Symphony Star Daniel Hillel Wins 2012 World Food Prize!

Yesterday it was announced that Symphony of the Soil star Daniel Hillel is the winner of the 2012 World Food Prize!

Dr Hillel is being honored at as pioneer in reducing water use in agriculture. While a youth in Israel he invented what is now commonly called ‘drip irrigation’- an efficient method of delivering water to plants via plastic tubes placed directly next to plants. As water will become an increasingly contested resource in the coming years, the World Food Prize wanted to recognize Dr Hillel’s early contribution to the concept of agricultural water sustainability.

Dr Daniel Hillel

SOS in Huff Po

Lynne Peeples, Huffington Post, May 18, 2012 

Jack Algiere has no qualms about letting his kids eat their veggies straight out of the ground from the fields and greenhouses he manages in Pocantico Hills, N.Y.

He knows the rich, organic soil will provide Sedge and Ojiah with delicious, nutrient-rich food. Not to mention a possible boost to their immune systems.

His sons have their favorites. “Carrots are up there and consumed after a brush with the shirt sleeve. But spinach in winter seems to be the prize,” said Algiere, the farm manager at Stone Barns Center For Food and Agriculture. “With most greens, they prefer to graze — no hands — rather than pick.”


Jack Algiere’s kids, Ojiah and Sedge, graze the fields at Stone Barns Center For Food and Agriculture.

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European Premiere at the Curzon Theater, Soho, London

On May 17th, Symphony of the Soil played to a packed house in Soho London at the famed independent film house, the Curzon. Organico and the Soil Association hosted the evening, complete with canapés and drinks after the show. The crowd consisted of food writers, key politicians, organic entrepreneurs, activists, and farmer gardeners. The after party was thick with conversations of how the food movement continues to grow and how this film will help encourage more people to join the good food revolution. One inspired health food store owner sought us out and thanked us, saying ‘this film reminded me of why I do what I do.’

So often we forget our original purpose of being here. It’s easy to get caught up in the day to day activities of life and work- emails, phone calls, business meetings. But when someone, or something gives us enough time to reflect on how we fit into the whole- brilliant things can happen. We can remember why it is that we wanted to be here in the first place. Symphony of the Soil is that for the sustainability movement- it’s a pause, a moment of reflection, an artistic vision of the base of all life, and an integrated holistic vision for the planet.Pouring Drinks for the After Party for Symphony of the Soil Screening Curzon Theater, Soho London

Jessy Beckett 

Ames Tribune Features Symphony of the Soil

8:04 pm – March 24, 2012 — Updated: 8:04 pm – March 24, 2012

Environmental filmmaker visits ISU

By Hannah Furfaro, Staff Writer

Deborah Koons Garcia likes to dig up dirt. And after producing the nationally acclaimed environmental film “The Future of Food” in 2004, she’s at it again this year with a documentary, “Symphony of the Soil,” about the importance of soil and ecological preservation. Her film will premier Wednesday at Iowa State University.

Why is soil important and can you talk a little bit about soil’s role in productive agriculture?

A When I started researching it, I realized how complex it is, and so the first part of the film is about soil itself; it’s not really about agriculture … soil as the protagonist of our planetary story, the birth of soil, the life cycle of soil, so really people can get to understand soil. And then we bring in agriculture and our relationship to soil so people can then understand there are different kinds of soil. For example, the soil in Iowa is just incredibly fertile. One of the main ideas in the film is to introduce people to soil itself because most people don’t understand soil is alive. It’s not inert, there’s lots of organisms in it … you can’t just pick up a little piece of soil and say ‘this is soil’ because soil is almost a process in a way.

One of the points I would like to get across is people need to give back to the soil. We need to feed the soil, and we can’t just keep taking, taking, taking because that impacts the fertility of the soil, and it can’t give to us because we’ve taken too much and haven’t replenished it.

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Symphony of the Soil World Premiere

Title: Symphony of the Soil World Premiere
Location: Washington, DC, 20001
Link out: Click here
Description: Symphony of the Soil will make its world premiere at The Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital
. Playing at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum’s Baird Auditorium at 4:00PM
. The screening is free and open to the public
Start Time: 16:00
Date: 2012-03-25
End Time: 18:00

SOS on TEDex!

Fred Kirshenmann gave a talk on TEDex Manhattan a few weeks back and featured a portion of Symphony of the Soil. Check out our brilliant advisor Fred and his short and inspiring lecture on Soil!

Fred’s TEDex Talk

Fred Kirschenmann (left)with Deborah Garcia and Jerry Glover at that Land Institute in Salina Kansas

Last Pre-Screening

Last night we concluded the last in a series of pre-screening events. Scientists, agriculturalists, editors, and directors came together at the Saul Zaentz Media Center in Berkeley to lend us their eyes and ears for the evening.

With enthusiasm, they patiently waded through the latest version of the film- saving their comments until the end, when we handed out questionnaires and pens.

Last Pre-Screen of Symphony of Soil

Last Pre-Screen of Symphony of Soil

– By Jessy Beckett