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Polyface farmer to appear on Martha Stewart

By Rebecca Martinez | newsleader.com

Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms Inc. spoke at the Augusta County Library in Fishersville on August 18. In his opening remarks Salatin mentioned his interns who work at the farm as well as mentioning the rising age of farmers.
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Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms Inc. spoke at the Augusta County Library in Fishersville on August 18. In his opening remarks Salatin mentioned his interns who work at the farm as well as mentioning the rising age of farmers. (Pat Jarrett/The News Leader)

Joel Salatin left Swoope's Polyface Farms on Wednesday and boarded an airplane bound for the New York metropolitan area.

Salatin, the sustainable farmer made famous in Michael Pollan's book "The Omnivore's Dilemma," has since been speaking about local farming in big and small venues, but today he will appear on "The Martha Stewart Show," a live cable program on the Fine Living network.

"Oh, this is big," Salatin said of this program. "This is absolutely the biggest gig I've been on."

According to the "Martha Stewart Show's" Web site, today will be the show's "Vegetarian Thanksgiving" episode. Stewart also will interview vegetarian author Jonathan Safran Foer about responsible dietary choices, and she'll talk with Robert Kenner about his movie "Food, Inc." Now on DVD, the film features Salatin and others talking about problems in today's commercial food industry.

As flawless as a Stewart table centerpiece, Salatin said the show's production leaves no room for error. The producer has already gone over Salatin's questions with him, and before the live show today, he'll walk through his segment with the clean-cut hostess to avoid any "surprises."

Salatin has been traveling around the country for years — to conventions, film festivals and private farms — singing the praises of "local, transparent, heritage-based food systems." Salatin said he understands his constant air travel isn't necessarily the best thing for the environment, but as an "evangelist for the cause," he believes it's necessary in order to spread the message of healthy, local food production.

"I understand, you know. I'm doing a lot flying around, but the other possibility is not to say anything and stay at home, and meanwhile people don't know and aren't encouraged and enthused about this cause," Salatin said. "Truth be told we all pick our inconsistencies don't we?"

Salatin will travel for a speaking engagement in British Columbia on Friday

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