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Re: E-M:/ RE: / Organic Shopping - Local Royal Oak Market

Enviro-Mich message from "Cynthia Price" <skyprice@gmail.com>

We also have a comprehensive guide to local food called West Michigan FRESH, which premiered in 2005 and is currently being updated for 2006. It lists farmers' markets, farm stands, and other direct markets, as well as retail and restaurant outlets which sell or use local food. It is accessible electronically by visiting our web site, www.foodshed.net, and clicking on 2006 Food Guide at the top of the left column. There is both a PDF version to download, and a link to a searchable version. However, it appears to search for words only if they appear in the farm title, so entering "organic" only produced two entries, though there are many more if you access their descriptions. We hope to improve the searchability this year.

There is a huge interest in local food and our guide also provides education on the environmental (and other) benefits of buying local. We gave away 20,000 copies in a heartbeat last year, many of them through the large Fulton Street Farmers' Market in Grand Rapids which we co-manage. There are a number of quotes from happy farmers and guide users on the web site, of which this is one: "There were enough people that called me because of the food guide that I have been able to expand my CSA the way I had hoped this year." - Farmer, Chad Riley - Back to the Land CSA

Which brings up another subject. A CSA farm, which stands for Community Supported Agriculture, allows people to buy shares at the beginning of the season in a farm and pick up produce as it comes in (or some deliver). The majority of CSAs I know of are farmed organically, and there is an opportunity to make informed choices about which CSA to join based on their farming practice. This is another very good way to "tread lightly on the earth."

Anyone who would like copies of the 2006 guide when it comes out in early June may contact me and I'll put you on the distribution list.

Cynthia Price
Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems Council

On 4/5/06, Anne Woiwode <Anne.Woiwode@sierraclub.org> wrote:
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Enviro-Mich message from "Anne Woiwode" <Anne.Woiwode@sierraclub.org>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Craig et al:
> Thanks for raising the importance of being able to find locally grown,
> organic foods. Another important thing for consumers to do is to request
> that the places you buy food carry what you want to buy -- locally produced,
> organic foods.  If they won't respond, buy from people who will! Here are
> some sources for local and organic foods growers and sellers Michigan:
> The Michigan Organic Food and Farm Alliance (MOFFA) has information on
> farmers' markets (http://www.moffa.org/brochures/2005market.pdf ) and other
> businesses that sell organic products
> (http://www.moffa.org/brochures/2005business.pdf )
> The Michigan Food and Farming System lists farmer markets and other
> resources at: http://www.miffs.org/index.asp  

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