Date: December 4th-11th
Location: at your favorite restaurants and stores
Of course we think every week should be “eat local week,” but Edible Austin’s Eat Local Week, their winter fundraiser event, is an invitation to Central Texans to explore and celebrate the abundance of local food and to raise money for Urban Roots, a youth development program that uses sustainable agriculture as a means to transform the lives of young people and to increase the access of healthy food in Austin.
When you intend to eat local it may be more challenging than you realized to find restaurants and markets that truly support local farmers and food artisans. We’d like to offer you a few questions to ask to determine if you are actually eating local.
- How often does your menu change? (Frequent changes are good. It usually means they are working with seasonal harvests)
- Can you highlight some of the locally-sourced items on your menu/in your store?
- How often do you feature and/or promote local foods?
- How does your restaurant/market define local?
- Where does your restaurant/market get local food? (direct from farm, 3rd party, or grocery store?)
- Is the local food you purchase certified organic?
- We prefer eating humanely raised, pastured meats. Do you know if your meats are raised this way?
Encourage more Local Food
Be sure to voice your desires for local food to your server, chef, or market owner. Don’t hesitate to let them know that you are more likely to be a loyal patron and promote their business if they feature more local, organic choices.
If you are not the assertive type but you still want to make the most sensible choices the Environmental Working Group publishes a wallet guide and iphone app that recommends avoiding the “Dirty Dozen,” a list of conventionally grown fruits and vegetables (that test positive for as many as 67 chemicals) in favor of the “Clean 15.”