Why Sustainable Farming Matters: Dean Carlson at TEDxPhoenixville


Dean is a 1994 graduate of the University of Chicago with an AB in Economics. After being a floor based derivative market maker for a few years, he moved to Philadelphia and then Dublin to trade convertible bond securities. Always bothered by the assumption of infinite growth in the field of economics, Dean became interested in how this assumption affects agriculture. After discovering the concept of sustainable agriculture, Dean changed careers and became a full time farmer. He purchased the 350+ acre Wyebrook Farm in Northern Chester County and set out to farm it sustainably. He raises 100% grass fed beef, heritage breed pigs in the woods and poultry out on pasture. Dean and his team sell hand-butchered meats in a fully restored 18th century stone barn on the property. Dean believes that it is important for people to have a real connection with their food and that buying food from the place it originated is a satisfying way to do this.

TEDxPhoenixville, the first TEDx event in the Philadelphia region, celebrates the creative, innovative and inspiring work happening right here and all around the world. Our objective is to present thought-provoking ideas via an annual day-long event featuring compelling speakers and performers.

Welcome to Ideaville, a place where local can mean everything from our solar system to our community. A place where YOUR BACKYARD becomes a universe of amazing ideas. In 2012 TEDxPhoenixville explored your backyard from the perspective of the arts, science, technology, education and humor, and how a lively mixture of ideas and people can lead to inspiration and innovation.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.*

*Subject to certain rules and regulations.

Video produced by Bob Sweeney (rlsvideo.com)

Camera Operators:
Bob Sweeney
Joel Rickenbach

Source: cuocdoidanghien.com

View More: Cuocdoidanghien Agriculture


  1. Very applicable to today's expectation of bunny rabbit growth in everything. Slow it down grasshopper. Patience is a virtue. Sustainable growth is consistent and healthy. I like this video, though it was a little slow to gain momentum and the audio was poor, it made it's point loud and clear. Well done and I will share it with students near and far…

  2. Dean Carlson is soooooooo correct!!! By the way, sustainable farming is organic farming. And Monsanto's toxic methods for the sake of monetary greed MUST go!

  3. Inform yourselves and Monsanto, deal with your conscience. In an alternative, sustainable agriculte there is absolutely no need for total herbicides and gmos. And believe me, it will come in the near future, globally. Of course, thousands of unscrupulous people working in the pesticide industry (Monsanto, Pfizer, DuPont, ADM, Bayer CropScience etc.) are probably going to lose their jobs. But be assured, there will be enough possibilities in weed picking for you guys!

  4. Grass fed beef uses about 40% more resources than grain fed beef. That's why in Florida, it is cheaper to send calves west for fattening up. We also have a very bad record of water de[letion and pollution from grassfed beef here. Alot of dairies as well as grass fed beef is produced in Florida in wetlands.

  5. So well said, I would love to visit the farm! Thank you so much for speaking on these issues with such grace

  6. Chickens can thrive entirely on compost and hogs can thrive on chicken and cow slaughter leftovers if they are allowed to forage.

  7. For producing meat it takes 10-30 times of grains (yes grains), energy, water etc. Going vegetarian alone throughout our life reduces the pressure on the system. First step to go sustainable. (plz don't ask me stop eating altogether)

  8. Way to go Dean, we need to see more  real people like you who care about the environment.  If we could only convince others to see it like you, and reject the blindness of business, everyone would be healthier, and we would have more with less. 

  9. My agenda is to glean facts that I can pass along. I'm a film maker, making a documentary about sustainable farming. Before I began this project, I'd never heard of the term sustainable farming. During the project, I've learned things that mean I can never go back. I heard a lot of things in this talk that I can take forward with me. Thank you.

  10. You should quit commenting on videos you clearly don't understand, because you look at them through an agenda and not from an objective viewpoint. You just look foolish by doing so, since you obviously missed the entire point of the speech.

  11. The musings of a 12 year old? No. The near sighted musings of a successful bond trader. Let's advocate a pro heart disease, pro cancer diet that strains the economy and resources. Several times in the speech he calls everyone a fool for not contemplating exponential growth while he incorrectly ascribes it to the human condition. Oil consumption is flat over the decade and the technology to free us from coal and oil are 10-20 years away. (Thorium, Fission, efficient solar cells)


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