Living Earth Festival 2018: Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma
The ninth annual Living Earth Festival focuses on sustainable development through heritage tourism, traditional agricultural practices, and the importance of Native foods and food sovereignty. In this presentation, Chief horticulturalist Gilbert Johnston (Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma) is joined by Shelby Crum (Cherokee Nation) to talk about the contributions that agriculture is making to the health of the land and economy. Less than a decade ago, the leaders and citizens of the Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma embarked on an agricultural program. The project began with a small herd of bison and four greenhouses where Johnston and his colleagues pollinated the first tomato plants by hand. Johnston quickly added beehives. Now in addition to selling fresh and dried meat, the tribe donates about 20,000 pounds of buffalo and beef a year to elder and daycare centers and local schools. Its vegetables and 20+ varieties of herbs are featured in the farm-to-table cuisine of restaurant at the Downstream Casino Resort. And for the past several years, the Quapaw have hosted the Native Youth in Food and Agriculture Leadership Summit. This presentation was webcast and recorded in the Potomac Atrium of the National Museum of the American Indian on July 22, 2018.