Thursday, August 9, 2007

Out to Lunch

There are two takes on the above phrase, this post will address both.

1) What if you are really committed to supporting local small farms, what if you love fresh local flavors AND what if you want to go out for lunch? Luckily there is an exciting new campaign out there called Buy Fresh, Buy Local. Buy Fresh, Buy Local is the brainchild of the FoodRoutes Network which creates partnerships with community-based nonprofit organizations across the country already involved in nurturing strong regional markets for locally grown foods. Each local organization creates and implements a Buy Fresh, Buy Local marketing campaign to bridge the gap between community farmers and consumers. Thanks to REAP (Research, Education, Action, and Policy on) Food Group you can click here for the Buy Fresh, Buy Local participants in Madison. Click here for a list of all the local organizations (nationwide) involved with Buy Fresh, Buy Local. Don't see your favorite restaurant? Give them the above Madison (or national) link and ask them to contact the local coordinator!

2)The other meaning of "out to lunch" is checked out, uninformed, uninterested or not paying attention. Someone left a comment a few days ago that they enjoy our blog but feel it should be reaching people who don't already know about benefits of local eating the, "HCFS devotees," or people who may not have easy access (for whatever reason) to local food. One of the best ways to reach people with these ideas is to feed them. Here in Madison we have Wisconsin Homegrown Lunch: A Midwest Farm-to-School Program. The mission of Wisconsin Homegrown Lunch is:

"To introduce healthy foods grown locally and sustainably to Wisconsin schoolchildren while developing stable markets for the producers and processors of those foods. By building respectful, working relationships between school educators, the school food service and our local food producers, we will establish a Midwest farm-to-school model to grow and thrive into the future."
Again, REAP is leading the way. Can you tell I love this organization?

So, it all comes back to eating. Choose restaurants that participate in Buy Fresh, Buy Local. Introduce the idea to restaurants that don't know about it yet. Feed people fresh, local, sustainably raised food, get them involved in the growing and preparation and the devotion will follow.

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