WEB ONLY: Farmers meet chefs to promote local food

The Guelph Wellington local food initiative is hosting a networking event for regional food producers and purchasers.

The event is about building food relationships. Chefs are typi­cally busy in the kitchen; farmers are busy in the field.  The event will bring them together to talk business. On March 2 from 2:30 to 5pm, Artisanale Café and Bistro will be buzzing.

Bob Desautels, owner of the new Borelias Bar and Grill plans to attend.

“This is an excellent idea to make the connections we need to – Borelias will be represent­ed there.”

Kevin Smith, of Smoyd Potato Farms, will be one of the keynote speakers and is happy to see more opportunities to promote his crop.

Local food is a big drawing card for customers because people want to know where there food is coming from.  More local menus are stating the sources of their food; more signs are appearing in retail stores as well.

The local food initiative is also the producer of the sought after Wellington County Buy Local Buy Fresh map.  This year will also see increased ef­forts by the initiative to increase local capacity for local food, including a website and other events. With assistance from a provincial grant, they are poised to help the different stakeholders within the local food systems work more effectively together.

“Everyone wants to see more local food on store shelv­es, restaurants and in the insti­tu­tional settings. This event is about rebuilding the middle of our food system to see more local food on local tables,” said Kate Vsetula.