Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What's New - Sept 10

Media Outreach
Will and I get phone calls daily from media interested in speaking with 100 mile dieters. The coverage has been fantastic! We have connected media across Manitoba to many of you; a big thanks to all of you who have been interviewed - we really appreciate it! We would love to broaden the diversity of people being interviewed still more. So if you are willing to be interviewed about your experiences during the next 100 days please let us know asap (jenniferdegroot@yahoo.ca). Prior media experience is not required but if you do have some do mention that. Also, if we don't know you, please let us know something about yourself. Finally, if you can speak any other languages (particularly French) also let us know.
Thanks again!

Update on lentils and a bit about beans
I have been inundated with lentil orders. Great! Since many of you have asked the same questions I will answer them all together. The lentils are not organic. I had a good conversation with the farmer, Ron Knight, about the whole organic industry. As an organic farmer myself I have many questions about the value of organic certification as does he. We both agreed that a relationship of trust with the farmer is the most important guarantee of a trustworthy product. This can only occur when we buy local and directly from farmers; no label can guarantee that, not even organic, which has turned into more of a brand name than a guarantee of good farming practices. Ron said that he sprayed the lentils for weeds about 3 weeks after seeding. They were sprayed again just prior to harvest though not with an insecticide or pesticide, just something to kill the plant, otherwise they'd just keep growing and be impossible to harvest. He was proud to report that his lentils are beautiful and taste great. The cost is 26 cents/lb.

Some of you mentioned Roy Legumex as another source of lentils and beans as well as Eidse Farms and Brueggeman. Eidse buys from Legumex and the majority of Bruegemann's products come from elsewhere (not Manitoba, more likely Saskatchewan). Legumex is the big bean & lentil distributor in Manitoba. Several of us have left messages for Legumex trying to find out where they get their product from but our calls have not been returned so far (this is their busiest time of year). I'm told that most of their product comes from Manitoba and Saskatchewan (I tell you, Saskatchewan is starting to sound like the garden of Eden).

Several of us have made a bulk order of beans from Stowe farms near Carman (listed on the 100 mile site). Their beans (pinto, kidney, black, red Mexican, navy?) come in 100 lb bags and are also not organic. My partner Will had a fascinating discussion with them about free trade, the food production industry and bean growing. Perhaps someone else has energy to organize a bulk order of local beans.

The lentils will probably arrive the weekend of Sept 15th (with Ron's son who goes to university in the city). I will arrange for them to be at a central pick-up area near downtown Winnipeg and will have a "lentil open house" one evening when you can all come by and get them. Until then if you have more orders do let me know, the sooner the better.

Thanks for your enthusiasm.

Green Party Fall Dinner
Hello 100 Milers,
My name is James Beddome, and I am council member at large with the Green Party of Manitoba. On Friday October 12th, 2007 at the Freighthouse we will be having our third annual Green Party Fall Dinner. The Dinner is a fundraising event, where we try to showcase local organic food.We would like to encourage some other community oriented groups that are encouraging local food production to come set-up displays at are fall dinner.
When preparing the menu we try to accommodate as many food choices as possible. There should be a vegan, local organic meat, and 100 mile option available.
Last years menu was primarily local (although a few of the ingredients (salt, cinnamon) may have came from outside of a 100 mile radius of Winnipeg--salt or cinnamon for instance). We will also disclose if any particular dish has a spice or ingredient that is from outside of the 100 mile radius. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door. For more information, please contact me.

SNAC 100 Mile Pot luck and music evening
St. Norbert Art Centre ( SNAC) will be hosting a 100 Mile Pot Luck on Saturday October 13 from 5PM on.. The evening will include entertainment,and a chance to spend time at a lovely spot on the outskirts of Winnipeg. If you would like to help out with the planning, or want to RSVP, please contact Fiona at 269-9272 or by email.

Eating out
Hey there.. we're just writing to let you know that we at Mondragon are going to do our utmost to do a 100 mile daily special every Saturday.
We are also attempting to have at least one menu item every day be 100mile. True to our commitment we have now a 100 mile veggie burger featuring local tomato roasted ketchup and a whole wheat 100 mile bun. Eating outjust got easier!! Our goal is to have this item available consistently , while we are developing other local options for your palette. Happy bio-regionalism!
Morgan/Mondragon Collective

Local Chickens
Hi all 100 milers and other locavores I thought I should send this out to you guys and gals to let you know that I still have a few delicious, pasture raised Manitoba chickens available. They are 2.50/lb, bagged, frozen and provincially inspected. They range in weight from 4 to 10 lbs. You can still order these birds. Its first come first served and I am running out fast (also already taking order for next summer's production) My cell 9974105, give me a call anytime between 7am and 9pm to get your hands on some chickens.

What is Local Food
Harvest Moon Festival will be featuring a panel discussion on "what is local food " on Saturday September 22 at 12:30 PM.The panel will feature a rural producer, Harvest Moon Society member,100 Mile participant and a Manitoba Food Charter staff person
To find out more about the Festival, click here.

Here are two comments from rural folks about what local means for them, and the limitations of strictly 100 mile guidelines.
"I do believe the intent of the 100 mile diet is admirable, but it really could hurt my production interests because I live more than 100 miles from Winnipeg. I hope this movement can develop another concept that will capture the vision of building direct producer to--consumer linkages that does not discriminate against rural people who happen to live more than 100 miles from an urban centre". Les-a small farmer
"Partly because of our involvement, our urban 100 miler friends are rethinking their borders. The organisers have contacted us about sourcing Boissevain grown beans, herbs and alfalfa seed. Increasingly they're saying they'll buy food from anywhere in Manitoba - that the 100 mile tag is only that, a tag to get us determining our food buying circle and to get the media's attention. What we're really talking about is intentional diets - not letting the supermarkets determine what we eat and from whom we buy." David- a sustainability advocate and 100 mile participant.

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