Rusty and Sue Nuffer have been farming organically in the Ozarks for over 35 years. When I first asked Rusty to lead a session at our conference, he declined, saying that he wasn’t sure if he had worthwhile knowledge that he could pass on to other farmers. It had been a rough year for them, with a long drought and greater market competition. Instead of feeling wise, he just felt old.
After my conversation with Rusty, I thought, “If he doesn’t have anything to teach other farmers, then who possibly can? Does anyone know enough?”
Malcom Gladwell, in Outliers, describes the need to be deeply involved in an activity for a long period of