Locavore News — World

 

USDA Built The Dataset & Map, Now You Can Design a Farmers Market App!

Today we’re pleased to announce a new mapping feature on the USDA National Farmers Market Directory. This feature allows you to pull up state-by-state maps of farmers markets listed in the USDA National Farmers Market Directory and zoom in to see detailed location. Information about farmers markets is easily accessed via convenient hotlinks right from the map. The Directory is also searchable by state, county, zip code and participation in federal nutrition assistance programs, such as the Women, Infants and Children program or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Results from the USDA National Farmers Market Directory are based on voluntary reporting from farmers market managers. As part of the our dedication to open government, transparency and providing high-value data to citizens, we are proud to offer a raw data set from the USDA National Farmers Market Directory on Data.gov. This data set is perfect for app designers and researchers to develop even more sophisticated or fine-tuned uses of the USDA Farmers Market Directory. The data set, which includes farmers market names and physical street locations, is available as a downloadable Excel file. USDA blog. USDA National Farmers Market Directory.

 

New Book Explains Why Big Cities Back Hometown Food

As a local food enthusiast, I often wonder: why is it that places most removed in their landscape from farms, most outward-turning in their economy, most cosmopolitan in their culture, most multicultural in their backgrounds, most futuristic in their outlook — North American cities such as San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Chicago, Toronto, New York and Boston — are the very places where something as seemingly rural, parochial, homespun and old-fashioned as local food is so very hot. Wayne Roberts review of The Wealth and Poverty of Regions: Why Cities Matter.

 

The Rise of the Lazy Locavore

There could hardly be a loftier culinary class than that of the locavore, a movement whose members eschew food grown outside a 100-mile radius of their homes. With copious outputs of money and labor, locavores earn bragging rights (we put up 50 jars of beets!), complaining rights (we went without wheat all winter!) and the right to believe they are doing their part to save the planet (we support local farms by paying $10 a pound for cherries!). But James Lucal in Seattle has them all beat. He not only brings home the local produce, he got a local to grow it for him directly outside his home. And yet he spent almost nothing for this luxury, and lifted not so much as a trowel to make it happen. The Wall Street Journal article.

 

Food for Life Partnership

The Food for Life Partnership is a network of schools and communities across England committed to transforming food culture. They aim to reach out through schools to give communities access to seasonal, local and organic food, and to the skills they need to cook and grow fresh food. The programme is in association with The Soil Association and other organisations. Website.

 

Windowfarmers, an Open Source Community Developing Hydroponic Edible Gardens for Urban Windows

his site is the online community of windowfarmers around the world. Together, we are continually getting better at growing food in the local conditions of our own homes. We are contributing to the “green revolution” as non-experts. We call it R&D-I-Y, or research and develop it yourself. We use this site to collaborate on evolving designs for these vertical hydroponic systems– proposing experiments, testing techniques, and developing a shared knowledge base around the many variables involved in building and maintaining a farm inside a city apartment. Website.  Food & Tech Connect interview with founder, Britta Riley.

 

A Crop Sprouts Without Soil or Sunshine

On the rooftop garden at St. Philip’s Academy, a private school in Newark, students tend plots of everything from broccoli and beets to sweet corn and spaghetti squash. But since August, they have also been helping to farm arugula, chervil, fun jen and komatsuna in a machine installed in a fourth-floor science classroom that grows crops without soil or sunshine. Made by the Ithaca, N.Y., company AeroFarms, the aeroponic growing system is owned by EcoVeggies, a startup formed by three former Wall Street technology workers who aim to transform Newark’s abandoned and vacant buildings into so-called vertical farms. The New York Times story.

 

New Liberty City Farmers’ Market opening in Miami

In Miami-Dade County, we have lost many farms to development and other pressures, so there just aren’t enough farmers for local markets. To help with this problem, we are asking home gardeners to plant a few extra rows to sell at our market. If you have produce, please contact us to either come to market and sell it, or sell or donate to us for sale in a terribly under-served inner-city area. There are lots of nice folks there who deserve, good, clean, healthy food! Urban Oasis Project post.

 

Oxford Local Bread (UK)

There is a growing demand in the Oxford region for high quality bread that is baked locally using flour that is also grown locally in an ecologically sustainable manner. Most of the bread consumed in Oxford is baked outside the region, or is delivered to shops and supermarkets pre-mixed for in-store baking. Few local bakers use locally grown flour, and most of the flour (both conventional and organic) produced in the region is milled from imported grain. Yet, high quality bread flour can be grown here. Oxford Bread Group website.

 

News from Edible Whitstable

“Edible Whitstable”, the newsletter of the Transition Town Whitstable Food Group, is one year old!! Its readership is growing; please help us spread the word further by forwarding to friends and other parties interested in local and ethical growing and eating. Much has happened in Whitstable during this past year. Our food group has gone from strength to strength; the Farmers’ Market gets better and better (see What’s On for details), and our public raised beds growing project – Edible Whitstable @ the Library – is well established with community planting, maintaining and harvesting sessions. Transition Town Whitstable blog.

 

Locally sourced meats among top menu trends for 2011

Locally sourced meats, healthy children’s dishes and food trucks will be among the hot trends in food service next year, according to a survey of 1,500 chefs by the National Restaurant Association. The professional chefs in the survey also identified sustainability, back-to-basics cuisine, farm-branded ingredients and gluten-free/food allergy-conscious items as top menu themes in the year ahead. Meatingplace Online story (requires membership – free).

 

Technology helps Meyer Natural Foods bond with consumers

Meyer Natural Foods recently became the first processor to bring technology not usually associated with meat and poultry into the meat case. As Chris Anderson, director of marketing at the Lexington, Ky.-based Meyer explained, using Microsoft Tag barcode technology on the packaging of its Meyer Natural Beef can foster new connections with customers. The 2D barcode allows shoppers to scan the package label with their smart phones and get additional information about the product. The initial program launches a 20-second video that helps shoppers understand what its natural beef offers that plays through the phone. Meatingplace Online story (requires membership – free).

 

AND IF YOU HAVE TIME

World Clock: clock.

 

Founding Foodies

Subject: When the going gets tough, the tough get going… to the kitchen for food. Then along comes the holiday season and our escapism becomes an obsession that leads us to ask… How did we become a nation of foodies? Topics include a look a Colonial era menus; the impact founders Franklin, Jefferson and Washington had on the young nation’s food chain; and how the founders began a foodie tradition that shaped the nation’s character. Guests: Dave DeWitt, author of Founding Foodies. The Food Chain radio program.

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