A century ago, nearly one million Black farmers worked the land across the United States. Today, there are around 45,000 Black farmers. Investigations into the United States Department of Agriculture found that starting in the 1950s, illegal and discriminatory loan programs resulted in enormous wealth transfers from Black to white farmers, and are at the root of this decline. In her new book "We Are Each Other's Harvest," Natalie Baszile, author of novel "Queen Sugar," looks at what happened. Through essays, poems, photographs and personal stories, she documents the rich agricultural history of African Americans. We'll talk with Bay Area based Baszile about the book, some of the farmers she's met and what's in the American Rescue Plan to help reverse the trend.
Natalie Baszile on the Decline and Future of Black Farmers
Naima (L) and Leah (R) Penniman work on Soul Fire Farm, a community farm in New York. Harper Collins / Alison Gootee
Natalie Baszile, author of "We Are Each Other's Harvest: Celebrating African American Farmers, Land, and Legacy"
Konda Mason, founder, Jubilee Justice