Growing/Eating Locally – Fall Fair Booth – We’re On !!

A meeting to plan the Fall Fair booth was held at Arrowvale Farm last Thursday evening, July 22nd. Food groupies Bob and Ann Collins, John Mayba and Edna Cox, and Janae Schiller, agricultural apprentice at Arrowvale, attended.
The goal: to encourage the public to grow, purchase and eat locally produced food. Why? Because doing so is better for our health, nutrition, environment, economy, community and food security.
The challenge: Alberni Valley used to grow 85& of its own food; now, 3 – 5 %.
We could achieve 75 % once again. What has to happen here to reach 75 %?
– Grow as much as you can yourself. Support local growers. Buy locally grown.
– Become willing to pay a fair price to support sustainable agriculture here.
Elements of the booth, so far:
– Eye-catching sign and display outside to attract visitors (farm implement, tractor ??)
– Large map showing all agricultural land in the Valley, as displayed at 2009 Fall Fair (Ann)
– World map using pictures to show where foods are imported from, and their carbon footprint as compared to locally grown food (John)
– Food Directory (click-on web page), being developed by Chris Alemany, to show locations where local food can be purchased ( farmgate, farmers’ markets..)
After discussion, we decided that, to be featured in the directory, the seller must offer at least some locally grown food. If only some, then that local food must be clearly signed or labelled as such at point of sale. Locally grown means grown within the boundaries of the ACRD.
– “Eating in Season in the Alberni Valley” – a calendar showing when locally grown foods are available here (John)
– Display of local produce (Ann)
– Demonstration to encourage home, urban, community gardening (Ann and John)
(series: veggie peelings to composting to soil to sowing to lettuce)
– Large historical photos, as displayed at 2009 Forum on Agriculture (Edna)
– Current photos of farmers’ markets (John ) and local farms (contributed??)
– Sale of “I EWat Locally Grown” bumper stickers
– Brochures / information on Transition Towns and AVTTS, including work already underway
– Notice of AVTTS Film Nights – suggestion for October as follow-up to the booth: “Food Inc.”
– Advertising of Family Farm Tours later in September (John)
– Posters – facts and figures, e.g. % of local agricultural land actually farmed, etc.
(Everyone can contribute to this research).
– Information / brochures about Farmers’ Institute, Century Farms, Farmers’ Market etc. (Everyone)
_ Your suggestions and contricutions !!!!
Help will be needed to man/woman the booth during the fair: September 9th through 12th. Times TBA.
Please contact Edna ox 723-8362 or via this site to signal your willingness to volunteer.

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