that everyone is trying to eat local these days, so I’m not going to go
on and on about the benefits of supporting local agri-business and
promoting healthful eating. But, I am going to publicly announce my intent to “Take the Challenge” and I’m going to encourage you to do so as well.
Here’s some information to get you started.
Are you ready to take the Eat Local Challenge?
early September, the Eat Local Challenge will be begin. What is this
Challenge, you may ask? For two weeks, people in the Milwaukee area
strive to consume as much of their diet from local sources as possible.
What are the rules?
The rules are that there are no rules. Create your own. I would encourage you to set a goal that includes eating more local food than
you do now. For some people that might look like “I will eat 100%
locally, with the exception of coffee and wine.” For others it
will be more like “I will try one new local vegetable from my farmer’s
market each week.” It may also mean doing a bit of research into local restaurants that serve local food. Or getting to know a few farmers at the farmer’s market. Doing “more” (no matter how much) is a step in the right direction.
The Eat Local Challenge is individual and not a contest.
The point is to challenge yourself – to see what you can live
without and what new sources of foods you can find – and to enjoy. It’s
really about thinking local first, doing what you can – and looking for
local alternatives that support our communities and economy. Even small
changes made over a period of time can have quite an impact.
It’s about setting aside a special time for mindful eating.
The Challenge is about taking time each year to reflect on what we
choose to eat and our impact on the world around us. When we eat with
intention, we can choose foods that are good for the health of our
bodies, communities and the earth. Mindful eating is also about taking
time to share our food and ideas with our community.
Here are some questions to consider as you define your goals:
- How are you defining local?
- How much of the food you are eating will be local?
- With whom will you share local food?
What will your exemptions be? What do you want to eat that
isn’t grown anywhere within your local area? For example, you might
decide to buy only fair trade coffee and to use olive oil.
How do I get started?
Come to the Eat Local Resource Fair on August 27th
from 10am to 1pm at the Urban Ecology Center (Riverside Park location). Talk with seasoned Challenge veterans about where to
source your foods and sample and buy bakery, preserves, cheeses, and
beverages from local vendors. You can also pick up your copy of City Farm and join the Eat Local Book Club.
Attend the following workshops and cooking demonstrations:
10:30 AM – How to Use and Preserve Herbs
11:00 AM – Pizza from the Garden
12:00 PM – Vegan Baking the Local Way
12:30 PM – Extending the Gardening Season
After the event you’ll not only be ready to start your own
Challenge, but you’ll be full of ideas and tools that will help you
enjoy local foods year round. Yes, even in the winter time.
Eat Local Resource Fair! RSVP, learn more and invite friends.
Get more information at eatlocalmilwaukee.org