Chattanooga Now Food for Life Conference at Sequatchie Valley Institute (May 31-June 2)

Chattanooga Now Food for Life Conference at Sequatchie Valley Institute (May 31-June 2)

May 30th, 2013 by Staff Report in Chattnow Outabout

Carol Kimmons, right, arts and education director at the Sequatchie Valley Institute, leads a workshop at a previous Food for Life Conference. The three-day conference, which is open to all ages, starts Friday.

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

A self-described "fermentation fetishist" who recently won a James Beard Foundation Book Award for "The Art of Fermentation," is among the presenters for this weekend's Food for Life Conference near Whitwell, Tenn.

Sandor Katz has taught hundreds of food fermentation workshops around the country, and his 2003 book, "Wild Fermentation" has been called a classic, "the bible for people embarking on DIY projects like sourdough or sauerkraut," according to Grist Magazine.

The three-day festival at Sequatchie Valley Institute, a nonprofit environmental education and research center, will also offer skills in permaculture, food preservation, cooking methods, diet choices and nutrition, and native forest foods and medicines. It will also examine the political, social and ecological implications of food and agriculture.

Several programs are geared to children, and other activities such as Dutch oven cooking and pizza baked in the wood-fired clay oven will offer additional ideas to those taking part.

"Participants will help make food in workshops that will later be used for meals," organizers said in a news release. "Each meal is therefore an integral part of the curriculum."

Cost for the entire conference is based on a sliding scale of $25 to $50 per day for adults, $5 to $20 for children, which includes meals. Rustic camping is $10 for three nights. To inquire about the cost of individual workshops or to make reservations, call 423-949-5922, email or visit

The Sequatchie Valley Institute is at 1233 Cartwright Loop, just off Highway 28, between Dunlap and Whitwell.