#SXSWEco is on NOW!

If you haven’t heard about SXSWEco, then you should take a moment and jump over to sxsweco.com – here’s the brief run down about what the event is about:

SXSW Eco is a three-day conference addressing the need for a concerted, cross sector approach to solving the recognized challenges facing the economy, the environment and civil society. In its second year, SXSW Eco will be held October 3rd-5th, 2012 at the AT&T Conference Center in Austin, Texas.

Hosting an international audience of on-the-ground innovators and executive level decision makers from the public and private sectors as well as thought leaders from academia, this event will drive the conversation of sustainability beyond rhetoric and towards solutions. SXSW Eco is for professionals at the forefront of the post-recognition discussion who are dedicated to making progress towards solving these challenges.

Join us in Austin, Texas for discovery, cutting-edge discussion and unique networking opportunities with experienced, passionate and pragmatic professionals.

 

You can check out the whole event which is livestreaming at SXSWEco.com/live

 

One particular highlight on the schedule is Anna Lappé – cofounder of the Small Planet Institute – who will be speaking on the topic “Plenty for the Planet: Sustainable Food and a Well-Fed World” on Thursday, October 4 at 3:30PM – 4:30PM (Austin, Texas).

 

We hope you enjoy the conference – we’re also going to be live tweeting some bits and pieces, so join the conversation!

Local Food Systems That Work : a National Good Food Network webinar

How can we accelerate learning and increase commerce in Local Food?

 

Check out our storify for a round up of the ‘Food Systems That Work’ webinar & full links to the recordings & slides, courtesy of the National Good Food Network:

 

 

[<a href=”http://storify.com/buckybox/ngfn-webinar-food-systems-networks-that-work-accel” target=”_blank”>View the story “NGFN Webinar Food Systems Networks That Work : Accelerating Learning & Increased Commerce” on Storify</a>]<br /> <h1>NGFN Webinar Food Systems Networks That Work : Accelerating Learning & Increased Commerce</h1> <h2>Bringing together conveners of food system networks of many different sizes: very local (a section of a state), to statewide, regional and even national. Each of these networks has amplified and abetted the positive triple bottom line effects of its member businesses and organizations.</h2> <p>Storified by Bucky Box · Sat, Sep 22 2012 23:47:37</p> <div>Interesting webinar coming up from @NGFN : "Food Systems Networks that Work" http://eepurl.com/pxgEL #foodtechFood+Tech Connect </div> <div>Don’t forget : Food Systems Networks That Work – Accelerating Learning and Increasing Commerce http://trib.al/TNQVe6 via @NGFN @BuckyEventsBucky Box</div> <div>NGFN Webinars — National Good Food NetworkOur monthly NGFN interactive webinars give you the opportunity to learn and connect with on-the-ground practitioners and experts. Below…</div> <div>Food Systems Networks that Work – the "how" and "why" of food systems networking NGFN Webinar TODAY! 3:30 ET, 12:30PT https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/853715690Natl Good Food Netwk</div> <div>Buckybox</div> <div>We’ll be tweeting live from our new Events-based Twitter feed today – @BuckyEvents!</div> <div>We’re ready & waiting for the @ngfn Webinar ‘Food Systems That Work’ – hope to see you there! http://bit.ly/PYhBEE #NGFNwebinar #FoodSystemBucky Box</div> <div>And we’re off! The @ngfn ‘Food Systems That Work’ webinar is up & running – Rich Pirog from @MichiganStateEU http://yfrog.com/hsy2bfpBucky Box Events</div> <div>A big welcome to the panelists for today:<br><b>Rich Pirog</b> (Sustainable Food Systems at Michigan State University), <b>Corry Bregendahl</b> (Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture), <b>Marty Gerencer</b> (Morse Communications) & <b>Karen Lehman</b> (Fresh Taste).</div> <div>The very knowledgeable panel of the #NGFNwebinar today. Q&A yielding some interesting insights – thanks @ngfn! http://yfrog.com/hwxxgepBucky Box Events</div> <div>"Value of Networks: Info & Knowledge Hubs, Catalysts for Cooperation, Leverage Funding, Cutting edge of Ideas & Innovation" #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>"What’s in your network?" – would you describe it as Cooperative, Coordinating or Collaborative? #NGFNwebinar http://yfrog.com/oduo5gpBucky Box Events</div> <div>Great stories about Food & Fitness program in Iowa – Corry Bregendahl (Leopold Centre for Sustainable Ag) http://bit.ly/PEmH7d #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>Solid Social, Health, Economic & Environmental outcomes from the Food & Fitness Program in #Iowa – #winwin – #NGFNWebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>Great Lakes Food Hub Network began as a learning group; small parts, loosely joined http://bit.ly/PYtOcq #FoodHub #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>Check out more about #FoodHubs at @ngfn’s online centre: http://bit.ly/PYuy1m #NGFNwebinar #collaborationBucky Box Events</div> <div>Food Hub Center – National Good Food NetworkA regional food hub is a business or organization that actively manages the aggregation, distribution, and marketing of source-identified…</div> <div>Much of the discussion about Networks That Work relates well to our vision of Sustainable Food System http://bit.ly/PYvfrB #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>Sustainable Food Summit – Vision of a Future Food System | The Bucky Box BlogThis blog was republished in part on Food+Tech Connect as ‘How Technology will decentralise the global food system’ and Sustaination’s "3…</div> <div>Great! Tackling Sustainability of Networks: Pork producers do % of sales to Network, is something similar poss for Fruit & Veg? #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>"You cannot legislate an ethic of sharing" – Great Lakes Food Hub began with trust & social capital, + some Vermont inspiration #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>GLFH also had inspiration from #Mondragon, Co-ops, & ‘Town that food saved’ http://bit.ly/PYxgUx #NGFNwebinar #collaboration #localfoodBucky Box Events</div> <div>IntroductionIntroduction</div> <div>Learning is central to the idea of network building. Karen Lehman suggests using #openspace to build commitment & co-creativity #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>Using #OpenSpace to run a collaborative meeting; links here: http://bit.ly/3Zu422 also check out emerging @CollabCafe #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>Open Space TechnologyOpen Space Technology In my experience open space is based on the belief that we humans are intelligent, creative, adaptive, meaning- and…</div> <div>#NGFNwebinar : 2 different approaches to Communications & Network building: 1) Almost fully offline, 2) Using webinars & some socialBucky Box Events</div> <div>We’ve got a #socialmedia for Local Food guide for you http://trib.al/KiyvYY #helpguideBucky Box</div> <div>TY @ngfn for the #FoodSystems webinar – some nuggets of interest there, lets keep the conversation going online! Suggest a #? #NGFNwebinarBucky Box Events</div> <div>#NGFNwebinar Lots of great info about food system networks that work!Bakari McC</div> <div><b>You can now find the fill slides, video & webinar details here:</b></div> <div>Food Systems Networks That Work – Accelerating Learning and Increasing Commerce – National Good Food NetworkWe bring together conveners of food systems networks of many different sizes. Each has amplified and abetted the positive triple bottom l…</div> <div>Food Systems Networks That Work – Accelerating Learning and Increasing Commerce – an NGFN webinarwallacecenter</div> <div>Follow future events here:</div> <div>NGFN Webinars — National Good Food NetworkOur monthly NGFN interactive webinars give you the opportunity to learn and connect with on-the-ground practitioners and experts. Below…</div>

Sustainable Agriculture – Resources & Courses

We just received an awesome email through the COMFOOD listserv at Tufts University, so we thought we would share it with you all. Big thanks to MOSES team for putting this together.

It’s an outline of the premiere Sustainable Agriculture resources & courses in the US at the moment.  It’s a window into the Production & Distribution sector of our food system – one that is crying out for more farmers with a focus on sustainable land use practices.  So, if you’re thinking of going back to school, getting a crash course online, or delving deeper into what sustainable agriculture looks like in c21st – here’s your guide. You can also find out more about existing resources in our Tips & Tricks for Local Food distribution here.

 

Agro-Ecology & Sustainable Ag. Program (ASAP)
U of I Urbana-Champaign, W503 Turner Hall, MC-047, 1102 S Goodwin Ave   Urbana, IL
217-333-9471 fax 217-244-3219
mwander@illinois.edu   www.asap.sustainability.uiuc.edu
Facilitates and promotes research and education which protects Illinois natural and human resources and sustains agricultural production.

Black Hawk College
26230 Black Hawk Road   Galva, IL
309-854-1722 fax 309-856-5601
Hawesj@bhc.edu   blackhawkorganics.blogspot.com/
Exploring the use of sound agricultural practices to produce and market alternative agricultural crops. Offers courses and operates a four acre production program that follows USDA organic certification guidelines through certifying agent, Midwest Organic Services Association (MOSA).

Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems (CIAS)
1535 Observatory Drive   Madison, WI
608-262-8018 fax 608-265-3020
cecarusi@wisc.edu   www.cias.wisc.edu
A sustainable agriculture research center at UW-Madison that brings together farmers, researchers, and policy makers to study farming practices and profitability.

Indian Hills Community College
721 N First Street   Centerville, IA
641-856-2143 fax 641-856-3158
bkaster@indianhills.edu   www.indianhills.edu
This program is designed to provide area landowners, farmers, and young adults with access to land the entrepreneurial skills necessary to start a new or further develop an existing land-based business, and/or gain employment in an agriculturally related field.

Iowa State University, Graduate Program in Sustainable Agriculture (GPSA)
253 Bessey Hall   Ames, IA
515-294-6518 fax 515-294-1337
gpsa@iastate.edu   www.sust.ag.iastate.edu/gpsa/
The first program to offer the MS and PhD in sustainable agriculture, the GPSA emphasizes experiential learning through an interdisciplinary curriculum. Students acquire depth of knowledge as well as systems-level thinking while pursuing advanced research that transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries.

Iowa State University, Dept of Agronomy
1126J Agronomy Hall   Ames, IA
515-294-3846 fax 515-294-8146
miller@iastate.edu   www.ImAnAgronomist.net
Agronomy at ISU is dedicated to maintaining a systems approach to agriculture. Our undergraduate program in Agronomy includes an Agroecology option that has been of high interest to students who want to study organic and sustainable agriculture.

Iowa State University, Organic Ag Program
106 Horticulture Hall   Ames, IA
515-294-7069 fax 515-294-0730
kdelate@iastate.edu   extension.agron.iastate.edu/organicag/
Dr. Delate’s position in ISU Extension is devoted to organic agriculture. ISU Extension also offers fact sheets and other materials on sustainable agriculture.

Lake Land College
5001 Lake Land Blvd   Mattoon, IL
217-234-5569 fax 217-234-5200
dbarkley@lakeland.cc.il.us   www.lakeland.cc.il.us
This program is designed for students planning a career in alternative agriculture production. Emphasis on the fundamentals of agroecology, incorporation of biological pest management, and sustainable crop and livestock production along with the concepts of direct marketing.

Maharishi University of Management, Sustainable Living Dept
Dr Keith Wallace Drive   Fairfield, IA
641-472-7000 x 1109 fax 641-472-1235
www.mum.edu/sustainable_livingsustainability@mum.edu
A rapidly expanding sustainable living undergraduate program gives students understanding and skills to develop sustainable systems and communities to create a more sustainable world. Courses cover policy, renewable energy, ecology, organic and community supported agriculture, and green design and building, etc.

Marshalltown Community College – Entrepreneurial & Diversified Agriculture Program
3700 S. Center Street   Marshalltown, IA
641-844-5788
linda.barnes@iavalley.edu   www.iavalley.edu/mcc/about/programs-degrees/EntrepreneurialandDiversifiedAg.html
This program offers one year certificates and two year degrees. Included on campus is a 140 acre farm used for demonstration to students and new farmers who wish to begin farming on site.

Michigan State University Extension
303 Natural Resources CAARS   East Lansing, MI
517-353-3543 fax 517-353-3834
sorrone@msu.edu   www.michiganorganic.msu.edu
The C.S. Mott Group at MSU engages communities in applied research and outreach that promote sustainable food systems to improve access to and availability of healthy, locally-produced food. There is a focus on organic farming approaches for vegetables and field crops.

Michigan State University W.K. Kellogg Biological Station
3700 E Gull Lake Drive   Hickory Corners, MI
269-671-2341 fax 269-671-2351
Director@kbs.msu.edu   www.kbs.msu.edu
Year-round biological field station conducting research on the ecology of managed and unmanaged systems that supports educational and extension/outreach programs, including sustainable agricultural practices for row-crop production (conventional and organic), cover crops, grazed pastures, and biofuels.

Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture (MISA)
1991 Upper Buford Circle   St Paul, MN
612-625-8235 fax 612-625-1268
misamail@umn.edu   www.misa.umn.edu
Bringing together the diverse interests of the agricultural community and the University to promote sustainable agriculture.

North Dakota State University – Carrington Research Extension Center
PO Box 219   Carrington, ND
701-652-2951 fax 701-652-2055
vern.anderson@ndsu.edu   www.ag.ndsu.nodak.edu
Researches crop and animal ecosystems to help family farms maintain profitability. Specializing in ruminants and all crop production.

North Dakota State University – Dickinson Research Extension Center
1041 State Avenue   Dickinson, ND
701-483-2348 ext. 113 fax 701-483-2073
frank.kutka@ndsu.edu
SARE state coordinator for both North and South Dakotas.

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
2740 W Mason St, PO Box 19042   Green Bay, WI
920-498-5568
valerie.dantoin@nwtc.edu   www.nwtc.edu
Offers accredited, on-line and in-person courses to gain skills in organic agriculture. Courses were developed through process that includes expert farmers working in organics. The courses take you through step-by-step learning with printed materials, short lectures, media, demos, and classroom discussion.

University of California – Santa Cruz – Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems
1156 High Street   Santa Cruz, CA
831-459-3240 fax 831-459-2799
apprenticeship@ucsc.edu   casfs.ucsc.edu
A six-month, full time education program held at the 25-acre Farm and 3-acre Alan Chadwick Garden on the UC Santa Cruz campus. Course includes classroom instruction, in-field training, and hands-on experience in the gardens, greenhouses, orchards, fields, and marketing outlets.

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Crop Sciences
1201 W Gregory Dr   Urbana, IL
217-621-7974 fax 217-333-4582
aslan@illinois.edu   asap.sustainability.uiuc.edu/org-ag
Developing research and outreach programs on cover cropping, weed management in organic farming systems. Coordinating on-farm research, organic farm tours.

University of Minnesota-Southwest Research and Outreach Center (SWROC)
23669 130th St   Lamberton, MN
507-752-7372 fax 507-752-5097
riddl003@umn.edu   organicecology.umn.edu
The U of MN’s Organic Ecology Program explores the science of organic agriculture through on-farm and experiment station research; variety trials; organic field days; workshops; publications; and the Organic Ecology website.

University of Minnesota, Applied Plant Sciences Graduate Program
1991 Upper Buford Circle   St. Paul, MN
612-625-4742 fax 612-625-1268
apsc@umn.edu   www.appliedplantsciences.umn.edu/
Biological solutions to real-world problems come to life in the Applied Plant Sciences graduate program. We offer Undergraduate, Minor, M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in one or more of the following specializations: Sustainable Agriculture; Agronomy/Agroecology; Horticultural Science; Plant Breeding/Molecular Genetics; Applied Plant Sciences.

University of Wisconsin – Madison, Agroecology Program
1525 Observatory Dr   Madison, WI
608-890-1456
caelholm@wisc.edu   www.agroecology.wisc.edu
We seek to foster the development of the facilitators, researchers, and practitioners of a more equitable and resource-efficient agriculture. Our curriculum addresses agriculture as the simultaneously biophysical and social enterprise that it is.

University of Wisconsin – River Falls, Plant & Earth Science Dept
410 S 3rd St   River Falls, WI
715-425-3941 fax 715-425-3785
william.anderson@uwrf.edu   www.uwrf.edu
UWRF’s Sustainable Agriculture option within the Crop and Soil Science major promotes land productivity, environmental stewardship, economic practicality and rural community viability. Two relevant minors are now available to students as well: Sustainable Agriculture and Sustainable Studies.

 


University of Minnesota Duluth – Continuing Education
104 Darland Administration Bldg, 1049 University Drive, Duluth, MN 55812-3011
218/726-8113
cehelp@d.umn.edu   www.d.umn.edu
The Sustainable Food Systems certificate is self paced and equivalent to 50 hours. This includes the time it takes to read, view and apply the concepts through the activities provided in each module. If you register for the certificate you will have access to the website for one year after registration. If you register for individual modules, you will have access for six months. If you are unable to complete the certificate / modules within these timeframes, your access will be cancelled and you must re-register if you wish to continue.

5 Tips for Local Food Delivery

Image courtesy of The Ecologist

We realised that as of late we’ve been chatting with a lot of local food delivery enterprises from all over the world, which puts us in a privileged place to spot some of what’s working for different organisations, wherever they may be.  We thought in the spirit of open source, we’d share our musings;

 

Get Social!

The landscape of finding & engaging with customers has changed with the emergence of social media. With social media has come an unprecedented opportunity to engage in meaningful conversation with your customers & stakeholders, and tell your own story like never before.  One of the best things? With over 835 million people worldwide using Facebook & Twitter, many of your customers are likely to already be there and 100’s more potential customers in your area too.

Whilst most social media sites (such as Facebook & Twitter) are free to use, you should factor your time into the equation – like any conversation, listening as well as talking takes time.  Consider super-targeted adverts on Facebook/Twitter/Google Ad Words.  We also heartily suggest telling your story through a blog (like ours!) on Tumblr or WordPress, and for the more aesthetically inclined – share your story, your passion & your vision through sites like Pinterest or Vimeo.

Remember; make your dialogue about Quality not Quantity.

 

Call on existing resources & support

In several countries around the world, there’s now NGO’s & Government programs which are set up to help local food distributors get started, or iron out any problems.  They vary from downloadable action packs to full immersive social enterprise courses!

 

So our suggestion? Research, and make use of anything out there which could help you – you’ll be surprised what’s available!

Just some of our favourite resource hubs include; Soil Association (UK), Making Local Food Work (UK), Wallace Centre (US), Sustain (UK), Eaterprises (Australia), Transition Network (Worldwide).

 

Get creative with Funding

There are plenty of ways to fund a local food enterprise beyond mortgaging your house with the bank.  Our run down from the National Good Food Network webinar on funding local food tells you how!

Teaser for the NGFN blog: Co-operative model, LION networks, Crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter, Micro/e-Lending platforms like Kiva, Slow Munis, Local Community Pre-Sales, Local Stock Exchanges, Investment Clubs like Slow Money.

See more here: Cutting-edge ways to Fund your Local Food business

 

Leverage free & low cost tools

Let the explosion of innovation & applications that resulted from mobile technology play into your hands!  The great news about the Mac App Store, Google Play & Chrome Store is that there are more applications than ever which can help you run your business more efficiently, and many of them are free.

 

Whether you need to manage your to-do list [Wunderlist], collaborative project management [Trello], communicate with your customers for nix [Skype], manage your social media marketing [Hootsuite], or simply use collaborative document sharing & calendars [Google Apps] – there’s a host of free apps out there.

 

We also would heartily suggest you check out some of the emerging technology, specifically around local food distribution.  This is where we get to play.  There’s several options out there now, which can manage customer accounts, help you manage packing & delivery logistics, and deal with the burden of payment reconciliation. Taking away the admin burden of local food distribution is one of the main barriers to growth we can see & are doing something about!

 

Be Authentic, Tell Your Story & be about More Than Profit

We keep coming back to this as a really important part of local food distribution.  We all loathe greenwashing don’t we? So don’t do it – be authentic with the story of where you came from, where your food is produced, and how you play nice with others.  We see local food distribution as being about values, and we constantly ask people to think about business in terms of ‘more than profit’.

 

Importantly, don’t ruin it for everyone. Local delivery, organics, farm-to-fork… it’s a tiny fraction of food distribution around the world. Don’t go stomping on it by picking fights with other people trying to do something similar in your area!  Try thinking about converting other people away from mainstream supermarket shopping, and growing the local food economy?

 

Use your blog and social media to tell the story of your business. Make it about more than just ‘units’ and ‘weights of food’, and aim for something more aspirational – your Values.  Use photography, words, infographics, videos & the great testimonials from your customers to show that you’re about supporting local farmers, delivering affordable organics, or whatever else it is that got you interested in local food delivery in the first place.  But be authentic!

Here’s some of our favourite use of Creativity in Local Food to get you started.

 

Do you have any more top tips to share?

 

You can now see the expanded version of this blog here:

#FoodRevolution Day is upon us!

Bucky Box is supporting Food Revolution DayToday, thousands of people around the world are taking to the streets, to workplaces, to schools, and to the internet, to celebrate Food Revolution Day.

 

“Food Revolution Day on 19 May is a chance for people who love food to come together to share information, talents and resources; to pass on their knowledge and highlight the world’s food issues. All around the globe, people will work together to make a difference. Food Revolution Day is about connecting with your community through events at schools, restaurants, local businesses, dinner parties and farmers’ markets. We want to inspire change in people’s food habits and to promote the mission for better food and education for everyone.”

 

Food Revolution Day was kicked off by the effervescent Jamie Oliver, who has been working hard since his early days as a celebrity chef, to train his passions on creating a better relationship between individuals, communities and food. We have a lot of respect for Jamie’s work on social enterprise projects such as Fifteen, Ministry of Food, and Kitchen Garden Project.

 

We decided we wanted to get involved, to lend our voice and our creativity to the Food Revolution, to support the vision of a global population which is better educated about food.  We joined Google, Spotify, IDEO, & Twitter, in pledging our company’s part in the food revolution – after all, we’re all about creating the tools for a better food system.

Bucky Box has pledged to be part of the Food Revolution - this year we'll be capturing the Farmer's Market through the lens.This year, we’ve committed to supporting better food in the workplace, and more food education for individuals in our networks.  We’re also wanting to train our creative talents on 19th May, on capturing the buzz in the local food movement.  We’re going to be out and about in Wellington, New Zealand, grabbing some of the excitement, colours, textures & delicious looking food at the Hill Street Farmers Market.

 

The only question left really, is ‘What are you going to be doing for Food Revolution Day?’.

How could you argue with a man this passionate about a better food system?

 

You can follow our day’s adventures on Facebook & Twitter – and we’ve fired up a Storify too to celebrate the #FoodRevolution internet action.

Locally sourced ingredients make up the topping for a #FoodRevolution Day celebration

Our photos of #FoodRevolution Day are up on Facebook here now.

 

Or, follow the Storify here, as it evolves:

[View the story “#FoodRevolution Day through the eyes of Bucky Box” on Storify]

#FoodRevolution Day through the eyes of Bucky Box

Celebrating the world wide day of action for better education about Food.Bring on the #FoodRevolution!!

Storified by Bucky Box · Thu, May 17 2012 23:46:05

Foodista
The media, celebrities, and the social networks are a’buzz with stories of the inaugural Food Revolution Day!
Food Revolution Day: Jamie Oliver hits 488 citiesFood crusader Jamie Oliver has succeeded in recruiting 800000 people to participate in his inaugural Food Revolution Day which is set tak…
Food Revolution DayThis Saturday, May 19, will be the first-ever global Food Revolution Day. I can not tell you how proud I am that we have more than 500 ci…
What are you doing for #foodrevolution day? Join me and @JamieOliver & stand up for real food!<http://foodrevolutionday.comGwyneth Paltrow
Check out the lovely @gennarocontaldo supporting #FoodRevolution day in London! http://foodrevolutionday.com http://pic.twitter.com/rRFEPiVDFood Revolution
In the U.S., more people die from diet-related disease every year than drugs, alcohol and war combined http://bit.ly/JVogMH #foodrevolutionRobyn O’Brien
sf.funcheap.com
Why a Food Revolution?
Jamie Oliver’s TED award speech.jamieoliver
RT @thelostescapist: @Live4TheMomentz "These fries taste…potatoey!" xD #bestmoment #foodrevolutionCaitlin DaSilva
Food Revolution Day, May 19jamiesfoodrevolution
What have YOU got planned for Food Revolution Day?
RT @jamieoliver: Check out the amazing #FoodRevolution menu at the UCLA cafeteria on may 19th!! http://pic.twitter.com/NeiujYwLPattycakes
Food Revolution Day Google Hangout With Jamie Oliverjamiesfoodrevolution
*siapin cangkul* RT @putisafira: @IDberkebun akan meramaikan #FoodRevolution #Jakarta http://yfrog.com/odi7cpFerry Arta Kusuma
Looking forward to getting stuck into #FoodRevolution Day here in NZ this weekend! Farmers Market Photography mission!! cc @FoodRevBucky Box
"I can not tell you how proud I am that we have more than 500 cities in 57 countries… standing up for real food." http://huff.to/JjpbIMFood Revolution
Remember this? http://bit.ly/crRiXe My buddy @JamieOliver is going global with it for @FoodRev Day on sat. U in?Ryan Seacrest
We partnered with Jamie Oliver’s first @FoodRev Day on May 19 to inspire change in food education. To learn more, visit http://bit.ly/HmW5ldChangeLab Solutions
Some amazing Food Revolutionary dinners happening across America this wknd for a lucky few. Hurry and grab your seat!! https://www.grubwithus.com/foodrevolutionJamie Oliver
Join @JamieOliver to bring back food education. $25 can educate a class. Host a dinner with cities worldwide May 19 http://foodrevolutionday.com/Food Revolution
RT @AlDmanii: Food revolution day ثورة الأغذية #uaeu #foodRevolutionUAEU #foodRev #foodRevolution http://yfrog.com/gyjmmvpjcute
43 milhões de crianças abaixo dos 5 anos estão com sobrepeso 19/Maio @FoodRev @jamieoliver farão um movimento #Foodrev http://pic.twitter.com/HeEfNlVgLucilia Diniz portal
Recipes abound throughout the Food Revolution Community!  Check out more on Jamie Oliver’s recipes page here: http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes
Yummy thanks to @jamieoliver oh and the stolen/borrowed recipe book @claresandford #foodrevolution http://pic.twitter.com/KGW3SXszMichelle Sandford
Join the NYC Chinatown Dumpling Tour this Sat in support of Food Revolution Day! http://bch.me/xrvLX1 #foodrevolution #NYCDumplingMark Birch

Vegetable Box Schemes, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), Food Hubs & Farmers Markets… cutting through the Local Food jargon

When you spend your time with local foodies, work on the local food movement, or simply live and breathe the community food systems, you inevitably end up talking the lingo.

A self-sustaining local food initiative in Paraguay

Check out communityfoodenterprise.org

We realised that a lot of people have never actually come across the local food movement, and as such have no idea what some of these terms actually mean, so we decided to give you a bit of a glossary of local food, to explain some of the food movement’s jargon.

 

So far we’ve come across a few different types of local food enterprises, and generally they’re very much characterised by passionate individuals or communities which extol the virtues of local-ness.

 

Why? Well, to those who think a lot about this stuff, local food means a few things:

  • Local – our current food system is highly energy intensive as we move our food around large distances to meet ‘any food, any time’ expectations that supermarkets have built up. If we re-connect out food producers & consumers, then we drastically reduce the costs, environmental impacts, and energy use of our food system.  We also support our local farmers, our local economies, and really – everyone that should win, wins…
  • Fresh – the less far the food has to travel, the less need for keeping things fresh artificially, post-harvest ripening, or expensive & energy hungry cold storage. Several studies show that as soon as food is harvested, nutrients decrease – so the further the fork is from the farm, the less goodness you get from your food.
  • Natural / Good – a lot, but not all, local food enterprises are very focused on Organic food production. That means no oil-based chemical fertilisers which destroy the soil, it means no chemicals sprayed onto your food to kill insects, and of course, it therefore means no chance of those nasty chemicals entering your body because of the food you eat and lingering around doing damage to you & your family. A lot of the smaller scale farming (by which we mean those who don’t see the need for miles on miles of mono-cropping) use sustainable/regenerative farming methods – ones which ensure the soil has nutrients for years to come, rather than stripping them of their health and relying on artificial, chemical fertilisers to grow things.
  • Fair – the burgeoning Community Supported Agriculture (more about that term later) model was founded on the basis of giving the farmers a fair go. That could be guaranteeing demand (buying a ‘share’ in the year’s harvest, whatever that may be), helping out around the farm, or even paying up front so the farm doesn’t carry all the risk.
  • Direct – if you know your farmer, and they know you, do you really have the need for a supermarket? Do you really agree with the incredible profits which supermarkets are making, year on year, whilst farmers are being squeezed, and us consumers are paying higher prices too? Many people have decided to go direct, get a better deal, and support their local farmer too.
  • Community – some, not all, enterprises are based very much in their communities. Whether it’s your friendly vege box delivery scheme dropping boxes at your door with personalised recipes, community supported agriculture schemes with their skills workshops, or food hubs which seek to connect the cities a little closer to the farms which produce their food, many of them seek to bring us that little step closer to where our food comes from, how it’s grown, who grew it and why it’s important to know that.

 

So, lets have a little look at these mysterious Local Food enterprises then.

 

Vegetable Box Delivery schemes

Fresh seasonal produce deliveryHave you ever had vegetables delivered to your door? Not by a supermarket, at supermarket rates, but by someone who’s gone to the trouble to get together a box of tasty seasonal vegetables, and deliver them to you direct. They come in many forms – the ‘mystery box’, the ‘à la carte’, and ‘the hybrid’;

  • Mystery – whatever the ‘in season produce’ is, perhaps taking into account your likes & dislikes, delivered to your door – pure & simple.
  • à la carte – you get the choice of what’s in your box a bit like an online grocery store; choose from whatever seasonal produce is available that week – if you really dislike several vegetables, then this might be your best bet.
  • Hybrid – some people do a bit of a mix of the two – the majority of the box is pre-defined like a Mystery box, but you can add extra items such as organic lamb, whole milk, and fair trade coffee. The best of both worlds? Beats going to the supermarket if you ask me!

 

One of the fundamental ideas about Vege Box Schemes, is that they make life easy. You get a beautiful box of vegetable delivered to your door, without stepping foot in the bright lights of the supermarket – you can support organics / local food, without making any real changes to your life, other than buying the bulk of your weekly food (presuming you eat fruit & vegetables….) direct from a local scheme.

 

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

Beetroot, Carrots, Onions, Heirloom varieties at Farmers Market

Image borrowed from Crossing Borders (check out their CSA story): http://bit.ly/9WYkbt

In a nutshell, Community Supported Agriculture is about the community supporting farmers by paying for the season in advance to take the financial risk away from the farmer and help them budget. Here’s a blog from ‘Vegetables for Breakfast’ about the positives of joining a CSA.  But, every community seems to establish their CSA differently, but here some of the basic premises of the CSA model:

  • Pledge – the commitment by individuals / families to buy a share in the harvest of one or more farmers. This can have a couple of benefits; the farmer is guaranteed that they will have a buyer for their food, and the farmer knows their full-season budget so can plan accordingly. This cuts down on a lot of the ‘waste’ of the food system – no need for marketing, storage, loan repayments, reduced cost of delivery, etc!
  • Risk & Reward sharing – chew on this question – why is it ok for us to load all of the risk of a bad harvest onto the farmer? That’s a central thing the CSA model aims to address – by sharing the risks of the harvest failing, the community engaged with the farmer also stand the chance of sharing the bounty if the harvest is unexpectedly good – for no extra cost.
  • Community Involvement – many farmers yearn to have their customers understand some of their dilemmas. This system often gets the community directly involved in the farm – helping plant, harvest & maintain the crops. The community often learn skills, socialise, and enjoy the connection to environment whilst there. By having the community involved, they can also have an impact on the production methods used – hence why so many CSA’s support farms growing organics, biodynamics & even some using permaculture principles or biological agriculture principles. Often the community is also involved in the distribution – either dividing up the weekly shares and delivering to friends, or all swinging by a central location to pick up their own lot.

 

Community Supported Fisheries (CSF)

Flickr.com/thelexicon

Based on the same model as the above CSA’s, comes the Community Supported Fishery. The morals & ethics stay the same – support the food ‘producer’ and get food direct to the people.

 

CSF’s are springing up in North America, you can see some examples here:

 

Restaurant Supported Agriculture (RSA)

Here’s a new term for you, or perhaps not. But we’ve been reflecting on big buyers of food – be they cafe’s, restaurants, or even larger institutions like catering companies & food supply contractors.  If these enterprises jumped on board too, we would increase the demand for small scale agriculture massively.  Take the essentials of Community Supported Agriculture (pledge to buy harvest and risk & reward sharing) and apply it to restaurants supporting farmers – we’re in no doubt it’s already happening, but a movement could form pretty quickly around this idea.  Coalitions of willing cafes & restaurants engaging farmers for people & planet friendly food production – what a beautiful vision!

 

Food Hubs

See how local food hubs can nurture regional food systems

Check out the awesome localfoodhub.org!

Here’s on of the models we’re really enjoying watching emerging. Food Hubs.

 

A visual description of local food hubs & regional food enterprisesFood Hubs can take several forms, but they often embody the values of both CSA and Vegetable Box Schemes. Food Hubs such as Food Connect & CERES Fair Food in Australia, are modelling what a community based, fair, healthy, local, direct, sustainable food distribution service can be.

Food Hubs take the values of CSA’s – fair prices for farmers, guarantee them customers, support people & planet friendly food production methods (organic/near organic). They take the values of Vege Box schemes – easy, delivered to your door, accessible to city folk. Food Hubs mash the models together, enabling local food enterprises to take your support for planet & people friendly food to a whole new ethical & sustainable level.

 

We see Food Hubs as a key part in the puzzle when it comes to both urban and rural food distribution, whereby people can have as much or as little involvement in the farming side of things, and still get great quality produce at an affordable price.

 

Often food hubs see a key part of their job as educating their customers a little about where their food comes from – whether it’s flyers with info about the farms, stickers, or even full QR code food traceability.

 

You can find out more about Food Hubs at the National Good Food Network : Food Hub Center.

 

Farmers Markets

Farmers Markets are a rich part of the local food movement

Check out Farmers Markets NZ

When the farmers come to town, that’s when the magic happens! Farmers Markets are a delightful variety of colours, smells, tastes & textures where you can meet the farmers who produced the goods. Often the stall holders are the producers themselves – make sure you check out your local market!

 

So with all these choices, the question really only remains, which one works for you?

 

But then, there’s one more option beginning to emerge. It’s the Food Portal – a web service which connects farmers with consumers via the interwebs. Sadly these services seem to do little to bring farms & consumers closer together at the moment, but we’ll see how these develop – there’s definitely some things they could do to ensure people are still connected to their food, who produces it, how & why they use that process.

 

Food Portals

There’s various organisations popping up online & on mobile technology to take up the opportunity that new technology is enabling.  These organisations are providing mapping, connections & other resources which make local food possible, and are creating online marketplaces  where people can buy their food.  These organisations like Local Harvest, Sustaination, Real Time Farms, Locavore, and Local Harvest Australia are creating new markets for small scale farmers & urban agriculturists – exciting times.

 

All in all, there’s a remarkable amount of choice out there to get you moving towards people & planet friendly food.

There’s also some great organisations out there who are doing wonders in terms of education, advocacy & research into the local food movement. We decided early on, that we’re going to support these people – we love their work, and want to support it – though sometimes they don’t have a sustainable business model. So here’s where our Local Food Champions fund comes in : divert a percentage of our proceeds to these organisations to support their invaluable work – we call it closing the loop. Every little helps right?

Here’s our current partners:

Food Connect Foundation
Permaculture Research Institute
The Dirt Doctor
Soil & Health Association

 

So get out there, and enjoy your food & enjoy it local!

Find local food on your mobile

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