Indigenous Foodways Gathering & Producer Forum Comes to Ajo Next Month


The 2017 Southwest Indigenous Foodways Gathering and Small Scale Producers Forum will be held on December 6-9, 2017 in Ajo, Arizona.

For the third consecutive year, Ajo Center for Sustainable Agriculture is planning a unique gathering of farmers, chefs, community organizers, and other passionate community members to be held at the Many Hands Learning Center and the Sonoran Desert Inn. The 2017 Forum programming will span over 4 days: the first 3 days will feature hands-on workshops and "talking circles," and the last day (Saturday), the participating presenters will be at the Authentically Ajo Farmers Market in the Plaza, highlighting food demos, local products, arts and crafts, and music.

The topics covered over the course of the event will include food justice and community organizing, resources and best practices for success for farmers and market growers, restoring trade routes, food sovereignty and climate change, and community-based seed banks and crop preservations programs.

In addition to "talking circles" and consultations, there will be hands-on learning opportunities including traditional farming methods, traditional processing of animals, as well as preparing food, herbs, and salves. The gathering will offer youth culinary mentorship for Culinary Arts students from the Ajo Unified School District with Loretta Oden, a Native American chef and teacher. There will also be a traditional storytelling night at the dry-land field at the Ajo Roping Arena, and seed exchange. View the full agenda here.

Three meals featuring local foods will be prepared by the chefs and community members each day.

All are invited to attend! The event is FREE to attend for the community of Ajo, youth (ages 14-24), indigenous peoples and people of color, as well as agricultural producers, but registrations are required. For everyone else, tickets are $200 for all 3 days or $75 for a one-day admission. RSVP or get your tickets here.

The forum is sponsored by the Ajo Center for Sustainable Agriculture (Ajo CSA), Tohono O'odham Community Action (TOCA), Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance (NAFSA), International Indian Treaty Council (IITC), Local Organic Crops and Stuff Cooperative (LOCAS Co-op) and Local First Arizona Foundation.

Email for additional details. We look forward to seeing you there!