Over the next few weeks, in preparation for August's Eat Local food challenge, I will be posting information, sources, and ideas about how to enjoy what our area has to offer. I speak often about how lucky we Central New Yorkers are in terms of the foods--dairy products, grass-fed meats, vegetables, breads, etc.,--that are made right in our region. So that should make eating local all the easier.
Still, it may be difficult to imagine that you might draw a circle of so many miles around your home and eat only food produced within those borders. However, I think that more than imagination what's called for is a good dose of knowledge and wisdom about the food sources that are out there. You can check the growing list of Local Food Sources on the sidebar to the left for local and regional food producers. If you know of a source that others should be aware of, please email me and I'll it to the list.
For more details about the Eat Local challenge check out the Locavores website--you can even register your participation if you'd like. You'll have the opportunity to decide just how broad your foodshed will be--you can choose a 100-mile radius or the entire state of New York. You can also decide who many of your meals will be locally sourced--will it be every meal in the month of August, or one meal a week? Finally, you can list your exemptions--which foods will you not worry about finding locally. I've listed olive oil as one of exemptions--I can't live without it and I haven't found any olive groves being harvested for oil in Central New York (though if you know of one--do let me know!) Also, Jen on her Life Begins @ Thirty blog, has some great information and resources on "the hows" of eating locally. You can check out her recommendations here.
It is my hope that the month of August will not only be a delicious month but will give us the chance to see the rich possibilities of eating locally and sustainably in Central New York.