New York Locavore Challenge

2011LocavoreChallenge-Postcard.jpg Alas, this may be harder in light of the recent flooding on many Capital Region farms, but the Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York is holding a Locavore Challenge for September. The goal is to "educate consumers about how to make healthy and ethical food choices, cook with in-season, local organic foods, while supporting local sustainable farms and food businesses."

There are three levels of commitment, depending on how much time and effort you want to put into the challenge --and they offer tips to help you meet your goals. You can also host or attend local pot-luck dinners. There's already one scheduled for Saratoga.

NOFA-NY Assistant Director Lea Kone says the event was meant to showcase the importance of the connection between local farms and the region -- which is even more evident in light of the floods. They're hoping to use some of the events in the challenge -- including the potlucks -- as a way to help gather money and assistance for local farmers suffering from the floods.

Comments

This should be aptly renamed the Organic Locavore Challenge, as they are pushing for organic, locally grown food. Eating locally grown food is an entirely separate concept than eating organically grown food.

There's nothing wrong with eating only organic food, but there are two battles being fought there and it's worth keeping them separated.

We are proud sponsors of the NOFA-NY Locavore Challenge over here at AGB.

@Matt, we (on a personal level) think the goal is to investigate/learn where one's food comes from, the practices of the farmer who produces it and to get to know the farmer (& hopefully even get dirty hands along the way). Labeling a farm or piece of food "organic" allows the consumer to automatically know there are no GMO's and that *hopefully* sustainable farming practices are used. Those of us who are familiar w/ these things understand that the story only begins with the label. Really the only thing to do is to know your farmer and ask questions about issues that are important to you. We don't always buy certified organic, but we do talk to our farmers to find out if they use crop rotation, specialized placement of (non-chemical based) fertilization, non-GMO seeds, are low or no spray (and only w/ organic herbicides in events of extreme infestation), etc.. Grey areas are difficult to publicize succinctly.

The main idea of the challenge is to support our area farmers (of which there are many) who are growing what we call "Real Food", our local economy and to connect w/ community. We hope you'll join in the challenge and stop by the bakery to further discuss your ideas about our food system! We love a good food convo. and learn a lot with every one.

We're holding a NOFA-sponsored Locavore Challenge Food Swap with "From Scratch Club" Sunday, September 18 from 4-6 pm at our bakery. Tickets are free and will be released any day now, but pre-registration is required due to space limitations. If you like to cook for others (and receive lots of bounty in return), please come! The swaps are incredibly fun and a great way to connect others in our community over food.

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