• Jennie Smith | Episode 16 | Listening and Learning Over Harvest

March 22, 2017 3 Comments

Back in the first year of my FarmHer journey, I set up a little booth at a women’s agriculture event in my home state of Iowa.  It was a blast, showing the photos, selling a few shirts and mostly talking to the women farmers at the conference about who they were, why they do what they do and the importance of showing the world the important role women play in agriculture.

As I stood there behind my little table, I can remember as clear as day, a strong and beautiful young woman who walked up confidently and said someone told her she had to find out more about FarmHer, she then gave me a strong handshake to introduce herself as Jennie Smith, a farmer.  

 

Not able to shake this awesome young woman from my thoughts, I kept her information and as soon as growing season started the next spring I called her up and set up a time to visit.  On that trip, my first trip to Butcher Crick Farms, I watch Jennie Smith tackle the weeds in the thousands of heirloom tomato plants she was carefully grooming.  She talked a bit about the difficulty of making her farm a sustainable business, but it was clear that she loved it, and her hands belonged in the dirt.  

Watch Jennie's video clips here

Fast forward another few years and I was able to visit Butcher Crick Farms at a different point in the growing season, at the point where all of her hard work starts to become visible.  At a time when the plants are bearing their beautiful rainbow of heirloom tomato fruit.  

 

This visit to Butcher Crick was a little different.  While the farm and the tomatoes are still very much front and center in Jennie’s world, her role in agriculture has now expanded.  She is now a Sales Manager for Kemin Industries.  She travels the world, helping large growers find solutions to their pest and plant problems.  She balances the love of her role in corporate agriculture with the love of her little locally focused farm, a business that she started and has grown with a lot of love and hard work. 

 

As I followed Jennie through the plants it was easy to see why she loves the farm.  It is    harvesting them and hearing about each variety, and even trying a few was an experience unto itself.  Getting my fingers dirty was a great way to spend my morning, listening to and learning from an absolutely amazing young women that I have so much respect and admiration for was the highlight of my day.  Jennie has a beautiful farm, she’s a beautiful FarmHer inside and out, and she grows beautiful fruit all in my beautiful home state of Iowa.  




3 Responses

James Abella
James Abella

May 19, 2017

The farmher episode of Jennie Smith is my all time favorite episodes, I would like to her more about her farming and her day job sounded very interesting as well. If there is an unedited version available I would like to see the cut footage, I felt she had more to say that may not have made it into the episode. -James

Jenette Gralund
Jenette Gralund

March 26, 2017

Hello I just watched your show on tomatoes and was totally amazed – they were all just beautiful. I have a question – what is the best way to plant the tomato plants? I have been told so many different ways – nothing seems to make my tomatoes produce very good at all. Do you have any secrets – I also live in iowa.

Thank you for any help you are able to give me.

Thank you and I loved your show!!!!!

Jenette

Chuck Carter
Chuck Carter

March 24, 2017

Sure enjoy the show. This Jennie Smith is a remarkable young woman. SHE is
a ball of fire. With all the work, what does her social life consist of ?

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