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Save the Date

Hey Klesick Farm Community!

We are hosting a brand new event. We are calling it: Inspire: A Community Be Healthy Event. This will be a health fair focusing on good food, wellness, fitness, naturopathic, homeopathic, chiropractic, etc. There will be cooking demonstrations, educational classes, and vendors. This is going to be a lot of fun and super informational.

There are two ways to participate:

1. Plan to come, learn and share: Saturday January 14th (2017) from 11am – 4pm at the Lynnwood Convention Center. Bring the whole family and bring the neighbors, too.

2. You can also participate as a vendor. If you have a health business, follow the links below and sign up. We only have 30 vendors spaces available. Follow the link below.

Vendor information:

Klesick Farms is pleased to invite you to participate in. This unique one-day event is to be held at the Lynnwood Convention Center on January 14, 2017 from 9:00 am until 5:00 pm – and is open to the entire community. For additional information and to register, click here.

Who Should Participate?

* Suppliers of products and services for individuals, families and professionals to support journey to wellness.

* Publishers and distributors or books, video and curricula for wellness and fitness.

* Outdoor and indoor play and fitness equipment companies.

* Resources for families and teachers for children’s wellness and fitness.

* Health coaching services for individuals, families and professionals.

* Farm to table, organic non-gmo food providers.

This is going to be a great community event, so plan to come and join us!

Farmer/health advocate,




Recipe: Baby Bok Choy with Cashews


2 Tbsp olive oil 1 bunch chopped green onions, including green ends 3 cloves garlic, chopped 1 pound baby bok choy, rinsed, larger leaves separated from base, base trimmed but still present, holding the smaller leaves together 1/2 teaspoon dark sesame oil Salt 1/2 cup chopped, roasted, salted cashews


Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Add onions, then garlic, then bok choy. Sprinkle with sesame oil and salt. Cover, and let the baby bok choy cook down for approximately 3 minutes. (Like spinach, when cooked, the bok choy will wilt a bit.)

Remove cover. Lower heat to low. Stir and let cook for a minute or two longer, until the bok choy is just cooked.

Gently mix in cashews.

Recipe adapted from


Know Your Produce: Parsnips

Parsnips are related to carrot and celery and have a slightly celery-like fragrance and a sweet and peppery taste. They have a high sugar content and in the 16th century, Germans realized the high sugar content of the parsnip and used it to make wine, jams, and flour.

If the parsnip root gets cold, either before or after the harvest, its flavor will be much sweeter. Parsnips are a good source of folate and Vitamin C, and one bite, no matter how they are prepared, will convince you of their fiber content.

You can steam and mash parsnips like potatoes, but their best flavor is emphasized by roasting or sautéing. If you have very large parsnips, trim out the woody, bitter core before or after cooking.

Parsnips are generally a good substitute for either carrots or potatoes in most recipes, although they have a slightly stronger flavor. Herbs are especially nice with parsnips including basil, dill, parsley, thyme, and tarragon.

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Toothless GMO Food Labeling Bill Becomes Law

Note: I have covered the DARK Act in a previous newsletter, but wanted to share the perspective of the Cornucopia Institute. The folks at the Cornucopia Institute are advocates the heart and soul of organics and small to medium sized organic farms. In the ever increasing “get bigger or get or get out” model of American business and Agriculture, the Cornucopia stands up and for farmers like myself and consumers like you who support us. Real change comes when concerned people make intentional choices for their families and their communities.

As I have shared in the past, we are the solution: you and I making good food choices, and sending less of our food dollars to companies that promote and use GMO’s in their products.

Organic is better for our health and better for the environment,




Toothless GMO Food Labeling Bill Becomes Law; Corporate Elites Betray Organics


The looming July 1 implementation date for Vermont’s first-of-a-kind, historic GMO food ingredients labeling law pushed Monsanto and other corporate giants in retailing, biotechnology, and agribusiness into overdrive as they ramped up pressure on Congress to negate the state law.

Labeling opponents wisely identified Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Agriculture Committee, as the key to crafting what they described as a “compromise” bill. Stabenow’s bill was able to move enough Senate Democrats to join with an already solid block of Republicans to muscle through its swift passage.

Ardent GMO backer, Senate Agriculture Chair Pat Roberts (R-Kansas) called it “the most important agriculture vote in 20 years.” When signed into law by the President in late July, it preempted Vermont’s new law, mandatory GMO seed labeling requirements in two states, and dozens of related local ordinances.

But what has been rightly called the DARK Act would not have been possible without the behind-the-scenes machinations of the Organic Trade Association (OTA), a few of its most powerful members, and two corporate-funded non-profit organizations – Just Label It (JLI) and the Environmental Working Group (EWG).

JLI, founded by Stonyfield Yogurt chairman Gary Hirshberg, and the EWG signaled their support for an agribusiness-supported alternative to actual GMO labeling, Quick Response (QR) codes, those inscrutable Rorschach-like images found on some product packaging.

The scanning of these speckled black squares with a smart phone and the appropriate app can provide more product information. These QR codes were sold as a solution to food labeling requirements and became an integral part of the Stabenow Bill. Millions of Americans are now discriminated against by not having smart phones and/or sufficient data plans.

The full Senate vote was only made possible when its backers invoked an obscure procedural gimmick that hadn’t been used in more than 40 years to push it forward.

Its next hurdle would be a cloture vote, a 60-vote threshold required to halt a filibuster and debate on a bill and force a final vote on the Senate floor. By early July grassroots organic and pro-labeling forces were mobilizing to fight the cloture vote.

The nation’s largest consumer organization, Consumer Reports, along with the Organic Consumers Association, the Center for Food Safety, Food and Water Watch, Cornucopia, and dozens of others were publicly calling on the Senate to reject the bill, hundreds of thousands of their members flooding Senate phone lines.

Key Senators also spoke out against the bill. And the Food and Drug Administration – the primary agency overseeing food labeling – issued a damning assessment of the bill’s many deficiencies.

Behind the scenes, the OTA and its leadership quietly worked for passage. This activity persuaded enough reluctant Democratic Senators to ignore what had become a loud call for rejection from fellow Senators, 286 public interest organizations, thousands of phone calls from the public, and broad condemnation by the organic community.

Along with executives from companies like Stonyfield, Organic Valley, Smuckers, WhiteWave, and Whole Foods, OTA lobbyists assured Senators that “the majority of the organic industry supported the Stabenow Bill.”

One senate staffer told the bill’s opponents that OTA’s lobbying convinced 15-20 senators who might have opposed the bill (and had opposed an earlier version of the DARK Act) to instead support it.

The corporate-organic industry sell-out facilitated a successful cloture vote that passed by a 65-32 margin. Senate and House passage of the actual bill followed shortly.

Aside from overriding state and local laws, what are some of the DARK Act’s other fundamental deficiencies?

• There is no requirement for on-package labeling of GMO foods.

• As many as 100 million Americans lack the ability to find out product specifics by not being able to access QR codes.

• The biotech-friendly USDA – not the FDA – is charged with creating the law’s actual labeling rules over the next two years.

• The bill leaves totally unclear what will be considered a GMO food and/or ingredient. According to the FDA, most foods typically thought of as being produced or made with GMO ingredients will not be covered by the bill’s narrow definition of genetic engineering. The USDA might raise the threshold for incidental GMO contamination from the currently accepted .09% to as high as 30% while still calling that non-GMO!

• The bill suggests that the USDA harmonize its ultimate definition of genetic engineering with the organic law’s definitions – something that could create a huge loophole into organic’s current strict prohibitions on GMO technology.

“The passage of this law will deny, for the foreseeable future, the right of most American’s to know what is in the food they are eating,” observes Cornucopia’s senior farm policy analyst, Mark Kastel. “It is vitally important that we double down on our efforts to protect the integrity of the organic label, the marketplace alternative to untested GMO technology.”

The Cornucopia Institute and a number of our allies in this fight are researching joining forces in a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of some of the aspects of this draconian piece of legislation.


This week’s guest blog & newsletter post from The Cornucopia Institute.

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Snohomish Farm-Fish-Flood Initiative: Finding Common Ground

Published in the Everett Herald, Sun Sep 11th, 2016 1:30 am

Since the retreat of the Vashon Glacier 13,000 years ago, the area that is now Snohomish County has been one of the best places on earth to live. A rich tribal salmon culture flourished here for millennia; settlers came for timber, fish, and fertile farmland; cities grew up around natural ports on our protected inland sea.

But the “resource lands” of Snohomish County – the farms, forests, natural habitat, open space and parks – that make this such a productive and beautiful place to work and live are facing historic challenges. An additional 200,000 people are expected to move here within 30 years; a changing climate – bringing droughts, floods, reduced snowpack, and sea level rise – is impacting agriculture, fish, forests, and communities; salmon runs are crashing; and the political and economic demands upon farmers, tribes, agencies, and developers are unprecedented.

Despite this complex landscape, groups are coming together in the spirit of “collaborative conservation” to work towards win-win solutions. The recent Farm-to-Table dinner hosted by the Sustainable Land Strategy (SLS) Agriculture Caucus, Snohomish Conservation District, and the Snohomish County Farm Bureau brought together a remarkably diverse 75-person group that included tribal leaders, flood control and drainage districts, big and small farmers, conservation groups, and high-level government officials, from County Executive Dave Somers to Puget Sound Partnership Director Sheida Sahandy and the Conservation Commission’s Mark Clark. On a pastoral 100 year-old farm on the banks of the Snohomish River, individuals shared their stories and their fears, listened to others’ perspectives, and experienced first-hand what exactly is at stake.

For over six years, the Snohomish County Sustainable Lands Strategy (SLS) has been providing a multi-stakeholder forum for identifying “net-gains” for simultaneously preserving and enhancing agriculture and salmon habitat.

The SLS, and similar regional “multi-benefit” initiatives like the public-private Floodplains by Design partnership between TNC, Ecology, and the Puget Sound Partnership, are based on the premise that science, collaboration, and coordinated investment can begin to bring together historically opposed groups, and address fish-farm-flood needs in a comprehensive way.

The benefits of this approach are beginning to emerge. The SLS brought together Lower Skykomish farmers, Tulalip Tribes, and other stakeholders to utilize reach-scale assessments and GIS maps to overlay potential habitat restoration areas, flood mitigation and drainage projects, and water quality sites. The Stillaguamish Tribe worked with the City of Stanwood, the Stillaguamish Flood Control District, and farmers to create a package of seven multi-benefit projects that received full funding under the Washington State Legislature’s Floodplains by Design program.

The SLS and its partners are also developing innovative models around conservation easements and the purchasing of development rights, incentives for stewardship practices, and climate resiliency planning.

In recognition of the efforts to advance this collaborative conservation model, and the national significance of our resource land base, the President recently designated the Snohomish basin as one of four focus areas under the federal Resilient Lands and Waters Initiative. The timely potential for positive impacts within our communities and ecosystems has never been greater or more imperative. We are all coming to the table with different needs but a common agenda: the long-term stewardship of these lands, and of our future.

Tristan Klesick, Klesick Family Farms, SLS Co-Chair

Terry Williams, Tulalip Tribes, SLS Co-Chair

Monte Marti, Snohomish Conservation District Manager

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What happened? One day I am in shorts and a T-shirt and the next I am in my wool L.L. Bean farm coat, which I have been secretly longing to wear again. I got the coat off eBay last year and absolutely love it. I also love the fact that it is 60 years old and was made when life was a little simpler.

Simpler times – doesn’t that sound nice? Everything is so complicated and fast paced. It takes effort just trying to “unplug.” Having lived in both centuries, I realize that we do have more choices with technology now, but I also think life was pretty crazy during the simpler times as well. It might have more to do with expectations, choices, or circumstances, than the actual era we are living in. And besides we are not rolling the clock back to the first Full House or Leave it to Beaver, either. So we have to figure it out for today.

Good things take time and often take time to plan. It is the same with living a healthy life. Living a healthy life takes a little planning and a little work and then with each small intentional step we build, maintain, and increase our health and our family’s health.

But those small steps can seem like big ones, especially in our minds, when the pressure of life is pressing in upon us: laundry, mowing the lawn, soccer practice, school activities, church, connecting with children or parents, doctor appointments, the list can stretch for miles.

I know that it is easier to eat the “organic” (or nonorganic) version of a health bar, a bag of chips, a pre-frozen meal or some snack foods than it is to make a meal from scratch. Processed foods are just more convenient and quite honestly just easier. And we often console ourselves with, “well at least it is organic.”

And, yes organic processed foods are better options, but what if we could make cooking with fresh fruits and vegetables more of a priority? What would be the benefit? A slower pace of life would be one, at least at that moment when we are preparing and cooking dinner or preparing lunches for the next day. Even if the kiddos wolf it down in five minutes or less. Anther benefit is that eating more fruit and vegetables in their minimally processed forms can lead to weight loss, lower blood pressure and an overall increase in vitality.

Maybe the side benefits to cooking are worth the extra steps in planning and preparing. Hmmm?

Farmer Tristan


Featured Recipe: Stir-Fry Mushrooms & Bell Pepper


2 tablespoons olive oil 3 green onions, slice 3 garlic cloves, minced 1 bell pepper, deseeded and diced 1 package mushrooms, sliced 1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine 2 -3 tablespoons soy sauce 1-2 teaspoons sesame seeds


1. Heat oil until hot. Stir fry onions (1 minute), then garlic (20 seconds). Then add the pepper and mushrooms. Stir-fry until it becomes a bit soft, (about 2 minutes).

2. Add the wine and soy sauce and continue to stir for 2 minutes.

3. When done, remove from heat and add the sesame seeds mixing it all together, and serve.



Know Your Produce: Kiwi Berries

Brought from Asia to the United States in the 1800s, the kiwi berry packs a big nutritional punch as the most nutrient-dense of all major fruits. Not just good for you, kiwi berries are delicious! Each variety has a unique flavor and color and their smooth skins make them the perfect snack. They can be eaten fresh, in salads, salsas, dessert sauces, ice cream and sorbets. Their tropical tastes pair well with orange, honey, and chocolate.

Kiwi berries should be allowed to ripen at room temperature. When they are ready to be enjoyed, the berries will turn a dark green color and feel slightly soft to the touch. Unlike most fruits, they are not ready to eat until they look slightly wrinkled and soft. Once they are ripe, store them in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or eat immediately. Let them come back up to room temperature before eating.