Friday, March 30, 2012 | Latest audio lessons → VOA Learning English
More Young Americans Plant Themselves in Farming
Many young Americans with no farming experience are entering agriculture. They are learning about agriculture in college. Emily Sloss is showing visitors around Duke University's new campus farm in North Carolina.
EMILY SLOSS: "We don't use synthetic fertilizers or pesticides."
Emily Sloss studied public policy at Duke. Now, she supervises the university's new campus farm.
EMILY SLOSS: "Now I'm a farmer. Yeah. Believe it or not."
In its first year, the farm has provided more than two tons of fresh vegetables for student meals. Nate Peterson directs the dining halls at Duke.
NATE PETERSON: "It's phenomenal. The produce that is coming out of the Duke Farm and coming into our cafes...is excellent quality."
Maureen Moody has studied what makes young people want to become farmers. Now, she herself is a farmer, at the Arcadia Center for Sustainable Food and Agriculture near Washington, DC.
MAUREEN MOODY: "A lot of people that are becoming farmers now are not the people you would traditionally think of as farmers. Me and a lot of people I know, we didn't grow up on farms."
"I've been eating this food all my life without having any idea where it comes from."
Movies like "Food Inc." and books critical of American food production have led some young people to consider a career in agriculture. But Maureen Moody says many who become farmers have difficulty succeeding.
MAUREEN MOODY: "It's really hard to stick with it after a few years. Some do, and I think, you know, they figure out a way to make it work. But it's really hard to make any money and to make a living."
I'm June Simms.