Maritime Festival July 4

A Watershed Moment for NE Michigan’s Regional Food System

Benefit, Environment, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Molly Stepanski

America’s highly productive food system is one of its beloved accomplishments. But the environment has paid a high price for this abundance, especially our rivers, streams, and lakes. In fact, according to the EPA’s National Water Quality Inventory Report, agriculture is considered to be “the most widespread source of impairment in the nation’s assessed lake acres.” Industrial agriculture is among the leading causes of water pollution in the United States today. Data indicates this method of food production often wastes large quantities of water, even when nearby communities are experiencing water shortages (check out California’s nut production dilemma).

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Meet our new Local Food & Events Intern : Maddy Baroli

Event, Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Maddy Baroli

maddy 1Maddy is very excited to be our Local Food and Events Intern this summer! She had the chance to work closely with the team at Taste the Local Difference last year when she was serving as an Americorps VISTA for the Northwest Michigan Food and Farming Network.

Her favorite vegetable is Okra and she wishes someone in Northern Michigan would start a lentil farm already. When not representing TLD at Certified Local Food Events this summer, she will be working at Light of Day Organics tea farm on M-72, biking, dancing, or hanging out with goats wherever she can.

Stay tuned for more information about Maddy’s work this summer. Contact info@localdifference.org with questions.

Spirit of Walloon and Lakeside Farm

Lakeside Farm : A History and a Lifestyle

Bailey Samp, Environment, Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Stories

When I first sat down with Dave Skornia of Lakeside Farm, he was incredibly moved and excited to share his story with us for the 2018 Guide to Local Food. He cares deeply about his farm and homestead and I knew right away we wouldn’t be able to do it complete justice in the yearly publication. This is Dave’s personal story about the history of his homestead, his love for farming, and what he raises and sells on his farm today. His inspiring story expresses his deep passion and dedication to the land, and motivation to help beginning farmers. So I thought, who else to tell the story better than Dave himself?

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Healthy Habits Sprouting at Platte River Head Start!

Find Local Food, Get Involved, Health, Marissa Natzke, Recipes

The Head Start classrooms over at Platte River in Benzie County are instilling healthy habits in kids with help from Taste the Local Difference (TLD). Through the Building Healthy Communities (BHC) grant, this partnership is using funds to incorporate nutrition education into the Head Start curriculum. Kim Micham and Debra Rafferty at Platte River Head Start are working closely with Paula Martin, Registered Dietitian and Community Health Coordinator at Taste the Local Difference. Together, they’re creating healthy snack options that have less sodium, less sugar, more fiber, and more fruits and veggies. But, they’re not just serving up healthier options – they’re also empowering kids and their families to make healthier choices.

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Everything Rhubarb

Emma Beauchamp, Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Recipes, Spring

I am a rhubarb fanatic. I’ll eat it straight from the bush, in a pie, in a cocktail, however I can. Rhubarb is such a striking vegetable– those ruby red stalks erupting from the ground topped with their poisonous green foliage (don’t eat those!). Finding these stalks at the farmers market is one of my favorite signs of spring. 

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Pioneer Milkmaid at Van Hoosen Farm

Annette Kingsbury, Edible WOW, Find Local Food, Learn More, Southeast Michigan

A fierce battle is being waged today over the pros and cons of pasteurized milk. But in the early decades of the 20th century, improvements that could bring safer cows’ milk to market couldn’t come fast enough. One of the farms leading the way was located in Avon Township, now known as Rochester Hills. It was owned and managed by Sarah Van Hoosen Jones, a pioneer dairy farmer in Michigan.

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A Fresh Catch and What It Really Means to Eat Local Food

Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Guest Post, Sarah Peschel, Specialty Producers

Here in Northern Michigan, we have the option – and the luxury – of buying and consuming a cornucopia of raw and processed food products procured right here in the Great Lakes State.

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Pickled Radishes and Pestoed Radish Tops

Emma Beauchamp, Find Local Food, Recipes, Spring

Sweet spring is finally here. Farmers markets are brimming with greens, radishes, ramps, mushrooms, and so much more. With all of this choice available, after a loonnng winter, it’s easy to get a little over enthusiastic and fill your fridge to the brim. By condensing veggie tops into pesto and pickling veggies, you can both extend their season as well as save room in the fridge. Here are some recipes that work well with, but are not limited to radishes.

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Move Over Chia…there is a New Superfood in Town!

Farmers Markets, Guest Post, Health, Laura Noble

Move over chia, step aside quinoa, it’s time for hemp seeds to take center stage! These small but mighty seeds are a nutritional powerhouse. They contain all 9-essential amino acids which means that, unlike most grains or seeds, hemp is a complete protein. Pair that with hemp’s high rate of protein digestibility and you have a fabulous source of plant-based protein. Just 2 Tb of hemp protein powder contains 11 g of highly-digestible protein.

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Washtenaw County: Market Season is Here!

Economy, Event, Farmers Markets, Find Local Food, Get Involved, Kelly Wilson, Southeast Michigan

Spring has officially sprung and that means it is time to hit the farmers markets! Southeast Michigan boasst a large number of farmers markets and 15 of these are in Washtenaw County. As you plan your spring and summer schedule, make sure to include visits to the Washtenaw County Farmers Markets. You can find more details about these markets at washtenawmarkets.org.