I’ve been filming a lot with Devon since the night I joined him for the sweat lodge. I’ve realized that he is a permacultural genius. His farm is littered with inventive systems that purify water with circular gravitational force or recycle straw into natural concrete and on and on. This ingenuity combined with a deep spiritual understanding of the natural forces seems to strike a happy balance, or in other words, fosters a feeling of wholeness.
Devon only sells his meat locally, mainly through the growers market in town that he founded. His prices haven’t changed for fifteen years.
“That’s called sustainable pricing. That’s what I figured it would cost to raise it and if it’s sustainable that should be the cost to raise it, and it is. It’s been steady since I started doing it. Some of the costs have gone up and some of the costs have gone down actually.” - Devon Strong
Devon has received some attention from the European biodynamics community recently. Biodynamics is a system of organic farming developed by Rudolph Steiner in the 1920s that treats the farm as a whole organism, one part supporting another much like the organs in a living body. Traditionally only cow parts are used in biodynamic farming, but since cows are not native to California, Devon has adapted the European model to suit American soil and has incorporated Buffalo into the cycle instead.
It’s not being done in a sterile lab with white jacket and latex gloves, but it’s certainly science. More so it’s a combination of spirit and science. The two worlds of spiritual belief and scientific reason are often at odds and it’s nice to see a more holistic approach.
Devon doesn’t do it for the accolades though. It’s hard work that often leaves one covered in dirt, blood, and manure, and in such a rural community there isn’t a large audience. He keeps pushing forward and working through the seasons because for him this is ‘living in a good way’.