Currently — April 3rd, 2023

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Christa Barfield — founder of FarmerJawn
Christa Barfield recipient of the “Black Women, Green Futures award, founder of FarmerJawn, an urban farm in Philadelphia and Viva Leaf Tea.

Currently’s Editor-in-Chief Abbie Veitch chatted with Christa Barfield, a recipient of the “Black Woman, Green Futures” award from New Voices for Reproductive Justice and founder of FarmerJawn, a Philadelphia-based farm that grows accessible, nutritious food for marginalized communities.

Here’s a snippet of their conversation:

Abbie: When did you start doing this?

Christa: I came up with FarmerJawn in 2018 when I went on vacation after resigning from my job. I was looking for a way to get back to myself and while on this trip I encountered agriculture in a different way. I saw how people integrated agriculture into their lifestyle — as just part of how they live.

It led me to herbalism and herbal medicine. My background is in healthcare and medicine, but I walked away from healthcare after being burned out in 2018. I encountered people, who were of Indigenous descent, using plant medicine. One was a Thai chef that I met when I was in Martinique and the other group of folks I met were Black farmers.

I learned from both of them, literally just by experiencing and watching. Not necessarily by engaging in any educational workshop. It was really just by living. This experience drove me to start a tea company, Viva Leaf Tea, in 2019 and a farm, FarmerJawn, in 2020.

Read the full Q&A on our site!

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