NYC EVENT :: WORKSHOPS AT JUST FOOD CONFERENCE 2012 // food media, saveur magazine, tasting table, nutrition evolution speaker, the good & the bad


DISCLAIMER: There’s a whole lotta words on this post because I didn’t whip out my camera (I was too busy being a good student)! So… below you will find the Just Food descriptions for the workshops I attended, in addition to my personal evaluation.

And by the way, Just Food provided so many awesome choices, it was hard to choose- good thing I always carry a yellow highlighter in my purse… seriously!!

Friday Morning Workshop 1: Media & Your Message
Whether you’re a farmer or an entrepreneur trying to sell a product, a community advocate looking to promote a policy, or a non-profit organization seeking support for programs, getting your message out to the public is crucial to your success. In this workshop, a panel of NYC journalists will give us the insider’s view of what stories get told and why, and how you can get your story heard.
Speakers: Gabriella Gershenson, Saveur Magazine; Francis Lam, Gilt Taste; Tracie McMillan, Journalist and Author of The American Way of Eating; Tressa Eaton, Tasting Table; Moderator: Clark Wolf, Clark Wolf Company

  • LML Review: LOVED! The moderator lead the discussion eloquently, asked thoughtful questions, and got answers to questions that were more than helpful to hopeful food writers. The panelists were insightful, honest, funny, & genuine; best quote of the discussion, “A prospective writer wrote ‘Hi! I love your magazine!’ Don’t write that, you sound like a dick. Write me a short letter, with bullet points, about something that we didn’t cover and in our voice style.” Saveur Magazine

Friday Lunch Workshop: Eating Healthy Local Food on a Budget
Eating the locally grown foods that are best for you and for the planet doesn’t have to be expensive! The speaker will share tips on how to eat local on a budget, and how to keep a local foods diet interesting even in winter.
Speaker: Margaret Schehl, Just Food Community Chef

  • LML Review: Terrible. The speaker who was scheduled to present was unable to attend. Therefore another woman took over and flat out said, “They called me last minute and I have no clue what she prepared… but here are some handouts.” Umm, no thanks… you already wasted 15 minutes of my learning time.

Lunch WorkshopGoing Beyond Gluten Free
This workshop will explain the reasons why gluten intolerance is actually a serious issue, how you can improve your health by avoiding it, and why going gluten free is only part of the solution. Learn how eating a diet rich in nutrient dense whole foods will decrease many of your chronic health issues, and support your mind, body, and spirit in its quest to achieve optimal wellness!
Speaker: Shoshanna Levy, Nutrition Evolution

  • LML Review: AMAZING! REVOLUTIONARY. As you know, I walked in late to this workshop… but late was a better choice than never. I honestly didn’t know how much I wanted to learn about gluten-free choices until I heard Shoshanna speak. She was a combination of exciting, knowledgeable, funny, quirky, and inspiring… and did I mention she brought us a sample of a homemade gluten-free snack?? Deffo brownie points.

Friday Afternoon Workshop: Regional Food Infrastructure: Models for a Healthy, Resilient Regional Food System
The cornerstone of a strong nation is the health of its citizens. Unfortunately, ours is being undermined. Our food system must change. Creating and preserving regional infrastructural systems is critical to effecting this change. This workshop will explore models for food production, processing, and distribution infrastructure that support a more resilient food system for the NYC region, and practical steps to achieve this system.
Speaker: Michael Conard, Urban Design Lab at the Earth Institute, Columbia University

  • LML Review: Not for me. Lots and lots of people told me to sit in on this workshop, and well, I felt like I was taking up a seat. This speaker was extremely knowledgeable, but his topic didn’t speak to me… at all. There were a lot of graphs, the lights were low and I was in the back of the class…

Saturday Morning Workshop: A Thyme for Healing
Common culinary herbs that we use for flavor also have medicinal use. In fact, most of the herbs we think of as just seasonings can be used to achieve human and environmental health. Come explore the kitchen as a place to nurture natural healing and discover the health benefits of commonly used herbs.
Speaker: Yonnette Fleming, Herban Farmer/Plant Medicine Practitioner

  • LML Review: TERRIBLE!!! I was looking forward to learning about herbs and how they heal, however, the instructor spent the first 20 minutes asking everyone in the room their name and why they chose this class… and I think EVERYONE in the class wanted to speak for the whole group and say, we’re here to learn about herbs, duh! Once the names were said and forgotten, the instructor told us how she will not be teaching us how herbs heal the body and well, you imagine where I went… OUT THE DOOR.

Saturday Morning WorkshopSeasonal Vegetables for Breakfast Lunch & Dinner
The workshop will cover: the benefits of eating local, seasonal produce, where to get local seasonal produce, and developing recipes for any meal, in any season, using local vegetables. By the end of the workshop, participants will have developed recipes for breakfasts, lunches, and dinners, using produce from any season.
Speaker: Margaret Schehl, Just Food Community Chef

  • LML Review: Nice. I managed to catch the last 30 minutes of this workshop, so I jumped into a group and worked on a seasonal recipe project. Kinda-sorta lame but I enjoyed using the fresh fruit/vegetable chart and their prime season in order to make the recipes.

Saturday Lunch Workshop: All About the East New York Farms! Youth Internship
Staff and youth leaders will be talking about and demonstrating how youth get involved, stay involved, and take on leadership roles in the East New York Farms! Youth program.
Speakers: Sarita Daftary, East New York Farms!; Kalia Monlyn, East New York Farms!

  • LML Review: LOVED!  Lead by a youth from the East New York Farm program, we performed ice breakers, learned about the benefits of the program, the mentality of the youth members, and their community- hopefully I’ll be able to visit the actually farmers market one day.

Saturday Lunch WorkshopFarm to Facebook: Bringing the Digital Community to Community Supported Agriculture
Join the discussion on how our CSA communities are evolving through social media and how this impacts our organizations. We’ll look at what aspects of social media have been working in CSAs and explore media beyond Facebook to see how we can better address CSA needs. The discussion will also cover common challenges and opportunities social media generally presents.
Speakers: Monique Hart, Farm School; Sara Strotman, LIC CSA Newsletter; Claiborne Milde, Cobble Hill CSA,; Facilitator: Alison Conforti, Crown Heights CSA

  • LML Review: Okay.  Kinda-sorta like social media for newbies…

Saturday Afternoon Workshop: Meet Your Meat (& Your Butcher!): How to Approach eating Local, Sustainable & Humanely Raised Meat
In this workshop, you will learn about sustainable meat farming, and the economics of it, and why pastured and grass-fed meat costs more than feedlot meat. Participants will also learn how to make sustainable meat more affordable through direct purchasing and choosing less expensive yet still delicious cuts.
Speakers: Craig Haney, Stone Barns; Adam Danforth, Butcher, Writer; Moderator: Kassy Nystrom, Myrtle Avenue Revitalization Project

  • LML Review: 50/50. I loved the handout which described which cuts of meat work best with certain meals for the best price. Loved hearing about the butchering process, how much love goes into raising animals, the benefits of butchering animals properly and the theories about afforable meat for all at low prices… but I wish there was more info about butchering rather the farm life.


  • Workshops were inspiring; learned some new facts… peaked new interests… and well, some of them made me consider tapping into my administrative side by becoming a professional small business consultant (in order to help some of these presenters… present!)
  • Well organized. Interesting speakers. Great sponsors.
  • Although a tad crowded in the classrooms as well as the job fair, it made me realize I’m in the right place.
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