The Seed Saver
May 13, 2019
John Picklap and Garrett Stern
Adopted as a baby from Korea by an Irish Catholic family, Kristyn Leach is now a farmer in Northern California dedicated to preserving rare and endangered heritage seeds.
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About the Documentary
Kristyn Leach was adopted as a baby from South Korea by an Irish-Catholic family on Long Island. It was her rebellious spirit that led her to farming, and it became a way for her to connect with her identity and community. Kristyn’s seeds come from ancient heritage breeds from Asia, and she is one of only a handful of farmers still growing these crops as they face extinction. But the day-to-day challenges of disease and wildlife take their toll as she feels a deep responsibility to the seeds she is trying to save. The Seed Saver is a short film airing with Harvest Season on Independent Lens.
John Picklap’s directorial work has been featured by The Atlantic, Atlas Obscura, and premiered at AFI DOCS, Mill Valley Film Festival and won Best Short Documentary at LA Lift-Off Film Festival. He has also worked with major media organizations such as NPR, WIRED, AJ+, and the Associated Press.Picklap is a 2019 SFFilm Artist-in-residence as he works on his first feature film.
Garrett Stern is a Virginia native. For the past decade he has been a researcher and advocate for sustainable, ethical farming. He has worked with farmers, nonprofits, and universities to build bridges between the farmers who produce our food and the communities that eat it. When he not producing films, he is working at the University of Richmond as a Senior Program Manager, building professional education programs to meet the needs of the Richmond community.