for other towns looking to preserve  small-scale farming and food processing. Sedgwick, located on the Blue Hill Peninsula in Western Hancock County, became the first town in  Maine, and perhaps the nation, to exempt direct farm sales from state and federal licensing and  inspection. The ordinance also exempts foods made in the home kitchen,  similar to the Michigan Cottage Food Law passed last year, but without  caps on gross sales or restrictions on types of exempt foods.

Local farmer Bob St.Peter noted the importance of this ordinance for beginning farmers and cottage producers.  “This ordinance creates favorable conditions for beginning farmers and  cottage-scale food processors to try out new products, and to make the  most of each season’s bounty,” said St.Peter. “My family is already  working on some ideas we can do from home to help pay the  bills and get our farm going.”

Mia Strong, Sedgwick resident and local farm patron, was  overwhelmed by the support of her town. “Tears of joy welled in my eyes  as my town voted to adopt this ordinance,” said Strong. “I am so proud of my  community. They made a stand for local food and our fundamental rights as citizens to choose that food.”

St.Peter, who serves on the  board of the National Family Farm Coalition, based in Washington, DC,  sees this as a model ordinance for economic development in rural areas.  “It’s tough making a go of it in rural America,” said St.Peter. “Rural  working people have always had to do a little of this and a little of  that to make ends meet. But up until the last couple generations, we  didn’t need a special license or new facility each time we wanted to  sell something to our neighbors. Small farmers and producers have been  getting squeezed out in the name of food safety, yet it’s the industrial  food that is causing food borne illness, not us.”

“And every food dollar that leaves our community is one more dollar we don’t have to pay for our rural schools or to provide decent care for our elders,” adds St.Peter. “We need the money more than corporate agribusiness.”

Three other towns in Western Hancock County will be voting on the  ordinance at or ahead of their town meetings in the coming weeks. Penobscot,  Brooksville, and Blue Hill all have the ordinance on their warrants.

Click here to view a copy of the Local Food and Self-Governance Ordinance of 2011.

Read the full article at Food for Maine’s Future.

A Rollicking Quest for Chiles ‘Along The Pepper Trail’

Monday, March 7th, 2011

Jill Koenigsdorf of the Santa Fe New Mexican published the following review this week of our newest title, Chasing Chiles: Hot Spots Along the Pepper Trail, by Kurt Michael Friese, Kraig Kraft, and Gary Paul Nabhan. Read on!

Everyone loves a book that has a good quest at its center, be it a great white whale, a holy grail or, in the case of ethnobotanist Gary Nabhan, chef Kurt Friese, and agro-ecologist Kraig Kraft, rare and heirloom chiles.

Their new book, Chasing Chiles: Hot Spots Along The Pepper Trail (Chelsea Green Publishing, 2011), is a rollicking ride, a “spice odyssey” that begins in Mexico and continues through several places in America where chile peppers are an integral part of the culture. The trio is passionate about its pursuit and, in the grand old tradition of a road-trip story, the book is chock-full of recipes, humorous adventures, chile lore and, most importantly, sobering statistics on the effects of climate change on food and agriculture.

In all the lofty discussions of global warming, or “global weirding” as The New York Times journalist Thomas Friedman astutely suggested we call it, there was very little input from the farmers — those people truly affected by the shifts on a daily basis. Kraft, Nabhan and Friese wanted to give a voice to these growers. Since all three of them were chile junkies, they hoped that narrowing their focus down to this one particular crop “would ignite the fires in the bellies and imaginations of our readers,” they wrote. All three men were already involved in grassroots organizations whose aims were “to promote and preserve rare and place-based foods,” so their approach — to go to the source, to listen to those in the trenches — seemed fitting.

Consider the chile. “Spice, vegetable, condiment, colorant, medicine, pest repellent, preservative, weapon. … Globally, more than twenty-five million metric tons of chile peppers are harvested each year with China, Mexico, Turkey, Spain, and The United States currently leading the world in both production and consumption,” the book states.

Where to begin their quest? Mexico, the “motherland” of wild and domesticated chiles. In their van christened “The Spice Ship,” these Musketeers of the sustainable-foods movement hit the road.

If there is a villain in Chasing Chiles, it is certainly climate change. In chapter after chapter, we meet remarkable growers who have lost everything to drought, freak frosts, floods and hurricanes, only to roll up their sleeves, clear out the debris, and figure out how to lose less to the ferocities of nature in the next round. The authors cover thousands of miles, gathering these stories, their yen for a region-specific chile acting as their compass. In the Mexican borderlands, it was the wild chiltepin chile, but the pickings were slim. That year’s crops had been hit with both drought and, in a neighboring region, 36 straight hours of rain. One farmer wept as he told them of climbing a palo verde tree and hanging on for dear life as the flood carried away his farm — chickens, dog, orange trees and all.

Continue reading the full review at the Santa Fe New Mexican.

Check out Chasing Chiles, available now in our bookstore!

A Masterpiece Written In Our Own Era

Sunday, March 6th, 2011

The following review was written by Gary Paul Nabhan, author of Renewing America’s Food Traditions and co-author of the newly released Chasing Chiles: Hot Spots on the Pepper Trail.  It appeared originally online at his website, GaryNabhan.com.

Without question, the most remarkable horticultural history book of this decade was released in late January, some fifteen years after its first edition astounded orchard keepers and agricultural historians everywhere. The second edition of Old Southern Apples is not simply expanded to include 1800 apple varieties, but it is an altogether more significant book, thanks to the extraordinary research accomplished by Lee and Edith Calhoun, and the inclusion of 120 newly-scanned watercolors of heirloom apples from the National Agricultural Library collection. It now serves as a new standard for horticultural publishing, particularly with regard to documentation of the extraordinary food biodiversity that has been part and parcel of America’s rural cultures and landscapes.

Before I get the cart ahead of the Horse apple, let me highlight the key features of this book. Since the first edition released in 1995, Lee and Edith Calhoun have received and responded to thousands of letters with clues to the origins of historic Southern apples, that is, named varieties once widely grown and marketed prior to 1928.  Some of these forgotten apples came to thye Calhoun’s Pittsboro. North Carolina nursery, while others came as gifts through intermediaries such as Tom Brown, who puts in 20,000 miles each year searching for Southern apples and recording their stories. Upon describing these apples newly brought to his attention, Mr. Calhoun has matched them with the geography, history and names (often multiple for one genotype) of apples referred to in nursery catalogs, agricultural experiment station bulletins and other ephemera. In short, he has compiled the largest and most definitive regional compendium of apple lore for any region in North America.

One must ask why the number of unique apples in the South dwarfs that of all the other regions of North America combined. The answer is complex—there is no simple soundbyte—but the combination of geographic isolation and cultural curiousity with horticultural novelty is key. In fact, the Upland South should really be known as Apple-achia, since it still serves as the motherlode of apple diversity.

If 1800 meticulously-researched and elegantly written varietal descriptions were not enough, then consider Calhoun’s front matter: a comprehensive history of the apple in the South, and a definitive treatment of apple cultivation practices of various historic eras, and a survey of historic uses of Southern apples. In addition to these long, well-crafted essays, Calhoun includes entertaining sidebar essays on Johnny Appleseed (not all laudatory!), the art of cooking apples, and several other topics.

For readers who cherished the color plates in the first edition, be prepared to be awestruck by the quality and color intensity of the plates which Lee Calhoun and editor Ben Watson selected for the second edition. Thanks to a Ceres Foundation grant to the National Agricultural Library,  a whole host of never-before published historic watercolors were chosen for this addition. They are, quite simply, knockouts—as fine as any prints ever published in an affordable book on horticultural history.

I would be remiss if I did not mention that this work is not merely of importance for apple growers and apple historians. It is one of the most valuable compendia we have ever had in for a critical segment of our historic food biodiversity and its cultural significance. It celebrates the incredible richness of historic apple culture, and mourns the loss of so much of this diversity within our own lifetimes. It is particularly poignant that Lee lost his wife and “silent” collaborator on this project the very month that the book was to be released; Edith was able to see a specially-bound edition of the book just before she succumbed to a coma. While the loss of so many apples in his region has always been painful for Lee, the untimely loss of his “sweetheart” to whom the book is dedicated must be overwhelming in every possible way. America owes both of the Calhouns much for the dedication, diligence and brilliance with which they accomplished their tasks. The second  edition of Old Southern Apples is a book like no other, and will be read (perhaps on kindles and other unforeseen devices) for at least another century. In short, it is timeless.

Read the original review at Gary Paul Nabhan’s website.

Old Southern Apples by Creighton Lee Calhoun is available now.

“Everyone concerned with health care reform should read this book.”

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

Author and blogger Judy Alter recently reviewed Maggie Kozel’s book, The Color of Atmosphere: One Doctor’s Journey In and Out of Medicine, for Story Circle Book Reviews. Check out what she had to say, below.

Everyone concerned with health care reform should read this book. From President Barack Obama and Speaker John Boehmer to the elderly and uninsured, Americans could learn a great deal from Dr. Kozel’s perspective. Maggie Kozel, M.D. practiced pediatrics in the military and in private practice, and she has a clear vision of what’s wrong with our private system. She speaks out boldly about those bugaboos politicians wish would go away: universal health care, Medicare and Medicaid, our insurance system, and malpractice.

Dr. Kozel interned and did a pediatric residence in the Navy. After ten years, including stints as a general medical officer on board a ship and a pediatrician at a base in Japan, she and her neurologist-husband left the military for private practices in New Jersey. In the Navy, Kozel did not have to deal with toilet training, sleeping through the night, or picky eaters. She did what she was trained to do: keep children healthy. Nurses did the child-raising counseling. Cost was never an issue for either patient or physician, eliminating the third-party payer as a middleman and making possible the treatment of small problems before they became huge. The military long ago embraced universal health coverage, and it works well for them.

Read the full review at the Story Circle Network.

Learn more about The Color of Atmosphere in our bookstore.

NOW AVAILABLE: Chasing Chiles

Friday, March 4th, 2011

We’re delighted to announce the release of a new book by Kurt Michael Friese, Kraig Kraft, and Gary Paul Nabhan entitled Chasing Chiles: Hot Spots Along the Pepper Trail.

Two years ago, The Economist reported that “the diet in the rich world is heating up,” as Europeans and North Americans increasingly began incorporating chiles into their cooking, chasing the adrenaline rush of ever-hotter varieties, and flooding the market with products like chile chocolate and chile-infused olive oil. But climate change could soon render the trend obsolete. In Chasing Chiles, three American chile-lovers – an agroecologist, a chef, and an ethnobotonist – set off on a year-long “pepper pilgrimage” to uncover the cultural traditions and humble beginnings of North and Central America’s own most beloved, and most threatened, varieties.

Setting out in a van they dub their “Spice Ship,” Kraig Kraft, Kurt Michael Friese, and Gary Paul Nabhan invite readers along on their journey through eight pepper-growing states and to Mexico in search of rare chiles, along with the local dishes and cultural traditions they inspire. The voyage takes them to the dusty streets and roadside stands of Sonora, Mexico, where they find the incendiary chiltepin stuffed in old bottles, and to northern Florida where salty growers eke out a living from the endangered datil pepper.

Chasing Chiles is both a rollicking travelogue from three guys on the hunt for authentic food and cultural experience and an adventure with a larger, sobering mission: to understand the effects of climate change by zeroing in on one critical crop and the people whose lives are most deeply intertwined with it. Kraft, Friese, and Nabhan seek out and listen to farmers, chefs, and others who rely on the chile, and document their struggle to protect local foods and livelihoods in the face of unpredictable weather, decreased biodiversity, and sporadic availability.

Chasing Chiles – complete with hard-to-find recipes for place-based cuisine—is the story of three unlikely travel companions united by a shared passion and a quest to uncover not only the future of peppers, but the future of food.

View the authors’ extensive schedule of appearances.

Read an excerpt.

Check out Chasing Chiles in our bookstore now!

He Keeps Ancient Apples Fresh and Crisp

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Anne Raver of the New York Times wrote a feature article yesterday on Creighton Lee Calhoun, author of Old Southern Apples. Purchase the book at 25% off in our bookstore now!

Pittsboro, NC: On a cold sunny morning last month, Creighton Lee Calhoun Jr. stood in his orchard, surrounded by 300 heirloom apple trees, and took some cuttings, or scions, to graft onto rootstock for new trees.“You have to have new growth, something that grew last summer,” said Mr. Calhoun, a retired Army lieutenant colonel, pointing out the smooth reddish bark of a young shoot on an old West Virginia variety named Jugg.

He snipped it off with his sharp Felco pruners, cut the supple branch into 10-inch lengths (each with a few buds) and wrapped them with masking tape in a bundle marked “Jugg.”

“Old-timers would bury them under the leaves on the north side of the house,” said Mr. Calhoun, 77. “But I put mine in a plastic bag in the refrigerator.” When the danger of a hard freeze is past, these scions can be grafted onto young rootstock.

The practice is lost to most Americans, who think an apple is a Red Delicious, which tastes like white sugar, or a Granny Smith, often picked too green and stored so long it tastes like the bottom of the refrigerator drawer.

“They’re strange-tasting, gummy, probably from long-term controlled storage,” said Mr. Calhoun, who would no more eat a supermarket apple than an old shoe.

Mr. Calhoun is the author of a recently revised compendium of 1,800 antique apple varieties, called “Old Southern Apples.” He is also one of a cadre of collectors across the country who are passing on their own rare apples, through scions and grafted trees, to younger men and women starting nurseries or preservation orchards, or simply planting a few trees in the backyard.

Continue reading this article at the New York Times website.

Learn more about Old Southern Apples by Creighton Lee Calhoun.


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