How is the health of our food system connected to the health of our soils? Sustainable Harvest International and Maine Farmland Trust will be asking this question and others at a film screening and panel discussion Tuesday, Nov. 17, at 7 p.m. at the Colonial Theatre, 163 High St.

The film, “Food for Thought, Food for Life” (2015, USA), is a 20-minute documentary about the structural causes of our current food system such as commodity agriculture, depleted soil and urban food deserts, as well as a look at solutions cropping up across the country. It is fast-paced and packed full of information and ideas and stories of change. Statistical infographics and footage are intercut with an all-star cast of interviews including chef Dan Barber, poet Wendell Berry, chef Michel Nischan and many others.

Several local Maine farm and food advocates also make appearances in the film including farmer Eliot Coleman; farmer and musician Bennett Konesni; and seed expert John Navazio.

The film will be followed by a focused panel discussion on the connections between soil and health. Panelists will include Eliot Coleman of Four Season Farm, Konesni of Duckback Farm, Katy Green of MOFGA and Elliot Powell of Sustainable Harvest International. The panel will be emceed by Sustainable Harvest International Executive Director Renée Johnson.

A $5 donation is suggested at the door. The event is sponsored by the Belfast Co-op. For more information about this event, visit or contact MFT’s Ellen Sabina at 338-6575.

Sustainable Harvest International, based in Ellsworth, provides farming and families in Central America with the training and tools to preserve tropical forests while overcoming poverty. Since 1997, it has worked with more than 2,500 families, planted almost 4 million trees and converted more than 17,600 acres to sustainably farmed land. For more information, visit

Founded in 1999, Maine Farmland Trust is a statewide, member-powered organization that works to protect farmland, support farmers, and advance farming. To date, Maine Farmland Trust has protected more than 40,000 acres of Maine's precious farmland and helped more than 400 farm families.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or