Food Conference Session Archive

Since 2006 the Hazon Food Conference has been the central gathering place for the Jewish Food Movement. The rich and varied sessions are both engaging for people who are already knowledgeable about the intersection of contemporary food issues and Jewish life as well as accessible to those with no prior knowledge of the subject. The program includes multiple learning formats from lectures, panels and presentations to do-it-yourself workshops and chevruta (small group) learning using Jewish texts.

We have gathered here a list of every session ever run at the Food Conference, organized by track. These session descriptions can be used to jumpstart your thinking as you are planning Jewish food programming in your community, whether it is a single evening session or a full-day extravaganza. For more information about any of these sessions or to get contact information for any of the presenters, please email foodeducation@hazon.org

Are you still hungry for more? Join us at the 2015 Hazon Food Conference, December 29-January 1 at the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center in Falls Village, CT

Do It Yourself (DIY) Food

Before there was a frozen food aisle in the supermarket, people enjoyed nutritious, naturally preserved food. Foods once integral to the life of the home and community have had their production outsourced to multi-national corporations. This track provides skills and strategies for you to reclaim your kitchen, your community and beyond. Roll up your sleeves, and get ready to be inspired.

Miso in the Morning (Or anytime!)

While Jews for generations have recognized the healing properties of food (nothing can be better than Bubbe’s chicken soup), there is a lot we can learn from traditional Asian cultures. We will start our morning by preparing a warming pot of miso soup. As we nourish our bodies we’ll explore the many varieties, uses, and nutritional benefits of Miso-a living fermented food. We will also learn about other traditional Chinese and Japanese ingredients including sea vegetables, mushrooms, ginger, garlic, daikon.

Led by Linda Lantos at Food Conference 2006

From Seed to Seed: Helpful Tips for Home Gardeners

If the thought of picking tomatoes from your backyard just minutes before dinner appeals to you, come learn tips and techniques for home vegetable gardening and seed saving from Naf Hanau, the current Adamah Greenhouse Manager. Site selection, irrigation, crop varieties, and seed saving will be discussed.  All levels of experience welcome.

Led by Naf Hanau at Food Conference 2007

From the Farm to Your Plate: The Journey of One Meal

Dan Barber, chef and co-owner of Blue Hill and Blue Hill at Stone Barns, explores the connection between a plate of food and a place that grows the food. Blue Hill restaurants emphasize knowing both where the ingredients come from, and how they are grown: An impossibly juicy and delicious leg of lamb? It turns out that it was not so much the workings of a great chef but of a great farmer taking advantage of great pasture. Barber offers a recipe, at once philosophical, gastronomical and environmental–but ultimately a recipe for flavor. Through the lens of one Blue Hill dish, he discusses the best agricultural practices behind each ingredient—not just what you’re eating, but what you’re eating is eating—emphasizing how to utilize the latest farm technology to grow the tastiest foods in D265the Northeast.

Led by Chef Dan Barber at Food Conference 2007

Urban Worm Composting

After cooking a delicious dinner, what should you do with carrot tops, corn husks, and onion skins? Come and learn how to turn your scraps into soil- through composting!  This hands-on workshop will give you an introduction to the basics of composting – it’s history, science, and practice.  We’ll be focusing on urban composting systems appropriate for even the smallest of apartments. Aproximately 12 bins will be built and available to take home on a first come basis.

Led by Josh Reich at Food Conference 2007

Female Jewish Farmers

Join Jewish female farmers, gardeners and educators in this panel discussion to discuss the unique opportunities and challenges faced by women, Jewish and non-Jewish alike, in sustainable agriculture. Moderated by Nancy Vail (Pie Ranch), established farmer, mother, and teacher, this panel will engage participants in the stories of female farmers who are working in the fields while simultaneously raising families, organizing communities, teaching, and working to create a paradigm shift in our global food system. Come and hear from this incredible group of women who are serving as role models for a new generation of farmers, mentors, teachers, activists, parents, and children.

Led by Nancy Vail (moderator). Tali Weinberg, Anna Stevenson, Julie Fine, Emily Freed at Food Conference 2008

Healthy Garden, Healthy Humans, Healthy World

Growing your own food is not rocket science and is one of the most fulfilling things you can do for yourself and your family. This how-to session will insure your farming success. You will take a virtual tour through a sustainable suburban garden and learn the basic principles of ecology that are applicable to gardening. Hear a new definition of fossil fuels and understand how a diverse and chemical-free garden fosters agricultural productivity.

Led by Judy Adler at Food Conference 2008

History & Genetic Diversity of Seeds

Travel from the evolutionary origins of seeds, through the codependent relationships of animals and seeds, to contemporary anthropocentric issues surrounding seeds. Learn about seed biodiversity and how seed saving can make a difference in a global world where biodiversity is on the decline. This session will cover the process and techniques for saving seeds from diverse crops and plants, including basic seed, flower, and plant reproduction biology, and seed cleaning and storage techniques. Collect and trade seeds during the session.

Led by Ian Hertzmark at Food Conference 2008

Kitchen Wisdom for Common Ailments

Herbal medicine demythologized! Herbal medicine can be a simple pleasure that enhances daily life while improving health. This session explores the connection between food and medicine, and examines what common kitchen staples can be used to create medicine for common ailments. Learn to start making your own simple herbal medicines for common ailments including sinus infections, coughs and digestive troubles as well as recipes to enhance longevity and enjoyment of life.

Led by Tamar Lieb at Food Conference 2008


Have you ever wondered how to make your Bubbe’s favorite pickles? How about the sauerkraut she raves about from childhood? Join two recent alumni of the ADAMAH Jewish Environmental Fellowship and learn how to preserve the harvest. Be introduced to the artisanal and nutritional process of lacto-fermentation as well as vinegar brines and the basics of making jams. And taste the great ADAMAH products that everyone is talking about, from our dill pickles to kimchi, jams, and more!

Led by Blaire Nosan and Eli Marguiles at Food Conference 2008

Pie from Scratch

From the heirloom variety of wheat for the crust, to the “Winter Luxury Pie” pumpkins and eggs from pastured hens for the filling, this pie is not to be missed. Pie Ranch is as a working farm, hosting youth from regional high schools to participate in farm-based programs and activities. A team from Pie Ranch will lead you in a typical pumpkin pie prep experience. Learn about the history of the pie ingredients and about this unique social change oriented farm, while assembling pies that will be baked at the Asilomar kitchen. Come bake some pie and eat it too!

Led by Jered Lawson at Food Conference 2008

Plan Your Own Tu B’Shvat Seder

Tu B’Shvat, the Jewish New Year for Trees, is right around the corner.  In this session you will receive a how to guide on creating your own Tu B’Shvat seder and new Haggadah created by Hazon and the AJWS – AVODAH Partnership.  Whether you are planning for a synagogue of 1000 families, a singles group in your community, or gathering friends together, planning a TuB’Shvat seder is fun and easy.

Led by Heidi Winig, Adina Allen, Jeff Levy at Food Conference 2008

Shabbat Candle Making & Mural Painting

The whole family is welcome to join us as we make and decorate beautiful beeswax candles for Shabbat.  We will also design a colorful, communal favorite-foods mural to decorate our space.  If you have ever had a desire to spend an hour immersed in the sweet smells of beeswax or to try your hand painting with seaweed, don’t miss this session!

Led by Teva Learning Center at Food Conference 2008

Shop Talk, from the Technical to the Philosophical;  An Open Conversation with Michael Ableman

Join Michael Ableman for a conversation on everything from food security to soil fertility. This more intimate time together provides an opportunity for farmers, gardeners, chefs, and eaters to ask questions and to share ideas, inspirations, and challenges.

Led by Michael Ableman at Food Conference 2008

Simply Sourdough

Jewish tradition has us on our knees once a year to find and throw out the last bits of leavened bread in our homes, even though a single pot of wild yeast sourdough culture can be kept alive for decades.  As sourdough is yet another one of those cool old – new country home crafts that are all the rage in the food world these days — we want to talk about the role sourdough has played in Jewish households — and its role in making a damn fine loaf of bread!  Join us for a hands-on demonstration of sourdough bread making from starter to sponge to dough to loaf and for a conversation about the greater mysteries of yeastly fermentation.

Led by Anna Stevenson & Naf Hanau at Food Conference 2008

Urban Worm Composting

After cooking a delicious dinner, what should you do with carrot tops, corn husks, and onion skins? Come and learn how to turn your scraps into soil through composting!  This hands-on workshop will give you an introduction to the basics of composting: history, science, and practice.  We’ll be focusing on urban composting systems, appropriate for even the smallest of apartments. Approximately twelve bins will be built and will available for participants to take home on a “first come” basis.

Led by Adam Edell at Food Conference 2008

Bake It Yourself: Sunday Sourdough Bagels

Bay Area baker Sarah Klein brings the ingredients, culture (the local yeast called Lactobacillus San Francicensus), history, tradition, and tools for baking our very own artisan bagels. This class is perfect for beginner and advanced bakers.  We will begin with a little history on bread and leavening.  Then roll up our sleeves to mix, knead, shape, boil, and bake. By bringing in a batch of previously risen dough, guests will start the process of bagel making without the wait.  In the end everyone goes home with recipes, a starter, and the encouragement to make bagels on their own.

Led by Sarah Klein at Food Conference 2009

Cook It Yourself: Mediteranean Cooking with Chef Joan Nathan

France has a rich and diverse Jewish history, starting with its first Jewish settlers in 39CE to the present day, as the country with the third largest Jewish population in the world.  In this session, Joan will discuss the culinary outcome of so many centuries of Jewish immigration to France.  In a country obsessed with food, the Jewish community has found a way to apply that obsession to its own traditions, laws and holidays. The results are fascinating and delicious.

Led by Joan Nathan at Food Conference 2009

Cooking as a Teaching Tool

If they cook it, they’ll eat it. Teaching kids how to prepare wholesome recipes is an ideal way to expose them to new, healthy ingredients and learn about nutrition. Join for an information-packed workshop on how to teach your own cooking class. You will learn how to alter recipes to make them kid-friendly, create a lesson plan that suits the targeted age group, figure out a budget, write up a detailed shopping list, determine equipment needs, organize and prep for the class, and introduce new foods to children. A short “cooking class” demonstration with audience participation will teach you how too host your very own class for kids 4 years old and up. Handouts and recipes will be included.

Led by Julie Negrin at Food Conference 2009

Decompose It Yourself: Compost for the Common Man

The Southeast compost king, Daron “Farmer D” Joffe, owner of Farmer D Organics, will teach beginner and advanced gardners the skills of composting.  Farmer D, a uniquely talented teacher, has years of experience building community gardens, small-scale farms and making tons of compost. Farmer D will also be speaking at the Farming Entrepreneur’s Panel on starting his own compost business.

Led by Farmer D at Food Conference 2009

Design It Yourself: Permaculture & Jewish Culture

For beginner and expert gardeners. You have been designing things your whole life. Designing your jobs, your life, your gardens, relationships, your kitchen etc. Want some tools? In this hands-on session we will experientially learn the basic step-by step, universally applicable, design principles of Permaculture and tie into how our Jewish tradition informs and interacts with this model.

Led by Pesach Stadlin at Food Conference 2009

Ferment It Yourself: Pickling in the 21st  Century

For Beginner and Advanced Fermenters Alike. Somewhere in the back of each of our memories, there is a pickle. Old dill, new dill, barrel packed, or canned—lets face it. Pickles and Jews have a history. In fact, nearly every human culture includes some fermented foods as a means of survival post-harvest. Fermentation is an easy, engaging, and indispensable skill that can revolutionize your efforts to eat locally, seasonally, and healthfully. Join us for an introduction to this ancient technique and we’ll demonstrate how you too can make some pickled veggies at home.

Led by Blair Nosan, Lauren Weinberg at Food Conference 2009

Milk It Yourself: Handmade Mozzarella

For beginner and advanced foodies alike, this hands-on workshop simple, delicious Mozzarella cheese will be made from common kitchen equipment and ingredients.  The lost art of cheese making is making a comeback in today’s DIY kitchen. Although a certain mystique surrounds the concept of making cheese at home, the effort is as simple as following a recipe.  Making cheese in your own kitchen can be a gratifying experience and a fun family adventure. Recipes and resources will be shared.

Led by Abbe Turner at Food Conference 2009

Pick it Yourself: Pruning Your Own Fruit Trees

For beginner and advanced tree pruners alike.  Why rely on the grocery store to bring you fruit and add to your carbon footprint?  This session will focus on shaping and training fruit trees for maximum health and fruit yield.  We will also touch upon plant care in landscapes, dendrology, and small scale agroforestry.

Led by Jacob Holzberg-Pill at Food Conference 2009

City Chickens: Nothing to Bawk At!

If we can make our own pickles and milk our own goats, we ought to produce our own eggs, no?  It may not be for everyone, but more and more folks are wetting their beaks in the wonderful world of chickens.  What does it take to keep a few hens for eggs in your backyard? How many will feed a family of four?  What happens when they escape? These chicken keepers will tell tall tales from the coop, and just might inspire you to start your own flock!

Led by Yadidya Greenberg, Naftali Hanau, Margalit Shetreat-Klein, Maya Shetreat-Klein, Helen Bennett (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

DIY Extravaganza

Roll up your sleeves for the second annual Hazon Food Conference DIY Extravaganza! Try your hand at new cooking techniques and urban homesteading skills at this round-robin event.  Bring your jar to take home samples.

Options: Fan-making with recycled materials, cooking with seaweed, introduction to homebrewing beer, rolling a knish, making ginger beer, container gardening, making herbal salves

Led by  at Food Conference 2011

Fermentation Frolick: Robert Mondavi Institute Tour

The Robert Mondavi Institute houses the UCD Food Science and Technology and Viticulture and Enology Departments, as well as the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science.  On this tour we’ll learn about the LEED Certification of the new brewery and winery building, visit the Sensory Theater, Good Life Garden, Rossi Terrace, Teaching Vineyard and Special Collection room to name a few.  Meet us at the Brewery at 1:45, or walk over from Putah Creek Lodge at 1:25 with the group.

Led by UC Davis at Food Conference 2011

Jewish Cooking in France: Exploring French Culinary Delights with Joan Nathan

What is Jewish cooking in France? In her latest cookbook, Joan Nathan travels the country to discover the answer and, along the way, unearths a treasure trove of recipes and the often moving stories behind them.  She’ll share stories from her travels while cooking delicious, traditional Jewish recipes with a special French finesse and a hint of Sephardic elegance.

Led by Joan Nathan at Food Conference 2011

Biblical Curds: The Art of Making (Local, Organic, Kosher) Goat Cheese

Jewish tradition teaches that we should feed our animals before we feed ourselves.  Using fresh milk, learn how to make delicious, handcrafted goat cheese in the Adamah Cultural Center.  In addition to participating in the step-by-step process of making cheese, this session will explore how cheesemaking and animal husbandry connects us to ancient biblical traditions and to the microscopic world of wild fermentation. *Meet in the Rec Hall to walk over to the Cultural Center.

Led by Aitan Mizrahi at Food Conference 2010 East

Bread from the Earth

Discover the little known bread and food traditions that sustained ancient Israelis, but are almost lost today. Learn how to plant, tend, harvest, thresh, mill and bake traditional whole grain breads with delicious heritage wheats from Eastern Europe and Eretz Yisrael. Learn about delicious emmer bread, used in the orginizal matzah, and gluten-safe einkorn breads, eaten in the period of Abraham and Sarah. Join us to restore the blessing ‘ha’motze lechem min ha’aretz’ from our own hands and hearts.

Led by Elisheva Rogosa at Food Conference 2010 East

Challah Baking

The mysteries around bread, braiding, wheat and yeast will be uncovered as you learn new ways to braid challah for Friday night. New and experienced braiders welcome!

Led by Elisheva Rogosa at Food Conference 2010 East

Cooking with Kids

Frustrated trying to get your picky eater to try new foods? Not sure how to involve your child in the cooking process? Linda Lantos, a chef, cooking instructor and food educator, has seen it all.  From the four year old who refuses to eat anything other than spaghetti with ketchup, to the elementary school child whose diet consists of breakfast cereal, or the junior high student caught up in the latest diet fad. In this workshop she will provide parents and caretakers with tools they need to nurture culinarily inquisitive adventurous young eaters.

Led by Linda Lantos at Food Conference 2010 East

Julia Child Cooking Show

Brush up on your Boef Bourgignon (or pick up some tips if you fancy hosting your own cooking show one day) with the incomparable Julia Child.

Led by  at Food Conference 2010 East

Kombucha: Meeting the “Mother” of Fermentation

Do you enjoy gardening or animal husbandry?  Do you like apple cider?  If so, you might like this class.  Learn to make a flavorful fermented tea called Kombucha.  It’s easy, doesn’t take much time, and involves caretaking tiny creatures, who incidentally are likely to be good for you. Along the way, there will be science, stories, tasting, and the opportunity to prepare your own Komucha starter to take home.

Led by Josh Reich at Food Conference 2010 East

No-Cook Cooking Class

You don’t have to cook to use your CSA veggies! Join Chef Hilla to learn no-cook techniques to create delicious food. We’ll make–and taste!–“Root Vegetable Fettuccine with Cashew Alfredo Sauce” and “Zesty Marinated Beet Salad with Fennel and Red Onion.” Plus, learn tips on how to run a cooking (or no-cook) demo for your CSA.

Led by Hilla Abel at Food Conference 2010 East

Spice Route: Taste your way through Israel’s diverse flavor traditions

Go on a journey to explore the spice traditions that shape Israeli cuisine.  Join chef Michael Solomonov from Philadelphia’s acclaimed restaurant, Zahav, to learn new techniques for spicing up winter squash, and taste (and smell!) how different spice blends bring a culture to life.

Led by Chef Michael Solomonov at Food Conference 2010 East

Sprout Your Own

The farming bug can hit at anytime…but if you’ve just decided you want to try to grow your own, and it’s the middle of winter, what are your options?  Farmer and nutritionist Stacey Oshkello will show you how to tend to an indoor kitchen garden — of sprouts!  Learn about the different things you can sprout, ways to do it, and the beneficial nutritional properties of sprouts.  In addition, there will be a variety of sprouts for tasting.

Led by Stacey Oshkello at Food Conference 2010 East

Tu B’Shevat: The fruit-full holiday

For the holiday of the trees, there is a tradition to serve fare containing fruit, especially the Shevah Minim (“Seven Species,” the five fruits and two grains for which the Land of Israel is praised) and other fruits mentioned in the Bible or associated with Israel, most notably bokser (carob), apples, pears, quinces, almonds, walnuts and pistachios. In this session, Gil Marks will demonstrate how to make (and provide tastings of) Hungarian wine and fruit soup, Moroccan orange salad and Moroccan fruited couscous.

Led by Gil Marks at Food Conference 2010 East

Urban Vermicomposting: Thou Shall Not Waste

Create beauty out of garbage and wealth out of waste as Lindsey Paige Savoie, director of Shomrei Adamah of Greater Washington, leads you through a hands-on workshop to create your own system for reducing trash in landfills and enhancing everything from your indoor plants to your window sill gardens. You will have the opportunity to create and bring home your own composting system.

Led by Lindsey Savoie at Food Conference 2010 East

Babka, Babka, Babka!

Do you long to tackle this traditional bread but feel intimidated by even the possibility of creating it?  In this two-day workshop, we will demystify babka!  We will break it downstep by step, using ingredients that are inexpensive and easy to find.  All you need are your hands, and a love for mixing chocolate and dough!  On Day One, we will make the dough and start the filling. On Day Two we will complete the filling and roll and shape the dough. While we work, we will also explore babka’s history and traditional significance.  Be prepared to get messy!  We’ll get to eat our results on Shabbat!

Led by Emily Barton at Food Conference 2010 West

Saturday Night DIY Extravaganza

Urban homesteading is all the rage these days, and now it’s time to reclaim our roots, go back to the basics, and explore how simple ingredients like flour and water, cream and chocolate, or plants and water can inspire all sorts of experimentation in your own kitchen.  Roll up your sleeves for the first-ever Hazon Food Conference DIY Extravaganza.  Choose from a full-length hands-on workshop or drop in to foodie activities at your leisure.

Led by  at Food Conference 2010 West

The Medicine Growing Around Us

An interactive co-exploration of the land around Walker Creek Ranch, learning the medicinal abundance that surrounds us, while digging into the use of herbs in our tradition for healing the body, mind and soul.  We will explore the growing re-surgeances of herbalism and Earth-based Judaism, through text and current trends, while walking the land.  After all, who needs to study text indoors anymore?  “Speak to Earth and it will teach you” Job 12:8  (If there is rain, the session will move indoors, and we will still have plants to meet!)

Led by Baruch Schwadron at Food Conference 2010 West

Walker Creek Ranch Garden Tour

Take a naturalist guided tour of the Walker Creek Ranch Garden.  The charming half-acre plot is used for garden programming offered to 5,000 schoolchildren who come to the Marin County Outdoor School each year.

Led by  at Food Conference 2010 West

What’s in a Dill? Vegetable Fermentation with a Twist

For the past few of years, we’ve been talking about fermenting vegetables. What makes fermentation a Jewish act? How can we ensure the deliciousness of our creations? And what is the secret to those classic dills we remember from our childhood days? This year, in addition to an overview of how to make delicious fermented foods, we’re going to be working together to make cucumber pickles and sauerkraut galore! Bring your pickle jar with you, and you can take your ferments on the road.

Led by Blair Nosan at Food Conference 2010 West

Delicious Dairy: Meet the Goats and Cows Who Give Us Milk (and get your hands on some teats!)

In this session, we’ll meet with Jan Carlson, Director of the Goat Facility at UC Davis, to learn about the world’s most common milk animal!  Try your hand at milking a goat, and then head over to the UC Davis Cow Dairy to watch the afternoon milking session and learn about cow dairy nutrition.

Led by Jan Carlson at Food Conference 2011

Food Justice

What does a just food system look like? What’s wrong with the way we’re doing things, and what are some of the creative ways that people across the country and the world are working to make it right? Explore how to be part of creating a socially- and economically-just, environmentally-sound food system. These sessions will showcase examples of food programs, social justice and community activists who are voting with their forks — and more.

Beyond the Band Aid: Finding Long-Term Solutions to Global and Domestic Hunger

The world’s farmers produce more than enough food to feed every person on the planet and yet 925 million people worldwide go hungry.  What gives? Join us as we unpack the political, social and economic factors contributing to food insecurity in the U.S. and abroad and discuss how we can move beyond the short-term fixes of emergency food assistance to long-term, sustainable food secure communities.

Led by Karin Fleisch, Dahlia Rockowitz at Food Conference 2011

film: Broken Limbs: Apples, Agriculture & the New American Farmer

In Broken Limbs, Guy Evans examines lives of American apple farmers as they struggle to compete against the Goliaths that populate today’s global economy, and are regularly forced off their land. The future looks grim until Evans happens upon a new model of farmers practicing sustainable agriculture and changing the shape of farming for the future.

Led by Jamie Howell & Guy Evans,(producers) at Food Conference 2006

What’s in a Symbol?

What’s in a symbol? More and more food products bear symbols indicating they are kosher, organic, fair trade, halal, grown in ways that protest song birds, protect your heart, or help you fit into a bathing suit on “South Beach”. We’ll look behind the hype to see what the claims really mean and how they relate to Jewish ethics around food, famring and the environment.

Led by Arlin Wasserman at Food Conference 2006

Feeding the Masses: Success and Challenges of Improving Institutional Food Systems

Whereas the options for an individual to buy local, organic and kosher food have increased dramatically in recent years, institutional food service lags woefully behind.   Find out about the challenges for schools, hospitals and other institutions to serve healthy, sustainable food, and hear what these institutions have done to overcome them.

Led by Julie Negrin, moderator, Shelley Chamberlain, Adam Berman,  Linda Lantos at Food Conference 2007

Food Fight: How Congress Impacts Who Eats What and How

Take a closer look at how the United States Congress sets food policy. Come ready to learn about and discuss the 2007 Farm Bill Reauthorization. Think it’s just about cotton subsidies? Surprise, it’s food stamps, nutrition programs for children and pregnant women, and even money for farmer’s markets around the country. And while it doesn’t always say so, the Farm Bill impacts not only what food is grown in the U.S., but everything from the economic viability of small scale crop farming in Africa to what kind of corn is grown in Mexico.

Led by Melissa Boteach at Food Conference 2007

Kopali Organics, A Business Experiment in Tikkun Olam

Would-be proponents of eating local are stumped: what about all the global economies that rely on food trade with North America?   What if you really like bananas?  Is it the case that buying tropical fruit and vegetables always represents a moral or environmental compromise?   Taking care of everyone and all life in the supply chains of food is not just important, it is critical to global food security and to the future of all life. Learn about the global capitalist food system, what one organization is doing to improve it, and why it’s Jewish to pay attention.

Led by Stephen Brooks & Zak Zaidman at Food Conference 2007

Modify This: Genetic Engineering, Ecology, Law and Jewish Values

Is it wrong to tamper with the genetics of species? Corporate seed companies hail biotechnology as the future of agriculture, while food advocates and environmentalists fight GMOs. The Torah itself describes a sacred order of creation, and there are Jewish laws that support the integrity of species. But genetic engineering gives us HPV vaccine, not just insecticide-producing corn. This session will explore the legal, ecological, ethical, and Jewish distinctions that can guide our choices about genetically modified foods.

Led by Zelig Golden & Rabbi David Seidenberg at Food Conference 2007

The Cost of Cheap Food: Exploring New York’s Poorest Neighborhoods

Take a close look at the intersection between poverty, obesity and public policy with New York City’s first Food Policy Coordinator. The session will provide an insider’s view into into the most pressing food policy issues in the city, as well as an opportunity to discuss the relationship of politics and economics to the obesity epidemic, and the appropriate balance between personal freedom and public health.

Led by Ben Thomases at Food Conference 2007

Cloned, Contaminated, or Genetically Modified: Is Our Source of Food Safe?

What is society really eating?  How has industry changed the ecology of food? Is the government part of the solution or part of the problem?  How can we secure a safe and sustainable food future in the face of the food safety challenges of today?  This session explores how novel food technologies – genetic modification, cloning, irradiation, and monoculture farming – threaten food safety and food security.  Center for Food Safety lawyer advocates will provide the law and policy highlights of the year to explore how food policy address has failed to protect us from these technologies, what they are doing to protect our food supply, and how you can get involved in the political movement to make food safer and what simple steps you can take at home to protect you and your family.

Led by Andrew Kimbrell & Zelig Golden at Food Conference 2008

Faith In Action: Renewal and First Harvest: Engaging Communities in Jewish Sustainability

Watch how faith-based communities are able to rally around sustainability as part of their core organizing values.  The film will be followed with a presentation and discussion on how to work with stakeholders to better envision a healthy, well-functioning, sustainably-oriented religious community.  Be inspired toward sustainability work in your home community.

Led by Nathan Martin & Larry Troster at Food Conference 2008

Feeding The Future; Stories and images from the new frontiers of food and agriculture

Food has become one of the dominant issues of our time. The industrial system that brings it to us is unraveling and the cost of that system, ecologically, socially, and personally is enormous. While this keynote presentation will touch on these problems, it will leave us with a deeper sense of how we can participate in the solutions: on our farms and in our gardens, in our kitchens and at the dining table, and in the broader communities where we live. In this time of great uncertainty there is reason for hope, embodied in the belief that the health of a nation is inextricably tied to the health of its agriculture.

Led by Michael Ableman at Food Conference 2008

Food Crisis and Hunger – What is a Jewish Response?

Food is a right and ultimately a public policy issue. Examine the underlining causes of the recent global and domestic food crisis. As the emergency food response system falls apart, understand the driving principle of stepped up advocacy to address the problem on a federal, state and local level. Consider the immediate and systemic response that the Jewish community is commanded to do as you explore the paradigm of ‘charity vs. justice’.

Led by H. Eric Schockman at Food Conference 2008

Food Stamped

This short film documents the adventures of a couple attempting to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet on a food stamp budget.   Shira Potash, a nutrition educator striving to walk a mile in the shoes of the low-income families she teaches, embarks on the Food Stamp Challenge, dragging her husband Yoav along with her.  Living on roughly a dollar a meal for a full week, they soon find themselves recycling bottles for extra change, dumpster diving for challah, and pocketing free samples.  Both comic and educational, Food Stamped shows what happens when you put your money where your mouth is.

Led by Shira & Yoav Potash at Food Conference 2008

Greening Your Institutions

Are you banging your head against the wall trying to green the food chain in your synagogue, school or other Jewish institution? Come learn strategies for success from three organizational leaders who are actually making it happen. This session will focus on how you can serve local, healthy and organic cuisine in your organization, despite the financial and logistical challenges. Come learn how!

Led by Adam Weisberg (moderator) Rabbi Lawrence Troster, Adam Berman, Alison Negrin at Food Conference 2008

KEYNOTE: The Ethics of Eating: Creating A New Food Future For The 21st Century

We are in the midst of a historic struggle over two very different visions of the future of food in the 21st century.  A grassroots public movement for organic, ecological, and humane food is now challenging the decades-long hegemony of the corporate, industrial model.  This struggle cannot be fought solely on an issue by issue basis.  As we continue to work on various industrial food issues -toxic pesticides, farm loss, genetic engineering, food injustice, food insecurity – we must also devote ourselves to creating a paradigm shift away from the industrial worldview.  Our ultimate goal must be nothing less than altering our thinking and habits of perception and embrace a new ethic of eating.  In this address, Andrew will share a vision of how we shift from being “consumers” of the industrial food system to “creators” of a food movement built on relationships, ethics, and ultimately a new agrarian consciousness.

Led by Andrew Kimbrell at Food Conference 2008

Understanding the Farm Bill

The new Farm Bill has gotten more attention than ever for the first time since its inception in 1933.  But what is this mammoth piece of legislation, and how exactly does it affect us and what we eat?  Hear from policy advocates about how they work to influence the Farm Bill and other public policy decisions around food and farming issues, such as hunger, public health, organic agriculture, family farmer viability, conservation, farmworker conditions, and the global food crisis. Find out what was gained and lost in the 2008 Farm Bill and what kind of food and farm policy to expect with the Obama administration and the new Congress.  Learn how you can get involved in changing the food system, through the ongoing Farm Bill implementation, the Child Nutrition Reauthorization Act and other future farm legislation.

Led by Zelig Golden (moderator), Tracy Lerman, Kathy Ozer, Aliza Wasserman at Food Conference 2008

Urban Agriculture: Coming to a City Near You!

Across the U.S., an urban agriculture movement is blossoming. People are transforming vacant lots, grass lawns and backyards into gardens. Many food projects are driven by the desire to provide poor communities with healthier options. Others are drawn to the prospect of fossil-free local food production.  Everyone can agree that growing food – with its tasty rewards – is an ideal vehicle for community organizing, especially when it comes to youth. You don’t have to be a farmer to grow your own food. Hear from community activists about how they planted the seeds for change.

Led by Robin Rifkin (moderator), Nati Passow, Karyn Moskowitz, Rafael Bratman, Heidi Winig at Food Conference 2008

Change So Good You Can Taste It: Case Studies of Food Access Strategies

Meet four innovative food justice activists who are working for enhanced access to healthy foods in underserved communities.   Karyn Moskowitz from Kentucky, Rabbi Jonathan Klein from Los Angeles, Doron Comerchero from the Central CA coast, and Nati Passow from Philadelphia will share cutting edge strategies that promote systemic changes that get healthy food choices on the shelves and into people’s homes.

Led by Karyn Moskowitz, Jonathan Klein, Nati Passow, Doron Comerchero at Food Conference 2009

City Savvy: Urban Agriculture

Urban Agriculture is the latest craze in the ever reaching food movement.  Hear examples from across the country of people making use of urban land to close the gap between urban dwellers and their food source. Learn how growing food in the city is not only incredibly cool but also a vehicle for community development, economic development, education, and improved health.

Led by Jonathan Silverman, Elizabeth Giancola, Karyn Moskowitz, Daniel Bowman Simon, Jill Slater (moderator) at Food Conference 2009

Community Involvement Through Food

Israel may be a land poor in natural resources and full of ecological challenges, but what it does have is a powerful sense of community and family. Learn how Israelis are using their local food systems, from production to distribution, as a means toward building healthy and powerful community, some even have a focus on social justice.

Led by Yael Assor, Yigal Deutscher at Food Conference 2009

Conventional Animal Agriculture

You may have attended the shechting at this or a previous Food Conference, or have heard the events described.  Everyone agrees these were not representative of the experience of the majority of animals killed for food, kosher or not.  Come see what really happens.  WARNING: We will screen a video that many find quite difficult.  Viewer discretion is strongly adviced.

Led by Roberta Schiff at Food Conference 2009

Fair trade – Is Iit Jewish Law?

While many of us feel a commitment to fair trade in principle, how does that commitment sit in relationship to Jewish law?  In this session we will explore the Jewish legal (halakhic) approach to buying fairly traded produce.  Does Jewish law say we must buy it?  Or only that we should?  And in either case, in what circumstances?  Earlier this year year Deborah wrote a teshuvah (Jewish legal ruling) on the subject which won the Whizin Prize for Jewish Ethics.  In this session she will present her conclusions and open them up for further discussion.  Fairly traded kosher chocolate will be available!

Led by Deborah Silver at Food Conference 2009

Food Inc

This film lifts the veil on our nation’s food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that has been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government’s regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA.  Featuring interviews with as Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation), Michael Pollan (The Omnivore’s Dilemma) and social entrepreneurs like Stonyfield’s Gary Hirshberg and Polyface Farms’ Joel Salatin.

Led by Irv Hershenbaum at Food Conference 2009

Food Justice: Power and Privledge

In this workshop, five food justice community organizers offer different perspectives to deal with unseen biases and racisms, within and beyond the Jewish food movement. The panel will examine how the struggles for access to resources, labor rights, and food security are inextricably linked to our collective food system. How does awareness of one’s access to power and class privilege play in (un)consciously to our role as allies? Where are the intersections between race, class, and the food system? What are the links between food and hunger? What is our role as consumers with purchasing power in perpetuating systems of oppression that serve us within the context of the food movement?

Led by Julie Wolk, Noah Farkas, Joti Levy, Devorah Brous, Audrey Sasson (moderator) at Food Conference 2009

Food Justice: Tools to Help Organize and Lobby More Effectively

This session will provide you with the tools to become a local or national activist on food justice issues. Panelists will teach to how to organize your community and lobby your representative and government officials more effectively. We hope this session will inspire you to to take action and get involved in food justice issues when you return home.

Led by H. Eric Schockman, Scott Minkow at Food Conference 2009

From Congress to the Farm to your Fork

This session will include a brief overview of US farm policy and how it impacts the food you eat.  Voting with your fork is important, but if you want to help create a sustainable food system that supports family farmers, the environment, and your health, you must do more than that. This session will focus on some of current important federal farm policy issues and how they impact real farmers, and in turn, your dinner. Also, learn what you can do to help support sustainable food and farming in Congress.

Led by Tracy Lerman, Kathy Ozer at Food Conference 2009

Grassroots: Local and National Food Policy

There is a lot of buzz about the grassroots aspects of the food revolution in our midst. But what are elected officials, governing bodies, and research organizations doing to proactively improve children’s access to healthy food, strengthen local and regional food systems, support small and mid-size farmers, secure access to arable land, and change the role food plays in our economy and our lives? Hear from experts in the field about how policy is shaped and what impact it can have on legislation and programs across the country.

Led by Kathy Ozer, Zoe Phillips, Michael Dimock, Tracy Lerman at Food Conference 2009

Greening Your Community through Education and Action

When it comes to environmental change in our Jewish communities and institutions, should we begin with actions or education?  Should we look at environmental facts or Jewish values?  Should we begin with individual or institutional change?  Really we must do all of these, in a complementary way, to achieve “buy-in” and to deepen the commitment of our community over time.  This session will demonstrate how Jewish values can underpin and enrich your environmental action, and give practical tools and strategies for greening your institution.

Led by Evonne Marzouk, Rachel Jacoby Rosenfield at Food Conference 2009

Hunger and Food (In)security in Israel

The food pyramid – who’s on top? Iimmigration, the military, government policy, businesses’ interests and the global market all affect food production and consumption in Israel. Who is growing or preparing Israel’s food? How do restaurant workers organize for civil rights and benefits? Learn about Israel’s food system in relation to environmental, social and economic issues. Learn how to access water, land, and the food system differs for Israelis and Palestinians.

Led by Jeremy Benstein, Yael Assor, Yael Berda at Food Conference 2009

Is it “Kosher”: Jewish texts on worker justice

Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi thinks Jews might be on this earth to ask the eternal Jewish question: “Is it kosher?” Looking at a mix of ancient and contemporary Jewish texts, we will explore how much it matters who labors, how they labor, and how they are paid in creating products and services we enjoy. Focusing on food production, we will explore Jewish texts and tools for conscious hiring and consuming.

Led by Dorothy Richman at Food Conference 2009

Justice on your Plate: Supporting Workers’ Rights

Join us for a journey from farm to table, as we learn stories of courageous worker organizing for better working conditions, and share resources for how to support them. Workshop leaders Irv Hershenbaum, 1st Vice President of the United Farm Workers and confidante of Cesar Chavez, and Sarah Church of the Progressive Jewish Alliance’s Economic Justice campaign will highlight stories from the fields to the kitchens, and paint a picture of how ethical consumption, rooted in Jewish tradition, can help secure rights for those most marginalized.

Led by Sarah Church,  Irv Herschenbaum at Food Conference 2009

Keeping the Tzedek (Justice) in Tzedakah (Charity)

1.02 billion people across the world are hungry. Learn about the underbelly of food system, poverty and hunger in Israel and the U.S. While we know that hunger doesn’t come from lack of food, the solutions to this problem continue to elude experts. Our panelists will speak about the innovative approaches to ending global hunger. Topics include soup kitchens and food pantries serving Jewish families, the problems of fostering dependence on emergency food aid , and community garden programs to teach growing food as a tool for self-reliance.

Led by Noah Farkas, Yael Assor, H. Eric Schockman, Tamar Wyte, Devorah Brous (moderator) at Food Conference 2009

Magen Tzedek: Food Fit for the 21st Century

Food tastes best when it is prepared with integrity. Magen Tzedek brings the Jewish commitment to ethics and social justice directly into the marketplace and the home. The Magen Tzedek service mark synthesizes the aspirations of a burgeoning international movement for sustainable, responsible consumption and promotes increased sensitivity to the vast and complex web of global relationships that bring food to our tables. Come to hear and discuss this exciting initiative.

Led by Ashira Konigsburg at Food Conference 2009

Slow Money & Sustainable Food Systems

If there is one thing that the recent economic recession has taught us, it’s that there is such a thing as money that is too fast, companies that are too big and finance that is too complex. Therefore, we must slow our money down, bring it back to earth and invest in an economy based on preservation and restoration rather than extraction and consumption. Michael Dimock, president of Roots of Change, and Woody Tasch, founder of Slow Money and author of Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing as if Food, Farms, and Fertility Mattered, will provide a vision of what this new economy could look like and will lay out concrete steps that we can take to facilitate capital investment in the small food enterprises and local food systems. Find out how, together, we can build a “nurture capital industry” that enhances food security, safety and access, improves nutrition and health and promotes cultural, ecological and economic diversity.

Led by Michael Dimock, Woody Tasch at Food Conference 2009

Sustainable Rice: Addressing Global Poverty Through Better Growing Practices

Rice has a significant global impact on the environment. Currently, the flooding of rice paddies accounts for 8% methane gas emissions. Join Caryl, owner of Lotus Foods, who will discuss a global project to transform rural rice growing practices to improve global food security, empower poor households, conserve natural resources and promote human and environmental health. You will have the opportunity to taste a variety of sustainably produced rice.

Led by Caryl Levine, Ken Lee at Food Conference 2009

The Garden

This film follows the plight of farmers, mostly immigrants from Latin America, from the tilled soil of an urban farm to the polished marble of City Hall. A local Los Angeles story, can also be seen as a window into larger issues of social and economic justice, the greening of public space, and the value of growing fresh fruits and vegetables in inner cities. It is a David and Goliath story that has been told over and over again by so many cultures and touches people on many levels. Join the Executive Producer for a Q & A session after the screening.

Led by Julie Bergman Sender at Food Conference 2009

The Greenwashing of Food: Be an informed consumer

We have known for decades that ‘natural’ and ‘organic’ foods are good for our health and the planet.  But now that the big food companies are equating these terms with big profits, there has been a substantial shift in the marketplace and a blurring of the lines from what we once believed to be true. Is that soymilk brand you trusted for years still using organic soybeans?  Are you unwittingly supporting big agribusiness when you think you’re buying local?

Led by Denise Garbinski at Food Conference 2009

The Vanishing Bees

Explore the apiary science mystery known as “Colony Collapse Disorder” – bees abandon their hives, including the queen and the brood. It is unnatural and unheard of. At first, this occurrence sounds like an urban legend or an exaggerated tale. Except it’s not. The situation is both dire and all too real. Bees are disappearing all over the planet and no one knows why.

Led by Maryam Henein at Food Conference 2009

2012 Farm Bill: How the Jewish community (and you!) can make a difference

The 2012 Farm Bill is a key piece of legislation that affects a wide range of food policies, including crop subsidies and food stamp benefits.  Understanding what it IS is the first step; learning about how you can engage your community to make a difference comes next.  This session will offer both.

Led by Oran Hesterman, Dahlia Rockowitz, Judith Belasco (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Chocolate: Our Dark Addictions

This talk will explore our special challenges of eating responsibly when chocolate is on the table.  We’ll discuss how Jewish values of caring for the needy, pursuing economic justice, protecting the environment, and promoting sustainability feed into today’s Organic and Fair Trade chocolate industry and watch a clip from a recent documentary about child labor in the cocoa fields.  Consideration will also be given to broader historical and liturgical connections between Jews and chocolate. Samples will be provided.

Led by Deborah Prinz, Ilana Schatz at Food Conference 2011

Community-Supported Agriculture: A Vehicle for Collective Action and World-Changing!

By pooling our resources and supporting local farmers, CSAs provide us with an opportunity to meaningfully engage in ethical consumption and to contribute to a more sustainable food system. But the power of CSAs doesn’t stop there! The very structure of CSAs as member-based grassroots projects makes them ideal breeding grounds for community building towards collective action. Come and hear about innovative efforts by CSAs from across the country that are leveraging their power as community-based initiatives to advance social, economic, and environmental justice.

Led by Steve Deheeger, Sasha Feldstein, Ariel Kohane, Audrey Sasson (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Food Justice and Policy: Local Change, National Change

Not sure where to start when it comes to food policy?  In this session, NYC Coalition Against Hunger Executive Director Joel Berg will discuss issues related to poverty and hunger — and policies designed to solve both on a national scale — and PolicyLink President Judith Bell will discuss strategies that are underway at the local, state and federal levels to improve access to healthy food.  This session is an excellent introduction for those looking to get more involved in food advocacy.

Led by Judith Bell, Joel Berg at Food Conference 2011

Food Justice, Food Systems, Food Movement: Your Passions in Context

In this interactive and fun workshop, we will explore four levels of engagement in the Food Movement, from personal choices to structural change.  Come with ideas about your organizations, your personal food decisions and/or food issues that impact your community, and leave seeing where the actions you take connect to big change.  As you learn about the innovative projects these presenters are working on, you might even get inspired be a part of the movement in a new and fresh way!

Led by Doron Comerchero, David Scwhartz, Holly Stein at Food Conference 2011

Food Sovereignty 101: How Communities are Regaining Control of Local and Global Food Systems

People throw out terms like food sovereignty and food justice all the time but what do those terms really mean and what do they represent? Come and learn about a truly global movement of communities around the world taking steps to gain back control of their food systems. Brahm Ahmadi from People’s Community Market and Shana Starobin from American Jewish World Service will connect the dots between the growing community food systems movement right here in the US and efforts by international peasant communities around the world who are organizing for more equitable, just, and sustainable food systems.

Led by Brahm Ahmadi, Shana Starobin at Food Conference 2011

Food Stamped

“Food Stamped” follows nutritionist Shira Potash and her husband Yoav as they attempt to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet on a food stamp budget.  Through their adventures they consult with members of the US House of Congress, food justice advocates, nutrition experts, and people living on food stamps to take a deep look at America’s broken food system.  A sneak preview rough cut of the film was shown at the 2008 Hazon Food Conference.  QandA with filmmaker Shira Potash following the film.

Led by Shira Potash at Food Conference 2011

Is it enough to join the cause on Facebook?

Jewish tradition teaches us that it is not enough to stand idly by in the face of injustice. In America, one of the most persistent injustices is a paradox: we are the wealthiest country in the world, and yet 50 million Americans don’t know where their next meal is coming from. This workshop explores who is struggling, why, and what we can and must do in response. If not us, then who? If not now, then when?

Led by Abby Leibman at Food Conference 2011

Toward True Sustainability? Rights and Dignity for Workers in the Food Chain

While food workers are some of the most exploited workers in the global economy, they are also leading up some of the most creative and effective organizing campaigns to improve their conditions and encourage a truly fair food economy. Their struggles remind us that a truly sustainable food system must can only be achieved when the people harvesting, packaging, preparing, and serving our food are treated with respect.  Come and learn about some of their dynamic efforts and find out how you, too, can help bring us all one step closer to real sustainability.

Led by Maya Barron, Dasi Fruchter, Audrey Sasson, Charlotte Williams at Food Conference 2011

Urban Innovations: Solving hunger, apathy, food access and poverty through unconventional combinations

Michael Corbett, a green designer, once wrote “you know you’re on the right track when your solution to one problem accidentally solves several others.”  These innovators have launched outstanding projects that do just this, including: how to get more fresh food into soup kitchens; addressing food deserts and youth empowerment; and connecting Jewish traditions of service with environmental consciousness and tikkun olam.

Led by Adam Berman, Gary Oppenheimer, Susan Silverman, David Wechsler-Azen, Becky O’Brien (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Eating Your Way to a Better World

What’s appropriate to eat–and what kind of world do we create through our food choices? Amy Cotler will share her journey becoming a locavore extraordinaire, culinary professional and farm-to-table advocate. Her latest book, The Locavore Way, is a comprehensive guide to seeking out and savoring local food, and in this session she’ll explore questions of how to eat ethically, how food and social justice go hand in hand, and ways we can become advocates for health and justice when we eat.

Led by Amy Cotler at Food Conference 2010 East

Food Policy in 2010: The Rundown on What’s Keeping Food Advocates Really Busy

You get the email alerts, but still, you have a vague sense of the important food policy decisions and their impacts. Get caught up on the divisive nature of the Childhood Nutrition Reauthorization Act, the Bloomberg administration’s proposed pilot to ban purchases of sugar sweetened beverages with food stamp funds, as well as progress towards planting a vegetable garden in front of New York’s City Hall and the next Farm Bill on the horizon.

Led by Daniel Bowman Simon at Food Conference 2010 East

From Purchasing to Political Power: When Community Groups Come Together around Vegetables–and Change the World

Projects that support local agriculture are a great way to find healthy produce; they also have the potential bring together people who are passionate, committed to community activism and hungry to make a positive impact in other ways. Meet changemakers who will share examples from their community about how their groups have organized to fix the broken food system.  Come and be inspired by their models of change, and learn what steps you can take to involve your community in a deeper way.

Led by Alex Sugarman-Brozan, Paula Lukats, Jacob Siegel, Deborah Greig, Naomi Rabkin at Food Conference 2010 East

Green Jewish Institutions: Conversation and Tour

For the past five years, Isabella Freedman has taken a lead in institutional greening–everything from the solar panels by the main road into camp, to the toilets, floor materials and cleaning supplies.  The Jewish Greening Fellowship, a program of Isabella Freedman, helps to bring this awareness to other Jewish institutions as well.  This tour will highlight the many green features of the campus, as well as introduce you to the Jewish Greening Fellowship.  *This tour will start in the lounge, but will cover the IF campus; be prepared to walk outdoors.

Led by Rachel Jacoby-Rosenfeld and Adamahnicks at Food Conference 2010 East

Jewish Values, Fair Trade, and the Highest Level of Tzedekah

What does fair trade mean, beyond a fair price for producers?  How does fair trade represent an enlightened form of tzedekah?  Delve into these questions and others through text study and an interactive exploration of the producers and supply chains that bring us fair trade food.  Examine halacha (Jewish law) dealing with treatment of laborers and discuss our own consumerism through the lens of Jewish teachings as we answer the question, “What’s Jewish about fair trade?”

Led by Molly Zeff at Food Conference 2010 East

Mapping the Living Landscape: Permaculture Design and Practice

Join Shamu Sadeh, Adamah Director, for a walk on the Kaplan Family Farm, Adamah’s new permaculture farm. Learn how the design and implementation of this farm is different from traditional organic and conventional farms. See, smell and feel your way through keyhole gardens, cover crops, perennial vegetables and slopes to learn how to really get to know a piece of land–whether you have a big backyard or an acre. *Meet in the Rec Hall to walk over to the farm.  Wear appropriate footwear for walking outdoors.

Led by Dr. Shamu Sadeh at Food Conference 2010 East

The Ethics of Consumption

Americans consume more of the world’s resources than any other people, and given the complex, inter-connected and very often hidden supply chain which drives the global economy, can we think intelligently and responsibly about the choices we make? How, if at all, can the Jewish textual tradition be a resource in thinking about these issues?

Led by Rabbi Brent Spodek at Food Conference 2010 East

The Tshuvah of Feeding Oneself

Making wise food choices can have profoundly positive effects on our overall physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. In this interactive class we will explore how to nourish ourselves so that we feel clear, energetic and balanced. The Jewish idea of tshuvah says that we always have the possibility to return to our truest selves. While we might not all pray three times a day, most us eat at least three times a day. What would it mean for our lives if we used those moments of eating as an opportunity to return to ourselves?

Led by Ilana Margolit, Nigel Savage at Food Conference 2010 East

Three Steps to Food Justice with the Tav HaYosher

What does food justice look like in the Jewish community, and how can we put our values into practice? Join Ari Hart, co-founder of Uri L’Tzedek, to explore the foundations for food justice in the Torah, and then learn how to organize your community and make a difference. Learn about the Tav HaYosher, Uri L’Tzedek’s ethical seal for kosher restaurants, and gain tools to help you speak with workers and owners of kosher restaurants in your community about food justice issues. 

Led by Ari Hart at Food Conference 2010 East

Vanishing of the Bees

Follow commercial beekeepers David Hackenberg and Dave Mendes as they strive to keep their bees healthy and fulfill pollination contracts across the U.S. Bee keeper Anna Herman and bee researcher/photographer Sabrina Malach will introduce this film and lead a buzzing conversation afterwards.

Led by Anna Herman, Sabrina Malach at Food Conference 2010 East

You Say Tomato: Exploring the values of the local food movement

The local food movement is growing — but why?  Are we trying to pursue justice? Promote values? Build community? Preserve farmland? Are there other reasons, and are all these reasons equally “kosher?” A structured conversation about what we are doing when we get involved with community-supported agriculture and the local food movement..

Led by Rabbi Brent Spodek at Food Conference 2010 East

Beyond Kashtrut: Magen Tzedek

When we discuss kosher food, the issue of what additionally makes food kasher- fit to eat- is a prime topic of conversation.  Will we knowingly eat food made with indentured labor, from mistreated animals, made by despoiling the environment?  What do we do when we don’t know how most processed foods are actually produced?  Learn why voting with your food budget by looking for and buying products with the Magen Tzedek will enable us to eat in accordance with ethical standards that we can be proud of.  We will discuss the basis for and scope of the Magen Tzedek standards and how they will change the way we think about our consumption of food and how we live lives of holiness.

Led by Iris Richman at Food Conference 2010 West

Beyond the Canned Food Drive: Deepening the Impact of Social Action

Every year synagogues across the country set up canned food drives at Yom Kippur services.  But what happens the rest of the year? How have Jewish communities extended their social actions beyond this yearly occurrence?  Hear stories about a group of Muslim and Jewish teens who have helped serve people on Skid Row.  Find out how young students have raised awareness in their synagogue around the nutritional value of food donated to those in need.  Learn about an education Jewish urban farm that donates 95% of their produce to a food bank.  Prepare to be inspired to think of creative ways our love of food and eating might help promote social justice efforts in your own community.

Led by Eli Goldstein, Anne Hromadka, Ilana Schachter, Jessy Gross (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Food Access: Finally Something You Want to Supersize

Many neighborhoods in our cities lack grocers selling fresh produce but are a cornucopia of fast food “restaurants” and convenience stores selling salty and sweet snacks.  From Kentucky to Vancouver to Los Angeles, food justice activists are working to enhance the accesss to healthy foods available in underserved communities.  Supporting healthy grocery store development, supplying farm-fresh food to low-income neighborhoods, and building urban farms in local schools are just some of the ways that these activists are creating change so good you can taste it!

Led by Maya Barron, Ilana Labow, Karyn Moskowitz, Judith Belasco (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Power Lunch: Applying the Tools of Community Organizing to Food Justice

Boycotting High Fructose Corn Syrup will only take you so far.  Refusing to buy a burger at McDonalds might go unnoticed.  Going to see Food, Inc might inspire you and even make you nauseous. But real change can only come when we are powerful enough to enact it.  Join Rabbis Stephanie Kolin and Shmuly Yanklowitz to learn some critical community organizing tools that might just be the right recipe for success as you work to enact effective systemic social change inside the issues of food justice.  We will explore how Torah (no previous knowledge required), community organizing tools, and current issues in the ethical food movement call us to learn how to build our relational power so that we can effect serious change in our local, communal, and maybe even national communities.

Led by Stephanie Kolin, Shmuly Yanklowitz at Food Conference 2010 West

Food Makers & Shakers

Producers and consumers are working to create sustainable food systems that enhance the environmental, economic and social health of a particular place and increase access to food that is produced without depleting natural resources or compromising our planet’s survival. This track will include local, sustainable, kosher meat and dairy producers, gardeners, institutional change-makers and educators who will share their stories and inspire you to make change in your own community.

Biblical Foodarts Workshop

Discover the little-known Biblical diet that nourished ancient Israel, and its value for healthy eating today. Explore ancient Israeli arts of seed-saving, blessing and food justice, inspired by Seder Zera-im, the first book of the Mishnah, and how we can help restore Israel’s almost extinct heirloom native crops. We’ll discuss the role of sustainable agriculture in the Arab-Israeli conflict, and its untapped potential for nourishing cooperation.

Led by Eli Rogosa at Food Conference 2006

Can You Eat Meat Ethically? A Conversation

Kosher, Glatt-kosher, local, conventional, pasture-raised, there are so many different ways to eat meat.  The conversation about eating meat is no longer just a debate on whether to eat meat or not, but includes consideration of how far the meat has traveled and how the animal was raised and slaughtered. As Jews, is there a way to ethically eat meat? Hear about the choices four people have made about how to eat (or not) meat.

Led by Simon Feil (Moderator), Devora Kimelman-Block, Roberta Schiff, Andy Kastner at Food Conference 2007

Beyond the Supermarket – Alternative Meat Production

More and more Jewish people are looking for kosher meat that is ethical and non-industrial. In an age where the local kosher butcher shop has frequently been replaced by the national supermarket chain as the purveyor of kosher meat, these presenters are taking matters into their own hands to ensure that their meat is not only kosher according to Jewish law, but ethically, sustainably, and safely produced. At this session you’ll hear from a Jewish mother who raised ducks in the backyard, a pediatric neurologist who founded a kosher meat co-op, a dairy farmer, and the person who brought kosher, local, heritage turkey to the Food Conference Shabbat dinner table. Learn more about how you can eat in a way that “meats” all of your standards.

Led by Naf Hanau (moderator), Maya Shetreat-Klein, Amalia Haas, Roger Studley, Aitan Mizrachi at Food Conference 2008

Enriching the Food System, One Small Business at a Time: The Sustainable Business Plan

Are you dissatisfied with the status quo of industrial food production and the globalization of our food system? The members of this panel took matters into their own hands. Each has successfully turned ideals for strengthening our local and regional food systems into a growing business. Using local ingredients, fair-traded ingredients, kosher ingredients, or all of the above, Eric Clayman (udisgranola.com), Shmuel Simenowitz (sweetwhisperfarms.com), and Devora Kimelman-Block (KOLfoods.com) have each laid new ground. Learn their back-stories, their inspirations, their business models, and their diverse calls for change.

Led by Jill Slater (moderator), Eric Clayman, Shmuel Simenowitz, Devora Kimelman-Block at Food Conference 2008

Helping You Become a More Effective Jewish Environmental and Food Educator

Teva and ADAMAH alumni are instrumental in bringing their knowledge to the broader Jewish community.  This session will help alumni of these programs take their personal experiences to the next level.  We will focus on defining a vision for your role as a leader and educator.  This session will help you visualize where you want to take your skills and passion from here and how Hazon, Teva, and ADAMAH can help. This session is for those who are graduates of one these programs and want to grow as Jewish environmental educators.

Led by Kevin Kleinman at Food Conference 2008

Making a Kosher Business in a Non-Kosher World

The largest Kosher retailer in the United States – what’s the story?! Hear the real life story of the creation of the largest kosher retailer in the United States.  How did it start?  Talk to the founder and delve into issues of Jewish identity, Kashrut, and the struggles of balancing business concerns, with ethics and community.

Led by Noah Alper at Food Conference 2008

Next Steps: Becoming a More Effective Jewish Environmental and Food Educator

Navigating your way through Jewish synagogues and organizations can be tricky.  This session will help you work with clergy, program directors, and support staff to get them excited about our work and to develop lasting partnerships.  we will present existing curricula and models for planning and running successful programs.  And we’ll explore professional opportunites involving these curricula and other program ideas with Hazon, Teva, and ADAMAH.  This session is for those who are graduates of one of these programs and want to grow as Jewish environmental educators.

Led by Kevin Kleinman at Food Conference 2008

The Labor Behind Our Food

What is our responsibility to the workers who get our food from farm to table? From classical Jewish teachings on ethical employment to the Agriprocessors controversy and the labor issues of food service and hotel workers, this session examines the economic and Jewish social justice issues related to the labor force that produces and serves our food.  Learn about food labor issues and options for activism on behalf of food production and food service workers.

Led by Rachel Biale at Food Conference 2008

Transforming Kosher Meat in America

Three large meat companies, under the supervision of a few national religious organizations produce the vast majority of the kosher meat consumed in the United States. These companies slaughter animals in industrial slaughterhouses far removed from major urban centers. The scandal at the Agriprocessors plant in Iowa have forced us to re-examine our modern system of Industrial Kosher meat production. How do notions of transparency, sustainability, affordability, consumer choice, and ethics fit into our kosher meat production system and whose responsibility is it to determine and enforce these standards?  Join some of the most influential players in the world of kosher meat to discuss their visions for the future of (large-scale) kosher meat production in America.

Led by Naf Hanau (moderator), Seth Mandel, Devora Kimelman-Block, Morris Allen, Ari Hart at Food Conference 2008

Will Blog for Food: The Changing World of Jewish Food Media

From breaking headlines about Agriprocessors, to a wave of innovative new Jewish cookbooks hitting the market, the world of Jewish food writing is hitting its stride. On this panel, you will hear from three women who are writing on the frontlines of the new Jewish food movement – and you will learn about how you can be involved in writing for Hazon’s award-winning blog, The Jew & The Carrot (www.jcarrot.org).

Led by Leah Koenig (moderator), Adeena Sussman, Sarah Newman, Alix Wall at Food Conference 2008

Agriculture Can Make a Profit and Change the World

Join two powerhouses in the sustainable agriculture movement who prove that agriculture can make a profit and change the world. Farmer D and Larry Jacobs have built businesses that have evolved into successful empires.

Led by Larry Jacobs, Farmer D, Julie Fine at Food Conference 2009

Behind the Scenes at the Food Conference:  Sustainable Kosher Food and Giant Food Corporations

The food at the Hazon Food Conference is a significant way in which we can share the Hazon values with participants. Learn from the Hazon staff and Conference leadership on the challenges of matching our sustainable food values with the restrictions and limitations set up by the corporation that manages the conference center.

Led by Renna Khuner-Haber, Debbie Kelman, Tracy Lerman at Food Conference 2009

Fish: Farmraised vs. Wild

Don’t eat those lox; try endangered salmon instead.  That’s right, wild salmon are better for you and better for the planet.  In this session, fish ecologists, a noted chef/fish wholesaler, and an ocean advocate begin to unwind the tangled net of apparent contradictions around eating fish and our impact on ocean ecosystems. This panel will also discuss how conflicts between freshwater ecosystems and modern agribusiness affect river management and endangered species throughout western North America.

Led by Jon Rosenfield, Kenny Below, Josh Israel at Food Conference 2009

Food Entrepreneurs: How to start and run a sustainable business

What are the incentives, motivations, challenges, goals of running a sustainable food business? How does one get started?  The innovators on this panel have taken their ideals for strengthening our local and regional food systems and turned them into a burgeoning business. Using local, fair-trade, or kosher ingredients,  Eric Clayman (udisgranola.com), Mary Waldner (marysgonecrackers.com), and Caryl Levine (www.lotusfoods.com) have each laid new ground. Learn their back-stories, their inspirations, their business models, and their diverse calls for change.

Led by Mary Waldman, Eric Clayman, Caryl Levine, Jill Slater (moderator) at Food Conference 2009

Growing the Real Food Revolution on Campus

What can young, progressive Jews do to inspire real change in our food system? Learn how we can use new networks and collective action to leverage the incredible power of our colleges and universities to lead the way. This session will discuss the role of students and youth in the “real food” movement from the theoretical to the concrete.  Join us to explore new frameworks for interpreting “food issues,” their connection to Jewish history and thought, examples of successful youth-led campaigns. Leave with concrete tools and resources for further education and action.

Led by David Schwartz, Brooke Saias at Food Conference 2009

Jewish Food Movement on the Ground

Come meet and hear from the Adva Network and learn about some of the inspiring projects run by Adamah and Teva alumni. Learn how you can join the new Jewish eco-movement by hiring alum to run programming for your institution, class, farm, CSA, JCC or camp. Open to all, come prepared to discuss and develop your programmatic visions and be ready to have them fulfilled.

Led by Adamah / Teva Alumni at Food Conference 2009

Media and the Food Movement

How do blogs, newspapers, and other forms of media outlets further the food revolution? Come hear the thoughts of bloggers, journalists, and new media pioneers discuss the impact of media on public policy, consumer consumption, and the public mind.

Led by Miriam Morgan, Sheila Himmel, David Gumpert, Debs Gardner, moderated by Leah Koenig at Food Conference 2009

Running a Sustainable Kosher Meat Business

Sources of sustainably and humanely raised meat are rare and few between. Hear from four pioneers who started their own businesses to provide kosher meat while rather successfully eschewing the United States’ industrial meat complex.

Led by Devora Kimmelman-Block, Maya Shetreat-Klein, Ariella Reback, Amalia Haas, Sue Fishkoff (moderator) at Food Conference 2009

How the Factory Farm Became Kosher: The State of Animal Agriculture and New Directions From the Sustainable Kosher Meat World

Many folks have an idea that chickens don’t live on Old McDonald’s farm–but we don’t even know the half of it.  In this solution-oriented session Farm Forward’s Aaron Gross will offer insights into how animal agriculture became synonymous with cruelty, how the new Jewish food movement is changing the kosher meat industry, and how humane, sustainable kosher meat could change the world. Three sustainable kosher meat producers will share their thoughts in response.

Led by Elisheva Brenner, Aaron Gross, Naftali Hanau, Robert Joppa Sue Fishkoff (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Jewish Food Writing: Identity and Menus on the page

Join us for an intergenerational conversation about the dynamic, changing landscape of food writing over the past few decades. What did food writing look like when Joan Nathan was getting started? What does one have to do to succeed today and what is success?  What impact does food writing have on people’s lives and/or kitchens and/or classrooms?  Should you start a food blog?  Panelists will reflect on what inspires their work, how their identity as Jews, chefs and travelers finds its way onto the written page, and what’s next for Jewish food writing in America.

Led by Amiee Kushner, Joan Nathan, Jeffrey Yoskowitz at Food Conference 2011

Leading the way: Healthy Sustainable Food Projects in Jewish Communities

How are you making change in your community?  These folks saw an opportunity to make their communities greener, healthier, more socially just and more engaged in food activism.  Come hear how they did it!  Projects include: Jewish community garden in Boston, a hunger project in Milwaukee, Jewish Institutional Greening in Los Angeles.  Moderated by Judith Belasco, who will also discuss Hazon’s new Food Audit for Jewish Institutions.

Led by Devora Brous, Ariel Kohane, Leora Mallach, Pam Frydman Roza and Judith Belasco (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

The New Jewish Food Movement: Visions and Action

Four years ago, the expression “New Jewish Food Movement” didn’t exist.  Now it is cited in the Huffington Post, touted by leaders of the Reform and Conservative movements, and is steadily changing the way Jews eat, learn and interact with their food and with each other.  In this keynote, Hazon’s Director of Food Programs Judith Belasco will reflect on this extraordinary moment in time, and some of the opportunities and challenges we now face.  Judith will be joined by Oran Hesterman, Dr. Maya Shetreat-Klein and Leon Vehaba who will share experiences from the field that illuminate the breadth and depth of this movement.

Led by Oran Hesterman, Maya Shetreat-Klein, Leon Vehaba, Judith Belasco (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Barnyard Chat

Join Jerry Schwartz and the Adamahniks to chat about what it’s really like to raise animals for milk and wool.  These folks farm by the values of sustainability, environmental sensitivity, and kindness to animals: come find out what “grass-fed” and “free range” really means, and explore the partnership that develops between these farmers and their herds.

Led by Jerry Schwartz at Food Conference 2010 East

Farm Wisdom: Generation to Generation

As a new generation of farmers and food enthusiasts is taking root, elders Mark and Judy Dornstreich offer their perspective on 30+ years as Jewish organic farmers at Branch Creek Farm.  What makes a farm successful?  What are the rhythms of life on the farm?  How is a Jewish farm different?  The Dornstreichs have been growing high quality, nutritious produce for restaurants and markets for over three decades. In this session, they’ll share some of what they’ve learned so far, and ideas for where the movement can go from here.

Led by Mark and Judy Dornstreich at Food Conference 2010 East

It’s a Whole Business: Sustainable Food Entrepreneurs Tell All

What does it take to change the food system?  These entrepreneurs are finding out.  Whether they’re sourcing sustainable products from Israel and  navigating international import standards and government inspections, producing sustainable grass-fed kosher meat and working with kosher certifiers used to dealing with companies a hundred times their size, or making aged, raw cheese from grass-fed cows, these pioneers are finding creative ways to structure their businesses and market their products–including working with the Jewish community-supported agriculture community.  Come hear their stories and find out how you can support their efforts to bring sustainable food to the table!

Led by Alan Glustoff, Naftali Hanau, Devora Kimmelman-Block, Jeffrey Yoskowitz, Jessica Haller (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 East

Pleased to Meat You: The Story of the Sustainable Meat Revolution

Following Michael Pollan’s outcry against the “frankinsteer” and the horrendous practices on conventional animal farms, many people wondered – is kosher meat better?  In fact, most kosher meat on the market comes from the same huge farms as non-kosher meat—with a small number of notable exceptions.  Jewish tradition understands keeping kosher as a way to bring holiness to our lives.  In their quest to produce sustainably raised, grass-fed kosher meat–whether for sale, for educational programming or for their own consumption–these meat-makers are challenging what that definition of holiness is (hint: it’s delicious, and complicated).

Led by Naftali Hanau, Devora Kimmelman-Block, Craig and Stacey Oshkello, Becca Weaver (Moderator) at Food Conference 2010 East

The Makings of an Urban Mini-Farm

In pictures and in words, come experience the transformation of a 40 X 60 foot childhood backyard from a shaded field of weeds and 50 foot trees into a sun-soaked, French Intensive, Biodynamic, urban mini-farm. It is the home of a CSA, an educational garden and an edible gardening company. Learn the methods and advantages of growing intensively on small plots of land, ideas for sourcing materials in urban areas and tips on growing healthy, bug-free vegetables.

Led by Steven Wynbrant at Food Conference 2010 East

Will Work For Food: Taking “Community-Supported Agriculture” to the Next Level

As folks seek to connect with the land and the farmers who produce their food, some people want not only to eat local fare, but also to participate in producing it.  How can the community get involved on the farm in ways that are truly productive and beneficial for the farm operation? Farmers Pablo Elliott and Esther Mandelheim from Stoney Lonesome Farm will discuss a range of ways for communities to help on farms. Participants will experience first hand the “Harvest Share” helpers system used on their farm.

Led by Pablo Elliot and Esther Mandelheim at Food Conference 2010 East

Jewish Food Education: Feeding Mind and Body

Farmers, gardeners, and educators are on the forefront of the movemt to establish Jewish food education as an important discrete discipline within the Jewish community.  Hear stories from the field about college students who choose to spend their spring breaks on farms, gardens and farms as classrooms, and how Jewish educators are developing innovative environmental education programs that integrate the sustainable food movement into the Jewish education landscape.  Come learn more about these programs and be inspired to bring these curricula and concepts home to your own schools, synagogues, preschools, and families.

Led by Nati Passow, Jakir Manela, Becca Bodenstein, Judith Belasco (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Straus Family Creamery: A Family Dairy in an Industrial Agricultural World

On a farm, just up the road, the Straus Family started farming in 1941 with 23 cows.  Albert Straus converted the farm to organic in 1994, making it the first certified organic dairy west of the Mississippi.  Listen to Albert tell stories about the farm and share insights into the dairy industry today.  Get the inside scoop on the milk, yogurt, and ice cream that you are enjoying during meals, and participate in a lively question and answer session.

Led by Albert Straus at Food Conference 2010 West

The Real Dirt on Farmer John

Meet Farmer John, a man who will turn every idea you ever had about what it means to be an American farmer, or an American dreamer, on its head. Watch this inspirational story of revolutionizing a family farm through the growth of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) on his farm.

Food Conference 2007

Really Delicious (World premiere!  First Screening!)

Really Delicious celebrates the farmers, thinkers, and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Really Delicious moves from educating the audience about the problems of our current industrial food system to exploring alternatives.  This is more than a movie; it’s a gateway to action. Among the inspiring characters portrayed, you’ll meet: Will Allen, an urban farmer and entrepreneurs and this year’s recipient of the McArthur Genius Award;  Joel Salatin, a “grass farmer” and visionary; and Michael Pollan himself!

Led by Ana Joanes at Food Conference 2008

Shmita and Jewish Agriculture

The Jewish Bible is rooted in agrarian concepts and metaphors, and yet most of us today live in quite un-agricultural ways. Across the globe, Jews are reconnecting with their agricultural roots, and in doing so are not only bringing ancient traditions to life, but are bringing new life into their families, synagogues and communities. As the Shmita (Sabbatical) year approaches, these sessions will explore the agricultural voices in Jewish tradition, and the innovative Jewish agriculture projects — from CSAs and community gardens at synagogues to short-term service learning projects and multi-month agricultural programs — that are using those voices to re-engage Jews of all backgrounds in meaningful ways.

Lifting the Cellophane Veil: Schechting a Goat

What is involved when an animal is schechted?  In this session, we’ll learn about what will take place during the schechting from the goat farmer who raised the goats, the shochet who will slaughter the goats and the mashgiach who will oversee the kashrut of the animal. Small group discussions will allow you to thoughtfully prepare for the schecting, and the panelists will asnwer questions.

Led by Shamu Sadeh (moderator), Simon Feil, Rabbi Seth Mandel, Rabbi Yehuda ben Chemhoun, Aitan Mizrahi at Food Conference 2007

Planting for Next Year’s Crop: Thinking About Next Year

Gather together one final time as a community.  Take this opportunity to share what you have learned, consider the connections between food and Jewish tradition you plan to nurture in your own lives, and be a part of creating a vision for the future of the Hazon Food Conference.

Led by Anna Stevenson, Simon Feil, Nigel Savage, Elena Sigman at Food Conference 2007

Israel’s Organic Movement: An Unconventional Conversation

Israel’s organic movement has undergone vast changes since it’s initial emergence in the early 1970’s. In this session, learn from an organic farming insider about the history, current status, and future of Israel’s organic movement – through the stories and lives of the people that made it happen.

Led by Isaac Hametz at Food Conference 2008

Happy Chickens, Happy People: Raising Animals Sustainably

Ethical treatment of animals makes animals, farmers and eaters happier. Happy farm animals are healthy farm animals. Healthy farm raised food is crucial for healthy omnivores.  Recent national revelations about the lack of humanity in the life cycle and processing of our animal protein supply demonstrate the absolute necessity of personal responsibility throughout the links from birth through shechting of livestock and consistent application of the underlying philosophical premises of Kosher meat production. Presenters will share their experiences in the raising of farm livestock in the modern world.

Led by Stephan Loewentheil, Hannah Treuhaft at Food Conference 2009

History of Agriculture in Israel: Agroecology vs. Agrobusiness

Explore Israel’s ancient teachings on farming and traditional practices. Learn about the early idealism of the kibbutz (collective farms) on through to current privatized agribusiness with nanotechnology developments, biotech research with GMO’s, as well as the burgeoning return of small-scale co-ops, CSA’s, and organic farms. As small-scale operations compete with commercial-scale high tech enterprise for scarce resources, what does the future of Israel’s agriculture look like?

Led by Jeremy Benstein at Food Conference 2009

Jewish Farm School Cooperative Design: A Model for Sustainable Engagement

Participants will have the opportunity to learn about communities in their habitats in the context of social, economic, and ecological sustainability.  Using Jewish Farm School Cooperative Design and its projects as a primary model, this session will introduce participants to various topics ranging from community supported agriculture to experiential education to sustainable building design.  We will also touch on philosophical foundations of sustainable community sourced from Jewish and non-Jewish texts and materials.

Led by Ian Hertzmark at Food Conference 2009

The Land of Plenty? A report from the Israel Sustainable Food Tour

Last month, the first ever Israel Food Tour, organized by organized by Hazon & The Heschel Center for Environmental Learning and Leadership, brought 30 foodies, chefs, farmers and activists to learn about the food systems in Israel. Come hear, see, taste, and smell a whole different side of Israel from participants who experienced it first hand. You will learn about Israeli agriculture, water systems, food, politics and much more in this enlightening session about a country you thought you once knew.

Led by Jill Slater, Lev Metz, Maya Shetreat-Klein, Laura Silver, Jeremy Benstein, Natasha Aronson (moderator) at Food Conference 2009

The Vegetable Monologues: Jewish Female Farmers

Farming, as most people know is far from an easy life. Hear from three incredible woman who have chosen the path less traveled and have become farmers in their own right. Learn how they came to farming and how it has changed their lives as women and as Jews.

Led by Emily Freed, Anna Hanau, Abbe Turner, Elizabeth Giancola at Food Conference 2009

Chicken Shechita (Part I)

In this session, participants will learn with licensed poultry shochet Naftali Hanau about the ancient Jewish laws of kosher slaughter, or shechita, as they respectfully witness the shechita of three chickens.  Participants will have the opportunity to help with plucking feathers, and watch the entire process of transforming a live bird into meat ready for your Shabbat table.  This is a two part session; participant are encouraged but not required to stay for the entire morning.

Led by Naftali Hanau (Shochet), Robert Joppa, Rachel Shaprio, Leon Vehaba (Assistants) at Food Conference 2011

Chicken Shechita (Part II)

Earlier this morning, participants witnessed the kosher slaughter of three chickens, and participated in the process of turning them into meat.  The next step of the kashering process involves soaking the birds for 30 minutes, then letting them sit covered in salt for one hour.  While the birds are kashering, participants will learn with Shochet Naftali Hanau about the laws of kosher shechita, what it takes to become a shochet (kosher slaughterer).  The session will culminate with rinsing the birds and pronouncing them “kosher!”

Led by Naftali Hanau (Shochet), Robert Joppa, Rachel Shaprio, Leon Vehaba (Assistants) at Food Conference 2011

Cycles of the Seasons: Reconncting our Agricultural and Spiritual Cycles to the Cycles of Nature

The Jewish calendar is deeply tuned to the cyclescycles of nature.  Join Zelig Golden of Wilderness Torah and Simcha Schwartz of Jewish Farm School to explore how the Jewish calendar is designed to synchronize our communal and spiritual lives with the cycles of rain and the food we grow.

Led by Zelig Golden, Simcha Schwatz at Food Conference 2011

Growing All Around Us: A Botanical Tour of UC Davis

Join botanist and ecologist Kevin Schwartz for a Shabbat exploration of California native plants.  We will walk through the UC Davis arboretum and learn how using native plants in our landscapes can not only surround us with great beauty and diversity, but can help protect and preserve our planet by improving energy and water conservation.

Led by Kevin Schwartz at Food Conference 2011

Jewish Farmers and Gardeners: Stories from the Field

For every synagogue and Jewish day school that has planted a garden this past year, there are five more who are considering it.  Jewish gardens bring the community together across generations and provide an innovative setting for learning about bible stories, blessings and tikkun olam.  These Jewish farmers and gardeners are witnessing the power of a few growing plants to transform communities.  Come hear their stories, and learn how you can start a garden in your own community.

Led by Elan Margulies, Aaron Ney, Aaron Schneider, Morris Panitz (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

New Solutions: Food Systems Research at UC Davis

What does it really take to change the way our country produces and consumes food?  These researchers are finding out.  Whether they are investigating farm-to-institution solutions, making maps of the food shed to better understand distribution and access, or charting the way for regional food hubs, their work at UC Davis is on the cutting edge of the movement to create a just and equitable food system.

Led by Gail Feenstra, Ryan Galt, Sharmain Hardesty, Meredith Niles, Tracey Lerman (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Shmita: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Come understand the sabbatical year and how best to incorporate it into your life and your community.  What effects did shmitta have on communal life for the Ancient Israelites?  What can it teach us today as we strive to live socially and ecologically balanced lives?  The next Shmitta year begins Rosh Hashana 2013: come learn how to make it count.

Led by Simcha Schwatz at Food Conference 2011

The Greenhorns

American agriculture is facing a crisis of attrition (the average age of a farmer is 58), but there is a growing cadre of determined, ecologically literate, and business savvy young people across the country who are pursuing farming as a profession. Farmer-filmmaker-activist Severine von Tscharner Fleming spent three years crisscrossing America, meeting and mobilizing a network of these revolutionary young agrarians resettling the land. “The Greenhorns” is the documentary film she created.  Greenhorns member Patrick Kiley will be available for QandA after the film.

Led by Elisheva Brenner, Patrick Kiley at Food Conference 2011

Torah Ecology: The Unique Nature of THE LAND of Israel

Ecology is defined as the relationship between organisms and their environment.  What is *Torah* ecology?  In this workshop we will explore and discuss the Torah view of THE LAND of Israel and its unique attributes.  We will look directly at various source texts that describe the unique sensitivities and potential of The Land- how that Land has particular agricultural and spiritual needs, how that Land is alive and responsive to us, and how that Land is the heart and central nourishing point of the world.

Led by Noach Bittelman at Food Conference 2011

Tour De Farm: UC Davis Student Farm- All Ages Welcome!

We will explore and experience the diversity of our beautiful organic farm while using our five senses to get to know the natural world around us. The farm is home to over 50 different fruits and vegetables and countless critters.  If you’re a farmer, come check out our small farm equipment.  If you’re a gardener, learn about ergonomic and efficient ways to use your body while working in your garden.  If you just want to come see the farm, join us!

Led by Leon Vehaba at Food Conference 2011

A Home on the Range: The Jewish Chicken Ranchers of Petaluma

Not all Jewish immigrants arrived in America to work in the garment industy in New York.  In one corner of Northern California, generations of Jewish immigrants became chicken ranchers.  This film tells the amazing storuy of how these immigrants adapted to rural life, while holding onto their socialist, communist values, and how their tales shed new light on Jewish history in America.

Led by  at Food Conference 2010 West

Land-Based Communities: A Vision for the Future

Kibbutzim, moshavim, co-housing, the vision of a pluralistic, inter-generational, land-based Jewish community continues to grow, develop, and hopes to be realized in the near future. From the Bay Area and Seattle to Baltimore, small groups are talking about how to re-define Jewish communal living – farming included.

Led by Zelig Golden, Jakir Menela, Ilana Mantell, Adam Berman (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Pleased to Meat You: The Story of the Sustainable Meat Revolution

Following Michael Pollan’s outcry against the “frankinsteer” and the horrendous practices on conventional animal farms, many people wondered- is kosher meat better?  In fact, most kosher meat on the market comes from the same huge farms as non-kosher meat- with a small number of notable exceptions.  Jewish tradition understands keeping kosher as a way to bring holiness to our lives.  In their quest to produce sustainably raised, grass-fed kosher meat, these current and future meat-makers are challenging what that definition of holiness is (hint: it’s delicious, and complicated).

Led by Elisheva Brenner

Mickey Davis?

Roger Studley? (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Rooted in the Garden: Cultivating Food and Education at Jewish Institutions

Vegetable gardens are sprouting up in schools, shuls, and camps all over the country.  Learn how three change-makers use the garden as a rich medium to teach the interconnected issues of hunger, environmental stewardship, and community building at Jewish institutions.   Following a panel discussion, our three speakers will break into smaller circles to share practical tips on getting a garden off the ground, growing food, and integrating the garden into Jewish programming.

Led by Becca Bodenstein, Elana Havusha, Cheryl Kollin at Food Conference 2010 West

Jewish History & Culture

Wherever the Jewish people go, a love and respect for food is always a constant. What changes are the traditional methods of preparing meals and the questions we ask about how and why we eat what we eat. Analyze the evolutions and changes in Jewish eating over the past two millennia from the changing paradigms of kashrut to understanding what is so Jewish about the Jewish Food Movement. Ground yourself in tradition.

Challah Baking with a Twist of Text

Start the conference off by making a beautiful load of challah for Shabbat and learning a few secrets about this beloved bread.

Led by Linda Lantos and Nancy Lipsey at Food Conference 2006

Food  & Place: The Hazon Food Curriculum

Here does your food come from? Where do you come from? What does home taste like? Come talk about the ways in which food and place affect our relationships and interaction with the world.

Led by Anna Stevenson and Nigel Savage at Food Conference 2006

Bagels- From Shmear to Eternity

Bagels have become the quintessential Jewish bread in America, yet this obscure Polish treat is more than a satisfying vessel for our lox or cream cheese. Beyond its culinary merits, bagels are also a symbol of the Jewish experience in America, serving as a tangible measure of the way Jewish tradition has adapted and changed in reaction to the cultures it has encountered.

Led by Gil Marks at Food Conference 2007

Challah: Kneading, Taking, and Giving

“The world was created for the sake of challah.” (Bereishit Rabbah 1:6) This quote from the midrash is not referring to the sweet braided bread we eat on Shabbat, but to the original meaning of the word challah: the portion of each bread batch set aside as a gift for the priests. In this hands-on workshop, we will bake bread together and look at Jewish texts associated with the ancient tradition of taking challah.

Led by Julie Seltzer at Food Conference 2007

Chanukah Food Around the World- Cooking Demo

We’re all familiar with these delicious Ashkenazi Chanukah foods, but what about Sephardic dishes? In this cooking demo with chef (and rabbi) Gil Marks, we’ll explore the rich history of Sephardic tradition while also sampling mouthwatering dishes that you can recreate in your own kitchen.

Led by Rabbi Gil Marks at Food Conference 2007

Jewish Eating Through the Ages

Whether recited during a holiday or over the bread we eat, blessings add significance to our actions. They serve as an expression of our values and preferences, and ultimately ask us to consider how Judaism will manifest itself in our lives. In this session will we examine the rabbinic food blessing system, gaining insight into the inherited values of our community as they relate to food and eating.

Led by Professor David Kraemer at Food Conference 2007

Min Ha’Aretz: Hazon’s Family Education Initiative

Mandatory for 2008 Min Ha’Aretz school attendees and open to everyone who cares about Jewish day school programming.

What is family education and how can it be successful in your Jewish day school? Learn about the Min Ha’Aretz program model by exploring the developing field of family education and by engaging in study of the curriculum. Identify potential benefits, challenges and way to strengthen the program in your own school.

Led by Elena Sigman & Judith Belasco at Food Conference 2007

Pharaoh’s Dreams (on Food Items, Of Course!)

This session will focus on a close reading of the first chapter of Parashat Mikketz (Genesis 41), in which Joseph is brought from prison to interpret Pharaoh’s two dreams, about the cows and the grain.  The session will focus mainly on the literary aspects of this narrative, but will also explore some of the environmental issues involved.

Led by Gary A. Rendsburg at Food Conference 2007

Planting Seeds for New Jewish Food Movement

Jewish tradition encourages the use of food as a vehicle for social and environmental sustainability.  Through ancient Jewish food systems emerges a model with significant philosophical and practical implications for contemporary life.  What are the ways we can learn from our traditions to address the growing need for sustainability?  How do we integrate the lessons from the past in creating a new Jewish food movement?

In this keynote session, we will pull together the conference’s various threads in the context of Hazon’s own food work and the larger emerging movement around Jewish life and contemporary food issues.

Led by Nati Passow and Nigel Savage at Food Conference 2007

Professional Jewish Farmers

“Farmer” may not be the first job that comes to mind when you think of Jewish professions.   But in fact a growing number of the people of the book are also ovdei adama, tillers of the earth.  Hear more about these farmers’ journies and the role of the Jewish farmer in the Jewish community.

Led by Anna Stevenson (moderator), Rabbi Shmuel Simenowitz, Margaret Hathaway, Alan Glustoff, Jakir Manela at Food Conference 2007

Six Years You May Sow Your Field…But in the Seventh Year the Land Shall Have a Sabbath

What are the philosophical implications of the Shemittah year on a society and how do they contribute to a culture of collective sustainability?  How does Shemittah address issues of social inequity?  A look at some of the texts and reasons for Shemittah from the Torah and throughout Rabbinic literature.

Led by Shuli Passow, Nati Passow, &  Yigal Deutsher at Food Conference 2007

Sustainable Simchas

A simcha should be a joyous event that exemplifies your values.  Whether you’re planning a gala wedding or a small-scale bar/bat mitzvah, learn how your celebration can be an occasion for thoughtful living, sustainable consumption and building community.   We’ll discuss healthy and sustainable food options, ways to green your synagogue, and starting a cooking committee at your shul.

Led by Dasee Berkowitz (moderator), Edith Stevenson, Barbara Lerman-Golomb, Sharon Halper at Food Conference 2007

A Sacred Duty: Applying Jewish Values to Help Heal the World

This documentary addresses the environmental crisis facing humanity. It offers simple and practical measures for reducing our impact on the planet and shows how a plant-based diet can reduce environmental degradation and improve human health and welfare. It also presents fundamental moral and ethical issues related to the foods we eat. It was inspired by the writings of Richard Schwartz of Jewish Vegetarians of North America.  Please note that this documentary contains graphic scenes that may be disturbing to some viewers.

Led by Roberta Schiff at Food Conference 2008

Bringing Hekhsher Tzedek to your community…a toolbox of education and organizing tactics

Hekhsher Tzedek is a new initiative to improve the working conditions, treatment of employees, environmental standards, and business practices in kosher food-producing businesses. By definition, kosher food is in compliance with Jewish dietary and ritual laws. This campaign will bring kosher food into compliance with Jewish ethical law and social justice values – allowing us to fulfill the ethical, ritual and dietary dimensions of kashrut. Hekhsher Tzedek will not come to full fruition until we, the Jewish community, can demonstrate that we will accept nothing less. In this workshop, participants will learn to use education and organizing tactics in their own communities, to make Hekhsher Tzedek a success.

Led by Morris Allen & Suzanne Bring at Food Conference 2008


Hazon commissioned Marcus to create a new work to debut at the Food Conference. You’re warmly invited to the World Premiere. The land was full of idolatry and ritual prostitution. One man came to spoil the fun: ELIJAH, first action hero. You’ve said his name. You’ve poured him wine. Now see him in the flesh. The battle is on, the day is short and Elijah is faced with the biggest problem of all – a weak king who is ruining the agricultural system and starving the country to the point of collapse. Only one person knows how to save the day…and make a prophet.

Led by Marcus Freed at Food Conference 2008

Jews on the Chocolate Trail: Historical and Halachic Questions

Jews have played a unique role in growing cacao, in the trade of cacao, and in the production of chocolate. What contributions did Jews historically make to the chocolate industry? What restrictions did Jews encounter in the chocolate trade? What do we learn about Jewish history from this intersection with chocolate? Why do we use chocolate gelt at Chanukah? Are there other Jewish ritual uses of chocolate? Which Jewish values relate to chocolate? Come lean and, of course, munch on delicious organic chocolate.

Led by Deborah Prinz at Food Conference 2008

Kneading, Taking & Giving: Challah Dough Making with Challah for Hunger

Make challah dough from scratch.  We’ll cover the technicalities of baking this bread, as well as its history and Jewish tradition.  Challah for Hunger volunteers will provide personal attention for participants.  Finish the process by braiding your loaves Friday morning.

Led by Eli Winkelman at Food Conference 2008

Listen to the Planet!  A Study of the Sh’ma that Puts the Earth at the Center

We are asked to recite twice daily two paragraphs from Deuteronomy and one from the book of Numbers, the passages are known collectively as “the Sh’ma.” Together this central liturgical recitation is understood as a form of re-covenanting, an affirmation rather than a prayer.   Surprisingly, in both clear and more subtle ways, the Sh’ma grounds the Jewish covenant with G!d in the earth and our relationship to it.  We will study the original text together in order to mine its deep environmental wisdoms.

Led by Steve Greenberg at Food Conference 2008

Pigs In Israel?!?

What does a pig know about noodles?” goes the Yiddish expression, possibly explaining why Israeli sausages are tasteless. The evolving role pork plays in Israeli culture and its history of pork laws offers an amusing and provocative look at Jewish culture in Israel today. The Jewish relationship to pigs culturally and historically has been riddled with contradictions, the ham sandwich being the ultimate line that Jews throughout history would or would not cross. Given this cultural baggage, what happens when a Jewish nation faces these issues on a larger scale? Can Israeli cuisine accommodate the Jewish character of the state and satisfy a democratic palette?

Led by Jeffrey Yoskowitz at Food Conference 2008

Practicing Sabbath Table Rites as a Kabbalist

Isaac Luria, the greatest Kabbalist of sixteenth-century Safed, began new rituals for the Sabbath, especially for the Friday night Sabbath table.  Based on traditions of the Zohar, the table became an occasion to welcome the Sabbath Bride and to bring about love between the Divine masculine and feminine.  In this session, we’ll learn about these motifs and the rites that they inspired. Why are a few drops of water added to the Kiddush wine?  What is the significance of having twelve loaves of challah instead of two? Learn how Jewish mystics transformed the experience of the Sabbath table through these rituals and consider their value for us today.

Led by Larry Fine at Food Conference 2008

Rav Kook’s Hazon (vision) on Whether or Not We Should Eat Meat

Should Jews be vegetarians?  The great 20th century Kabbalist Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook wrote a little known pamphlet in 1904 arguing that eating meat in Judaism is a necessary concession to human nature, but that we’d all be better off without it. In Rav Kook’s vision, the laws of kashrut are sparks of light shining backwards in time from a future era when we will recognize our interconnectedness with all of creation, in order to teach us now what that would be like.  Today, as we recognize that the way we get our food might just be endangering our life on the planet, maybe it’s time to realize that Rav Kook’s future vision has arrived.

Led by Yedidya Sinclair at Food Conference 2008

School on the farm?  Get Your Head Out of the Books and Get Your Hands Dirty with the New Wave of Jewish Farm-based Education

Jewish farm-based education is re-ritualizing Jewish farming and rapidly growing across the U.S. and Israel. Sefirot, Mishna and Havdala gardens are growing across the country. In this session you will be introduced to the Directors of Adamah and Kayam Farm and the co-director of the Jewish Farm School. Learn how to incorporate experimental Jewish education on the land. Hear from those who farm, according to the Jewish calendar and agricultural laws.

Led by Jakir Manela, Shamu Sadeh, Simcha Schwartz at Food Conference 2008

Shmita 101: What’s This Shmita Thing Everyone’s Talking About?

Six years you may sow your field…but in the seventh year the land shall have a Sabbath. This is an introductory session on the laws, values and implications of the Shmita (Sabbatical) Year, and how it can contribute to a culture of collective sustainability.  How does Shmita address issues of social inequity?  How is it observed in modern Israel?  Learn what the fuss is all about as we explore texts and sources about Shmita from the Torah and throughout Rabbinic literature.

Led by Nati Passow, Yigal Deutscher at Food Conference 2008

Shmita Project- Where will you be in 6 years?

The next Shmita year begins in 2014. Be part of the first open session on the Shmita Project, a joint venture of Hazon and the Jewish Farm School.  The Shmita Project is a public conversation about creating an ethical and sustainable food policy for the Jewish community and the world. Consider the principles of shmita through the lens of contemporary issues around agriculture, economics, public policy and more.  What does it mean to let your land lay fallow if you are not a farmer?  What does it mean to forgive all debts, release the bonded? Be a part of building the Shmita Project forward in creative and collaborative ways.

Led by Nati Passow, Rachel Kahn-Troster, Yedidya Sinclair at Food Conference 2008

What are the Laws of Kashrut?

There is a growing debate in the Jewish community over what the word kashrut means and should mean. Many Jews are confronting anew the relationship between their faith and their food. One of the primary issues at the center of the kashrut debate, is how much ethical and environmental concerns have to do with whether a product is kosher. Can a cow which has been fed hormones and antibiotics its whole life, penned into a tiny feedlot and ultimately slaughtered and processed by under-age, mistreated immigrant workers, still be technically kosher if it was slaughtered according to the details of Jewish law? For many traditional Jews, even those who are appalled by the animal rights and worker rights violations, the answer to this question is still ‘yes.’ For other Jews, traditionally minded among them, the definition of kashrut must be expanded to include ethical and environmental concerns. If it does not, kashrut becomes meaningless.  Hear from presenters who represent different perspectives on this hotly debated issue.

Led by Jacob Fine (moderator), Steve Greenberg, Seth Mandel, Ari Weiss, Morris Allen at Food Conference 2008

What Makes Wine Kosher?

When it comes to kashrut, there is perhaps no consumable that is more hotly debated and misunderstood as wine.  What makes wine kosher?  Is there a problem with non-Jews touching wine?  Is it true that kosher wine needs to be boiled?  These are just some of the questions that we will be exploring in this text-based session.  Wine will be served.

Led by Jacob Fine at Food Conference 2008

What’s for Dinner? Jewish Food Education

What are we eating?  Why? And with whom? And what does all this have to do with families or with Jewish education ?  (You might be surprised.)  Join us for an exploration of food and family. You will leave with some insights, some Big Jewish Ideas and some program ideas. This session is designed for Jewish educators (a term which includes parents, of course).

Led by Vicky Kelman at Food Conference 2008

Woven Together: Challah Dough Braiding

Experiment with braids and challah flavors (chocolate chip, peanut butter, and cinnamon raisin).  Use the dough that participants made yesterday, in Part One. Share your homemade challah with your Shabbat dinner table.

Led by Eli Winkelman at Food Conference 2008

“What would Moses Drive? From Canaan to Copenhagen

The consensus has been reached. 2,500 of the worlds leading climate scientists now agree that without major action, our planet’s ability to support life will rapidly diminish in coming years. How soon? How bad? What can we do? Together, we will explore the latest scientific data, survey Jewish wisdom on the subject, and reflect on how the Jewish community might play role in addressing what is being called by many the greatest social and environmental challenge of the 21st century.

Led by Adam Berman at Food Conference 2009

10 Principles of a Jewish Food Ethic

There is currently a groundswell of interest and activity across the Jewish community in the realm of food ethics.  Whereas the do’s and don’ts connected to Jewish eating has traditionally been narrowly defined by the rules of kosher slaughter, increasingly, many Jews are expanding their notions of ethical eating to include other Jewish values having to do with treatment of animals, worker rights and care for the environment. We will examine 10 principles in the Jewish tradition that are serving to inform an expansive vision of contemporary Jewish food ethics.

Led by Jacob Fine at Food Conference 2009

American Kosher: From Manischewitz to Tootsie Pops

The kosher laws were outlined in the Torah, but their application varies with time and place. This session looks at how kashrut has been practiced in North America and how it relates to the Jewish Food Movement, including kashrut basics, the boom in kosher food production, and the use of kasrut as both a political and spiritual tool.

Led by Noah Farkas, Sue Fishkoff at Food Conference 2009

Beyond Parsley: Tu Bishvat & Holiday Celebrations

Join us for a taste of Teva’s hands-on approach to Jewish environmental education, popular in congregational and community setting year-round. Participants will take home tools to teach Judaism’s earth and agriculturally-based celebrations to learners of any age. We will focus on Tu Bishvat curriculum for the birthday of the trees celebrated in late January; and then broaden our exploration into Teva’s core pedagogy with holiday curriculum ideas for many seasons.

Led by Laura Bellows at Food Conference 2009

Evolving Israeli Foodways: Culture, Ethnicity and Fusion Cuisine.

Israel is rich with food influences from around the world. From appropriation of Arab cuisine, to a reclamation of Sephardic food as well as the more recent influences of Ethiopian and Russian immigrants, what Israelis are eating is constantly a work in progress.  In this session, explore the shifting cultural landscape that makes Israel the dynamic culinary capital that it is.

Led by Joan Nathan at Food Conference 2009

Genetically Modified Food – Safe? Kosher?

It’s becoming practically unavoidable to eat genetically modified food today.  Corporate seed companies claim that GMOs will feed the world, protect the environment, and solve global climate change, yet organic farmers and foodies won’t touch the stuff.  In this session, food safety advocate Zelig Golden and Rabbi David Seidenberg explore new science that makes the safety and wisdom of GMOs suspect, age-old Jewish laws and ethics that put the Kashrut of GMOs into question.

Led by Zelig Golden, David Seidenberg at Food Conference 2009

How to: Tu B’Shvat

Jewish tradition includes a range of ways to celebrate our food and appreciate nature, with celebrations and special occasions throughout the year.  On Tu b’Shevat, we focus on the fruit of the tree.  Come experience a fun and effective Tu b’Shevat seder with fruit, grape juice, and Jewish concepts that relate to the environment.  You will also get tools and suggestions to help you plan your own for your friends, family, school or community!

Led by Jeff Levy, Evonne Marzouk at Food Conference 2009

Jewish Hospitality: The Slow and Storied Sacred Feast

Rabbi Dov Gartenberg has pioneered an approach to building community, fostering spirituality, and revitalizing synagogue life by concentrating on slow eating  table  experiences on Shabbat and Festivals and by raising Hachnasat Orchim (Jewish Practice of Hospitality) to a central place in congregations.   He will demonstrate his approach by sharing examples from his approach to Shabbat meals and unique festival table experiences for Hanukah and Erev Yom Kippur.

Led by Dov Gartenberg at Food Conference 2009

Mind, Body, Spirit:  The Paradox of Nourishment From No Food

Most of us have no problem getting access to plentiful and good food — so why do we sometimes opt to absain from eating? Join us as we explore the paradox of nourishment from no food from varied Jewish perspectives as fasting in our lives can be about expressing contemporary forms of an ancient tradition. Panelists will offer a sense of the history of Jewish fasting, explore the ways in which Jews have used fasting as a call for  for social change and investigate ideas of cleansing and purification of the self as a step toward purification and cleansing the world.

Led by Dorothy Richman (moderator), Seth Mandel, Ahud Selah, Julie Wolk at Food Conference 2009

Not A Master Cleanse:  Asara B’tevet & Fasting in Jewish Tradition

You know the joke — “What’s a Jewish Holiday?”  “They tried to kill us.  We won.  Let’s eat.”  If eating is so identified as Jewish, what about not eating?  We will explore texts from the Torah to Jonah, from Isaiah to the Talmud, to see if fasting is saintly or sinful-or both.  Learn about Asara B’Tevet (a fast day this Sunday) and the meaning it might have in a modern context.

Led by Steven Goldstein at Food Conference 2009

Scared Cows, Scared Plows: The Original Jewish Food Movement

The so-called American Jewish return to our agricultural roots actually began well before the new Jewish food movement.  This panel discussion will look at those people involved in Jewish agricultural experiences in the 20th century, relaying stories and putting this new Jewish food movement into its proper context.

Led by Sylvia Schwartz, Anna Hanau, Alex Wall, Scott Gerber at Food Conference 2009

Shmita Project: The Application of the Seven Year Goals

In this second Shmita Project session we will look at the framework of the seven year goals developed by Hazon in 2008 and learn how the Jewish Farm School is applying the model to a variety of its projects.  How can we design not only our land but also our organization in a way that reflects the long term sustainability that is promoted through the Shmita year?

Led by Nati Passow, Brooke Saias, Yigal Deutscher at Food Conference 2009

Show me the Money: the Economic Implications of the Sabbatical Year

In this Shmita Project session, we will review the basics of the Sabbatical (Shmita) Year and delve deeper into the econmic implications and how they might and how they might help us shift our contemporary economic system into one that is more just and sustainable.  Learning from the Slow Food Movement, we will learn about the Slow Money Movement from one of its founders and see how money can be a radical force for good.

Led by Nati Passow, Woody Tasch, Yigal Deutscher at Food Conference 2009

State of Knish Address, Chanukah-ish 5770

Ladies and Gentlemen, Hazoniks, food lovers, dignitaries, Jews: It is time we discuss the knish. It is not the stuff of the Macabees, nor is it the dish of choice for Israelis, but the knish occupies a special place in the hearts — and stomachs — of many a descendant of Sarah and Abraham. We will consider the first knish; the square and round varieties that came to prominence in post-war Brooklyn, and the knish-eating champions of the last century. And we will share our knish reminiscences.

Led by Laura Silver at Food Conference 2009

The Hunger Artist: Fasting as Body Cleansing

Moses fasts for forty days on Sinai, Esther and her maids fast to gain God’s favor at a moment of danger and Daniel fasts in preparation to return to Israel.  The Babylonian exiles fasted four times a year until they returned to Jerusalem and nearly 5 centuries later, Rabbi Zerah fasts to forget the Babylonian Talmud and Rabbi Akiva appears to fast in order to gain holy and demonic visions.  We will explore these and other contemporary thinkers on the experience, meaning and purpose of fasting.

Led by Steve Greenberg at Food Conference 2009

Eating With Values: Meat Consumption as a Spiritual Practice

The tension is so thick, you can cut it with a steak knife: on the one hand, meat contains many unhealthy chemicals, its mass production and consumption significantly contributes to global warming, and its production is associated with abuse of both animals and workers. On the other hand, meat is really delicious, healthy and can be part of a balanced ecosystem. Join us as we attempt to balance these conflicting views by discussing a conscious meat-eating practice based on traditional Jewish values and texts.

Led by Aaron Potek at Food Conference 2011

Elves! Gnomes! Fairies! and Shretelech?

Join this expedition for a slow- paced, pre-Shabbat hike in search of the kindly Shretelech, the Yiddish word for the little people.  We’ll explore the natural world through the eyes of children, hear stories of the magical Shretelech, and help them prepare for Shabbat.   Along the way we will introduce a few Shabbat prayers, songs and blessings that connect us with wonder.  Adults will learn how to reframe this walk as a contemplative nature hike and antidote to “nature-deficit disorder”.

Led by David Arfa at Food Conference 2011

Food, Sex and Money: Jewish Views of Consumption

What are you hungry for?  A range of Jewish texts will guide our conversation about all kinds of appetites, including those for food, sex and acquisition.  We’ll dive into Torah, Talmud, and texts by Mussar scholars Alton Brown and Charles Bukowski as we explore our personal Jewish views on consumption.

Led by Jordanna Flores at Food Conference 2011

Holy Eating: You’re Not Only What You Eat, but How You Eat

“They tried to kill us, we won, let’s eat.” The Jewish tradition of celebrating with food often leads to excess. The quip should read: “They tried to kill us, we won, let’s eat-with holiness.” Biblical, talmudic and chassidic sources provide the framework for how our Jewish tradition stresses not only eating kosher food but also eating with “God consciousness” or spiritual awareness.  To truly Eat Holy, we must also understand how the chemistry of hunger and our food current food system affect our food choices.  Practical strategies will be offered to promote holy and mindful eating.

Led by Aaron Flores, Robert Schwartz at Food Conference 2011

How Much is that Challah in the Window

Jewish tradition has much to say about the cost food.   Let’s learn together the history and philosophy that priests and rabbis have used to establish equitable and just food policy.   We’ll then consider if and how these values can be applied to our own eating habits.

Led by Noah Farkas at Food Conference 2011

Knish, Reconsidered: Memory, Mourning and Catalyst for Community

All hail the knish. The wrapped pastry represents eternal life, cultural survival and co-existence. Born in the Pale of Settlement, the stuffed dough rose to popularity on New York’s Lower East Side and Brooklyn’s Coney Island. It carries on as a cultural signifier and catalyst for community. Baked or fried, round or square, sweet or savory, the knish encapsulates memory and serves as a vehicle for stories. Please bring yours. I’ll tell how it led me to my roots in Knyszyn, Poland.

Led by Laura Silver at Food Conference 2011

Kosher Nation: the Good, the Bad, the Treyf

The new Jewish food movement didn’t invent Jewish ethical eating — that’s at the basis of the kosher system itself, although it’s not always put into action. What are the spiritual roots of traditional kashrut? What are the different ways American Jews have looked at Jewish dietary practice, from kosher-style to “eating out” to glatt beef? Through looking at the past, this session will help us develop our own spiritual practice of eating like a mensch. Plus, you’ll hear about amazing scandals.

Led by Sue Fishkoff at Food Conference 2011

Precious Water

The world increasingly faces a water crisis, and a lack of sufficient drinking water is recognized to be a leading cause of death in the world. Yet we are not using our water resources responsibility. Jewish tradition impresses upon us the importance of water, and provides wisdom about conservation and appreciation that can illuminate today’s challenges. These teachings also have special resonance around the high holidays and Sukkot.  Learn Jewish teachings about water, the modern challenges we face, and how you can share these lessons with your community this year.

Led by Evonne Marzouk at Food Conference 2011

A Time to Sow and a Time to Reap: The Jewish Calendar Cycle

In this class, we’ll look at the calendar of the year and explore how the agircultural rhythms of ancient Israel, the seasons, the holidays, and the cardinal points of the compass overlap to create a map for our daily lives.

Led by Simcha Schwartz at Food Conference 2010 East

Eating as Tikkun: Kabbalah, Eden and the Tree of Life

Eating was the first sin according to Torah. Kabbalah teaches that every act of eating can fix that sin and heal our connection to the Tree of Life. With a nod to Sarah Schneider’s small work “Eating as Tikkun,” we will explore some of the deep Chasidic and Kabbalistic ways of understanding eating, and look at how we can repair both the Kabbalistic and the evolutionary Tree of Life.

Led by Rabbi David Seidenberg at Food Conference 2010 East

Food Justice in the Torah: Two Models

The Torah gives us two different kinds of commands regarding “the poor, the widow and the orphan.” Harvest accidentally dropped should be left, and we should actively parcel off the corners of our field. What’s the difference between these two modes of giving, and how can we incorporate both into our food and monetary choices?

Led by Becca Weaver and Meira Soloff at Food Conference 2010 East

Food Renaissance in Israel

Israel is enjoying a second back-to-the-land movement, but this time it’s actually about the food (rather than about the politics).  Take a culinary tour of Israel that highlights inventive Israeli chefs, as well as the sustainable farmers and food producers whose products are not widely available in the US. Israel is a land of many flavors, and much more than just falafel and shawarma.

Led by Jeffrey Yoskowitz and Chef Michael Solomonov at Food Conference 2010 East

Is There Such Thing as a Compassionate Meat Eater?

Jewish law permits us to kill and eat animals, yet the Torah requires us to treat animals with the utmost sensitivity and compassion. Negotiating this balance is often difficult. Look at several texts regarding the relationship between G-d, humans and animals; analyze the potential conflict between the practice of kashrut and our most essential Jewish values; and explore the challenges to spiritually-based eating within the modern industrial food system.

Led by Marion Menzin at Food Conference 2010 East

Jews in Food: A Culinary History

For more than 2,000 years, Jews have brought culinary traditions with them and also adopted local dishes, modifying them to fit their dietary laws, lifestyle and tastes. Gil Marks will explore this phenomenon from the blatantly Jewish bagel and falafel, to items with less obvious Jewish roots including doughnuts and yogurt. He will also follow the mainstreaming of kosher from canned vegetarian baked beans (ultimately derived from Sephardic Sabbath stews) to more than 110,000 products under kosher supervision.

Led by Gil Marks at Food Conference 2010 East

Organic Torah: How to Think Like an Organic Farm

Underlying our agricultural woes and ecological crisis is the mode of thought that treats the earth, oceans,  animals, plants and even humans as if they were machines, running predictably, logically, like “clockwork.” This way of thinking has brought dramatic gains in the short run, but we’re now seeing  how forcing life into a straightjacket is a recipe for disaster.  Explore how Jewish tradition teaches us to think in a different way: in terms of webs of relationship, dynamic interactions and non-linear patterns.  It’s a way of thinking that is much more like an organic farm than a machine.

Led by Rabbi Natan Margolit at Food Conference 2010 East

Permaculture: Farming, Noah and the Third Way

Between romancing our agrarian past, and bemoaning the destruction of the plough, permaculture suggests a new way to grow food and to relate to the world around us. Explore biblical perspectives on agriculture and learn how permaculture principles can offer a new paradigm for the way we get shelter, food and fuel. Come and play with concepts and examples of ecological design that can guide you whether you have a farm or a window-box garden.

Led by Dr. Shamu Sadeh at Food Conference 2010 East

Small Hands, Big Minds: How to Embrace the New Jewish Food Movement with our Children

There is an incredible opportunity to excite our children about food, where it comes from and what’s Jewish about growing, preparing and eating. Hear from innovative environmental education programs that developed creative and engaging programs to integrate the sustainable food movement into the Jewish experience of young people.  Come learn more about these programs, and experience the models and lessons for yourself, and be inspired to bring these curricula and concepts home to your own schools, synagogues, preschools and families.

Led by Judith Belasco, Anna Herman, Vivian Lehrer, Abby Streusand, Rachel Jacoby Rosenfeild (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 East

The Body As Holy Writ and Holy “Rid” – Birkat Asher Yatsar

Is the way the human body rids itself of waste an example of holiness? According to Jewish tradition, it is an example of God’s presence within routine, or “normal mysticism” (Max Kaddushin). Explore the history and theology of the blessing recited after visiting the bathroom through the lens of its precedents in ancient and medieval rabbinic literature and explore the implications for the connections between body/mind/soul.

Led by Rabbi Jeffrey Hoffman at Food Conference 2010 East

Tu B’Shvat 305: Using the Holiday of the Trees to Start Conversations in Your Community

In the darkness of winter, the 15th of the month of Shvat brings the birthday of the trees.  At this session, join Hazon Executive Director Nigel Savage on a journey to explore the roots and branches of this remarkable holiday – from public policy in Ancient Israel to the birth of the Jewish Environmental Movement, and learn how Hazon can support you in hosting an outstanding Tu B’Shvat seder in your community.

Led by Nigel Savage at Food Conference 2010 East

2 Traditions, 1 Goal: How the Value of Food Justice in Judaism and Islam Enables Dialogue and Promotes Action

The notion of Tikkun Olam, of our responsibility to reapir the brokenness in the world, has anchored and shaped the Jewish community.  In studying texts from the  Jewish and Muslim traditions side by side, rabbinical student Ilana Schachter will explore the fact that Tikkun Olam, particularly regarding food justice issues, is a shared value in both communities.  This session will explore the potential that discussing food justice issues has in creating and developing interfaith communities, and shaping an interfaith vision of repair.

Led by Ilana Schachter at Food Conference 2010 West

Cycles of the Seasons: Reconnecting Our Agricultural and Spiritual Cycles to the Cycles of Nature

The Jewish calendar is deeply tuned to the cyclescycles of nature.  Join Zelig Golden of Wilderness Torah and Simcha Schwartz of Jewish Farm School to explore how the Jewish calendar is designed to synchronize our communal and spiritual lives with the cycles of rain and the food we grow.

Led by Zelig Golden, Simcha Shwartz at Food Conference 2010 West

Eating God: Reclaiming a Jewish Theology of a Sacred and Animate World

A natural world that presents itself to us as sacred and animate may not seem consistent with our understanding of Jewish monotheistic belief—it may seem pagan and, perhaps, heretical. However, we find within biblical and rabbinic literature many portrayals of a natural world imbued with Divinity where the distinction between “animate” and “inanimate” creations doesn’t exist.  Biblical monotheism is critiqued by some as having laid a theological foundation leading to our contemporary ecological crisis.  What is the relationship between our perception of Divinity and our treatment of the natural world?  What is the place of theology in the food movement?  How would the world look if we experienced the act of eating as our consuming God?

Led by Jacob Fine at Food Conference 2010 West

Exploring Rain from our Collective Hebrew Conciousness

Our cultural roots dig deep into the souls of an arid land, a land desperately dependent upon the seasonal rains to renew and continue her life cycles.  As a people of this land, rain is as important to our social ecology as it is to the natural ecology we share with the plants, animals, and soils.  As Israel suffers another winter of drought and, most recently, the burning of the Carmel forest, how can we come together and renew our relationship with rain?

Led by Yigal Deutscher at Food Conference 2010 West

Fit to Eat? Changing Paradigms of Kashrut

What does keeping kosher really mean to us today?  For some of us, it’s all about the hechsher (stamp of certification); for others it is about mindfulness of what we allow to enter our bodies; and more and more of us include environmental and ethical issues in our definitions of kashrut.  As synagogues and other Jewish institutions create and recreate their kashrut policies for the 21st century, how do factors other than traditional Torah values influence how we decide what is kosher and what is not?

Led by Elisheva Brenner, Sue Fishkoff, Joel Mosbacher, and Marc Soloway (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Jewish Food in Pop Culture

College professor, Hillel director, and food writer Ted Merwin will lead a discussion on the place of food in Jewish culture — film, TV, music and stand-up comedy. Among the clips that we will analyze are John Belushi’s “Samurai Deli” sketch from SNL, “The Larry David Sandwich” episode from Curb Your Enthusiasm, the infamous Katz’s Deli scene from “When Harry Met Sally,” the music of Mickey Katz and Allan Sherman, and the comedy of Jackie Mason and Jerry Seinfeld.

Led by Ted Merwin at Food Conference 2010 West

Meaty Tidbits and Other Fine Delicacies of the Torah

The original diet for humans in the Garden of Eden was vegan.  What has changed since then? How? In this text-based discussion, we will nosh on the appetizers of the written and oral traditiions surrounding meat-eating.  Join us as we explore how the Jewish tradition can help us construct our relationships with the animals we do or don’t eat.  Collect insights and become familiar with a sampling of text from Biblibcal and Rabbinic sources.

Led by Aliza Hertzmark at Food Conference 2010 West

Nourishing the House of the Soul: Jews, Food, and Healthy Eating

When people think about the New Jewish Food Movement, they think of Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) and grass-fed kosher meat, but not necessarily of ways to eat that nourish our bodies.  Join Nigel Savage, Executive Director of Hazon, for a conversation using texts from Hazon’s Food for Thought sourcebook.

Led by Nigel Savage at Food Conference 2010 West

Petaluma Chicken Ranchers: The Story of a Jewish Farm Community

The so-called American Jewish return to our agricultural roots actually began well before the new Jewish food movement.  At the beginning of the 20th century, Jewish families fled the pogroms and hardships of Eatsern Europe and traveled to California to become chicken farmers.  This session will expose participants to the rich history of chicken ranching in Petaluma during the last century.  Sylvia Schwartz and Lily Krulevitch will share their stories as a living testimonial to this time in our history.

Led by Lily Krulevitch, Sylvia Schwartz, Bonnie Burt (moderator) at Food Conference 2010 West

Repurposing the Shehechianu

The shehechianu is a popular and widely used Jewish blessing.  We say it when buying new clothes, starting a holiday, and eating the first fruits of the season.  In this session we will learn its origins and laws and discuss how we can use this blessing to reconnect us with the cycles of life and local food.  You will leave with tangible steps to bring increased awareness of the natural world and connection to the Earth into your life.

Led by Josh Shupack at Food Conference 2010 West

Shmita: Visions of a Just and Sustainable World

In this session, we will explore the laws and values of the Shmita year and use this framework to analyze contemporary issues of food justice and sustainability.  What foundation can Shmita help us create as we work to fix the broken food and economic systems?  What is the Jewish environmental movement doing to infuse our work with Shmita values as we look toward the next Shmita year?

Led by Nati Passow at Food Conference 2010 West

Tu B’Shvat: Trees, Torah and Mystical Wisdom

In the darkness of winter, the 15th of the month of Shvat brings the birthday of the trees.  At this session, join Hazon Executive Direct Nigel Savage and Bay Area Director Deborah Newbrun on a journey through time and space to explore the roots and branches of this remarkable holiday – from public policy in Ancient Israel to the birth of the Jewish Environmental Movement.

Led by Deb Newbrun, Nigel Savage at Food Conference 2010 West

What’s a Stolen Lulav Got To Do With Fair Trade Coffee? (i.e. What’s so Jewish about the Jewish Food Movement)

What are the Jewish concepts that animate and enrich our lives as Jews, and how do they fit into the contemporary food movement?  We will be exploring these central categories through their Jewish lens: the treatment of the land, animals and human beings involved in food production, different definitions of “kosher,” values of ethical consumerism, and care for the body.

Led by Dara Frimmer, Lizzi Heydemann at Food Conference 2010 West

All Around Food for Thought in 60 minutes

Rabbinical Student Scholarship Recipients are invited to this special session with Nigel Savage to explore Hazon’s “Food for Thought” sourcebook.  Nigel, the co-author of this popular sourcebook, will examine how this book is being used in Jewish food education with all ages around the country.

Led by Nigel Savage

Beit Midrash/House of Learning

Come study together and in chevruta (pairs) from Hazon’s Food for Thought adult education curriculum.  Three concurrent sessions are offered highlighting different sections of the curriculum.  The Food for Thought sourcebook will be provided to all participants during this session.

Led by

Beit Midrash/House of Learning

Kashrut: What is “fit” to eat?

Led by Avi Finegold

Beit Midrash/House of Learning


Led by Nigel Savage

Beit Midrash/House of Learning

Food and Ethics

Led by Anna Stevenson

Blessing Bee:   Understanding Jewish Brachot

Didn’t go to Jewish Day School? Join us for some interactive study on traditional Jewish blessing language and put your learning into action in a playful competition. Are you an accomplished Jewish blesser? Join us for the bee and be some lucky team’s ringer.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Can America be the Promised Land?

The new environmental movement is calling people to restore the earth by reconnecting deeply to the soils from which they are nurtured.   It was a similar romantic spirit allied with nationalism that motivated many Jews of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries to become Zionists.   A return to the land in psychological, physical, social and religious ways was central to A. D. Gordon and other proto-agrarian thinkers.  However, for those of us who live in the diaspora, a new earth-centeredness is growing that it not tied to Zion in particular, but is renewing its ties to the land everywhere.  Is environmentalism in the global age post-Zionist?   As Jews, can we return to the earth anywhere or is our only home-land, Zion?

Led by Steve Greenberg

Consumerism and the Jewish Ethic of Restraint

We live in an extremely consumer-oriented society.  In our society, people are often thought of not as human beings, but as “consumers”.  The Jewish tradition has a completely different approach to living and human life, which may provide the antidote to our consumer passions and help our students live happier and more sustainable lives.  Learn what Jewish tradition has to say about our wants, our needs, our purchases, and what it really means to be human.

Led by Evonne Marzouk

Environmentalism v. Animal Rights: Ramban v. Rambam

Environmentalists, who focus on the well-being of whole ecosystems, and animal rights activists, who are concerned with the well-being of individual animals, don’t always see eye-to-eye. Amazingly, the same division existed between Maimonides and Nachmanides. We will study their interpretation of the mitzvah of “shiluach hakan” (the commandment to send the mother bird away if you want the eggs), where they both discuss these questions.  Their debate has far-reaching political, spiritual and even theological consequences. We will apply what we learn to issues in the world and in the Jewish environmental community.

Led by David Seidenberg

Feeding the Living/Dead

We don’t feed idols, but what about ancestors? After outlawing her trade, what was King Saul doing with the female ghost medium (ba-alat ov) in En-dor? To find the answers, we will be exploring one of the strangest meals in the Bible. Our text, I Samuel 28, will be provided in Hebrew and English.

Led by Rebecca Joseph

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

In 2004, Hazon launched a multi-week beit midrash – learning community – looking at the relationship between Jewish tradition and contemporary food issues. In 2007, we published the first edition of Food For Thought – a 130-page sourcebook that combines traditional and contemporary texts and a raft of questions to prompt us all to think more deeply about these issues. At this time on Shabbat morning – when Jewish people around the world traditionally learn Torah – we’re excited to offer you an incredible intellectual smorgasbord: 11 different teachers, each introducing you to different parts of Food For Thought. (10 will focus on specific topics and parts of the book; the 11th, with Nadya and Anna, will focus on the practicalities of hosting a great Shabbat meal about food and Jewish tradition, with ideas of texts to bring in and how to organize the meal itself.) Our hope is to whet your appetite and to give you recipes of learning and conversation that you can take back to your families, friends and communities. And – yes – we will give each of you a copy to take home…

Led by

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Jews, Food and Place: A Complicated Relationship

Led by Steve Greenberg

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Birkat Hamazon: The Grace after Meals

Led by Yedidya Sinclair

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Paths to Mindfulness

Led by Chai Levy

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Authentic Jewish Food

Led by Dorothy Richman

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Eating our Words

Led by Alexander Davis

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Agriculture and Tzedakah in the Torah

Led by Shamu Sadeh

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

The Blessings We Say

Led by Hyim Shafner

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Welcoming Guests

Led by Joel Hecker

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Health, Bodies, and Nourishment

Led by Catharine Clark

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

Connection to Place:The Good Land

Led by Evan Wolkenstein

Food for Thought, Hazon’s sourcebook on Jews Food and Contemporary Life

A recipe for using Food for Thought while hosting a Shabbat meal with great food and great community

Led by Nadya Strizhevskaya & Anna Stevenson

Food Preparation and the Seven Fat Cows

Does the Torah teach us anything about food and dealing with economic (or other) emergencies?    How did Joseph, dreamer and slave, become Egypt’s grocer?  How did he and Pharoah, a sleepless king, not only survive an economic and food crisis, but prosper?   What can we learn from this text and apply it to our homes and lives?   This will be an interactive textual study, meant to stimulate thought and action.

Led by Rob Bonem

Jewish ethics and food”The proprietor is warned by the Torah”: Jewish ethics and food production production

Food is central to Judaism, and the Jewish tradition requires more than just ritual. Animal welfare, worker concerns and environmental impact have always been Jewish values. Learn and discuss the traditional sources underlying these priorities.  Texts will be provided in Hebrew and English, and no experience with text study necessary.

Led by Ashira Konigsburg

The Bread Cycle of the Jewish Year

From matzah to challah, Jews are focused on food. In Jewish tradition, food is sacred. What matters to Jews is not only what to eat, but when to eat it. We will explore the origins of Jewish time in the agricultural rhythms of nature in the land of Israel by taking a closer look at the “bread cycle” (along with some other foods) of the holidays.

Led by Ron Feldman

The Dining Table as a Holy Place

In Judaism, the table has been compared to the altar of the Temple and is considered a place where God can dwell. We will study biblical and rabbinic sources that describe how the dining table can become a holy place, and how to apply these teachings to our own tables when we sit down to eat.

Led by Chai Levy

The Emerging Field of Jewish Food Education

Jewish educators of all types of students are invited to learn about Min Ha’Aretz, the program Hazon has created to teach students and families about food and Jewish tradition. This session will provide an overview of Min Ha’Aretz, with an introduction to the program’s special blend of text study and hands-on activities. See how Min Ha’Aretz promotes family learning and the curricular integration of Judaic and general studies.

Led by Natasha Aronson & Mick Fine

What the Forbidden Fruit tells us about civilization

Adam and Eve ate the apple, right? Wrong! Genesis speaks only of “the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil” – pri etz hada’at – and that vagueness has spurred the imagination of commentators and artists for generations. Food and eating, forbidden and permitted, are key to understanding the Creation stories.  The Forbidden Fruit, as  anthropologist Claude Levi Strauss said, is “good to think with” –about how we understand what it means to be human, and our place in Creation in general. We will study some amazing midrashim on the topic, with surprising suggestions for just what it was they were supposed to have eaten, and explore what this means for our own cultural criticism.

Led by Jeremy Benstein

Health and Mindfulness

According to the World Health Organization, health is a “state of complete physical, mental, and social wellbeing.” How do various Jewish perspectives add to our understanding of health? How can we better negotiate “healthy choices” among the myriad of information about health and nutrition that is thrown at us every day? Sessions in this track will guide participants in discovering new ways of thinking about the foods we choose to put in our bodies from physical, social, mental and spiritual health perspectives.

Kundalini Yoga

Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan is a practice combining posture, breath, movement and meditation. Through safe and ancient techniques you will feel stronger, healthier and radiant and possibly more attuned with your true self

Led by Nigel Austin at Food Conference 2006

Prayer: FULL

Explore the meaning of the conference theme “v’achlta v’savata u’veirachta-you shall eat, and be satisfied, and bless” and enhance your participation through study of Birkat HaMazon, the prayer of thanksgiving that follows a full meal. After uncovering the theology and structure of today’s standard text, we will consider ways of working with the existing language andalternative versions that motivate us to fulfill this mitzvah wherever we are eating.

Led by Rabbi Rebecca Joseph at Food Conference 2006

Body Image Panel

We live in a society where obesity and anorexia are able to co-exist along with ever changing standards of beauty.  How do we cultivate a healthy sense our bodies and our selves? What role can Judaism play in fostering a healthy body image?

Led by Sharon Lebewohl (moderator), Robert Schwartz, Sara Jamison at Food Conference 2007

Eat Local Longer

Vegetables are only good for you if they’re fresh, right? Not so! Making fermented foods such as pickles and sauerkraut using the traditional method of lacto-fermentation not only preserves your vegetables so that you can eat local longer, it also makes the nutrients more bioavailable (in other words, it’s really good for you).  Anyone can practice lacto-fermentation in a home kitchen.  In this session we will learn the basics of lacto-fermentation, as well as discussing other ways to extend your harvest through the winter months.  We’ll also do some taste tests and sample a variety of products from the Adamah farm.

Led by Josh Rosenstein at Food Conference 2007

Incorporating Real Food into Your Real Life

Warm up with stew and other delicious winter fare.This cooking demonstration and discussion will explore the realities of people’s busy lifestyles with a focus on how to realistically incorporate nourishing whole foods into their daily routines.

Led by Linda Lantos at Food Conference 2007

The Transformational Power of Nourishment

Nourishment has the potential to awaken, to heal and to empower us.In these turbulent and transformational times, we need flexibility and strength to manifest vision for the many new directions life is now presenting. How do we remain firmly rooted and flexible at the same time? Can we eliminate what is no longer necessary in our lives and embrace the new directions with lightness of being and clarity of heart? This session will cover how we need to nourish ourselves fully to align with our deeper, natural rhythms, and to support our soul’s vision.

Led by Halé Sofia Schatz at Food Conference 2007


Bibliyoga is a system for experiencing spiritual wisdom through our body – it’s physical, engaging and powerful. This session will draw on the qualities of water and how it can unlock some powerful spiritual secrets. We’ll work through a slower yoga sequence, and move into some deep R&R! Bibliyoga workshops are open to all levels of experience. Wear loose clothes, bring an open mind and get ready to stretch.

Led by Marcus Freed at Food Conference 2008

Breast is Best

Human breast milk is the perfect food for babies. It has all the right ingredients in just the right amounts. It has special antibodies that help protect infants from colds, ear infections and many diseases and illness. Research show that breastfed babies even have higher IQ’s. So why doesn’t everyone breastfeed their babies? In this workshop moms-to-be and new mothers will have the opportunity to network, brainstorm and explore the motherly art of breastfeeding.

Led by Sue Carson at Food Conference 2008

Groovin’ With G!d

Join Adam Berman and the Adamah Alumni for a morning prayer session unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Traditional shacharit chants, poetry from mystics of other faith traditions, silence, drumming and guitar will take you on an deep exploration of your inner world and open your heart to the gorgeousness of your life. Bring a sweater and your beach clothing in case we talk a walk.

Led by Adam Berman and the Adamahniks at Food Conference 2008

Jewishly Gluten-free

Gluten may be your nemesis, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t indulge in delicious Jewish foods that traditionally contain the dreaded protein.  What if you didn’t have to skip the Shabbos challah or Bubbe’s rugelach?  In this workshop, learn simple guidelines and explore easy recipe conversions for those with wheat/gluten intolerances and allergies. Discover easy ways to create deliciously gluten-free Jewish and kosher style foods.  This session is also great for families with multiple allergy-issues and includes fast and easy kid friendly recipes.  Noshes include: Honeyed Apple Cake, Vegan Berry Blintzes, Sweet & Seeded Challah Rolls, and Walnut-Hemp Seed Kneydelach.  Great for Gluten-Free Foodies…and those who share meals with them!

Led by Claire Cohen at Food Conference 2008

Living Latkes: Live Food with a Jewish Twist

During this Festival of Lights, the Maccabean miracle inspires this session on the art of raw food preparation, made to be accessible, delicious, and life-affirming. Explore live foods through the prism of our own culinary traditions as we traverse the many dimensions of Jewish food culture, from spiritual to nutritional. Gain a basic understanding of the health benefits of raw food within the context of preparing Jewish holiday cuisine. Come ready to playfully re-form your Jewish pancakes and palates in this hands-on interactive workshop.

Led by Alex Sharone at Food Conference 2008

Our Health: The Role of Manufactured and Highly Processed Foods

What is the role that food plays in our health? Dr. Shetreat-Klein will discuss the ways that food has changed from our traditional whole foods diet and how treacherous it has become to feed our children and ourselves even with the best of intentions.  Dr.Pelavin will describe how highly-processed foods are linked to pediatric and adult obesity, the epidemiology of obesity (including in the Jewish population), and how obesity can be successfully tackled by replacing or eliminating certain highly processed foods in their diet.

Led by Paul Pelavin & Maya Shetreat-Klein at Food Conference 2008

Plant Power – How to Eat More Plants

As Reb Michael Pollan wrote, “Eat Food. Mostly Plants. Not too much.” What are the top ten plants you should have in your diet? Learn why and how to eat more plants.  We will utlilize exciting, satisfying, and easy methods to incorporate plant foods.  Find practical ways to cook the best plant foods.  The workshop will include a cooking demo for a Lentil Stir Fry over Quinoa.  Yum!

Led by Chana Citron at Food Conference 2008

Quick, Easy and Tasty: Healthy Snacks for Kids

Busy families sometimes have trouble fitting in three healthy meals each day. Like it or not, snacking has become an important contributor to daily food intake for children. Whether eaten on the go or at home after school, healthy snacks can be easy and quick to put together, and offer important nutrients and energy in each delicious bite.  Learn how you can offer snacks that are every bit as healthful as the meals you serve, including how to make healthy and delicious (brown) Rice Crispy Treats.

Led by Chana Citron at Food Conference 2008

Eating Disorders and Body Image

A rabbi, a psychiatrist and an author walk into a food conference…to talk about body image, eating issues and eating disorders. Join Rabbi Dara Frimmer, Dr. Caryn Bernstein, and the author of “Hungry: A Mother and Daughter Fight Anorexia,” Sheila Himmel, for a discussion about our bodies, our lives, and our Jewish identities. Presenters will reflect on their unique experiences in practice and pulpit, and invite participants to share their stories.

Led by Dara Frimmer, Caryn Bernstein, Sheila Himmel at Food Conference 2009

Eating Vegan in the Garden of Eden: A Guide for the Gastronomically Confused Today

Jews are fortunate that our dietary history begins, “See I give you every seed herb, and green thing to eat.” Eating vegan works in this age of Global Warming.   Roberta Kalechofsky will discuss the history of vegetarian Judiasim throughout the ages. You will learn that kosher meat is not as clean as we have always been taught. What constitutes “kosher” is becoming more complex.  Roberta Schiff will focus on how we can choose and prepare healthful food that respects Jewish tradition and does not cause harm to animals and degrade our planet. We can return to the diet of Eden, reworked for our time.

Led by Roberta Schiff, Roberta Kalchofsky at Food Conference 2009

Gluten FREEdom

In this session, we will “shop at the Shuk” to find inspiration in traditional Israeli foods that are, by nature, gluten free, healthy, and delicious.  We will nosh on samples, kvetch about our struggles with flour, and share our gluten free trials and tribulations while learning new strategies and recipes for gluten-free success.  We will also discuss the fabulous food options for the remainder of the conference…here’s to gluten freedom!

Led by Claire Cohen at Food Conference 2009

Jewish Perspectives on Vegetarianism

Join us for an interactive roundtable discussion that explores the many dimensions of a vegetarian diet and way of life. Hear perspectives of people who prosper on a plant-based diet and their how their choices for health, ethical, environmental, and spiritual reasons are also rooted in Judaism.  Prevailing myths and misconceptions will be addressed so that you become more aware of the positive benefits and blessings of choosing a vegetarian lifestyle that reflects your deepest Jewish values.

Led by Alex Sharone (moderator) , Denise Garbinski, Claire Cohen, Michael Bedar at Food Conference 2009

Oh Baby: Healthy Eating in the Childbearing Years

The list of what a woman should and shouldn’t eat during pregnancy and childbearing years can be confusing and overwhelming. Learn about nutrition and holistic health specifically to meet the special needs of a pregnant woman as she progresses through the stages of this journey, the needs of a birthing woman and the needs of a postpartum mom.

Led by Danielle Gutshall at Food Conference 2009

Ride to Eat-Eat to Ride

Learn the diet principles of professional athletes to enhance your wellness and exercise routine.  Exercise physiologist Dave Liotta will debunk common myths about exercise and nutrition and provide strategies for using food and hydration as part of an optimal workout and wellness program.  Hazon Ride Staff will also be present to discuss how Hazon considers nutrition and heath as well as environmental impact in the development of their bike rides.  Come with questions and join us to enjoy this interactive and informative workshop.

Led by David Liotta and Hazon Ride Staff at Food Conference 2009

Tales from the Coop: an ancient ritual in a modern context

This discussion will focus on adapating the ancient process of ritual slaughter to a modern context.  All the panelists were involved with slaughtering, processing, organizing, the pre-conference Chicken Shechita (slaughter) at Green Oaks Creek Farm.

Led by Roger Studley (moderator), Caleb Barron, Seth Mandel, Naf Hanau at Food Conference 2009

Thinking Outside the (Lunch) Box

Are you worried about what your kids are eating in the school cafeteria?  Do you feel frustrated or intimidated by the idea of packing a nutritious school lunch every day? Join us for an informative session for those who struggle with the daily grind of preparing lunch for our loved ones.

Led by Maya Shetreat-Klein, Julie Negrin at Food Conference 2009

You are what you eat: Eating Raw Foods

Join us for an honest look at the vast health and healing properties living foods provide, as well as the scientific, spiritual and religious foundations for embracing such a way of life.  We will also review common myths and missteps and share delicious, deeply nourishing recipes so that you leave with simple next steps to integrate living foods into your life.  If you are what you eat, then this live-food workshop is for you.  Find out if there is something special to this ancient way of eating food in its natural, whole, living state, just like the rest of the creatures on this earth do.

Led by Alex Sharone, Michael Bader at Food Conference 2009

Brainmending: How to Change Your Brain with what You Eat

People say that food is information that you give to your body.  Some food is nurturing and restorative, and other food is depleting.  We know we love delicious, healthy food.  But how can your love of farm-fresh, organic food change how your actual genetics are expressed and affect your lifelong health?  Learn why foods that you enjoy can enhance brain function both in children and adults- from mood to concentration to ability to focus to overall wellness.

Led by Maya Shetreat-Klein at Food Conference 2011

Delete the Wheat: What’s a Person to Eat?

Not so sure that wheat agrees with you?  You’re not alone.  Increasing numbers of people suffer from celiac disease, gluten sensitivity and wheat allergies.  This session will differentiate between these conditions, and will share tips for gluten-free living, dining and traveling.  Learning how to live gluten-free, even adapting Jewish traditional foods, can be challenging but it’s easier than you think: come learn how to take care of yourself and your tummy, wheat-free!

Led by Nadine Braunstein at Food Conference 2011

Good Food: Promoting Health and Preventing Illness at the Dinner Table

This session will explore a novel approach to illness: preventing it in the first place!  These doctors are challenging medical conventions by advocating for plant-based and meatless diets, educating their colleagues and their patients about food insecurity and access, and redefining health: for individuals, communities and the planet.

Led by Nadine Braunstein, Alicia Cohen, Rachel Friedman, Ron Weiss (moderator) at Food Conference 2011

Mindful Eating for Shabbat

Mindfulness is the practice of being aware of thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations in the present moment, without judgment.  By slowing down, we can re-connect to ourselves and what is really important.  This workshop will provide practical ways of integrating mindfulness into the ritual of Shabbat through foundations in mindfulness, mindful eating, hunger awareness, mindful choice around food, and cultivating inner wisdom.

Led by Carley Hauck at Food Conference 2011

Qi Gong

Join us for this Chinese meditative practice using slow, graceful movements and controlled breathing techniques to promote the circulation of qi within the human body and enhance your health.

Led by Adam Berman at Food Conference 2011

Women’s Health  Through the Years

Please join us to discuss women’s wellness and nutrition at lifecycle stages of pregnancy, birth, and lactation.  We will explore how to optimize health with holistic nutrition including medicinal herbs, lifestyle choices and our relationship to our Judaism.

Led by Juliet Glaser, Rachel Shapiro at Food Conference 2011

Yearning, Indulging, Emerging: The Journey of our Food from Desire to Defecation

Traditional Jewish blessings describe the spiritual and physical path of our food from craving to tasting to digesting. The amazing liturgy of appreciation and wonder includes blessings before and after food, as well as a powerful blessing recited after processing and eliminating waste.  We will explore some of these brachot (blessings) along with classical interpretations and contemporary re-readings to depict a narrative of our relationship with food, the body and the soul.

Led by Rachel Shapiro, Marc Soloway at Food Conference 2011

From Counting Calories to Consumer Consciousness: Redefining the Role of Nutrition in the Food Movement

With so much conflicting information circulating about food and health, eating has become such a complicated matter that a recent study showed many Americans would rather swallow an inexpensive nutrient pill than choose what to eat. Foodies increasingly criticize the field of nutrition for reducing food to calories and nutrients, but with rising concerns about obesity and diabetes, nutrition can play an important role bridging public health and the various factions of the food movement.  This session will explore the shifting paradigm of nutrition with examples of ways that it can inform not only what we eat, but how we eat.  As we delve into approaches for conscious eating, learn how nutrition is more relevant than ever before.

Led by Rebecca Finkel at Food Conference 2010 West

Mindful Money

We often assume that we know what money is.  But do we? And what does money mean to us as individuals, family members, participants in our local communities, and citizens of the world at large? In this discussion group, we will brainstrom about the nature of money and how it relates to food systems and environmental sustainability.  We will also examine how the concepts of “money” and “resources” relate to each other, and how to relate more mindfully to money itself.

Led by Madeleine Lansky at Food Conference 2010 West

Kids and Family Programming

These sessions were developed for kids and family programming at the Food Conference.


Remy is a young rat in the French countryside who arrives in Paris, only to find out that his cooking idol is dead. When he makes an unusual alliance with a restaurant’s new garbage boy, the culinary and personal adventures begin despite Remy’s family’s skepticism and the rat-hating world of humans.

Led by Kids & Family Film at Food Conference 2008

Avocado, carrot, tomato – oh my!: Raw Food Fun in the Shabbat kitchen

Join our expert chefs in the Teva kitchen for some RAW FOODS fun!  Learn quick & easy techniques for concocting Shabbat-friendly snacks – then join in the tasting.  All dishes will be served with a side of stories from our own Shabbat kitchens.  All ages & parents welcome; Teens especially encouraged to attend.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Bread from the Earth: Hamotzie Workshop’

Our first Challah-making session starts with the wheat!  When we say “Hamotzei Lechem Min Ha’aretz” we are recognizing our role as partners with G!d in creation: together we bring forth bread from the Earth.  For ages 6 – 12.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Breads and Braids

Prepare for Shabbat with challah making and a trip to Freedman’s cob oven for baking.  Yum! Open to kids of all ages; children ages 4 and under need to be accompanied by an adult.

Led by Julie Negrin

Caring for the Coolest Machine You’ll Ever Own

After embarking on an exciting scavenger hunt, families are welcome to come learn about Ellen Sabin’s “The Healthy Body Book.” This great resource will help your kids grow with character, learn about their amazing body and how to keep it healthy and strong.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Children grades 3-6: Welcome Gefen to Camp Teva!

Become a part of Camp Teva’s Gefen group with icebreaker games, a chance to make seed necklaces, and time to decorate our space together. Parents are encouraged to join so they can become familiar with the Teva educators and the space Camp Teva will be taking place in.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Children grades K-3: Welcome Zeytim to Camp Teva!

Camp Teva begins with some fun games and ways to get to know each other. Parents are encouraged to join so they can become familiar with the Teva educators and the space Camp Teva will be taking place in.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Climate Change Bus Tour (kids and families)

Kids groups will be able to tour and interact with the bus and experience some of the programming from the cross-county tour

Led by

Family Service and Shabbat stories

This Family service will start with a story while kids and parents arrive. Prayer time will begin around 9:15 followed by a story telling workshop and adventure in creation. Please bring outdoor layers, shoes, and lots of energy! Fun for the whole family.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Fast world, Fast Food and Jewish Wisdom

Consider the food challenges faced by youth in a fast-paced, fast-food world.  What we can do to address those challenges and live a strong, healthy life? Share experiences from your own life and learn how you can help build a healthy sustainable world for all.  Ages 9 and up.

Led by Teva Educators

Feeding Our Feathered Friends

What role do birds play in providing food for people? Learn about our feathered friends and why people aren’t the only ones out there who need food this winter.  Make and decorate a bird feeder out of re-used materials to take home and to share with the birds at at Isaballa Freedman. All ages welcome; children under 5 must be accompanied by an adult.

Led by Teva Educators

Feel Your Roots

If you could be a plant, what type of plant are you? What does it feel like to be a plant?  Explore the plant world through meditation and creative movement,  close your eyes and experience the plant’s journey from seed to flower.  Kids 6 and up.

Led by Teva Educators

Find-it-Yourself:  Wild Food from Nature

Adventure around the beautiful lands of  Isabella Freedman to collect acorns and learn about wild edible plants with Teva experts.  Learn brachot and wilderness awareness skills.  Enjoy some free food from nature.  All ages are welcome.  Outdoor dress attire required.

Led by Teva Educators

Fire Food

Join us in our sacred space to cook, bless and enjoy wild edible teas, roasted root veggies, and pita made from acorn flour, all from ingredients the kids have learned about and harvested themselves.  This is the closing ceremony for Kids and Family programming. Weather permitting, this session will include time outdoors, please dress appropriately. All encouraged and welcome to attend!

Led by Teva Educators

FIRE FOOD Round-Robin: An Outdoor Feast & Festival Made with Love by the Kids & Teens.

SOUP: Join us for a soup extravaganza as we cook up seasonal veggies in a delicious fire pit stew, made in Teva’s dutch oven! BREAD: Ha’motzie workshop experts share their skills: Join us to make gooey, sweet or savory “bread-on-a-stick”. BOOKS: A book full ‘o ideas: Decorate and take home a recipe collector – and start it off with recipes from our weekend together!  SAND BOX SEARCH: Preschool, Search through our sand box and see how many popcorn kernels (and other surprises) you can find!  We’ll wash the kernels then pop them over the fire as part of our closing ceremony.  SAND SCULPTURE: Try your hand at the sand & seaweed sculpture competition at the Sand Pit!  All conference participants are encouraged to stop by, pitch in, and enjoy our bounty.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Food Adventurers: A kid-directed Play

Love to be dramatic?  Join the Teva educators to create a food-tastic PLAY to be performed for the community on Saturday evening.  Ages 7-12 & teens welcome.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Food Chanukiot

Let’ s make Chanukah creative!  Create a food Chanukiot (Menorah) to light tonight and start decorations and a mural for our space!  All ages welcome.

Led by Teva Educators

Food Routes Activity & Discussion, for Teens & Tweens

Fast Food/Fast World: Re-thinking our Food.  What are the challenges of being a teen/kid in a fast-paced, fast-food world?  What role does media play in our food choices?  If you were creating it anew, what would your food system look like?  What would you keep or change?  And how can we “bring home” those ideas to stay healthy and energized in a fast-paced world? Followed by a teen Shabbat night stroll on the beach as weather permits.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Gefen: Avocado, carrot, tomato – oh my!

Join our expert chefs in the Teva kitchen to learn quick & easy techniques for concocting Shabbat-friendly foods – then join in the tasting!  All dishes will be served with a side of stories from our own Shabbat kitchens.  Teva educator or volunteer available to read books or play ball outside with kids who opt out.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Gefen: Head to the beach for Eitz Adamah relay & Hamotzie Workshop Part 2

Head to the beach for the Eitz-Adamah relay and appreciate the ocean together with a bracha.  Then, join us for the continuation of our Challah making workshop – from wheat to Shabbat dinner!

Led by Teva Learning Center

Gefen: Mandible Theater Players con’t OR frisbee on the beach

Love to be dramatic? Come create a food-tastic play to be performed for the community.  Whether you like being center stage, or setting the scene for magic to happen — join us for this Gefen-only Food Conference tradition.  If acting isn’t your thing, come play frisbee and other fun games on the beach.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Gefen: Shabbat Candle Making & Hamotzei workshop Part 1

Kids will learn how to make and decorate beautiful beeswax candles for Shabbat and then take part in the Hamotzei workshop, Part 1. Our first Challah- making session starts with wheat! When we say “Hamotzei Lechem Min Ha’aretz” we are recognizing our role as partners in G!d’s creation: Bringing forth bread from the Earth.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Gefen: Solar Chow

Become a chef by building your own pizza box solar oven to take home. Then explore the solar & energy power of seeds in the context of breishit by making your own sprouting jar to take home to grow simple wild sprouts.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Gefen: Weaving & Breading: Hamotzie Workshop, Part 3

Hamotzie Workshop Part 3: Weave and braid your challah while learning about bread and blessings. Prepare to participate in Camp Teva Presents: Mandible Theater Players with theater games and fun.

Led by

Groovin Shabbat Cooking

It’s Saturday, we’re hungry and we are observing Shabbat.   What kinds of food can we make on Shabbat?   Join us to make yummy, Shabbat-friendly snacks.  Open to kids 9 and up.

Led by Teva Educators

Make Way For Seedlings

Make your own recycled seed paper! Plan your garden for next year by storing vegetable seeds & wild edibles in homemade paper. Take your paper home to plant in the spring! Amalia Haas will lead us in a discussion about Jewish Family Gardening, and guide us to set intentions for the coming year! Ages 6 and up. Teens and parents especially encouraged to attend.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Make Way for Seedlings: Paper Making

Learn about seed saving including the storage of vegetable seeds & wild edibles in homemade paper.  Make your own seed saving paper filled with seeds from this year’s harvest. Plant your paper in the spring and watch it grow.  The first half of this program start in the Greenhouse and the second half will be outside.  For ages 7 years and up.

Led by Teva Educators

Make Way for the Orchestra (Another Reason to LOVE Veggies)

Calling all musicians, artists, circus clowns, and veggie lovers!  We will be using raw vegetable materials to create a musical and rhythmic performance for Saturday night.  Join the band!  Ages 8 and up. Instrument making, practice & composing of our celebratory orchestra.  Followed by a facilitated discussion of “What next?” and keeping the whole system in mind by reducing our food waste, planning for soup, and intro to compost.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Min Ha’Aretz in Action: Live a Lesson

Min Ha’Aretz is an amazing Hazon curriculum to use with students in grades 5 – 8. This session is designed for educators in all areas of Jewish education—day school, congregational, and informal settings.  Participants will experience the Min Ha’Aretz curriculum as we complete a lesson together.  This session will review curriculum implementation strategies, hevruta-style learning, and how to teach about food and Jewish tradition in your educational setting.

Led by Mick Fine

Movement and Music for Seedlings

Come stretch like a cat, stalk like a fox, slither like a snake, and sprout like a sunflower, as we celebrate the rhythm, song and movements of ma’aseh bereshit (all of G!d’s creation).  What is food and where does it come from?  Why do we, and all life, eat?  How can we say “thank you” for our food and how might other critters sing praise?  Preschool – age 6.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Movement and Music for Seedlings

What does it feel like to be a seed in  the ground, pushing your roots down and shooting towards the light? Find the answer to this question and other Jewish food questions during this Shabbat-friendly movement and music session for our youngest children.  For kids ages 5 and under.

Led by Teva Educators

Paint with Veggies, Fruits and Roots

Make block print Chanukah cards for your family and friends with vegetables and washable paints. We will be cutting out beautiful shapes from potatoes and apples and stamping them onto cards with paint.   Hear a silly story about a rabbit who didn’t know his veggie heads from tails!   For 8 years and younger.

Led by Teva Educators

Play’s the Thing: Healthy Living and Nature Play

Wiggle and shake to build a strong body, smart mind and kind heart. Join Marci, a creative movement teacher, and Teva educators with Shabbat-friendly physical activity. All ages welcome.

Led by Marci Serfati & Teva Learning Center

Praying with your feet

Experience a taste of Abraham Joshua Heschel’s idea of praying.  Head out into the woods to experiece a Tiyul Breishit – a journey through creation.  Warm up with warm drinks after the trail.  Please dress appropriately.  Ages 9 and up.

Led by Teva Educators

Rimonim: Do-it-Yourself Deliciousness

Master the kitchen by making pickles, bread-on-a-stick, sprouts and other yummy, healthy, local foods led by Teva.  Teens, bring recipes from home to swap or share and make your own resource books of quick, easy, scrumptuous foods.  End with a closing circle and good byes.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Rimonim: So Cheesy! Cheese Making Workshop & Wacky Seaweed Sculpture Competition

Join Abby Streusand in learning how to make your own cheese, then head to the beach for a wacky seaweed sculpture competition.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Rimonim: Supersize Me- A film of Epic Portions

A look at obesity in America and one of its sources – fast food corporations. Don’t miss a chance to see director and star Morgan Spurlock throw up (on-screen only) in this hilarious and eye-opening documentary.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Rimonim: Tidepooling and Heeb Hop

Explore the beaches and its wildlife with Lom Friedman for tidepooling then bring your gold chain and put on your jew-fro for a Food Heeb Hop session.

Led by Lom Friedman & The Teva Learning Center

Rimonim: Who Eats?: Food Security in a Changing World

The Earth is a rapidly changing place.  Politics and ecology are interacting on local, regional, and global levels to produce a food supply in question.  In this session, participants will have the opportunity to explore major political and ecological currents that are affecting who gets to eat, how much people get to eat, and what people are eating.  We will focus on three contemporary examples of food systems to illustrate major issues in the world today. You will learn how to positively affect food systems and food security in local, regional, and global contexts.

Led by Ian Hertzmark

Roots! (A “Why We LOVE Veggies” session)

Continue the creativity by using root vegetables to make awesome Chanukah prints on our take-home produce bags!  Please bring your families’ bags to decorate.  We will learn more about ROOTS with the silly story of a rabbit who didn’t know (veggie) heads from tails.  Preschool, early elementary & adults welcome!

Led by Teva Learning Center

Seed Sprouts: Edible Jewelry

Explore the Greenhouse and discover the role of sprouting in farm life. Use seeds to create your own edible necklaces. Open to kids 6 and up.

Led by Teva Educators

Teens at the Food Conference: Welcome Rimonim to Camp Teva!

Teens, come meet the beach and each other as Camp Teva kicks off! Hang out, get to know each other and talk about what we can expect as teens at the Food Conference.

Led by Teva Learning Center

The Food Adventurers Take on America!

Become a Food Adventurer and create a dramatic performance about our food system.  Where does our food come from?  Who grows it?  How does it get here? From the script, to costumes, prop design, and acting, be a part of the show. Participation in all three of the Food Adventurer sessions and final performace is requested. This play will be preformed on Sunday morning for all conference participants. Open to kids of all ages.

Attend this one-time only preformance of the Food Adventurers. The youth participating in the Hazon Food Conference created and will now preform an original show about where our food comes from and why we should care.

Led by Teva Educators

Zeytim & Gefen: What’s on Your Plate

Filmed over the course of one year, this witty and provocative documentary follows two eleven-year-old multi-racial city kids as they explore their place in the food chain.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Zeytim and Gefen: Family Pajama Party

Share some of your favorite Jewish bedtime stories for childrend of all generations.  We will share Jewish bedtime rituals, and then all participants will do story sharing- reading books to each other.  Storybooks will be provided, or bring your own to share.  Bedtimw snack will be provided. Stuffed animals and pajamas encouraged.

Led by Teva Learning

Zeytim: Cooking Adventures for Kids

If they cook it, they’ll eat it! Your children will explore the world of nutritious foods with nutrition expert and cooking instructor, Julie Negrin. They will prepare Berry and Banana Yogurt Parfaits for a snack while they learn about healthy foods and why they are good for the body. Recipe is nut-free; class is not recommended for children with other food allergies.

Led by Julie Negrin

Zeytim: Head to the Beach for “Eitz Adamah” relay & Root Veggie Prints & Paint

Come join Teva’s “Eitz-Adamah” relay then print and paint with root veggie. Learn a bit about root and sprouts as we make veggie Shabbat decorations for the whole conference.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Zeytim: Make Way for Seedlings

Join us in making your own recycled seed paper!  Help plan your family’s garden for next year by storing vegetable seeds & wild edibles in homemade paper then take your paper home to plant in the spring.

Led by Teva Learning Center

Zeytim: Meet the Worms

Have fun, learn about and play with everyone’s favorite creepy-crawlies: worms. Followed by a Midrash improv workshop complete with mini skits and theater on Jewish-environmental themes.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Zeytim: Take a Bite of the Sun

Harness the power of the sun by making egg-free cookie dough to bake in the cooler solar oven then head to the beach to try your hand at the sand and seaweed sculpture competititon as the San Pit.

Led by The Teva Learning Center

Zeytim: Tidepooling

Parents are welcome to join their children on this local ecology scavenger hunt to learn about the world around them.

Led by

CSA Training and Enrichment

These sessions were designed to train site coordinators from Hazon CSA sites around the country. Learn more about the Hazon CSA program and how you can get involved on the CSA pages.

Justice, Justice Your Shall Pursue: Bringing Social Justice to your Tuv Ha’Aretz

Eating fresh, organic produce through a CSA is a blessing – but the blessing of healthy, sustainable food is not equally accessible to everyone.  In this session you will explore the roots of Jewish food justice in Biblical texts and consider ways to weave these values into your Tuv Ha’Aretz.

Food Conference 2007

Use Your Monkey!  Incorporating Tuv Ha’Aretz Member Feedback from Your Online “Survey Monkey”

What do your members really think of Tuv Ha’Aretz, and how can you utilize that information?  In this session you will have the opportunity to dissect member responses from the Tuv Ha’Aretz Member Survey and learn how to use member feedback and ideas to build a stronger CSA.

Food Conference 2007

Your Farmer, Your CSA: Building a Strong Relationship with Your Tuv Ha’Aretz Farmer

Building and maintaining a strong relationship with your farmer is a crucial part of a successful Tuv Ha’Aretz.  Hear from Tuv Ha’Aretz’s first partner farmers, Chris and Eve Kaplan-Walbrecht of The Garden of Eve Farm in Riverhead, Long Island, and chart a course for creating a solid partnership with your own farmer (or farmer to be)!

Food Conference 2007

Branch Out and Create Deeper Roots for Your CSA Community with Social Networking Tools @Hazon #FoodConferenceEast

To Facebook or not to Facebook?  Social networking sites and other on-line tools can add a richer dimension to the community aspect of your Community Supported Agriculture program, but there’s so much out there, figuring out where to start can be pretty overwhelming.  What tools would work for your community?  How do you add new layers to tools you are already working with?  This workshop will offer both an overview of available resources, hands-on skill building, as well as skill-sharing about what works and hasn’t worked in different communities.    All levels of experience welcome.

Led by Sarah Chandler and Lisa Bates at Food Conference 2010 East

CSA Leadership Summit

The Hazon CSA program is the first ongoing effort in the American Jewish community to support local, sustainable agriculture. Meet the CSA leaders and core group members who have built this network, reflect on the growth of the Jewish CSA movement and share best practices for your 2011 season.

Led by Lisa Bates and Jennifer Handy at Food Conference 2010 East

CSA: Introduction and Overview

Congratulations, you’re bringing a Jewish CSA to your community! But what needs to happen between now and the beginning of the season? During this session you’ll get a solid sense of the pre-season and season timelines and receive your copy of the Hazon CSA Bible.

Led by Anna Hanau at Food Conference 2010 East

Spreading the word: Effective marketing techniques for your CSA

You’ve launched your CSA, now you need to tell folks about it!  This session will walk you through creating a marketing plan, designing effective posters and brochures and the components for a successful “Meet the Farmer Night.”  Additionally, participants will learn skills to talk about CSA to prospective new members while standing on one foot.

Led by Judith Belasco at Food Conference 2010 East

Sustaining Volunteer Leadership

CSAs are a unique partnership between farmers and consumers. A well run, motivated group of volunteers and leaders can help to ensure that this partnership is successful. With the many demands on CSA members’ time, a core group can be challenging to establish and to sustain. In this workshop, explore strategies to increase volunteer and leadership participation, to share responsibilities among coordinators and to transition responsibilities to new coordinators over time.

Led by Paula Lukats at Food Conference 2010 East

Your Farmer, Your CSA

A strong partnership between farmer and community is a hallmark of a successful CSA. Hear from a Hazon CSA farmer about his experiences during this first year as a CSA farmer. Learn how to find a farmer, utilize a Farmer Agreement and communicate effectively with your farmer as you build this project together.

Led by Anna Hanau and Jonathan Kirschener at Food Conference 2010 East