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Michael Pollan at the 2024 Homestead Festival: A Conversation on Sustainable Farming and the Future of Food

  • Dates: June 7, 2024
  • Location: The Homestead Festival
  • 4765 Hardison Mill Road
  • Columbia, TN 38401
  • Time: 7:00 AM to 9:30 PM
  • Price: $129
  • Overview

    New York Times bestselling author, Michael Pollan, will feature as part of the speaker lineup at The Homestead Festival on June 7-8, 2024 at Rory Feek's historic farm in Columbia, TN. Gates open at 7 am CT, but the music performances start at 5:30 pm CT as part of the festival schedule. Michael Pollan has been featured in the documentary, Food, Inc., and several Netflix adaptations of his books on Cooked, and How to Change Your Mind.

    For more than thirty years, Michael Pollan has been writing books and articles about the places where the human and natural worlds intersect: on our plates, in our farms and gardens, and in our minds. Pollan is the author of eight books, six of which have been New York Times bestsellers; three of them (including his latest, How to Change Your Mind) were immediate #1 New York Times bestsellers. Previous books include Cooked (2013), Food Rules (2009), In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto (2008) and The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals (2006), which was named one of the ten best books of 2006 by both the New York Times and the Washington Post. It also won the California Book Award, the Northern California Book Award, the James Beard Award for best food writing, and was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. A revised, young readers’ edition of Omnivore’s Dilemma was published in 2015. Pollan’s 2001 book, The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s-Eye View of the World, also a New York Times bestseller was recognized as a best book of the year by the American Booksellers Association and Pollan is also the author of A Place of My Own (1997) and Second Nature (1991). An expanded edition of Food Rules, with original illustrations by Maira Kalman, was published in 2011. How to Change Your Mind was named one of the New York Times’ 10 Best Books of 2018. In 2020 he published a new audio book titled Caffeine, available from Audible. In 2021, he published a book titled This is Your Mind on Plants.

    Several of his books have been adapted for television. Four-part series based on Cooked (2015) and How to Change Your Mind (2022) are streaming on Netflix. PBS presented a two-hour special documentary based on The Botany of Desire in fall 2009 and a two-hour documentary based on In Defense of Food was broadcast nationally in December 2015 and was nominated for an Emmy. Pollan also appeared in the Oscar-nominated 2008 documentary Food Inc., which was partly based on The Omnivore’s Dilemma.

    A contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine since 1987, Pollan’s writing has received numerous awards, including the James Beard Award for best magazine series in 2003; the John Burroughs prize (for the best natural history essay in 1997); the QPB New Vision Award (for his first book, Second Nature); the 2000 Reuters-I.U.C.N. Global Award for Environmental Journalism for his reporting on genetically modified crops; and the 2003 Humane Society of the United States’ Genesis Award for his writing on animal agriculture; the James Beard Foundation Leadership Award (2014) ; the Nierenberg Prize for Science in the Public Interest by the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (2014); the Washburn Award for “outstanding contribution to public understanding of science” from the Boston Museum of Science; the 2013 Premio Nonino, an international literary prize; the 2015 Washington University Humanities Medal, and the Lennon Ono Grant for Peace in 2010. In 2009 Pollan was named one of the top 10 “New Thought Leaders” by Newsweek magazine. In 2010 he was chosen by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.

    Pollan’s essays have appeared in many anthologies, including Best American Essays, Best American Science Writing, and the Norton Book of Nature Writing. In addition to publishing regularly in the New York Times Magazine, his articles have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s (where he served for many years as executive editor), Mother Jones, Gourmet, Vogue, Travel + Leisure, Gardens Illustrated, The Nation and the New York Review of Books.

    Pollan has received an honorary doctorate from the University of Gastronomic Science and in 2015-16 was a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard. He is a 2022-23 Guggenheim Fellow.

    In 2003, Pollan was appointed the John S. and James L. Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and the director of the Knight Program in Science and Environmental Journalism. In 2017, he was appointed Professor of the Practice of Non-fiction at Harvard and the university’s first Lewis Chan Lecturer in the Arts. In 2020, along with Dacher Keltner and others, he co-founded the UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics. The center conducts research using psychedelics to investigate cognition, perception and emotion and their biological bases in the human brain. In addition to teaching, he lectures widely on food, agriculture, health, and psychedelic science.

    Michael Pollan, who was born in 1955, grew up on Long Island, and was educated at Bennington College, Oxford University, and Columbia University, from which he received a Master’s in English. He lives in the Bay Area with his wife, the painter Judith Belzer.

    About the Festival:

    Have you always wanted to learn how to grow your own food... Raise chickens, or milk a cow? Harvest, cook, can, and preserve? Have babies at home, or homeschool them as they grow? Keep bees or start a flower garden? Or just build a more sustainable life?

    The Third Annual Homestead Festival will be held on June 7-8, 2024 at Rory Feek's 100-acre historic farm in Columbia, Tennessee. Combining music with meaningful experiences, the two-day affair brings together some of the most influential speakers, teachers, and musical artists for a hands-on event where you can learn not only how to grow your own food, but also how to grow a life filled with meaning and purpose. Speakers include headliners Michael Pollan, Joel and Daniel Salatin of Polyface Farm, Jill Winger from The Prairie Homestead, Jill Ragan from Whispering Willow Farm, Shawn and Beth Dougherty from The Sow’s Ear, to name a few, plus musical performances from The Bellamy Brothers, John Anderson, Michael Martin Murphey, Mo Pitney, and others to be announced in coming months. Rory Feek will also perform as part of the music lineup. Full artist and speaker bios will soon be available at

    Tickets start at $129 for General Admission and are sold as two day passes. Individual tickets are not available. Please note, all tickets are non-refundable and all purchases are final.

    General Admission: All tickets include access to:

    Learn from the best as 25+ of the most knowledgeable in the industry speak

    Watch and participate with skilled artisans, such as wood turning, leather working, chicken butchering, sheep shearing and more!

    Homestead Marketplace:
    Browse 200+ homestead oriented vendors, including farm and garden supplies, handmade goods, kitchen essentials, crafts, snacks, etc.

    Food Vendors:
    Access to food trucks and food vendors (for purchase, food is NOT included in the ticket price).

    Lil' Homesteaders:
    Access our kids area, with face painting, a corn pit, bounce house, kid oriented vendors and more!

    Live Music
    End each night with a curated concert (lineup to be announced), and listen to live music during lunch in the food court.

    Learn more at

    Festival FAQ Page Here: