Back in grad school I took several classes at the business school, about the time I realized I didn’t know how to make money as a literature student. I remember the class where the professor talked about presenting a business plan to an investor. “Confidence,” he said. “You have to believe your plan is bullet proof.”

At the same time I was taking a class on Moby Dick. If you need a little refresher, Captain Ahab gets his leg bitten off by the great white whale. Now it’s impossible to not want to be Ahab as you read. He knows who he is. He has a mission to kill the one thing that has defied him, that took a part of him and made it part of itself. But it’s the fidelity to his plan, and others’ fidelity to him, that leads the ship “beneath the rolling waves.”

Forage has a mission, to investigate the ways sustainable agriculture can become more sustainable. We’re not moving away from this. But we will change as we grow. We’re going to reflect on our process, and share those thoughts with you. We’re going to welcome your feedback and involvement.

Can humility be a good business practice? I hope so.

(There actually is business theory here also. Please check out our conversation on The Lean Startup).

 

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Most of the time when I read I skim. You might even be doing it now. That’s not a judgment, it’s just how most of us read these days. Unlike podcasts or online videos, things we can have on in the background while we do something else, reading takes our full attention. In the age of multi-tasking reading can seem inefficient.

Which is why I read. For as scattered as I can be, reading can slow me down, bring me into a moment. Maybe more than any other medium, it asks me to be involved. I don’t get to know what a character's voice sounds like, or the contours of their face. I have to imagine it. Writing can be almost a suggestion, a direction for us to wander. But we have to do the walking. In many ways the reader is more the author than the writer themselves.

Every medium has its gift. As we come to tell the story behind food, Forage will evolve to incorporate journalists of all kinds—film, photography, podcasting, and the intersection between these mediums. For the beginning though, we are starting with words because they allow us to participate in the story, something Forage will explore in a series of ways. 

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