The Southern Foodways Alliance, the food world's favorite non-profit and symposia host, documents and celebrates the food cultures of the American South through a variety of initiatives — collecting oral histories, mentoring writers, publishing a journal and a podcast. They also produce beautiful and impressive documentaries. Some center on cooks, some on food producers, but all tell intimate and fascinating stories exploring regional food culture.
This year, Eater is teaming up with the SFA to spotlight their documentary work, premiering a short film every other week. This first piece by 1504 focuses on the Muddy Pond Sorghum Mill, a family-owned sorghum syrup producer in Tennessee. One choice quote from sorghum-maker Mark Guenther:
It takes a lot of effort to make sorghum — short nights and long days, very stressful many times. And I ask myself, 'Why am I doing this?' But you know what? What would I do in September and October and it wasn't harvest season, if I was just taken out of that? I don't even know that I would have the desire to live.
Have a look and check back here for more.