The theme of this year’s Festival is Exploring the New Territory: Your Gut.

Your gut is home to trillions of microbes [living organisms much smaller than we can see with the naked eye]. They are bacteria, yeasts, fungi, viruses and more, and most of them are friendly. Their jobs are to defend us from bad microbes, help us digest our food, create vitamins, strengthen our immune system, and more!

For eons, humans have known that eating fermented foods was good for our us [providing us a way to eat nutrient-rich food during times when fresh food wasn’t available]; and good for the environment [enabling us to use all of Nature’s bounty, wasting nothing and preserving the harvest beyond its fresh life].

This “New Territory” of your gut and its inhabitants [called the gut microbiota] is not actually new at all, but our understanding of it is. We are just beginning to learn how these microbes interact with each other and with us. And we don’t exactly know how eating fermented foods confers health benefits to us… but we know they do! It’s truly a new frontier, as we witness [Modern science is catching up to traditional wisdom]

We have assembled a community of artisanal food and beverage makers, scientists, teachers, authors, and fermentation enthusiasts to celebrate and revive this ancient tradition.

We invite you to taste, have fun, explore and learn about this “new territory” together with us!