Local Author: Beth Hoffman

  • Overview

    Welcome to Central Library’s new series, featuring local authors talking about their books and their experiences as writers!

    Beth Hoffman began her food writing career producing a radio series featuring immigrant women as they cooked in their homes (which aired on Weekend America). Now twenty years into writing and producing work on food and agriculture, her areas of expertise have grown to include the potential of agriculture in development, the financial viability of farms, and sustainable agriculture.

    In her book Bet the Farm: The Dollars and Sense of Growing Food in America Beth tells the story of how, in her late 40s, she and her husband decided to leave San Francisco and move to his 530-acre family ranch in Iowa—all for the dream of becoming a farmer, to put into practice everything she had learned over decades of reporting on food and agriculture. There was just one problem: money. Half of America's two million farms made less than $300 in 2019. The book is a first-hand account of the perils of farming today and a personal exploration of more just and sustainable ways of producing food.