Little Rock Urban Farming

David Lepine’s Bio

Maybe it started two years ago when I read The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan.  Maybe it started earlier when I heard about the Paleo Diet and guys like Mark Sisson who preach against processed food.  Maybe it was just bound to happen eventually growing up in the family that I did, in which we plan our road trips around which restaurants we’ll stop at and are endlessly on the quest for good cheese dip.  Maybe I can’t say exactly when or where it started, but I can say that sustainable agriculture is one of the things in my life that I am most passionate about.  After The Omnivore’s Dilemma, I went on to one of Pollan’s other books, In Defense of Food, and then to The Unsettling of America by Wendell Berry, Animal Vegetable Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver, and others, and of course to watch documentaries like Food, Inc. and Fresh.  I became aware of the local food scene in my hometown of Little Rock, patronizing as often as possible local farmers, butchers, chefs, artisans, and then went through the same process of discovery in Tulsa, OK when I went off to college.  After a stressful first year of papers and test, I drove to the middle-of-nowhere Indiana and soothed my soul cultivating plants on a small, organic farm—my first real experience with the life I’d been dreaming about for so long.  After my six weeks on the farm were up, I left wondering whether there was anything I wanted to do with my life (a question I get a lot as an English/Philosophy double major) that wouldn’t in some way be tied directly to sustainable agriculture—whether that’s working the farm itself, or owning the restaurant that sources food locally, or working with an elementary school to establish a community garden.  I can’t think of any more tangible, meaningful way to help people than providing them with good quality food or of any better way to stay sane in our fast-paced industrialized world.