PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — “So many young people want to be this movie star, or want to be an astronaut, or, or something fantastic. Louis Escobar wanted to be a dairy farmer. I’ve lived my life dream,” says Louis Escobar in the trailer for the new documentary film, Forgotten Farms.
Louis, along with other New England dairy farmers, are featured in Forgotten Farms, which examines class divides in farm and food communities.
The trailer, which opens with Escobar, can be viewed here:
Forgotten Farms special event
Presented by newportFILM with support from the Aquidneck Land Trust, the film Forgotten Farms will be be shown on Tuesday, March 7, at the Portsmouth Abbey School Auditorium, 285 Cory’s Lane, Portsmouth.
6 p.m. – Pre-ﬁlm wine and cheese reception with filmmakers. Cheese donated by Rhody Fresh.
7 p.m. – Film, followed by conversation with local dairy farmers Jane and Louie Escobar (featured in the film), the film’s director Dave Simonds, and producer Sarah Gardner.
Parking available in the hockey rink parking lot.
There is another farmer who is left out of the local food celebration.
New England has lost more than 10,000 dairy farms in the past 50 years; fewer than 2,000 farms remain.
Collectively, they tend 1.2 million acres of farmland and produce almost all of the milk consumed in New England.
In our enthusiasm for the new food movement, people often overlook the farmers at the foundation of the regional agricultural economy. Only 100 years ago, New England produced most of its own food on 16 million acres of farmland.
Climate change will demand that more of our food is grown closer to where people live. As people strive to revive local production, they have much to learn from dairy farmers who have been managing most of the farmland and sustaining the farm economy all along.
Through conversations with farmers and policy experts, the film reconsiders the role of these vital but forgotten farmers.
Forgotten Farms gives a glimpse into the past and a vision for a future regional food system.
The documentary shows the cultural divide between the new food movement and traditional farming, highlighting the need to examine differences, develop mutual understanding, and find common ground. A truly sustainable local food system that benefits everyone will rely on all of farmers.
Forgotten Farms, directed by Dave Simonds and produced by Sarah Gardner, runs 60 minutes.